Idaho legislature votes to remove climate change from new science education standards

Lawmakers in Idaho voted to adopt new science standards for the state, but chose to remove key references to climate science.

The vote came just days after public testimony from students and teachers overwhelmingly supported including climate science in the public school standards.

“At what point do we trust our teachers?” Rep. Sally Toone, a Democrat who voted against removing the climate references, said during a House Education Committee hearing. “We have great teachers and they have spent thousands of hours on this document.”

The document, known as the Idaho Content Standards, includes key metrics for students from kindergarten through high school. Lawmakers voted to remove all supporting science content included in the standards, which often went into more detail about human-caused climate change.

The lawmakers also voted to remove one paragraph from the state’s performance standards that asked students to be able to “describe that energy and fuels are derived from natural resources and their uses affect the environment.” Examples of how fuels affect the environment included “air pollution from burning of fossil fuels.”

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