Public education in America has run into hard times. Even many within the system admit that it is failing. While many factors contribute, Douglas Wilson lays much blame on the idea that education can take place in a moral vacuum. It is not possible for education to be nonreligious, deliberately excluding the basic questions about life. All education builds on the foundation of someone's worldview (teacher's, curriculum writer's). Education deals with fundamental questions that require religious answers. Learning to read and write is simply the process of acquiring the tools to ask and answer such questions.
A second reason for the failure of public schools, Wilson feels, is modern teaching methods. He argues for a return to a classical education, firm discipline, and the requirement of hard work.
Often educational reforms create new problems that must be solved down the road. This book presents alternatives that have proved workable in experience.