American pupils are to be taught that the Loch Ness monster is real in an attempt by religious teachers to disprove the theory of evolution.
The Scotsman reports that pupils attending privately-run Christian schools in Louisiana will learn this from textbooks next year. Thousands of kids will receive publicly-funded vouchers enabling them to attend the schools.
The Accelerated Christian Education (ACE) programme teaches controversial religious beliefs, aimed at disproving evolution and proving creationism. One ACE textbook reads: “Are dinosaurs alive today? Scientists are becoming more convinced of their existence.
“Have you heard of the Loch Ness Monster in Scotland? ‘Nessie’ for short has been recorded on sonar from a small submarine, described by eyewitnesses, and photographed by others. Nessie appears to be a plesiosaur.”
They also claim that a Japanese whaling boat once caught a dinosaur.
A former pupil who went through the ACE programme as a child, but now campaigns against Christian fundamentalism, said the Nessie claim was presented as “evidence” that evolution could not have happened.
He told The Scotsman: “The reason for that is they’re saying if Noah’s flood only happened 4,000 years ago, which they believe literally happened, then possibly a sea monster survived.
“If it was millions of years ago then that would be ridiculous. That’s their logic. It’s a common thing among creationists to believe in sea monsters.”