[DRAFT] Repeal "Promoting Natural Sciences in Schools"

Discussion in 'World Assembly Proposals' started by Kaschovia, Nov 3, 2019.

  1. Kaschovia

    Kaschovia Eternal Sunshine - - -

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    Repeal "Promoting Natural Sciences in Schools"
    Category: Repeal | Proposed by: Kaschovia


    General Assembly Resolution #475 “Promotion of Natural Sciences in Schools” (Category: Education and Creativity; Strength: Mild) shall be struck out and rendered null and void.

    The General Assembly,

    Respectful for GAR #475, in the pursuit of a solution to insufficient promotion of scientific education in schools,

    However conscious that, as the following are not defined and vague, opposing member nations may exploit and or misinterpret the terms 'non-trivial length of time' and 'relevant educational content', used in Clause 2, in a counterproductive way, and could put students at an educational disadvantage,

    Worried that GAR #475 neglects a fundamental scientific practise in the employment of the peer-review process in setting standards for the eligibility of teachable, accepted scientific content, which may lower the quality of scientific education in many schools,

    Troubled that the mandates of Clause 5, as it allows for problematic scenarios in the case of the prohibition of deliberate dissemination of 'false' information, can be evaded where hypotheses or ideas, unaccepted by the scientific community, can be taught mistakenly as a result of the vagueness in Clause 2, without deliberately disseminating 'false' information,

    Concerned that Clause 7 urges member nations fund private schools' science classes in contradiction with their actual financial nature, and should instead have mandated, or even urged, that private schools appropriately fund science classes themselves in agreement with the general aim of the proposal,

    Hopeful that, although GAR #475 has noble intentions and addresses an important issue, better written and defined legislation on this topic can be soon passed by this Assembly,

    Hereby repeals General Assembly Resolution #475, "Promotion of Natural Sciences in Schools."
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2019 at 10:03 AM
  2. Zyvetskistaahn

    Zyvetskistaahn TNPer -

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    I think there is a drafting error in the first (substantive) paragraph, as the quoted terms are in clause 2 of the resolution rather than 1.b. I also must say I do disagree with this notion that because one doesn't go into granular detail about all matters in a resolution that the resolution must be flawed because an unreasonable nation can define things to mean the opposite of what they mean. There must come a point in all legislation, and particularly in the context of a game played by those not expert in the topics being considered (and in which there is a character limit on the length of legislation), at which one says that the game is not worth the candle when it comes to going into further detail.

    Further, though I appreciate that I am straying into duplicating an argument ongoing in the GA forum, but I have to disagree with what appears to be the interpretation given of the operation of clause 5.

    The resolution requires in clause 2 that "classes in multiple branches of the natural sciences" be taught (natural sciences being "subjects consisting of information gained from empirical evidence or logical deductions about natural phenomena, such as biology, geology, chemistry or physics") and in clause 5 that schools may not "deliberately disseminat[e] false information". The proposed repeal seems in essence to assert that one can permissibly manipulate the definition of natural sciences so as to teach information that is false.

    While I appreciate the argument in the GA forum around "absolute truth", I would hope that it can be accepted that it is possible to meaningfully say that some things are false and known to be so and, that being so, it would seem to me to be wrong to say one could engage in manipulation to allow the teaching of false information. The requirement of the resolution is not "information on the natural science that is true must be taught", but that "information on the natural sciences must be taught but not if that information is known to be false".

    If the claim of the resolution is that one can mistakenly be incorrect under clause 2 and thereby not within the prohibition in clause 5, rather than being a claim that one can simply by making logical deductions that are known to be wrong escape the prohibition, then I think the argument for that claim can be more clearly made.
     
  3. Kaschovia

    Kaschovia Eternal Sunshine - - -

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    No, they are not.

    The natural sciences are defined in subpoint 'b' of the clause numbered '1'.
    My aim is not to expose all of the minute, irrelevant issues one could possibly come up with against the resolution, but rather address some of the broader, more important, issues that the resolution currently has.

    At any stretch, if any standard exists for resolution writing, even in circumstances of the most complex international issues, we must attempt to represent the complexities of the issues we address to the best of our abilities, so that passed resolutions with clear flaws can be discussed. Not all proposals need to cover every single aspect of the issue they cover, but if they do come to pass, and contain errors, it is not unusual for those errors to be highlighted in a repeal. I ask for this as a bare minimum, not as some over-the-top measure of pedantic accuracy or detail.

    The phrases I mention are supposed to control how long, and how relevant, science classes are to be, which is why not defining them is problematic. You say that unreasonable nations can define things to mean the opposite of what they mean, but in this case, what, exactly, does 'non-trivial length of time' and 'relevant' mean? How are those clear requirements for education?
    I have made some amendments to the proposal, so your view of the repeal may change now, but the fact that one can mistakenly teach 'false' information and evade the mandates of Clause 5 is not me saying that this is okay, or should be allowed, but rather I am highlighting that this is an issue with the current passed resolution that needs addressing.
    Then you disagree with the actual author?

    'Imagine two subsets of all that can be taught. The first is information that can be gained by logical deductions, and the second is true information. Clause 5 mandates that only information in the second subset can be taught, whereas other clauses mandate the teaching of information in the first subset. Combining these, the resolution obligates the teaching of true information about the natural sciences.'

    The actual author of this resolution believes that the teaching of true information is possible, and mandated by Clause 5. This is why there is confusion on my part. His interpretation of the purpose of the fifth clause is in complete contradiction to scientific practise.

    In science, to establish falsity, you need some proper standard of what the truth may be to compare hypotheses to... but not what it is, as nobody can know what the absolute truth is. This is why the exclusion of the peer-review process is such a massive problem, because no such standard of 'truth' is defined in this resolution. Member nations are left to assume that 'logical deductions about natural phenomena' are truth, as they are mandated to teach to this definition, and are not allowed to teach 'false' information.

    This resolution, or at least its author, seems to believe there is some omniscient power within its words, capable of ascertaining absolute truth in what is allowed to be taught. No sentient being can work effectively with such definitions, because no sentient being knows everything, and so no member nation can understand or act upon what is being asked of them.

    I understand. I will amend the proposal to better reflect this.