Thursday, September 8, 2011
Historical Society flying false colors
A new feature recently appeared on the AHS website at http://arizonahistoricalsociety.org In the middle of the website under the major attention grabbing pictures appears “Arizona Mineral Education”. It looks like a caption but is not. It has nothing to do with the photos, and is a link to http://www.azmineraleducation.org
That is a fairly recent website that makes the preposterous claim that an AHS operated Arizona Experience Museum will be a prominent resource for mineral education. An “Outreach & Education” tab on the website implies that the AHS has some possible connection with an ongoing and successful science education program.
The AHS does not conduct, sponsor, or support any mineral education programs. Rather, by hijacking and destroying the top rated mineral museum, the AHS is depriving tens of thousands of Arizona students of a lifetime learning experience. Last spring, they even slammed the doors in the faces of hundreds of students and cub scouts that still had field trips scheduled. This year, school busses no longer appear at the gutted mineral museum building. The plans for the Arizona Experience Museum prepared by Gallagher and Associates include no provisions for mineral education, and have a mere 500 square feet in the most obscure part of the building to display the mineral collection. The information about the Arizona Experience Museum on www.az100years.org includes nothing about mineral education.
As for the outreach program featured on the link, that was conducted by the agency (ADMMR) that formerly operated the mineral museum. The person conducting the program was fired shortly after the AHS takeover, even though the position was funded by a private grant. The AHS and the Governor’s office made an absolute mess, which others are trying to clean up. The outreach instructor was subsequently rehired by another agency and is again conducting the programs as described on the tab. For the AHS to insinuate they are in some way associated with that remaining mineral education program is an outrage.
Apparently the AHS is deservedly receiving extensive criticism for their attack on science education, and is trying to cloak itself with scientific credentials in a pitiful attempt to confuse the issue.