Much ink has been spilt on the question of how philosophy might be taught in schools—on the forms of pedagogy appropriate to the subject, the levels of abstraction at which children can think, and the philosophical problems most likely to inspire their interest. Rather less attention has been given to exactly why it should be taught. Perhaps, to most philosophers involved in classroom experimentation, the benefits of acquainting children with philosophy have seemed self-evident and the burning question has been how to go about it. But, in fact, the benefits are not self-evident. And even if they were, it would remain to be shown that they are equal to or greater than the benefits of the other subjects and activities vying for space in the school curriculum.The contributors to this special issue of Journal of Philosophy in Schools take up this challenge. Their remit was to advance and defend answers to the question ‘Why should philosophy be taught in schools?’ While the contributors differ in their conceptions of philosophy and their reasons for championing it, their arguments are largely complementary and make a compelling cumulative case for the inclusion of philosophy in the school curriculum.