I replied to that post, quoting the Ontario curriculum and pointing out that it was pretty damn good when it comes to evolution [Teaching evolution in Ontario Schools]. The curriculum concentrates on fundamental principles of evolution as they apply to all species. It does not cover any details of the history of life per se. It doesn't specifically mention the evolution of whales, or birds, or any other lineage. It doesn't say which examples have to be included in the classroom instruction. It refers frequently to the fact that humans are not different than any other animals when it comes to biology.
Jerry take this to mean that detailed descriptions of human evolution are specifically excluded and he now claims that this is due to government policy [Ontario school officials respond—or rather, fail to respond—to queries about why they don’t require teaching human evolution].
Until I learn otherwise, then—and the Ministry of Education hasn’t seen fit to answer my letter—I’m going to assume that Ontario doesn’t require the teaching of human evolution because it’s giving a sop to creationists. Of course some enlightened teachers will go ahead and teach about our own species in the evolution unit anyway, but the point is that that isn’t required. Bowing to “cultural sensitivity”, the government of Ontario says it’s ok to prevent children from learning what is probably the most important thing about their own species.Just about everyone who has ever taken biology in Ontario, and everyone who has ever taught it, is telling Jerry that he is wrong. Human evolution is covered in class as a good example of evolutionary concepts.
This jibes with the experience of my own children and with the three different high schools that invited me to talk about evolution. It's also consistent with the views of several colleagues (university professors) who were involved in creating the curriculum. Members of the Ontario Legislature, including the Minister of Education who I've met, are not creationists, nor are they sympathetic to creationism. The professors and teachers at the Ontario Institute for studies in Education (OISE) (part of the University of Toronto) are not creationists and are not sympathetic to creationists. I been to many talks at OISE and I've met many of the people who are in charge of designing and implementing school curricula.
I don't know why Jerry Coyne is ignoring all of the advice he's getting from people who live in Ontario and who know that he is misrepresenting the teaching of evolution in this province. It's very disappointing to see him behave like that.