Augusta County School BoardDivision Superintendent: Dr. Eric Bond
Angela DeitzInstructional Supervisor
TO: Middle School and High School Science Teachers
FROM: Angela Deitz, Instructional Supervisor: STEM (6-12)
SUBJECT: Controversial Topics in ScienceThe responsibility of an Augusta County Public School science teacher is to provide students with quality science education based upon the Virginia Science Standards of Learning and the county curriculum guide for each grade level and/or subject area.
Environmental topics are taught within the context of elementary, middle and high school curriculum, and presented through scientific evidence. Teachers are aware that environmental topics are a blend of science, policy, economics and human impacts. It can be helpful to separate these into three distinct sub-topics. First, present the science objectively, using data and relevant examples. Next, discuss the policy and economic issues related to this topic. Once those subjects are covered thoroughly, students will often be interested to learn what their own personal stake may be.
The theory of evolution (how populations of plants and animals change over time) is taught within the context of 7th grade Life Science, Earth Science, and Biology and presented through scientific evidence. Teachers should emphasize evolution in a manner commensurate with its importance as a unifying concept in science. Teachers should not advocate any religious interpretations of the natural world and should remain nonjudgmental regarding the personal beliefs of students.