News In Brief

Creationism classes can be ordered, state court says

The Louisiana Supreme Court ruled Monday that the Legislature had the right to order the teaching of creationism alongside the theory of evolution in public schools.

The court did not address whether the ''creationism'' doctrine violated the constitutional separation of church and state. Rather it focused on whether the Legislature could pass a law saying what can be taught in public schools.

But civil rights groups say Louisiana schoolchildren may never learn the Bible story in public classrooms. The separation-of-church-and-state issue is scheduled to go back before a federal judge. The American Civil Liberties Union expects a ruling in that court to mirror an Arkansas judge's decision, which tossed out a similar law.

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