Texas SBOE Science hearings Nov. 19, 2008 (with audio)

This post is a gateway to audio recordings of the Nov. 19 hearings on Science Standards revisions by the Texas State Board of Education. These were not formal “hearings,” technically, but an informational session of the Board meeting as a Committee of the Whole.

Streaming audio is available at the SBOE website (They are Committee of the Full Board Part C (11/19) and Committee of the Full Board Part D (11/19). Parts A and B were on other agenda items.)

It would be just about impossible to make practical use of the unwieldy streaming audio with dozens of speakers testifying over about seven hours. Austringer reports being told by the audio/visual media technician for the TEA that he wants to provide the MP3 files for direct downloading. So, I don’t think I’m violating anything by providing the files here.

The files here are broken down into seven parts, and on the linked wiki there’s a page for each part with the beginning of an annotated contents page with times noted for each speaker. I never intended for those pages to have only the content that I put on them. That’s why they’re on the wiki, not this blog: Anyone can add or edit on the wiki. Please do! Especially if you have a list of the speakers, or know how to complete the names and correct my phonetic spellings. Also, please add your own comments and observations. You can also add links from those pages to pages in your own webspace, or elsewhere. (Anyone can edit the pages that are already created there. To create new pages, or to use discussion tabs or other features, you would need to join the wiki — but let me know if you want to do that (You’ll see a link to click for “join”).

I tried to correllate my audio files with the live blogs by  Steven Shafersman and by the TFN blogger, which could help with navigation, connecting dots, filling in content, etc. In conjunction with the audio, I also recommend reading the Austringer post, “ Texas: Your “Weaknesses” Are Weak — And Old, Too.”

The size of these audio files is large, ranging from about 3 to 13 MB, & that’s after I reduced them down to 16 kbps. I tried 8 kbps but that was not acceptable. These files sound OK to me for speech. On the wiki these audios are provided in the leaner Windows Media Audio (.wma) format, with much smaller file sizes.(Note: If you’re using Mozilla Firefox, and the browser shows a link to install a plug-in to play wma files, you may need to close Firefox after the installation and restart it before you see the wma player on the page.)

So here they are! Use the TFN links below to get to the right part of their five-part blog from the event. Click here for Steven Shafersman’s blog from the event (mostly on one page). You can use the “sboe …” links either to download the mp3 files to your own computer, or to play them from this page. And don’t forget to visit the pages on the wiki for each part of these hearings, to add your comments, links, or whatever, and see what others put there.

  • TFN Pt. 1: 4:00 – 4:45
  • TFN Pt. 2: 4:45 – 5:37
    • sboe081119_2of7 (5.8 MB): Paul Kramer, Steven Schafersman, Kathy Miller, Clare Wuellner, and others — contents & comments on Curricuwiki (please feel free to add info, comments, etc.)
  • TFN Pt. 3: 5:37 – 7:00
    • 5:37 – 6:00 sboe081119_3of7 (3 MB) Rabbi Ana Bonnheim, Ronald Wetherington, and others — contents & comments on Curricuwiki (please feel free to add info, comments, etc.)
      • SBOE pizza break
    • 6:26 – 7:00: sboe081119_4of7 (3 MB) Rev. Timothy Tutt, Andrew Ellington, and others — contents & comments on Curricuwiki (please feel free to add info, comments, etc.)
  • TFN Pt. 4: 7:00 – 7:54
    • 7:00 – 7:42: sboe081119_5of7 (5.8 MB) Wendee Holtcamp, “Spider Joe” Lapp, and others — contents & comments on Curricuwiki (please feel free to add info, comments, etc.)
  • TFN Pt. 5: 7:54 -11:07
    • 7:42 – 9:15: sboe081119_6of7 (11 MB) J. Tinsley Oden, Richard Neavel, Rabbi Charlie Cytron-Walker, Jonathan Saenz, and others — contents & comments on Curricuwiki (please feel free to add info, comments, etc.) Note: The first 12 min. of this audio are covered in TFN Pt. 4.
    • 9:15 – 11:07: sboe081119_7of7 (13 MB) William Quinn, Lorenzo Sadun, Garrett Mize, and others — contents & comments on Curricuwiki (please feel free to add info, comments, etc.)
  • There are a few points concerning the overall proceedings that I think demand some comment (they pertain to things that run through the event, and not just one or another piece of testimony). I will start a separate blog post for each of these to keep them on separate threads:

    1. The “Kansas problem”
    2. The “six experts” scandal
    3. The nature of the colloquy, and what that tells us
    4. The Board’s “not-religion” problem

    There’s a » link forward at the top of this page (top right, between the blog title and the title of this post) that you could use if you want to step through these posts in the sequence above.


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    6 Trackbacks/Pingbacks

    1. […] Added November 29: There are now audio files of the whole thing (in seven parts, aligned with the TFN blog pages) posted here on this blog. […]

    2. […] one of the more unexpected developments to come out of the seven hours of public testimony before the Texas State Board of Education November 19, 2008 is the emergence of SBOE Chair Don […]

    3. […] and context for the 10-year review of TEKS science standard by the Texas State Board of Education. (Click here for a page with links for playing or downloading audio files of the November 19 public […]

    4. […] Click here for links to audio files of the complete hearings. Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)TX Advisory council recommends approval for creationism master’s degree This entry was written by Tony Whitson and posted on December 2, 2008 at 8:58 pm and filed under Evolution, Intelligent Design, Politics of Education, Religion, Science, Texas, blog, creationism. Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post. Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL. « Great Summary of Texas Evolution developments […]

    5. […] Click here for links to audio files of the complete hearings. […]

    6. […] I will post shorter segments, and smaller-sized files, like I did for the November 19 hearings. This entry was written by Tony Whitson and posted on January 21, 2009 at 3:20 pm and filed […]

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