No matter what theory of creation is believed, one question will always remain… where did the original materials that created the world come from? Because this debate is ‘un-testable’, I feel the topic falls more into the realm of philosophy then it does science, and this is how the topic should be presented in schools.
The goal of philosophy is to use any and all evidence and facts available and expound upon those facts and options using the full extent of intelligent thought and reason. Philosophy looks at every possible version of a topic and expounds upon each until all angles are examined and discussed. Due to the widely ranging religious and scientific backgrounds that will continue to be present in our schools, why not simply present every option involved surrounding this topic that are available? This is not to say that a strict version of biblical or scientific theory should be “taught” only that all the facts of each should be made available for students to then sift through and use after being introduced to the basics as well as examples of philosophy and philosophical views.
To do so, would be to lay out all variables of the topic in scientific and logical fashion, and allow students, with the assistance of their own families’ teachings and beliefs, to make their own conclusions. To earn credit in such a class, it will be a student’s job to discuss, elaborate and explain their personal theories and beliefs on the topic. This will not only allow them to make their own empirical judgments, but it will give students practice in understanding and accepting the different viewpoints of others.
Two examples of philosophical views include cosmological and teleological schools of thought. Each of these views is rooted strongly in either a religious or an evolutionary backgrounds and each takes on a role as more of a doors to open up into intellectual debate over the basics of creation rather than a teaching of one version or another.
The topic of creation will remain an ongoing debate in politics and religion. Why not present the topic to students the exact same way, as a philosophical debate in which they may introduce their own ideals and reach their own conclusions. By making students well informed of all the possibilities and then influencing them to expound upon the facts presented they will not only be given an opportunity to reach their own conclusions about creation that are in line with their family, their culture and their religion, but they will also be given practice developing valuable critical thinking skills, which they may employ in other important decisions throughout the rest of their lives.