We here in the UK are lucky insofar as creationism is not pedalled in most of our schools. In the US on the other hand, no less than 13 States have applied to add it to the curriculum.
Perhaps though, we shouldn't be too sanguine about the situation on the UK. The moral education of our children is mostly woefully lax, with parents often abdicating all or most of the responsiblity for this side of education to the schools, and with schools failing abjectly in their brief. (For a start, how can you tell a child that bullying is wrong, when you are, like as not, being a terrible bully yourself?). There is, therefore, an obvious temptation to flail around looking for solutions to this failure in moral education, and creationism could be seen by some to fit the bill.
There are signs that this is indeed happening. The Guardian reports that the government's plans to create 200 new City Academies by attracting private sponsorship to the tune of £2 million pounds, with the sponsors running these academies in partnership with the LEAs, have backfired somewhat, in that almost half of these proposed flagship schools are to be sponsored by religious organisations. At least two of these sponsors, (The Grace Academy, with schools in Coventry and Solihul and the Emmanuel Foundation with three schools), either already teach or intend to teach creationism.
The Guardian also notes that:"In the UK, creationism remains a fringe movement - although the organisers of Creation Fest, a Christian festival held this weekend in Devon which is hosting several Creationist lecturers, say attendance has doubled year on year since they began in 2001".
It is not necessary, however, to fill the educational ethical void with unmitigated nonsense and we must hope that the good sense of the British people will prevail and that they realise there is a workable, rational alternative. By this I mean that we could start to take humans seriously. There are profound reasons for doing so, since humans can be awesome. We could generate prodigious inspiration and strength by acknowledging human achievement. We should be proud of the times when the human race has shown ingenuity, proficiency, confidence, intelligence and courage. We could look to maximise these qualities in ourselves.
However, here in the UK, those of left-wing persuasion have propogated a self-loathing of immense proportions, and elements of the right do little more than despise them for it. Taken altogether, this amounts to nothing less than a total dissipation of belief in mankind, human potential and progress.
Yet theoretical quantum physicists such as David Deutsch and Frank Tipler talk of human potential in truly inspiring and not incredible terms. Despite the commonplace denigration of human achievement and the ever present seductions of religious belief, there is no need to resort to mysticism for an ethical framework or for a reason to live.