But such legislative attempts have to date had mixed success.
Louisiana enacted such a bill in 2008 and Tennessee followed suit in 2012.
But in conservative South Dakota and Iowa this year, similar bills did not succeed.
Two introduced in the Iowa legislature died in committee, failing to advance for a full debate.
'Science in science class'
Detractors say these laws boosting teachers' options can sow confusion in the classroom and bind the hands of school administrators.
"Allowing the teacher to teach creationism would risk the possibility of a lawsuit from a parent objecting that it's unconstitutional to teach creationism," Branch said.
"Stopping the teacher from proceeding would risk the possibility of a lawsuit from the teacher."
The South Dakota bill died in the state legislature in a matter of weeks, thanks in part to the opposition of David Evans, executive director of the National Science Teachers Association.
"We strongly support teaching science in science class and are strongly opposed to teaching other things in science class," said Evans, whose group crusaded against the bill with a letter-writing campaign.