The article sets out to address two issues, one theoretical and the other experimental. The theoretical issue concerns the appropriateness of values education as a component of all schooling, especially in public education settings. The growing acceptance that this is the case challenges former conceptions about the defined limits of public versus private education. The experimental issue concerns an update of studies around curriculum intervention in values education. Results of a recent study that centred on a formalized international program in values education are compared with those of an earlier study that centred on a less formal, school-based program. Addressing the two issues challenges two commonly held assumptions that have potential to retard the development of values education: first, that values education is not an appropriate component of public education; and, second, that values education is not capable of having practical curriculum impact.