To the editor:
I spent the night in Dodge City recently and The Dodge City Daily Globe, on Nov. 14, printed on their front page both the new and the old definitions of science in the standards for public schools in Kansas. I was astounded at the difference between the two definitions.
One is, "Science is the human activity of seeking natural explanations for what we observe in the world around us." The other definition is, "Science is a systematic method of continuing investigation that uses observations, hypothesis testing, measurement, experimentation, logical argument and theory building to lead to more adequate explanations of natural phenomena."
The bad news for you folks who are bewailing how backward and fundamentalist the Kansas State Board of Education is, is that the second definition with all that about observation, measurement, experimentation, logical argument, etc. is the new one. It looks to me like the first definition is the one which would, in the words of Tony Miller's Dec. 5 letter, "eliminate all those bothersome educational credentials as a barrier to participation in the field" (of science).
Sorry, folks, but I think the Kansas State Board of Education raised the standards of scientific teaching to a wonderfully acceptable level compared to the current definition. Furthermore, I think and would hope that they are all re-elected with much gratitude for their courage in raising the standards of science education in Kansas.
Teresa A. Gordon,