Reasons for teaching Biotechnology at the High School Level

These days you can't open a newspaper or turn on a television without hearing about DNA and the strong impact it is having on society. As we approach the 21st century, it is apparent how biotechnology will have an influence on everyone's life. No matter who you are, everyone will need to have a basic understanding of biotechnology in order to make intelligent and moral choices regarding daily decisions. We are entering an era where:

All of these issues focus on the manipulation of an organisms' DNA. However, DNA technology presents society with a double-edged sword. Along with great benefits of biotechnology towards the advancement of our culture, there will be a multitude of ethical and moral issues. For example, the genetic makeup of a person could be used against them by potential employers or insurance companies regarding risks of disease indicated by that person's DNA sequence; or, expectant parents could "choose" the potential traits and characteristics of their future children. These factors, both positive and negative, are part of OUR FUTURE. Decisions regarding the outcome and direction of this genetic revolution will be influenced by everyone society. Therefore, we, as teachers, should pass on this pertinent information onto the future generations of students because THEY are OUR FUTURE.