Ohio Charter School Accused of Preaching Creationism to Students

The Ohio Distance & Electronic Learning Academy, a “non-sectarian” online charter school that receives taxpayer funding, apparently teaches Creationism to students.

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The Freedom From Religion Foundation recently sent a letter to the school’s superintendent Dr. David Bowlin explaining the concerns and asking him to put a stop to it.

the school’s biology classes include a unit on “biogenesis” that teaches the biblical view of creation. The class readings for this unit reportedly include young earth creationist Walter Brown’s book “In the Beginning: Compelling Evidence for Creation and the Flood,” a book promoted exclusively by Brown’s own religious ministry, the Center for Scientific Creation.

Teaching creationism or any of its offshoots, such as intelligent design, in a public school is unlawful, because creationism is not based in fact, FFRF reminds the Academy.

“Courts have routinely found that such teachings are religious, despite many new and imaginative labels given to the alternatives,” FFRF Staff Attorney Sam Grover writes to Ohio Distance & Electronic Learning Academy Superintendent David Bowlin. “The Supreme Court has struck down the teaching of ‘scientific creationism’ in public schools. And federal courts consistently reject other efforts to undermine evolution or to supplement its teaching with religious ideology in the public schools.”

You would think the leaders of a charter school would already go out of their way to make sure everything they do is on the up and up because of the additional scrutiny they often receive. The fact that a parent of a child at the school alerted FFRF to this problem is disturbing, in part because it suggests Creationism would still be taught there if no one had stepped in.

There’s absolutely no reason a religious explanation of our origins — one that has zero evidence backing it up — belongs in a public school.

(Image via Shutterstock)

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