A collective cry resounds from coast to coast: “We’ve got to fix our broken education system!” Yet what do we do? Young Americans are caught between schools’ requirements to maintain certain levels of testing and garnering a valuable, useful education that can manufacture valuable, able-minded citizens.

E. D. Hirsch is a pioneer in the field of cultural literacy. Being literate on one’s cultural is as important as being literate in letters and the two are indeed married. When one’s ability to read and write at an appropriate level is below certain levels, of course their understanding of their environment and culture is retarded as well.

This is a heartbreaking conversation of critical importance to us all. Hirsch is still at it, now heading the Core Knowledge Foundation. For anyone who has ever cared about what their child is learning and why, this is an episode not to be missed.