It's decision day for Texas' latest classroom debate over evolution - and for algebra II.
The Board of Education is casting critical votes Thursday on new science textbooks for use statewide, and on whether Algebra II should be a required high school course.
Members are devising updated academic standards under a curriculum overhaul already approved by the Legislature.
It rewrote course requirements to promote vocational training.
The law doesn't require algebra II, and some experts worry it weakens curriculum.
But the lawmakers who sponsored the overhaul made an unplanned appearance to implore the board not to make algebra II mandatory.
The board is also poised to approve new science books - despite claims by some social conservatives that they aren't skeptical enough about the theory of evolution and climate change.