Joining Forces to Combat Science Education: Ken Ham and the Good News Club

The parent organization of the Good News Club has announced that Ken Ham will be the keynote speaker at their international conference.

Back in 2015 when I first started covering the Good News Club and Child Evangelism Fellowship, fellow members of the Atheist Community of Rochester asked CEF if we could review their GNC curriculum.  We found out that, despite CEF’s claims that the curriculum is “open to the public,” in order to view the curriculum, you have to purchase it, and there’s a lot of it to buy if you want to review it all.  However, through our own research, attendance at GNC sessions, and the help of sites like goodnewsclubs.info, we discovered some of the disturbing lessons and exercises used at Good News Club meetings.

What we found through our own investigations was that Good News Clubs are teaching fundamentalist Christianity — an anti-science version of the faith where globally-accepted ideas like evolution and a 4.5 billion-year-old earth are rejected and replaced with a literal interpretation of Genesis, because, as the children are taught:

Teacher: “What is different about the Bible, compared to all other books?”

Children: “Everything in the Bible is true.”

Teacher: “Very good! And how do we know that?”

Children: “Because God never lies.”

Cue the passing out of candy rewards.  Yes, I’ve witnessed this first-hand.

A typical GNC permission slip
A typical GNC permission slip

This version of Christianity is taught, in many cases, without parents realizing it.  Good News Club permission slips are purposely written without these details and advertise things like fun, games, snacks, and Bible stories.  They know that if they actually informed parents they’d be teaching concepts that spit in the face of their children’s science education, their attendance numbers would go way down and public scrutiny would skyrocket.  So the Good News Clubs continue to intentionally deceive parents and vilify whistleblowers as “those who would like to silence God’s message of love, salvation and hope.”

And now it seems Child Evangelism Fellowship is going full anti-science in 2017. They recently announced that Ken Ham, master of science denial and willful ignorance, will serve as the keynote speaker at their 80th Anniversary International Conference in Asheville, North Carolina. The event will be held May 8th through 13th at the Ridgecrest Conference Center.  And while lately there seems to be a national focus on extremist speakers and where they’re appearing, there will not likely be any media coverage of this one — that is, unless we initiate it.

By inviting Ken Ham, CEF and GNC are essentially admitting to aligning with his version of anti-science rhetoric. They’re bringing their normally intensely-protected curriculum, or at least a piece of it, out into the public for all of us to see.  The Good News Club operates in over 5,000 public schools across the US, and is even more prevalent in other countries.  They got this large by deceiving parents, a practice that continues to bring them success and growth.

This conference is a great opportunity to open the public’s eyes to the abuses and attacks on education that are perpetrated by the Good News Clubs across the US every week, right under the noses of unsuspecting parents.

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Kevin Davis

Kevin Davis is the head writer and editor for SecularVoices, co-founder of Young Skeptics, and author of Understanding an Atheist. He is known for local and national secular activism and has spoken at conferences and events such as Reason Rally 2016 and the Ark Encounter Protest and Rally.

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22 thoughts on “Joining Forces to Combat Science Education: Ken Ham and the Good News Club

  1. Utterly frightening. When I first heard of the Good News Club, I started googling them and was amazed to find them in my own elementary school from growing up.

  2. Sounds like someone needs to volunteer to be a teacher, suck up the pain of doing it, and secretly copy every page of every book.

    Then post it on the interwebz, torrents etc.

    Worked for Scientology critics.

    1. And Scientology was founded by an atheist, Hubbard, who said that he would like to start a new religion because that’s where the money is. He wrote a holy book, On Dianetics, and people actually believed it!

  3. If atheists admire Charles Darwin so much, why don’t they follow his example of premarital chastity, a stable marriage to Emma Wedgwood and their successful family formation?

    1. Where did you get that silly idea? Atheism only speaks to a non-belief in any ‘god’-claims for lack of evidence.

      As for compassion and humanism, well, what you described doesn’t work for everybody, all the time, and a mistake that’s not an attack shouldn’t be reason for punishing somebody by forcing them to stay in a bad situation.

      1. ALT-JESUS:
        Fear Everyone,
        Expel the Stranger,
        Blame the Poor,
        Ignore the Sick,
        Feed the Rich,
        Love only Thyself,
        Trust only Caesar,
        Throw Lots of Stones.

    2. Ephesians 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.

      1 Corinthians 7:12 To the rest I say this (I, not the Lord): If any brother has a wife who is not a believer and she is willing to live with him, he must not divorce her.

      Matthew 5:31-32 It has been said, ‘Anyone who divorces his wife must give her a certificate of divorce.’ But I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, makes her the victim of adultery, and anyone who marries a divorced woman commits adultery.

      Matthew 19:9 I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another woman commits adultery.

      Luke 16:18 “Anyone who divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery, and the man who marries a divorced woman commits adultery.

      Mark 10:11 He answered, “Anyone who divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery against her.

      Most evangelical churches discourage divorce, for instance, yet conservative Protestants who attend church less than twice a month have higher divorce rates than any other group — including the nonreligious.

    3. If you’re at all interested in the subject of this actual post, why don’t you post a comment that’s relevant to it?

  4. Teacher: “What is different about the Bible, compared to all other collections of books?”
    Children: “The Bible is occult literature that requires extensive knowledge to decipher.”
    Teacher: “Very good! And how do we obtain that knowledge?”
    Children: “By tasting the forbidden fruits of anthropology.”

  5. God didn’t write the BIBLE..People did and people are capable of LYING..BTW wh did GOD need peole to write the BIBLE if HE HIMSELF wrote the 10 Commandments on STONE???..

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