I am very excited about the publication of Thomas Korcok's Lutheran Education: From Wittenberg to the Future. It supplies what has long been needed: a history of classical Christian education as practiced in the Reformation tradition. Dr. Korcok shows that the Lutheran approach to education has always been the classical liberal arts + catechesis.
He also shows that the various theological conflicts were also manifested in educational conflicts: The scholastics did practice the liberal arts but with an emphasis on logic, whereas the Renaissance & Reformation educators emphasized rhetoric, with its attention to original texts (such as the Bible). The Renaissance humanists tended to believe that the liberal arts were sufficient to instill morality, but the Lutherans insisted also on the necessity of Christian catechesis. The enthusiasts, considering the liberal arts too worldly, wanted only Bible-reading schools. The pietists also considered the liberal arts too worldly and wanted schools to concentrate only on job-training. The rationalists considered the liberal arts too old fashioned, wanting only scientific education. But the Lutherans believed that the liberal arts approach to education–training students broadly, with lots of history, great books, and objective knowledge from mathematics through music–combined with rigorous catechesis, was the best approach in forming young people so that they can think like a Lutheran.
Pastors, parochial school teachers, and parents should read this book. So should anyone interested in classical Christian education. (I suspect that much of what holds true for Lutherans also applies to various Reformed educators, who also practiced this approach.)
Here is what Paul McCain of CPH says about the book:
You can order the book from the link in my first paragraph or from the CPH website, along with downloading a free sample. The book is scheduled for release in August, but you can pre-order it. I wrote the foreword.
Along these lines, I should put in a plug for the 11th annual Conference of the Consortium for Classical and Lutheran Education, July 12-14, in Sheridan Wyoming, which is where I am heading this week. I'll be giving a couple of talks. If you are in Sheridan, be sure to introduce yourself!