NOTE: This petition is closed on May 12, 2003. By signing this petition I affirm the following: 1. I am a middle school or high school student in the Mount Vernon City School District. 2. The interpretation of the scientific facts surrounding evolutionary theory is controversial within the scientific and academic communities. 3. I am mature enough to be presented all the facts of the theory of evolution, both the facts that support it and those that challenge it. 4. Censorship of opposing points of view stops true scholarship and prevents me from developing my critical thinking skills. 5. I have the right to study all aspects of controversial scientific issues in my science classes, including the theory of evolution. 6. No teacher should be unfairly treated for challenging the assumptions of the evolutionary theory, or for presenting alternate theories. 7. I would welcome free and open debate between the theory of evolution and any alternate theory that practicing scientists believe to be viable. I strongly request a policy that would allow the teaching and learning of controversial aspects of origins science, particularly the evolutionary theory. I speak out AGAINST censorship and indoctrination, and speak out FOR academic freedom and fairness.