The Freedom From Religion Foundation and the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science were successful in getting a science teacher in Arroyo Grande, Calif., to stop teaching creationism. The groups sent a letter that sparked an investigation by the Lucia Mar Unified School District into lessons on creationism by Brandon Pettenger at Arroyo Grande High School.
In an April 29 email to Staff Attorney Andrew Seidel, Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources Chuck Fiorentino reported that he and the school principal met with Pettenger on April 23 and told him "to immediately cease using [creationist materials] and not to instruct at all on the topics of creationism, intelligent design, or anything related."
They also told Pettenger he must adhere to state-adopted science standards and that anything outside those standards needed approval. Creationist material was also removed from his school district Web page.
In addition, the district "will be reminding all teachers of their legal obligation to teach only material that is in the State adopted Standard, or Curriculum, or Board approved."
Dawkins Foundation CEO Robyn Blumner praised the anonymous student for bringing the situation to light. "That student helped bring evidence-based science back into a public school classroom hijacked by religious teachings."