President Bush said on Monday that schools should teach "intelligent design," a theory asserting that an intelligent agent helped shape the origins and history of the earth and life, in addition to evolution, the theory of life that enjoys overwhelming support from scientists.
Mr. Bush, who spoke in an interview with reporters from five Texas newspapers, said students should learn about intelligent design to understand the debate over creation-of-life theories. His support could help the efforts of Christian conservatives who have pushed for public schools to teach the theory.
"I think that part of education is to expose people to different schools of thought," Mr. Bush told the reporters. "You're asking me whether or not people ought to be exposed to different ideas, the answer is yes."
Intelligent-design theory holds that some biological systems are so complex that they could have arisen only through the action of an intelligent force -- ostensibly divine -- and not simply through Darwinian evolution.