July 31, 2014 at 3:01 pm

Michigan students may opt out of animal dissection

Lansing — The State Board of Education is urging Michigan school districts to let students opt out of animal dissection for moral, ethical, religious or other reasons.

The policy was adopted by the board in May and applauded Thursday by the animal rights group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.

The state board encourages K-12 districts to enact a policy letting students complete an alternate to dissection such as an interactive computer program. It’s up to individual districts to decide whether to follow the state’s guidance.

PETA says Michigan joined 21 states and Washington, D.C., with policies allowing students to opt against animal dissection. PETA says it has offered free training to familiarize Michigan science teachers with computer-based dissection programs.