"And before the future citizen can contribute to the decision-making process, they need to have a good grounding in the fundamentals of science and technology, rather than the soundbite science that state school curriculums are increasingly moving towards."
The new syllabus is designed to engage teenagers by examining issues of public concern like nuclear power and the MMR vaccine.
Baroness Warnock, the philosopher who framed the embryo research laws, said the agenda was being set by the Press, creating debates that were "more suitable for the pub than the school room".
Lady Warnock said: "The present policy has two incompatible aims: to give all pupils some understanding of the subject matter of the sciences, and to so fire the imagination of a substantial minority of them that they want to pursue their interest into the sixth form and beyond.
The new syllabus encourages a post-modern view that science is just one of many ways of finding out about the world, and that its claims are as open to challenges those of any interested pressure group."