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Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District

Trial transcript: Day 8 (October 12), AM Session, Part 1


THE COURT: Be seated, please. All right, good morning to all, and welcome back for our next day of trial. We have, we're mid-examination I guess, and we can have our witness back on the stand, and I believe we're on cross, is that correct?

MR. GILLEN: That's correct, Your Honor.

THE COURT: All right.

(Bertha Spahr was recalled to the stand.)

MR. GILLEN: Judge, may I approach the witness for the purpose of providing a separate binder?

THE COURT: You may.


Q. Good morning, Mrs. Spahr.

A. Good morning.

Q. Pat Gillen, we met at your deposition. I'm going to ask you a few questions today about the trial testimony you gave last week. Before I do that, I'd just like to ask you have you consulted with anyone about your testimony last week in-between being released from trial?

A. No.

Q. Thank you very much. You did so at advice of plaintiff's counsel?

A. And my own counsel.

Q. Oh, good. I thank all of you for respecting that integrity of the process. Mrs. Spahr, I'd like to start my questioning of you with just a few questions about the 2003 year. It's correct, is it not, that during that year the science department learned that the purchase of the science text would be delayed due to fiscal considerations?

A. Yes.

Q. And there was a notion expressed in connection with that that the texts appeared to be in good and usable condition?

A. That's correct.

Q. We have had some discussion about a memo from Dr. Peterman that was created and it recounted a conversation that you and Dr. Peterman had, and I just want to make sure I have the details of that straight in the record. When you had that discussion with Dr. Peterman, it was about instruction in biology class?

A. That's correct.

Q. And you were the head of the science department at that time?

A. Yes.

Q. And Dr. Peterman was the principal for the high school, is that correct?

A. At that time, yes.

Q. And if I'm correct, you had brought to her your concern about a possible change to the biology curriculum?

A. Yes.

Q. And you told her it related to creationism, correct?

A. That's correct.

Q. Now, before you spoke with Dr. Peterman you had spoken with your science faculty?

A. Yes.

Q. And based on that you told Dr. Peterman that creationism per se was not taught because it was not within the state standards?

A. That's correct.

Q. You told her that the teachers mentioned that another theory of evolution was creationism, but they did not teach it, is that correct?

A. That's correct.

Q. And that's what the teachers had told you?

A. Yes.

Q. At this time Jen Miller was the veteran biology teacher?

A. Yes.

Q. And she explained to you that teachers would mention creationism as an alternate to Darwin's theory?

A. Yes.

Q. And she also told you that we tell the students if they want to talk about that they should talk to their pastors, correct?

A. Pastors or their families.

Q. That's right. And they did that because they knew that the subject was controversial and they wanted to treat it properly?

A. Yes.

Q. In addition the teachers would sometimes point students to books on the subjects, correct?

A. They referenced the reference section of the library if they had additional questions.

Q. Okay. And if I'm correct, at the end of that conversation with Dr. Peterman as reflected in the memo she told you to tell the science teachers just keep what they're doing, correct?

A. Continue what we had done in the past.

Q. Thank you for correcting my imprecise sentence. All right. Now, you discussed with Dr. Peterman some of the concerns you had about this notion of perhaps working creationism into the biology curriculum, correct?

A. Yes, I did.

Q. And one of those concerns was just a practical consideration of time constraints, the teachers were already pressed for time trying to present the state standard material, and how would another subject be worked in, correct?

A. That's correct.

Q. Now, at the board meetings in 2004, I'm taking you forward to -- well, actually let's look at 2003. Do you recall Barrie Callahan making mention of the notion that the students in biology didn't have books?

A. Yes, I do.

Q. And although she expressed that concern, I know it wasn't technically accurate that they didn't have books, correct?

A. They did not have books for one year, and there was a good reason for that, and the curriculum was basically realigned to meet the state standards, and we had in one year all of 9th grade and 10th grade taking biology, four hundred students with two hundred books.

Q. Right. So in a sense what she was getting at and what you're saying is that no text was assigned to each student?

A. That's correct.

Q. But they did have texts that they used as classroom texts?

A. There were classroom sets available, and there were also books available if any student wished to take a book home.

Q. And during the period when you were realigning instruction to meet the new state standards, two grades were taking biology?

A. That's correct.

Q. And that's what accounts for the practice of the classroom sets as opposed to assigning?

A. Yes.

Q. One other feature of the new state standards was that they redistributed in some ways some topics among different subjects, correct?

A. Yes. Classification was removed from what we now taught in the 9th grade biology curriculum book to the middle school in life science, that area.

Q. Okay.

A. And ecology went into a separate course, which was now part of the course for 10th grade.

Q. Right, and that would naturally affect the way you looked at the text also, correct?

A. Correct.

Q. Different texts have different strengths?

A. Yes.

Q. And I believe the 1998 Miller and Levine on biology was strong on classification, correct?

A. And ecology.

Q. Now, if we take that discussion with Dr. Peterman in April, or about April of 2003 until the fall meeting with Allen Bonsell, you don't recall any discussions relating to this issue?

A. Not specifically.

Q. Now, that fall meeting took place at the suggestion of the science department?

A. I believe that is correct.

Q. And you know it was suggested that if Mr. Bonsell had concerns, that the faculty was confident that they could address them, correct?

A. We felt that we had the scientific expertise to answer any questions he may have had, as opposed to Mr. Baksa, whose training we believe was not in science.

Q. Correct. So we have this fall 2003 meeting with Alan Bonsell, and you can't recall any specific questions that he asked?

A. The questions he had basically were directed to Jen Miller, who was the lead biologist. I was there more taking note as the department chair. She was answering the biology questions.

Q. Right, and you as department head it's kind of your role to facilitate that sort of interaction, correct?

A. I am not a first line supervisor.

Q. All right.

A. I am a facilitator.

Q. But you do recall as you say Jen Miller explaining the way she presented evolutionary theory in class?

A. Very clearly. She tried to make the differentiation between origin of life and origin of species. She emphasized that when evolution is taught in the biology classroom, it is taught as change over time.

Q. Right, and she used as an example the bird, the finches, Darwin's finch, and the change of one finch to another, correct?

A. Yes.

Q. We learned a lot about that Galapagos Islands.

A. The bird and the tree, yes.

Q. Now, the meeting as you recall was cordial, civil, collegial?

A. Yes.

Q. And you left the meeting believing that Mr. Bonsell had been satisfied?

A. We felt that we had answered his questions and his concerns at that time, yes.

Q. Now, as we've noted the texts weren't purchased in 2003, correct?

A. That's correct.

Q. And as the head of the science department you had some concern that if the science department missed its turn in 2003, it might have to go to the next seven years of the cycle before to get new books?

A. Yes, and I brought that concern to the appropriate attention.

Q. That's right, and instead what happened was the money was escrowed for next year to purchase science books, correct?

A. We were not certain of that, but we were led to believe that that was the case.

Q. Okay, and ultimately the book was purchased, the science books were purchased in 2004, not 2003?

A. That's correct.

Q. When we look now at 2004, I just want to get a sense again for this text purchase and how it unfolded, we're moving quickly, and I hope to do that, if I'm correct you recall a meeting with the board curriculum committee that occurred in the spring of 2004 prior to the June meetings, correct?

A. There were several.

Q. And one of them focused on a purchase of a family and consumer science text?

A. Yes. That was the one that was earlier in the spring.

Q. And at that meeting were present Mr. Buckingham, Mrs. Harkins, Sheila Harkins, and Casey Brown, correct?

A. Yes.

Q. Along with members of the faculty at the high school?

A. Members of the faculty, that's true, and Mr. Baksa I believe was present as well.

Q. Thank you, yes, the administration. And you recall Mrs. Harkins asking the teachers, "Do you realize that there's about five words difference between the old text and the one you're recommending for purchase," correct?

A. Yes, I do.

Q. You left that meeting somewhat uncertain concerning whether the family and consumer science texts would be purchased, correct?

A. That's correct.

Q. Then there was a later meeting in June of at which the science texts were the focal point of the discussion?

A. That's true.

Q. And you remember I believe Casey Brown complemented you on your selection of a new chemistry book?

A. Yes.

Q. The biology text was discussed again?

A. That's right.

Q. During that meeting, and during that meeting if I'm not mistaken that's the meeting where Mr. Buckingham expressed his conviction that teachers were addressing the origins of life, correct?

A. He had asked us more than once if we teach man comes from a monkey. In response to that in utter frustration I looked at Mr. Buckingham and I said, "If you say man and monkey one more time in the same sentence, I'm going to scream." He did not do that, and I didn't have to.

Q. And that's because you're Italian, Mrs. Spahr, is that right?

A. Sicilian.

Q. I'll remember that.

A. Let's clarify that.

Q. And there was this discussion that he said well, what about this, the mural came up again, correct?

A. The mural came up again because I finally said to him, "Does this go back to the mural that appeared in Room 217?" He did not acknowledge that question. I then asked him, "Could you please explain where you obtained the picture of the mural that you had at a board meeting earlier in the spring that someone had seen and brought to my attention?"

Q. Right, I got the picture of the mural. Now, if I'm not mistaken, Mrs. Spahr, Jen Miller explain again, "We don't address that portion of evolution theory," correct?

A. That's correct.

Q. Now, around this time, these are meetings in June, the faculty were given some videos and DVD's for review, is that right?

A. We were given one.

Q. Well, you were given three, but you looked at one, correct?

A. We were given one I believe, and we did view it. I believe there was a series of three. To my knowledge we only had the one.

Q. Well, you remember reviewing one, correct?

A. Yes.

Q. Okay. But there were three, correct?

A. That is my understanding, yes.

Q. And the teachers agreed upon reviewing that video that there was some validity to the information it contained?

A. Yes.

Q. And they indicated in fact that they'd be willing to point out gaps in evolution theory?

A. That's true.

Q. In fact, many teachers were already doing this --

A. Past practice we have, in the biology curriculum they had done that --

Q. Yes.

A. -- in the past.

Q. So kind of the notion that was discussed here was well, it will be consistency --

A. That's correct.

Q. -- that will ensure. Now, we have seen some documentation related to a text put out by Bob Jones University Text Press, but Mr. Baksa never asked you to review that text?

A. He handed us that piece of paper and said, "This may be a book that you would wish to consider while you're reviewing books for biology."

Q. But he never told you to look at that text, did he?

A. I never had a copy of the text. I just looked at the document he had handed me.

Q. And you came away from that meeting with the assurance that the text recommended by the department, which at that time was the 2002 edition of Miller and Levine, would be purchased, correct?

A. The last thing I said to Mr. Buckingham before we departed, because we were now all getting ready to leave for the summer, "Do I have your assurance that we will have the 2002 biology text in the hands of our teachers when fall begins?" He looked at me and said yes, and I took him at his word.

Q. Yes. And if we go into the, look at the school board meetings that are taking place in June, there was still mention of this notion that the kids don't have texts, correct?

A. That's correct.

Q. But for the reasons we've discussed that wasn't really accurate. It's more accurate to say the texts weren't assigned to each student?

A. I believe at the June 14th board meeting I made that statement during public comment to clarify that issue so that the public did not think we were asking for new books when in fact we didn't use the old ones which were there.

Q. Right. Now, you didn't attend the first board meeting in June of 2004?

A. That is correct I believe.

Q. But you did attend the second?

A. I did, June the 14th.

Q. Forgive me for cutting you off. And that's because you anticipated that the texts would be purchased, approved at that board meeting as per the assurance of Mr. Buckingham --

A. The chemistry textbooks and the family and consumer science textbooks were on the agenda for adoption. I went in case there happened to be any discussion as to why this particular chem book was being recommended over some other publisher.

Q. And Barrie Callahan was at that second meeting in June?

A. I believe so.

Q. And she also asked why the science books hadn't been purchased?

A. Yes.

Q. And former board members Lonnie Langione and Larry Snook were there?

A. I believe.

Q. And they spoke?

A. Yes.

Q. There were some heated exchanges between the public and the board members?

A. I believe that's correct.

Q. And you remember some comments by Bill Buckingham, but nothing that Alan Bonsell said?

A. That's true.

Q. Or that Heather Gessey said?

A. That did not occur at that meeting.

Q. Oh, I understand, and that's what I'm focused on, that second meeting in June --

A. June 14th.

Q. Your don't remember anything Heather Gessey said?

A. Not specifically.

Q. Right. Or Jane Cleaver?

A. No.

Q. Or Angie Yeungling?

A. No.

Q. Or Sheila Harkins?

A. No.

Q. Okay.

A. I remember things that pertained specifically to me.

Q. And I understand that, we all do. Now, up through June of 2004 the biology text was the edition of Miller and Levine biology?

A. That was the one we were proposing, yes.

Q. But subsequently the department received a more recent edition, the 2004 edition, correct?

A. I came in to school sometime either late in June or the beginning of July, and upon the desk was a box from Prentice Hall. I had the good fortune of opening it because I thought it might be teachers editions, which the staff would need over the summer in their preparations, only to find the 2004 edition of Miller and Levine.

Q. And you knew that the board was going to have questions if you were recommending purchase of a 2002, and there was a 2004 edition?

A. And rightly so, because at that point the book would already be probably somewhere between two and four years old, and if the new edition is there it would sometimes appear it would be a waste of money to buy an older edition.

Q. And I believe you said that after receiving that, you had a get-together with Mike Baksa and Jen Miller and you went over the 2002-2004 text, correct?

A. I immediately called Mr. Baksa to inform him that the 2004 edition was there and thought that this could now be a new issue in all of the work that it took to get the 2002 edition approved.

Q. And you reviewed those two texts in light of the concerns that Mr. Buckingham had raised, correct?

A. The only chapter that we reviewed was the chapter on evolution.

Q. I got that, Mrs. Spahr, and what you were doing was looking to see if the presentation reflected changes in light of the controversy that had been seen in print for the last several years, correct?

A. That's correct.

Q. And it was around this time that the text Of Pandas and People came up as well, correct? July of 2004?

A. It was at that meeting that I first saw a copy of Of Pandas and People.

Q. And you started looking into that text, correct?

A. I did not, no.

Q. Well, didn't you learn that college professors were using it? Subsequently you started to look at the text?

A. At the July meeting the text was given to Jen Miller to look at.

Q. Right.

A. Okay? I left that meeting without a copy of the book, and did not see it until a later time.

Q. Okay, and subsequently though you did look into the text yourself?

A. Yes.

Q. You learned that college professors were using it?

A. In the front of the book there was one high school teacher and all of the rest were college professors that had reviewed it.

Q. But you thought it was not appropriate for use by 9th graders?

A. Indeed. The vocabulary was too sophisticated, the complexity of the material which was presented would never have been suitable for a 9th grade student. We had enough trouble reading it.

Q. Now, later then I believe you did not attend the August 2nd, 2004 -- I believe you did not attend the August 2004 board meeting because you were on vacation?

A. That's correct.

Q. But there was a board curriculum committee meeting in late August of 2004 that you did attend?

A. Yes.

Q. And that meeting featured discussion of the idea of using Of Pandas in connection with the Miller Levine text, correct?

A. Yes. That original idea came out of the board meeting where the adoption of the Miller and Levine book was being presented.

Q. And Dr. Nilsen and Mike Baksa, the assistant superintendent, were trying to find some sort of compromise position between the faculty and the board, correct?

A. That's correct.

Q. And essentially it's consisted in that the teachers didn't want the book Of Pandas used in the classroom, whereas the board was trying to find some way to work it in, is that correct?

A. That's correct.

Q. And what was proposed there was the notion of having the book Of Pandas available as a reference text, correct?

A. In each of the individual classrooms, yes.

Q. And the notion was essentially was it will be there if students want to reference it they can do that because it will be in the classroom, but we're not working it into instruction, correct?

A. That's correct.

Q. Now, if we end there at that August 2004 board curriculum meeting, there was really no discussion about this issue again until October, which was the start of the school year and everyone was busy, correct?

A. For the most part, yes.

Q. You later learned that Dr. Nilsen had accepted the donation of text Of Pandas, correct?

A. Yes.

Q. And then on or about, and I'm not going to hold you to the date, October 8th, 2004 you got a draft curriculum change from Mike Baksa, correct?

A. That's correct, and that is the correct date.

Q. Okay, and you received the draft because you were the head of the science department?

A. That's true.

Q. You passed it on to your biology teachers?

A. Yes.

Q. The draft language that you received at that time said that students would be made aware of gaps and problems in Darwin's theory, correct?

A. That's correct.

Q. And that was consistent with what had been discussed in June?

A. Yes.

Q. And it also said that students would be made aware of other theories of evolution, correct?

A. Yes.

Q. And again that was consistent with what the teachers had discussed in June?

A. Yes.

Q. But, you know, it also mentioned intelligent design, the teachers were not on board with that idea?

A. We were not.

Q. And it also listed the text Of Pandas as a reference, and again the teachers didn't want that listed?

A. True.

Q. So the science department sent back a revised draft?

A. That's true.

Q. And it essentially took those two things out, the mention of intelligent design, correct?

A. Yes. We had a period at the end of word "evolution," and the Of Pandas and People reference was removed.

Q. Right, and then it also deleted the reference to Of Pandas under the resource and materials column, correct?

A. Yes.

Q. And that's the column in the curriculum, proposed curriculum change that you had been given for review, correct?

A. Yes.

Q. Okay. Good enough. Now, the next thing I'd like to ask you a few questions about is the October 18th board meeting, and what I'd like to do is, I've put these up in the hope that they would be of some use to you. I'm going to ask you about the various versions of the curriculum change that were at issue on that evening, okay?

A. I have new glasses, but this could be an issue.

Q. Well, you know, if you look in that book --

A. That binder?

Q. Yes. And you will see that it's essentially Defendant's Exhibit 60, 61, and then 68 I believe.

A. I'm at 61.

Q. All right. What I want to just get into the record for my perspective is the documents that were at issue here as we approached this meeting, and if you look at 60, Mrs. Spahr, you'll see that that's billed as the board curriculum committee's recommended changes, correct?

A. 60 or 61? You referred me to 61.

Q. Oh, did I? I'm sorry. Look at 60, please.

A. Okay.

Q. Now, I just want you to take a look at that. You'll see it contains, the cover memo contains a reference to the board curriculum committee's proposed change. Do you see that?

A. Yes.

Q. And if you flip the page you'll see the proposed change there.

A. I see it.

Q. And that includes the reference to intelligent design, correct?

A. It does.

Q. And it also lists Of Pandas as a material resource?

A. Just like the document I was handed on October the 8th.

Q. Okay. So that's marked Roman XI, hyphen, capital A, correct? You know, that's fine. The record will take care of that, I'm sorry. Flip over to Exhibit 61.

A. Okay.

Q. And you'll see that that's billed as the staff administration recommended change?

A. This was the recommended change by the science department that we gave to the administration.

Q. And that we have just discussed, correct?

A. Yes.

Q. Now, then if you would, Bert -- I'm sorry, Mrs. Spahr, would you look at Defendant's Exhibit 68?

A. I have the cover letter.

Q. Okay. And you'll see that described as a second staff administration draft on the cover memo?

A. Yes.

Q. And then if you'll look at that, Bert, I want to ask you a few questions. First of all, you received this just prior to the meeting on October 18th, correct?

A. Probably about 6:25.

Q. Okay. And if you look at that, Mrs. Spahr, you'll see that there's some highlighted text, correct?

A. Yes.

Q. All right, and what's significant about that, and I'm going to ask you is this, first of all if you look in the second column of the proposed curriculum change under "Unit Concepts" and so on?

A. I'm there.

Q. You'll see that that lowest entry references other theories of evolution, correct?

A. It does.

Q. But it does not include the reference to intelligent design?

A. It does not.

Q. Now, if you turn to the, your attention to the right, materials resources column, you'll see however that it does retain the listing of the text Of Pandas as a resource?

A. Yes.

Q. So in these two respects it's somewhat dissimilar and somewhat different from the board curriculum committee's version. First, it omitted the reference to intelligent design, correct?

A. This one appears to, yes.

Q. The second change is the note that's added there in the lower left-hand corner?

A. Yes.

Q. And that says that origins are not taught, correct?

A. Origins of life, okay, is not taught, and that we were told was added by Mr. Bonsell.

Q. Right. I'm going to ask you a few things about that. Now, you've testified previously that the teachers could have settled for this particular version, correct?

A. Yes, we could have settled for that.

Q. And you had heard that Mr. Bonsell had the idea of attaching that note to the curriculum, correct?

A. That's correct.

Q. And it was an effort to allay the teachers' concerns about including intelligent design?

A. We were never told what his motivation was behind it. We were just told he contributed it.

Q. Let me ask you this. You understood that that note would mean that intelligent design wasn't taught?

A. We looked at this and thought that the origins of life is not taught, which it is not. And if origins of life are not taught, then there would be no reason for intelligent design, and furthermore we felt no reason for the reference of Of Pandas and People.

Q. And that's because you're looking right at the subtitle of the text and it says that it deals with the central question of biological origins, correct?

A. That's correct. The subtitle to the book.

Q. As we get up to that October 18th board meeting you remember Dr. Nilsen making a comment to you that you thought at the time -- well, you've never really understood it, correct?

A. That's correct.

Q. And it was something to the effect that whatever happens, don't clap?

A. That's true.

Q. And it gave you the sense that you thought the administration might thought a different document was going to be approved, something that the teachers would be happy with?

A. We were not exactly sure what that meant, but we sat there, waiting, to find out.

Q. You had a sense that comment indicated he wasn't certain and thought the outcome would be favorable to you guys?

A. That was our feeling.

Q. And by that colloquial expression "you guys," I mean the science faculty.

A. That's true.

Q. The science faculty had discussed the October 18th 2004 board meeting and agreed that it would be good to attend, correct?

A. Indeed.

Q. And other teachers turned out to show their support for the science faculty?

A. They did.

Q. The meeting began with public comment?

A. As always.

Q. And that's the point at which you stood up to read the statement that you read into the record?

A. Yes.

Q. Now, with that statement you began by noting that the science faculty did not agree with the inclusion of intelligent design, correct?

A. Very true.

Q. And you felt that there was a need to make that plain in public because the you felt at least the newspaper coverage made it look like the science teachers were on board with that aspect of the curriculum change, correct?

A. There were two factions in the community at the time. Many people thought that we, the science department, agreed with what the board was doing, which we did not. And the other half believed that if we did not support it, then we had to be atheists. That offended my science department because two members of the science department are sons and daughters of ministers.

Q. And your basis for that is essentially, you know, rumor or what you were hearing sort of second or thirdhand, correct?

A. Well, in some instances it was a little more direct than that. If we were out in a drugstore or the food store people, would come up and make comments.

Q. Well, I mean you didn't hear anything firsthand accusing you of being an atheist?

A. Not correctly, no.

Q. And you made this statement in public because you had the sense that the newspaper coverage was creating impression that the science faculty was supporting the curriculum change?

A. There had been some coverage in the newspaper, not necessarily by reporters, that gave the idea that we had been involved in the implementation of certain statements, and that was not necessarily true.

Q. When you made your statement you also pointed out that the teachers had tried to compromise with the board curriculum committee?

A. Yes, I did, in four different areas.

Q. Exactly. And they were the science faculty had agreed to point out problems with Darwin's theory?

A. That's true.

Q. They had agreed to make students aware of other theories of evolution?

A. Yes.

Q. They had agreed they would assist students if they wanted to seek other reference material on the subject?

A. Yes.

Q. They had agreed to have Of Pandas in the classroom as a reference text?

A. As a reference text.

Q. And you also observed that the teachers did not teach origins of life.

A. That is correct.

Q. Okay.

A. And that was for the clarification of the community.

Q. Okay. In addition you asserted in this statement at the public meeting that teaching intelligent design would be unlawful, illegal, and unconstitutional?

A. That's how we felt, yes.

Q. And the basis for that was your opinion that intelligent design was creationism?

A. Was a synonym for.

Q. Okay.

A. And I got that idea when I looked at the catalog from which the book had been ordered and it was listed under creation science.

Q. Speaking of that catalog, Mrs. Spahr, you didn't pass that on to Dr. Nilsen, did you? You kept that in your files?

A. Yes, as I do all other book catalogs that I receive.

Q. And you didn't pass it on to Mr. Baksa either?

A. No.

Q. You had in your statement you also expressed the concern that the inclusion of intelligent design would possibly open the teachers to a lawsuit?

A. We were concerned over that issue, yes.

Q. I understand. And part of that related to the untenured teachers in the district, correct?

A. That's correct.

Q. In fact, if I'm not mistaken you asked Bill Buckingham in the middle of your statement whether or not the teachers would be required to teach intelligent design?

A. That was part of my statement.

Q. And you asked for a delay to work out some sort of compromise?

A. I gave them a challenge.

Q. There was a heated discussion after Mr. Buckingham responded to your comments, correct?

A. When I finished my statement Mr. Buckingham looked at me and wanted to know where I had received my law degree. There was a gasp that went through the audience, I looked at him, I remembered what a former principal had told me, and I did not dignify it with a comment, and sat down.

Q. And the gasp was from the audience?

A. It was.

Q. And you know, Bert, that's because you've been teaching at Dover for forty years?

A. I have.

Q. So there's a lot of people in the community who know you?

A. That's true.

Q. And respect you?

A. I hope so.

Q. And when that comment was made there was a negative reaction on the part of the crowd, and in fact Lonnie Langione got up and -- well, you described in your deposition I believe practically jumped out of his chair and took issue?

A. And came to my defense, yes.

Q. There was a lot of heated discussion in the aftermath of that comment, correct?

A. Yes.

Q. And as things wound down, Mr. Langione asked what does it mean in the classroom, correct?

A. He did.

Q. And there was a notion expressed that well, a statement might be read in the classroom, correct?

A. Yes.

Q. Now, later stepping back from that October 18th, 2004 board meeting there was another meeting on or about October 28th, 2004, correct, Mrs. Spahr?

A. Would you please refresh my memory on what that meeting was? Because we attended many.

Q. Yes, and once more my question was imprecise. It was a meeting with Mike Baksa.

A. Concerning?

Q. Concerning the, what the curriculum change would mean for instruction.

A. Okay. Thank you.

Q. No problem. You remember that meeting?

A. Yes.

Q. And he presented a draft statement to the science faculty?

A. I believe it was four paragraphs.

Q. And Jen Miller has already testified there was some back and forth between the science faculty and Mr. Baksa over this statement, its accuracy?

A. I delegated her as the veteran biology teacher to be in charge of tending to that particular thing since it did not affect me and my subject.

Q. Right. Because you're a chemistry teacher, correct?

A. That's correct.

Q. And Jen Miller was the veteran biology teacher. Good enough. Now, Mrs. Miller, she solicited input from the faculty about the proposed changes --

A. The other biology teachers --

Q. Mrs. Miller solicited input from the other members of the science faculty regarding her proposed revisions to the statement that had been presented to her by Mr. Baksa?

A. That's true.

Q. Okay. Now, we know that ultimately the teachers refused to read the statement for the reasons you've expressed, correct?

A. Yes.

Q. All right. You felt that if, the science faculty, that is, felt that by reading the statement they would give credibility to the notion that intelligent design was a scientific theory?

A. That's true.

Q. And they were opposed to that notion?

A. They were.

Q. The basis for your particular opinion, Mrs. Spahr, is that you think intelligent design cannot be proven scientifically?

A. That's correct.

Q. Therefore, in your opinion it doesn't belong in a science class?

A. That's true.

Q. When you say it can't be proven, it's with reference to your understanding of the notion of testability?

A. In science we have a very defined pattern of behavior to test anything. We observe and gather data, we propose a question, we formulate a hypothesis, we go into the laboratory to test the hypothesis and draw a conclusion. After many people have done the same experiment we are now prepared to propose a theory.

A theory is a confirmed explanation, and from that we develop models.

Q. And I do understand your view of the matter. Just in contrast you think that evolutionary theory is testable according to the criteria you've just described?

A. My biology teachers feel that way. That is their field of expertise.

Q. Okay, and that's based on their training as science teachers, correct?

A. That's correct.

Q. Now, ultimately, Mrs. Spahr, I just want to look at the current situation so far as you can speak to it, the 2004 edition of Miller and Levine was purchased as recommended by the science faculty?

A. Yes, it was.

Q. The text Of Pandas and People is a reference text in the library, correct?

A. In the library.

Q. Yes. Not in the classroom?

A. That's true.

Q. Okay. The curriculum change has resulted in a statement that's read in class?

A. Yes.

Q. Biology, however, as taught in the classroom is taught according to state standards, correct?

A. Yes.

Q. Dr. Nilsen has directed that creationism is not to be taught, correct?

A. That you would have to deal with the biology teachers. That is my understanding, yes.

Q. Okay, and religious beliefs of teachers are not to be taught?

A. Yes.

Q. And the teachers never taught that, correct?

A. To my knowledge.

Q. They referred students with those sorts of questions to their pastors or their family?

A. To their pastors and/or their own family.

Q. Okay, good enough. And the religious beliefs of the board are not to be taught, correct?

A. I am assuming so.

Q. Okay. So far as you know teachers comply with those directives?

A. To my knowledge, yes, although I am not a first line supervisor. So I do not have the opportunity to go into the classroom to see exactly what they are teaching. I have a full teaching load of my own.

Q. Okay. I've got one last question I want to ask you, Mrs. Spahr, and it's just for the purpose of putting things in context and being fair. As I've told you, I understand that you're well respected in the community and you have taught there for forty years. But do you recall in your statement that you accused Mr. Buckingham of operating from a personal agenda?

A. I do.

Q. Did you ever give any thought to how he felt when you accused him of that at that public meeting?

MR. SCHMIDT: Your Honor, I think that strikes me as argumentative and certainly beyond the scope of direct examination. Mrs. Spahr is not a party.

THE COURT: Do you care to respond?

MR. GILLEN: Well, Your Honor, I mean she has testified, and I have tremendous respect for this witness, who I've deposed, that she felt deeply insulted and so on. What I'm -- and I understand that, but what I'm trying to get across for the court so you can see the context of the meeting is that prior to that unedifying comment, you know, Mr. Buckingham had also been accused of operating from a personal agenda, not with the best interests of the students at heart and --

THE COURT: Well, if Mr. Buckingham testifies and if he says that he was and he was insulted, and if that prompted comments by him, then I think that's relevant. Her impression as to whether or not he was insulted I'm not sure is in any way relevant to the proceedings, so I'll sustain the objection.


THE COURT: It doesn't move the ball as far as the case is concerned.

MR. GILLEN: Okay. Thank you, Your Honor. With that in mind, no further questions.

THE COURT: All right.

MR. SCHMIDT: No redirect.

THE COURT: Thank you, Mr. Gillen. No redirect? Ma'am, you may step down. That completes your testimony. We have some exhibits that we must take up, starting with the direct examination last week. We have the notes by the witness, that is P-90, and we have the catalog, which is P-144. Are you moving for the admission of both of those exhibits?

MR. SCHMIDT: I apologize, Your Honor. Yes.

THE COURT: That's all right. I lost you there for a minute. Any objection, Mr. Gillen?

MR. GILLEN: Well, P-90 I would object to. It's been read into the record and it's a statement that she prepared in anticipation of the meeting.

MR. SCHMIDT: Your Honor, she has read the exhibit into the record. So rather than tussle about that, the contents of it are part of the record.

THE COURT: How about P-144, Mr. Gillen?

MR. GILLEN: If you'd give me a moment, Your Honor?

THE COURT: All right.

MR. GILLEN: I'd object to that, Your Honor.

THE COURT: On what basis?

MR. GILLEN: It's hearsay. It doesn't really have any bearing on -- she's testified that showed up in a box when the book was ordered. It's not a business record or anything of that nature. It was never passed on to the administration. They didn't know it existed until she produced it. So it's hearsay and not relevant.

MR. SCHMIDT: Your Honor, she received the catalog with the book. She received them as the designated employee of the defendant school district, who was the person who received the books. She unpacked it. There's no challenge to the authenticity of the document, and it is the publishers' or distributors' description of the nature of the text that's highly relevant to this case, so it seems to me that it comes in.

THE COURT: Well, she's the designated recipient. She is an agent of the school district. You know, I didn't hear an authenticity challenge. I don't think there is one. Her testimony was that it was in the box when she opened it. I'm inclined to let it in, unless you have another argument you want to make, Mr. Gillen.

MR. GILLEN: Well, I've made my argument. I don't think it's a business record. It's something that she basically received in the mail. I mean, it's not a business record in the sense that it's not her job to keep the catalog, there's no testimony to that effect, and she didn't pass it on to the administration, so they didn't even know it existed.

MR. SCHMIDT: Your Honor, on the second issue, there was no reason for her to pass it on to the administration because she received it as an employee of the district and kept it as part of her files as the head of the science department, which was her testimony.

THE COURT: Yes. I don't see her failure to pass it on to the administration as being necessarily fatal.

MR. GILLEN: I guess what I'm saying, Your Honor, is if she would have received the catalog any number of ways, her mailings or mailings she received, solicitations from any number of sources.

THE COURT: Well, you could cross her on how she received it. I mean, then you're expanding your objection to say conceivably she got it another way than in the box that was sent, but I didn't hear that.

MR. GILLEN: No, you did not. I have no reason to believe it didn't show up in the box with the book.

THE COURT: So the box was designated, to the extent she was the duly appointed agent to receive it, it was within it. The purpose of the exhibit is to show that within the box there was a brochure from the publisher that had other books and the books were under certain, under a certain designation. I'll allow it for that purpose, the purpose offered by the plaintiffs, and nothing more. So we'll overrule your objection in that regard and we'll admit P-144. P-90 has been withdrawn, so there's no ruling on that.

Now, on cross we have D-60, D-61. D-60 is the memo and change curriculum guide. D-61 is the memo and planned curriculum guide, D-61 is, and D-68 is the memo and the second draft. Now, some of those may have gone in under plaintiff's designations I think.

MR. SCHMIDT: They already have.

THE COURT: Were all three of them admitted, Mr. Schmidt?


THE COURT: So we don't need to dispose of those in any way. They just had the plaintiff's exhibit numbers, and we'll do those. I think that's everything. Tell me, gentlemen, if I'm wrong, if I've missed everything.

MR. SCHMIDT: I believe you're right, Your Honor.

MR. GILLEN: I believe you're right.

THE COURT: All right. Then we'll take your next witness.

MR. WALCZAK: Plaintiffs call Dr. Brian J. Alters.

(Dr. Brian J. Alters, Ph.D. was called to testify and was sworn by the courtroom deputy.)

MR. WALCZAK: Your Honor, may I approach the witness?

THE COURT: You may.


Q. Good morning, Dr. Alters.

A. Good morning.

Q. Where do you live?

A. I live in Montreal.

Q. What do you do there?

A. I'm a university professor.

Q. What do you teach?

A. Science education.

Q. Can you tell us a little bit about your educational background?

A. Yes. I have a bachelors degree in biology and a Ph.D. in science education, both from the University of Southern California.

Q. Matt, can I ask you to pull up Plaintiff's Exhibit P-182, please? I'll show you what's been marked as Plaintiff's Exhibit 182. Do you recognize this document?

A. Yes, I do.

Q. Is this an accurate representation of your curriculum vitae?

A. Yes, it is.

Q. And is it accurate as of early 2005?

A. Yes.

Q. So you said, I'm sorry, you got your undergraduate degree from University of Southern California, and what was your major?

A. Biology.

Q. And your degree from the University of Southern California was in what?

A. Biology, and my Ph.D. was in science education.

Q. On page 1 below that it says university appointment. Could you describe for us your professional appointments?

A. There's an update on that since within the last month I've been named in a Dowd Chair, an eight million dollar Dowd Chair in science education, the Tomlinson Chair in science education.

Q. And you teach at McGill University in Montreal?

A. Correct.

Q. And after you got your Ph.D. where did you start teaching?

A. Harvard.

Q. And could you tell us a little bit about what you taught?

A. I was appointed in the philosophy of education research center, and taught science education methods courses in the graduate school of education. I designed a course that I taught, and --

Q. What course was that?

A. It was, I don't know if I remember the title, but it was something like evolution, education, and religion.

Q. And how long did you teach at Harvard?

A. One year, and I also supervised science, to-be science teachers. We called them in-service science teachers, or pre-service science teachers.

Q. And when you say supervised, what did that entail?

A. It entailed helping them prepare for classes. I would go out in the schools and watch them teach and give criticism, write reports back to Harvard.

Q. And after your work at Harvard what did you do next?

A. There was an opening at McGill in science education, and so I decided to take that appointment. Harvard kept me on for two more years in the philosophy of education research center, and then after that they appointed me in the science education department at Harvard, and I've held that appointment ever since.

Q. So, I'm sorry, you teach at both Harvard and McGill?

A. Well, I previously taught at Harvard, I since have taught at McGill, and I go back to Harvard to give lectures on how to teach evolution for example to the pre-service teachers.

Q. Now, you've developed some expertise I gather in science education?

A. Yes.

Q. Now, is that different than science?

A. Yes. It's how to teach science as opposed to the act of science. It's more of teaching what the scientists have produced knowledge-wise and the process that they use.

Q. And is that a specialty in and of itself?

A. Yes, it is.

Q. Now, is that different than say education?

A. Yes, because it focuses on science education. It's particularly science.

Q. And have you developed a subspecialty within science education of how to teach evolution?

A. Yes. My real focus and interest is in evolution education, and even within that my particular focus is concerning problems teachers have with students bringing in problems with their religion conflicting with what they perceive to be problems with evolution and how students themselves feel about it and how teachers feel about it and the conflicts they have.

Q. And have your, has your research and other activities involved looking at students' problems or difficulties students have in learning about evolution?

A. Yes. I've interviewed well over a thousand students at various levels, asking them what the problems if any they have concerning evolution with their religion or wherever the interviews lead.

Q. And I notice on page 2 of your curriculum vitae there's a long list of activities under something called funding. Now, are these activities for which you receive either government or private foundation grants to do research and activities?

A. Yes, but first I'd like to mention there's an update on that also within the last, since this CV in the last couple of months I received another grant, $175,000 from the federal government of Canada the research Islamic views of evolution concerning teaching students and teachers. So but in answer to your question, other than that update, yes, these are from government and corporate, and they're all involving some form of science education.

A couple of them are awards I think, yes.

Q. Now, you're teaching at McGill in Canada and you mentioned this foundation grant to do research in Canada. Is there any difference between how science is taught in Canada and how it's taught in the United States?

A. No.

Q. And you've taught in both countries?

A. Yes.

Q. And there's no difference?

A. No, there's none.

Q. Now, have you received grants from the National Science Foundation to do research and activities?

A. I have not received grants directly from them. I've researched and evaluated for the National Science Foundation science education programs, large ones in the millions of dollars that university professors run for science teachers.

Q. So these are National Science Foundation sponsored research and activities?

A. Yes.

Q. And what is the National Science Foundation?

A. It's the largest science and science education granting institute I guess you would call it, organization I think is better, in the United States if not the world.

Q. And is this a government agency?

A. Yes.

Q. Is this an arm of the federal government?

A. Yes, it is.

Q. And I'm sorry, what kind of activities have you done at the request of the National Science Foundation?

A. When the NSF, if you'll allow me to use the acronym, when the NSF gives funds to university professors to do research in science education or to run science education programs for teachers, they generally would like to see those millions of dollars that are going to those professors to be evaluated, to see that the programs are good, to get some feedback concerning that, and sometimes the evaluations are 40, 50, 60 pages long and they're sometimes quite extensive, and I'm called in to do some of those. I've done a few, and some are listed here.

Q. Is this more of a quality control?

A. I don't want to presuppose what the NSF is thinking concerning that, but I think that's reasonable.

Q. Are there a couple of other notable activities or research projects that you've undertaken here that you might tell us about?

A. Well, I'm kind of fond of the Lucent Technologies Foundation. It was a worldwide competition, and the only grant that was awarded in Canada was mine, and it was about $668,000. We worked with hundreds and hundreds of to be teachers and in-service teachers both, people who are currently practicing the art and science of teaching to develop science activities, and so those were essentially put into a large book form and apparently are being used by hundreds of schools presently.

Q. When you say science activities, what do you mean?

A. How to teach a particular science concept, whatever it would be, to figure out a new, entertaining, interesting way, novel way of doing it hopefully.

Q. And you developed a number of these activities to facilitate science education?

A. Yes. With a lot of help from a lot of other people, but I was the principal investigator on the grant, yes.

Q. On pages 3 through 5 of your CV, starting in the middle of page 3, you have many listings under what are known as refereed articles, and then there's a section, other publications and scholarly writing. What are refereed articles?

A. Refereed articles are where they're not automatically published. They're reviewed in some way, and criticism comes back for possibly, you know, we're not publishing this, something like that.

Q. And other publications and scholarly writings are, how would you describe those?

A. Those are ones that really couldn't be considered refereed articles. So it's sort of a default category.

Q. And under the refereed articles what do most of them concern?

A. Most of them concern something to do with students' understanding of evolution and the conflict with creation and their perceived conflicts concerning that.

Q. And do you also attend conferences?

A. Sure.

Q. And are there -- we've heard from Professor Miller about scientific associations, the National Academy of Sciences, American Association of the Advancement of Science. Are there science education associations as well?

A. Yes, there are.

Q. And what are the largest and most important ones?

A. The largest scientific association in the United States is the National Association of Science Teachers, NAST. There's over fifty thousand members. The largest biology organization in the United States for teachers is NATB, National Association of Biology Teachers.

Q. And have you been a featured speaker at these conferences?

A. Featured speaker, keynote speaker at some conferences, yes.

Q. And how many conferences have you spoken at about science education?

A. Probably close to a hundred, if not more.

Q. And are most of those about teaching evolution?

A. Yes.

Q. You mentioned also you taught science teachers how to teach science.

A. Yes.

Q. And that's both at Harvard and at McGill?

A. Yes.

Q. And how many teachers would you estimate you've taught?

A. Over a thousand.

Q. Now, are you familiar with creationism and intelligent design?

A. Yes.

Q. And what have you done to develop your familiarity with creationism and intelligent design?

A. Well, I have read easily over fifty books on creationism, hundreds of articles and pamphlets, products from creationists, interviewed again over a thousand students about and teachers about the problems, their problems, their perceived problems with evolution and creation, tried to understand better what they perceived as their problem.

Q. And you say that you've read creationist articles and many books on creationism. Do you equate intelligent design with creationism?

A. Yes. It's a form of creationism.

Q. Do you view it as science?

A. No.

Q. Why not?

A. There's so many reasons, but I guess the primary reason is that it involves breaking one of the ground rules of science and methodological naturalism. It brings in supernatural causation into science, which is against most foundational ground rules.

Q. Does that mean supernatural causation doesn't exist?

A. Oh, no, it doesn't mean that whatsoever. It just means within the game rules of science they don't entertain supernatural causes.

Q. I want to turn back to page 3 of your CV, and at the top there apparently you're also the author of several books. Could you tell us briefly about the, what are the first four books there?

A. Well, the first book is Biology: Understanding Life. It's a university biology non-majors textbook.

Q. I'm sorry, you say a biology. So that's not a science education book. That's a science book?

A. Correct.

Q. But you're not a scientist?

A. Correct.

Q. Your expertise is in science education?

A. Correct.

Q. So can you explain to us why you're a co-author on a science biology textbook?

A. My co-author has bachelors and masters in biology and a Ph.D. in education also. Because what textbooks really do is teach, that's basically what they're doing. And so authors such as us of course consult scientists and get help from hundreds literally on the discipline, hundreds of scientists consulting various areas of content, critiquing it, sending back comments and so forth to help us on the science part, but the textbook itself is really an author's attempt to teach a student.

Q. And that just came out this year?

A. Yes.

Q. And what's the second book there?

A. Teaching Biology in Higher Education. It's a book written to instructors at the college level on how to teach biology.

Q. And that came out this year as well?

A. Yes.

Q. Do you know whether this book is being used in colleges and universities?

A. The publisher tell me it's doing okay.

Q. And how about the third book?

A. Teaching evolution in Higher Education: Methodological, Religious, and Non-religious Issues. This is a book specifically about the conflict that instructors see students bring into their courses concerning evolution, and it also came out in 2005. It was a good year.

Q. And does it give advice to science professors how to deal with students who have creationist beliefs?

A. Yes. It does more, yes.

Q. What's the fourth book there?

A. Project Collaboration: One Large Experiment. It's a book about the activities I mentioned earlier, the compilation of the work of a hundred graduate students in education, hundreds of teachers out in the field, and about fifty some graduate students in science.

Q. Now, I want to focus a little bit more on the fifth book listed there, and what is that book?

A. Defending Evolution in the Classroom.

Q. And what I'm holding in my hand, is this a copy of that book?

A. Yes.

Q. Now this book received some endorsements, did it not?

A. Yes, it did. The president of the American Association for the Advancement of Science endorsed it in writing.

Q. Let me stop you for one minute there. Matt, could you pull up the exhibit -- this is Plaintiff's Exhibit 212, and is this a cover, is this the cover of your book?

A. Yes, it is.

Q. And Matt, could you turn to the next page, please? And is this a page, one of the pages of endorsements?

A. Yes, it is.

Q. And the first one is by a gentleman identified as Stephen J. Gould, professor of zoology and geology at Harvard University. Who is, or who was Stephen J. Gould?

A. The late Stephen J. Gould is considered by most people to be one of the top evolution area theorists and popular writers of evolution to live in the past century. He was a professor at Harvard as stated there. He'd been president of the AAAS, American Association for the Advancement of Science, and I think he was, before his death he had been awarded close to honorary doctorates.

Q. And what Professor Gould says about your book is, "This book becomes a vital document in one of the most important issues in our age," is that correct?

A. Yes.

Q. And did Professor Gould also write the foreword to your book?

A. Yes, he did.

Q. And who is Howard Gardner?

A. Howard Gardner is one of the leading education professors in the nation, if not the world. He's a professor at Harvard.

Q. And we'll just do one more, the third endorsement there is from Ernst Mayr, and I believe we have heard this gentleman's name in the courtroom already. Who is Ernst Mayr?

A. Ernst Myer passed away recently at age 100. He was again one of leading evolution scientists of the century, considered by most, and was a professor at Harvard also.

Q. And what he says about this book is, "This book should be in the hands of every educator dealing with the subject of evolution," did I read that correctly?

A. Yes.

MR. WALCZAK: Your Honor, we would move Dr. Alters as an expert in science education with a specialty in the teaching of evolution.

THE COURT: Any questions by defense counsel?

MR. MUISE: Your Honor, pursuant to the stipulation, we have no objections to his qualifications to testify as such.

THE COURT: Thank you, Mr. Muise. He is admitted for the purpose as stated by Mr. Walczak, and you may proceed with your direct examination.

MR. WALCZAK: Thank you, Your Honor.


Q. Dr. Alters, you understand that the Dover policy on intelligent design includes the reading by school administrators of a four paragraph statement, and then there are restrictions placed on what teachers can and cannot discuss in class about that statement, is that your understanding?

A. Yes. And the policy also concerns other aspects, I guess the mention of the, part of the policy within the curriculum, the Dover curriculum.

Q. And do you have an opinion about whether the policy promotes students' science education?

A. Yes.

Q. And what is your opinion?

A. If anything it's detrimental to their science education.

Q. Do you have an opinion about whether the Dover policy constitutes good pedagogy?

A. Yes.

Q. And what is your opinion?

A. It does not promote good pedagogy.

Q. We're going to take a little bit of time to look at the basis for your opinions. Is teaching students about evolution important?

A. Yes, it's extremely important. It's the overarching theme, the underlying concept, it's the glue that holds all of the life sciences together. It would be somewhat like teaching a physics course without talking about gravity, something like that. It's probably even more central to biology. Most biology professors have indicated such.

Q. Now, certainly not every student in a high school going is going to become a scientist, is that a fair statement?

A. Correct.

Q. Why is it important for students who don't become scientists to learn about evolution?

A. Well, evolution involves so many aspects of their life. Bacterial resistance, pesticides, evolution of organisms for pesticide problems, environmental issues, in general just their reading of environmental issues in newspapers and magazines, voting on issues, thinking about getting involved in such issues. Many of those involve evolution. There's many more of course. It's interesting to know how the diversity of life and why things look the way they do and are the way they are, it's extraordinarily important, and most people like it also for discussions. It's somewhat interesting, you know, how am I related to those other organisms.

Q. Now, how would you define good pedagogy? First of all let me ask you, what is pedagogy? What does that word mean?

A. Generally it means the art and science of teaching.

Q. So what is good pedagogy?

A. Well, I can speak for science education. Good pedagogy is usually underpinned by an educational theory called constructivism. It goes by some various other terms, but basically it's constructivism, and it's that a child is just not a vessel into which we pour knowledge. We just don't do that. The child interacts with what they're hearing and constructs their own knowledge of that. And so most, most areas of science education underpin their activities and their learning and so forth on constructivism. So that's kind of the central theme for most of it.

Q. And does good pedagogy involve students' misconceptions?

A. Yes, it does, because again we just can't pour knowledge into students. We have to find out what it is that they have preconceptions about, or if it's not directly about the subject being taught, it's something that they misunderstand that's impeding them to understand what is being taught currently. And so diagnosing those misconceptions is very important in figuring out a treatment to be able to be used in the classroom so the students can overcome those misconceptions so that they can learn what needs to be learned.

Q. And does good pedagogy also mean that you don't engender needless misconceptions?

A. Absolutely. There would hardly be anything worse for a science teacher to do than engender needless misconceptions.

Q. Let's talk a little bit about selecting course content for a biology class. Are there sources that teachers, administrators, and others can consult to decide on say a science curriculum content?

A. Sure, many of them consult the National Education Association, National Science Teachers Association, NABT that I mentioned previously, National Association of Biology Teachers, absolutely.

Q. And do those organizations rely on any others in helping them formulate positions on appropriate science curriculum content?

A. Sure they do, because they're generally made up of science educators. So they often need help on the science aspect, so then they look to the national and leading worldwide science associations for help. The National Academy of Sciences, the most prestigious science organization in the United States, if not the world. AAAS, American Association for the Advancement of Science, it's the largest general scientific society on the planet. Their publication is read by a million people subscription. They serve ten million individuals. Vast resources for science education association.

Q. And do you know whether the science education organizations, the National Science Teachers Association and the National Association of Biology Teachers, have taken positions on the teaching of evolution and intelligent design?

A. Yes, they have.

Q. Are there also -- we'll come back to that in just a moment. Are there also standards put out at the state level?

A. Yes.

Q. And does every state have standards?

A. I believe there's one that doesn't, but I believe 49 do.

Q. And you're not going to tell me Pennsylvania doesn't?

A. No. Pennsylvania does.

Q. Pennsylvania does have standards on teaching science?

A. Yes.

Q. And do those standards also relate to teaching biology?

A. Yes.

Q. Now, if a school board member wanted to learn, or a school board member or anybody else wanted to learn what to teach in science class, are there places they could go to research this?

A. There's many places, but the educational associations I previously mentioned, NST A and NABT, have wonderful web sites and they publish books, pamphlets, they have a vast amount of resources, they hold annual conferences, regional conferences, yes.

Q. And do you know whether the scientific associations also have web sites that are readily accessible to the public?

A. Yes, they do.

Q. And how about the Pennsylvania standards? Do you know whether those are available on-line?

A. Yes, they're on-line.

Q. And you've checked and been able --

A. Yes. I know, yes.

Q. Let's come back to the national science associations' positions, not science education associations, and you testified that the science education associations are to some extent derivative of, their positions are derivative of what the science organizations do?

A. Well, it would be tough for a national or any science education association to make statements about science without checking with the scientific association.

Q. So they tend to do that in formulating positions?

A. Yes.

Q. And do you know what the National Academy of Science, what position they've taken on evolution and teaching the occurrence of evolution and about intelligent design?

A. Yes. They're very much for, extremely for teaching the science of evolution, and very much against teaching intelligent design.

Q. Matt, if you could pull up exhibit P-192? Is this a publication from the National Academy of Science?

A. Yes, it's Science and Creationism: A View from the National Academy of Science.

Q. Is this put out for scientists?

A. No, it is not.

Q. Who is it put out for?

A. It's put out for teachers.

Q. And I've asked you to highlight a passage. Matt, if you could pull up, and this is from the page marked "Conclusion" in the publication Science and Creationism. Could you please read that passage into the record?

A. Yes. "Creationism, intelligent design, and other claims of supernatural intervention in the origin of life or of species are not science because they are not testable by the methods of science. These claims subordinate, observe data to statements based on authority, revelation, or religious belief. Documentation offered in support of these claims is typically limited to the special publication of their advocate. These publications do not offer hypotheses subject to change in light of new data, new interpretations, or demonstration of error. This contrasts with science, where any hypothesis or theory always remains subject to the possibility of rejection or modification in light of new knowledge."

Q. And do you know whether this reflects the official position of the National Academy of Sciences?

A. Yes, it does.

Q. And earlier you testified that AAAS, or the American Association for the Advancement of Science, is the largest organization of scientists I think you said in the world?

A. Yes.

Q. Certainly in the United States, and have they taken a position on teaching about the occurrence of evolution and intelligent design?

A. Yes, they have.

Q. Matt, if you could pull up Exhibit P-198, please? And is this AAAS, a board resolution on intelligent design?

A. Yes.

Q. If you could highlight the first three or four whereas clauses? Dr. Alters, if you could read for the record the highlighted passages?

A. Okay. "Whereas, ID proponents claim that contemporary evolutionary theory is incapable of explaining the origin of the diversity of living organism; whereas to date the ID movement has failed to offer credible scientific evidence to support their claim that ID undermines the currently scientifically accepted theory of evolution; whereas the ID movement has not proposed a scientific means of testing its claims, therefore be it resolved that the lack of scientific warrant for so-called intelligent design theory makes it improper to include as part of science education."

Q. Now, again this is a science association?

A. Yes.

Q. This isn't a science education association?

A. Correct.

Q. But they have put out this statement and taken this position about science education?

A. Yes.

Q. And do you know this to be their formal position?

A. It is.

Q. Are you aware of any science associations that have taken a position that students should be taught that there are questions or controversies about the occurrence of evolution?

A. No.

Q. Are you aware of any science associations that have taken a position that intelligent design should be taught in science classes?

A. No.

Q. So you're aware, and you're aware that they have taken positions and said no, it should not be taught?

A. Every scientific association that I'm aware of, and there are a lot of web sites listed in various places, such as the National Center for Science Education, when they make a statement concerning evolution or intelligent design, they always say intelligent design should not be taught.

MR. WALCZAK: Your Honor, this might be a good time, or we could go another ten or fifteen minutes or --

THE COURT: No, why don't we take our morning break at this time. I appreciate your suggestion, Mr. Walczak. We'll do that, we'll break for twenty minutes, and we'll return and pick up the direct examination of this witness. We'll be in recess.

(Recess taken at 10:20 a.m. Trial proceedings resumed at 10:45 a.m.)


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