Education in the UK

Preliminary pages
Introduction, Contents, Preface
Chapter 1 Up to 1500
Chapter 2 1500-1600
Renaissance and Reformation
Chapter 3 1600-1660
Chapter 4 1660-1750
Chapter 5 1750-1860
Towards mass education
Chapter 6 1860-1900
A state system of education
Chapter 7 1900-1923
Secondary education for some
Chapter 8 1923-1939
From Hadow to Spens
Chapter 9 1939-1945
Educational reconstruction
Chapter 10 1945-1951
Labour and the tripartite system
Chapter 11 1951-1964
The wind of change
Chapter 12 1964-1970
The golden age?
Chapter 13 1970-1974
Applying the brakes
Chapter 14 1974-1979
Progressivism under attack
Chapter 15 1979-1990
Thatcher and the New Right
Chapter 16 1990-1997
John Major: more of the same
Chapter 17 1997-2007
Tony Blair and New Labour
Chapter 18 2007-2010
Brown and Balls: mixed messages
Chapter 19 2010-2015
Gove v The Blob
Chapter 20 2015-2018

Organisation of the timeline

The timeline is divided into sections corresponding to the chapters of the history. You can scroll through it or use the links below to go to a particular section.

1 Up to 1500
2 1500-1600
Renaissance and Reformation
3 1600-1660
4 1660-1750
5 1750-1860
Towards mass education
6 1860-1900
A state system of education
7 1900-1923
Secondary education for some
8 1923-1939
From Hadow to Spens
9 1939-1945
Educational reconstruction
10 1945-1951
Labour and the tripartite system
11 1951-1964
The wind of change
12 1964-1970
The golden age?
13 1970-1974
Applying the brakes
14 1974-1979
Progressivism under attack
15 1979-1990
Thatcher and the New Right
16 1990-1997
John Major: more of the same
17 1997-2007
Tony Blair and New Labour
18 2007-2010
Brown and Balls: mixed messages
19 2010-2015
Gove v The Blob
20 2015-2018

Renewing public education:
proposals for an inclusive, democratic and joyful system

As the UK gears up for a general election, Patrick Yarker and the members of the Forum editorial board, together with other leading educationists, call on a new government to create a fully-comprehensive education service which is democratic and life-enhancing.

Download the eBook for free here.

Education in the UK: a history
Derek Gillard

first published June 1998
this version published May 2018

copyright Derek Gillard 2018
Education in the UK: a history is my copyright. You are welcome to download it and/or print it for your own personal use, or for use in a school or other educational establishment, provided my name as the author is attached. But you may not publish it, upload it onto any other website, or sell it, without my permission.

A printer-friendly version of this timeline can be found here.


a chronological list of
events, reports, education acts, official papers and other publications


Prime Ministers (since 1721) are listed in red.

Committee of Council on Education Vice-Presidents (1857-1900), Board of Education Presidents (1900-1945), Ministers of Education (1945-1964) and Secretaries of State for Education (since 1964) are listed in blue.

HM Chief Inspectors (HMCI)/Heads of Ofsted (since 1994) are listed in green.

Where a number of items are shown in a single year I can't guarantee that I have listed them in the correct chronological order within that year, although I have tried to do so.

Where a document is shown as a link, the full text is available online.

1 Up to 1500 : Beginnings

AD43 The Roman occupation of Britain began.

c400 The Romans left: no surviving evidence of their schools.

597 St Augustine arrived in England.

598 First grammar school established at Canterbury.

600s More grammar schools established at Dorchester, Winchester, Hexham, Malmesbury, Lichfield, Hereford and Worcester etc.

711 Venerable Bede completed his Ecclesiastical History.

776 Alcuin established a school at York.

866 Viking invasions began.

871 Alfred became King of Wessex: showed 'concern for education'.

925 Dunstan born - became Abbot of Glastonbury then Archbishop of Canterbury.

990s Ælfric, schoolmaster at Cerne, wrote educational works.

1016 Canute became King of England: showed concern for the education of poor boys.

1066 Norman invasion: French replaced English as the vernacular medium for teaching Latin.

1096 Oxford: evidence of teaching.

1128 Royal High School Edinburgh founded - one of the oldest schools in Scotland.

1167 Henry II banned English students from attending the University of Paris.

1179 Third Lateran Council decreed that every cathedral should have a schoolmaster.

1209 Cambridge: scholars arrived from Oxford.

1214 Oxford: post of Chancellor established.

1226 Cambridge: post of Chancellor established.

1249 University College founded - the first Oxford college.

1260 Balliol College Oxford founded.

1264 Merton College Oxford founded.

1284 Peterhouse College founded - the first Cambridge college.

c1291 Royal Grammar School Worcester founded.

1316 Exeter College Oxford founded.

1317 King's Hall College Cambridge founded.

1324 Oriel College Oxford founded.

1324 Michaelhouse College Cambridge founded.

1326 Clare College Cambridge founded.

1341 Queen's College Oxford founded.

1347 Pembroke College Cambridge founded.

1347 Gonville College Cambridge founded.

1348-9 Black Death resulted in shortage of teachers.

1350 Trinity Hall College Cambridge founded.

1352 Corpus Christi College Cambridge founded.

1379 William Wykeham founded New College Oxford.

1382 William Wykeham was granted charter for Winchester College (independent school): it opened in 1394.

1384 Katharine Lady Berkeley founded a grammar school at Wotton-under-Edge in Gloucestershire - the first of the chantry schools.

1406 Statute of Apprentices re-enacted earlier legislation forbidding those earning less than 20s. (1) a year from apprenticing their children.

1413 Scotland: St Andrews University founded.

1422 Archbishop Chichele established a college at Higham Ferrers in Northamptonshire.

1427 Lincoln College Oxford founded.

1437 Alice Chaucer founded Ewelme School in Oxfordshire.

1438 All Souls College Oxford founded.

1439 William Byngham founded God's-house at Cambridge.

1440 Henry VI founded Eton College (independent school).

1441 Henry VI founded King's College Cambridge.

1447 Queens' College Cambridge founded.

1448 Magdalen College Oxford founded.

1451 Scotland: Glasgow University founded.

1458 William Waynflete founded Magdalen College Oxford.

1473 St Catharine's College Cambridge founded.

1483 Archbishop Rotherham's college founded to give 'free instruction in grammar, song and writing'.

1486 Pico della Mirandola (1463-1494): De hominis dignitate (Oration on the Dignity of Man) - the 'Manifesto of the Renaissance'.

1495 Scotland: Aberdeen University founded.

1496 Jesus College Cambridge founded.

1496 Scotland: statute required barons and freeholders of substance to send their children to school.

1498 Wells School in Somerset used printed schoolbooks (probably the first school to do so).

2 1500-1600 : Renaissance and Reformation

1508 Christ's College Cambridge founded (an enlargement of God's-house).

1509 Henry VIII became King.

1509 Brasenose College Oxford founded.

1509 St Paul's School founded by John Colet.

1509 Royal Grammar School Guildford founded (granted a charter by Edward VI in 1552, one of many such schools).

1511 St John's College Cambridge founded.

1512 Statute required that boys aged between seven and seventeen should be provided with a bow and two arrows.

1512 Desiderius Erasmus (Dutch humanist, 1466-1536): De Duplici Copia Verborum ac Rerum - written for use in Colet's school at St. Paul's.

1517 Corpus Christi College Oxford founded.

1517 Reformation: Martin Luther's protest.

1521 Henry VIII: Assertio Septem Sacramentorum (Defence of the Seven Sacraments) dedicated to Pope Leo X.

1523-8 Juan Luis Vives (Spanish humanist, 1492-1540) visited England regularly.

1525 Royal Grammar School Newcastle upon Tyne founded by Thomas Horsley. Later granted a charter by Elizabeth I.

1535 Thomas Cromwell (Henry VIII's Vicar-General and chief adviser) ordered copies of William Tyndale's new English Bible to be placed in every parish church.

1535-40 The dissolution of the friaries and monasteries.

1535 Thomas Cromwell sent visitors to the universities with directives for re-orienting studies and powers to enforce the required changes.

1539 Parliament authorised Henry VIII to establish new cathedrals and collegiate churches with grammar schools - implemented between 1450 and 1542.

1539 Colchester Royal Grammar School (founded in 1128), granted a royal charter by Henry VIII; another charter was granted by Elizabeth I in 1584.

1540 Henry VIII founded five Regius professorships - in divinity, Greek, Hebrew, medicine and civil law - at Cambridge.

1541 Canterbury Grammar School refounded.

1542 Magdalene College Cambridge founded.

1542 A Shorte Introduction of Grammar, produced by a committee for Henry VIII - became known as Lily's Latin Grammar.

1543 Parliament banned artisans, husbandmen, labourers, servants and almost all women from reading or discussing the Bible - prohibition proved impossible to enforce.

1545 The first Chantry Act provided for dissolution of the chantries and guilds - not completed because of Henry's death.

1546 Trinity College Cambridge founded.

1546 Henry VIII founded five Regius professorships - in divinity, Greek, Hebrew, medicine and civil law - at Oxford.

1546 Christ Church Oxford (Wolsey's Cardinal College) refounded by Henry VIII.

1547 Henry VIII died, Edward VI became King at the age of nine.

1547 Royal injunctions replaced the doctrine of purgatory with a duty to provide for the poor.

1547 The second (Edwardian) Chantry Act.

1548 Robert Crowley's Petition against the Oppressors of the Poor Commons of this Realm urged parliament to provide better education for the poor.

1548 Edward VI restated his intention 'to erect diverse and sundry grammar schools in every county in England and Wales'.

1548 Italian Reformation scholar Peter Martyr Vermigli (1499-1562) became Regius Professor of Divinity at Oxford.

1548 The first English textbook on anatomy, written by surgeon Thomas Vicary, was published.

1549 Royal visitations at Cambridge and Oxford: Catholics expelled.

1551 King Edward VI Grammar School Chelmsford granted charter.

1552 Royal Grammar School Bath (no longer in existence) granted charter by Edward VI.

1552 Royal Grammar School Guildford (founded in 1512), granted a royal charter by Edward VI.

1552 London's common council adopted plan to deal with poverty, including Bridewell training school; similar schemes followed in other towns.

1553 King Edward VI's School Witley (Surrey) founded in London, moved to Witley in 1867.

1553 Cambridge visitation - further pressure to enforce Protestantism.

1553 Edward VI died, Lady Jane Grey ruled for 13 days and was then deposed by Mary.

1554 Clitheroe Royal Grammar School founded as 'The Free Grammar School of King Philip and Queen Mary'.

1555 National synod of clergy attempted to reimpose Catholicism - its decrees were largely ignored.

1555 Trinity College Oxford founded by Sir Thomas Pope.

1555 St John's College Oxford founded by Sir Thomas White.

1557 Tadcaster Grammar School founded by Bishop Oglethorpe (who crowned Elizabeth I).

1557 Gonville and Caius (pronounced 'keys') College Cambridge refounded (previously known as Gonville Hall).

1558 Mary died; Elizabeth I became Queen.

1559 Elizabethan Religious Settlement (1558 Act of Supremacy, 1559 Act of Uniformity and Royal Injunctions) restored Protestantism.

1559 The last royal visitation of the universities reversed the changes of Mary's reign.

1560 Westminster School refounded by Elizabeth I.

1560 Scotland: the First Book of Discipline, based on the work of John Knox (c1513-1572), set out reformers' plans for schools and universities.

1561 Merchant Taylors' Company School founded.

1561 Royal Grammar School Kingston (Surrey) granted charter by Elizabeth I.

1561 Baldassare Castiglione (1478-1529): The Book of the Courtier (1528): English version published.

1562 Royal Grammar School High Wycombe (founded in 1551), granted a Royal Charter by Elizabeth I.

1562 Elizabethan Statute of Artificers established a national system of apprenticeship.

1563 All graduates required to take the Oath of Supremacy.

1563 Scotland: General Assembly set up commissions to found schools in Moray, Banff, Inverness and Ross (and in Caithness and Sunderland in 1574).

1565 Claude Holyband (1534-1594): French Schoolmaster - the teaching of French.

1569 Archbishop Parker founded Eastbridge Hospital school at Canterbury for twenty poor children.

1570 John Foxe (c1516-1587): Book of Martyrs - enlarged edition published.

1570 Roger Ascham (1515-1568): The Scholemaster published posthumously - stressed the importance of play in education.

1570 City of Norwich made arrangements for the teaching of poor children.

1570 Sir Humphrey Gilbert proposed the establishment of an academy for gentlemen's sons - did not come to fruition.

1571 1571 Oxford and Cambridge Act (13 Eliz 1. c. 29): provided for the incorporation of the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge, giving or confirming a range of privileges.

1571 New statutes for Cambridge aimed to reduce puritan influence.

1572 Government ordered censuses of the poor in all cities and introduced a compulsory poor rate.

1578 John Florio (1553-1625): First Fruits - the teaching of Italian.

1581 Richard Mulcaster (1531-1611): Positions - said education should be regarded as a developing science.

1582 Richard Mulcaster: Elementarie - called for improvements in the teaching of young children.

1582 University of Edinburgh founded.

1584 Puritans called on parliament to provide better education.

1584 Sir Walter Mildmay (c1523-1589) founded Emmanuel College Cambridge.

1585 Oxford University appointed its own printer.

1587 Francis Clement published a practical manual for those teaching in the petties.

1588 William Kempe: Education of Children in Learning.

1590 Spanish Grammar - English edition published.

1596 Sidney Sussex College Cambridge founded.

1596 Edmund Coote: The English Schoolmaster.

1596 Gresham College London founded.

1597 Elizabethan Poor Law (Acts of 1597 and 1601) ensured that the children of the poor were set to work.

3 1600-1660 : Revolution

1602 Sir Thomas Bodley (1545-1613) restored Oxford University's library.

1603 Elizabeth I died; James VI of Scotland became James I of England.

1605 Francis Bacon (1561-1626): The Advancement of Learning.

1605 Gunpowder plot: one of several Catholic attempts to kill the King.

1611 Authorised Version of the Bible ('King James Bible').

1616 Scottish Act of Parliament required every parish to have a school paid for by the parishioners. (A further Act followed in 1633).

1619 Oxford University: Savilian chairs of astronomy and geometry established.

1625 Charles I became king.

1632 John Amos Comenius (Czech Moravian pastor, 1592-1670): Didactica magna - championed universal education.

1633 William Laud (1573-1645) became Archbishop of Canterbury (charged with treason in 1640 and executed in 1645).

1641 Comenius visited England; left when the civil wars began.

1641 In the Grand Remonstrance, Parliament vowed to purge the universities of royalists.

1641 Petitions to parliament urged the establishment of universities at Manchester and York (these, and the earlier proposals for a university at Ripon, came to nothing).

1642 English Civil Wars began (ended 1651).

1642 Samuel Hartlib (c1600-1662): A Reformation of Schooles.

1644 John Milton (1608-1674): Of Education, addressed to Samuel Hartlib.

1648-9 Triumph of the New Model Army resulted in a purge of Oxford.

1649 Charles I was tried, convicted and executed for high treason.

1649 The Commonwealth (until 1660).

1649 George Snell: The Right Teaching of Useful Knowledge, to fit scholars for some honest profession, dedicated to John Dury (1596-1680) and Samuel Hartlib.

1649 Cromwell's physician John Bathurst proposed a teacher training college.

1649 William Petty (1623-1687) became a doctor of physic and Fellow of Brasenose College Oxford.

1649 John Owen reported to Parliament on the state of education in Ireland - new schools and apprenticeship schemes were established.

1650s The Experimental Philosophy Club - a group of mathematicians and experimental scientists - began meeting in Wadham College Oxford.

1650 John Dury: The Reformed School.

1651 Committee appointed to develop proposals for a new college, library and free school at Trinity College Dublin. (Plans were submitted in 1657 but were lost when the monarchy was restored).

1652 William Petty joined Oliver Cromwell's army in Ireland as physician-general.

1653 John Dury: Proposals towards the Advancement of Learning.

1653 A blueprint for a national educational system, based on work by Hartlib, was presented to the Committee for the Advancement of Learning.

1654 Richard Lloyd: Schoole-masters' Auxiliaries - advice on teaching English.

1656 James Harrington (1611-1677): The Commonwealth of Oceana - advocated free, compulsory, state-directed universal education.

1657 Joshua Poole: English Parnassus - anthology.

1657 Durham College established, financed out of the funds of the dissolved cathedral chapter, but closed three years later when the monarchy was restored.

1658 Comenius: Orbis Sensualium Pictus - the first illustrated school book; English version published in 1659 by Charles Hoole.

1660 John Milton: The Ready and Easy Way to Establish a Free Commonwealth - an anti-monarchy tract urging the establishment of schools and academies.

1660 Charles Hoole: Art of Teaching School and Petty School - called for better teaching for young children.

1660 Henry Hexham: Dutch grammar.

4 1660-1750 : Restoration

1660 Restoration of the monarchy: Charles II became king; Oxford and Cambridge began discriminating against nonconformists.

1660s Nonconformists began opening dissenting academies to teach law, medicine, commerce, engineering and the arts.

1661 Isaac Newton (1642-1727) entered Trinity College Cambridge, where he stayed until 1696.

1662 Act of Uniformity: part of the Clarendon Code, which aimed to purge the church and government of puritan dissidents.

1662 Scientists formed the Royal Society: Charles II granted it a royal charter.

1665 Five Mile Act: imposed strict regulations on nonconformist ministers.

1665 Royal Society began publishing its journal Philosophical Transactions, edited by Henry Oldenburg.

1665 The Great Plague.

1666 The Great Fire of London.

1667 John Locke (1632-1704) was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society as a result of his study and practice of medicine.

1668 Richard Frankland opened a dissenting academy at Rathmell near Settle - lasted for thirty years with up to eighty students.

1673 Christ's Hospital opened a subsidiary mathematical school to teach 'the art of navigation and the whole science of arithmetic'.

1674 Glasgow appointed sewing mistresses.

1678 Christopher Wase: Considerations concerning Free Schools.

1680s Coeducational grammar schools began to appear.

1681 Charles II dissolved the English Parliament and ruled alone.

1683 Oxford: Ashmolean Museum of natural history opened as a base for experimental science.

1685 James II became King - the last Roman Catholic to reign over England, Scotland and Ireland.

1688 James II deposed in the 'Glorious Revolution'.

1689 William and Mary became co-regents and signed the English Bill of Rights. (Mary died in 1694; William then ruled alone until his death in 1702).

1689 Toleration Act allowed nonconformists (but not Roman Catholics) freedom of worship.

1691 Thomas Tryon persuaded the common council of London to set up twenty free schools for the education of poor children.

1693 John Locke: Some Thoughts concerning Education.

1696 Scotland: Act for Settling of Schools required every parish to have a school.

1697 John Locke's Report to the Board of Trade recommended the establishment of workhouse schools for children aged three to fourteen.

1698 London Corporation of the Poor set up a workhouse to provide a thousand of the able-bodied poor with short training courses.

1699 Society for the Propagation of Christian Knowledge (SPCK) founded: opened charity schools and provided some teacher training.

1701 Act of Settlement barred Roman Catholics from the throne.

1701 School of mathematics founded at Rochester.

1702 Anne became queen.

1707 Acts of Union: England and Scotland became Great Britain.

1709 Tory high-church parson Henry Sacheverell attacked the dissenting academies as 'illegal seminaries' and 'schismatical universities'.

1712 John Brightland: Grammar of the English Tongue - 'a complete system of English education for the use of schools of Great Britain'.

1714 Tories' Schism Act aimed to destroy the nonconformists' educational system - not enforced after the Whigs returned to power in 1715, repealed in 1719.

1714 George I became king.

1714 Bernard Mandeville: The Fable of the Bees; with an Essay on Charity and Charity Schools.

1719 Philip Doddridge (1702-1751) entered John Jennings' dissenting academy at Kibworth in Leicestershire.

4 April 1721 Sir Robert Walpole (Whig) - Britain's first Prime Minister

1722 Governor of St Giles' Workhouse in Bloomsbury was told to 'maintain the poor as cheap as may consist with reason'.

1723 Philip Doddridge chosen to run a new dissenting academy at Market Harborough - later became known as Northampton Academy.

1727 George II became king.

1741 Woolwich Academy established for the training of engineers.

16 February 1742 Spencer Compton (Whig)

27 August 1743 Henry Pelham (Whig)

5 1750-1860 : Towards mass education

16 March 1754 Thomas Pelham-Holles (Whig)

16 November 1756 William Cavendish (Whig)

2 July 1757 Thomas Pelham-Holles (Whig)

1757 Warrington Academy established.

1760s Thomas Braidwood's Academy for the Deaf and Dumb opened in Edinburgh.

26 May 1762 John Stuart (Tory)

16 April 1763 George Grenville (Whig)

13 July 1765 Charles Watson-Wentworth (Whig)

30 July1766 William Pitt 'The Elder' (Whig)

14 October 1768 Augustus Henry Fitzroy (Whig)

28 January 1770 Lord Frederick North (Tory)

1775 Lunar Society of Birmingham founded - the first of many literary and philosophical societies.

1776 Adam Smith (1723-1790): The Wealth of Nations.

1777 Ackworth School opened by the Society of Friends (the Quakers) 'for the education of children of parents not in affluence'.

1780 Gotthold Ephraim Lessing (1729-1781) The Education of the Human Race: book by the influential German philosopher, poet, dramatist and art critic.

1781 Robert Raikes opened four small Sunday schools in Gloucestershire.

27 March 1782 Charles Watson-Wentworth (Whig)

4 July 1782 William Petty (Whig)

2 April 1783 William Cavendish-Bentinck (Whig)

1783 Manchester College of Arts and Science established.

19 December 1783 William Pitt 'The Younger' (Tory and Whig)

1785 Sunday School Society established.

1786 Warrington Academy closed, Manchester Academy opened.

1788 1788 Chimney Sweepers Act: the first of six Acts regulating the work of chimney sweepers. Set the minimum age at which boys could be employed to climb and clean chimneys at 8 years. (See also the Acts of 1834, 1840, 1864, 1875 and 1894.)

1791 Henry Dannett founded School of Instruction for the Indigent Blind in Liverpool. Similar schools followed:

1793 Asylum for the Industrious Blind at Edinburgh
1793 Asylum for the Blind at Bristol
1800 School for the Indigent Blind in London
1805 Asylum and School for the Indigent Blind at Norwich.
1791 Tom Paine (1737-1809): The Rights of Man.

1792 London Corresponding Society founded - the first of many such societies.

1792 Mary Wollstonecraft (1759-1797): A Vindication of the Rights of Woman.

1793 William Godwin (1756-1836): Political Justice.

1797 Erasmus Darwin (1731-1802): Plan for the Conduct of Female Education in Boarding Schools.

1797 Andrew Bell (1753-1832): An Experiment in Education set out his ideas for monitorial schools.

1798 Joseph Lancaster (1778-1838) opened his first monitorial school for poor children, at Borough Road.

1798 Richard Lovell Edgeworth (1744-1817) and daughter Maria: Practical Education.

1798 Samuel Butler (1774-1839) became head of Shrewsbury School.

1798 Richmal Mangnall (1769-1820): Historical and Miscellaneous Questions for the use of young people.

1799 School of industry opened at Kendal.

17 March 1801 Henry Addington (Tory)

1802 1802 Factory Act (22 June): the first to require factory owners to provide some education. Ineffective.

1802 Edward and John Bruce opened private school in Percy Street, Newcastle.

1803 1803 Parochial Schools (Scotland) Act (11 June): sought to improve the provision of education in Scotland and laid down rules concerning the employment and payment of teachers.

10 May 1804 William Pitt 'The Younger' (Tory)

1805 In the 'Eldon judgement', Leeds Grammar School governors were refused permission to use part of the school's endowment for teaching modern subjects.

11 February 1806 Lord Grenville (Whig)

1807 Samuel Whitbread's Parochial Schools Bill, which called for the education of 'the labouring classes', was defeated.

1807 Mill Hill School founded by nonconformists.

1809 Naval College at Portsmouth established.

4 October 1809 Spencer Perceval (Tory)

1811 Church of England established the National Society for Promoting the Education of the Poor in the Principles of the Established Church (the National Society), which aimed to provide a school in every parish, using Bell's monitorial system.

8 June 1812 Robert Banks Jenkinson, Earl of Liverpool (Tory)

1813 Robert Owen (1771-1858): A New View of Society.

1813 Robert Owen opened his first infant school in New Lanark, Scotland.

1814 British and Foreign School Society for the Education of the Labouring and Manufacturing Classes of Society of Every Religious Persuasion (the British and Foreign School Society) founded by liberal Anglicans, Roman Catholics and Jews as an alternative to the National Society. Its schools used Lancaster's monitorial system.

1814 Institution for the Instruction of the Deaf and Dumb opened in Edgbaston. More schools for the deaf followed:

1820s Liverpool, Manchester, Exeter and Doncaster
1847 Aberystwyth
1851 Edinburgh (Donaldson's Hospital).
1816 Select Committee on the Education of the Lower Orders in the Metropolis set up to examine schools for the working class, but also investigated the conduct of various grammar schools.

1816 Jeremy Bentham devised 'Chrestomathic Scheme' for the education of 7 to 14 year olds: his schools never opened.

1818 Robert Owen: On the Employment of Children in Manufactures (article).

1818 John Pounds gave care and training to ragged children - led to the establishment of ragged schools.

1818 Nicholas Carlisle: The Endowed Grammar Schools - contained the results of his survey.

1818 Commission of Inquiry into Charities set up - spent twenty years investigating abuses including those relating to grammar school endowments.

1819 Hazelwood School in Birmingham founded by the brothers Matthew and Rowland Hill.

1820 Henry Brougham's (1778-1868) Bill 'for better promoting the means of education for His Majesty's subjects in England and Wales' was defeated.

1821 Robert Owen: Report to the County of Lanark.

1821 Co-operative and Economic Society established in London, based on the ideas of Robert Owen. Similar societies followed elsewhere, including Brighton in 1827.

1821 Richard Carlile (1790-1843): Address to Men of Science.

1822 Matthew, Rowland and Arthur Hill: Public Education.

1824 David Stow (1793-1864) founded Glasgow Infant School Society and Glasgow Normal School for training teachers.

1824 London Mechanics' Institute established - the first of many such institutes.

1824 William Thompson (1775-1833): An Inquiry into the Principles of the Distribution of Wealth.

1824 Robert Owen left for America (returned in 1828).

1824 Infant School Society founded by Samuel Wilderspin.

1825 1825 Universities Act (5 July): authorised the Chancellors of Oxford and Cambridge to appoint Constables to help maintain 'peace and good order' in the university precincts.

1825 Liverpool Institute opened. Other proprietary day schools followed:

1829 King's College School
1830 University College School
1831 Blackheath Proprietary School
1837 City of London School
1840 Liverpool College.
10 April 1827 George Canning (Tory)

31 August 1827 Frederick Robinson, Viscount Goderich (Tory)

1827 Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge established.

22 January 1828 Arthur Wellesley, Duke of Wellington (Tory)

1828 Thomas Arnold (1795-1842) became head of Rugby School.

1828 University College London opened - later became University of London.

1829 British Association for Promoting Co-operative Knowledge founded with William Lovett (1800-1877) as secretary.

22 November 1830 Earl Grey (Whig)

1831 Church of England opened King's College in competition with University College.

1831 Birmingham Grammar School Act: empowered the governors to use endowment funds to build a new school to teach modern languages, the arts and sciences.

1832 Representation of the People Act (The Reform Act): extended the franchise (the right to vote) to a million middle-class property owners, but not to the workers.

1832 Chartist movement established in response to the Reform Act.

1833 JA Roebuck's (1802-1879) bill for 'the universal and national education of the whole people' was defeated, but government began making annual grants to church schools. A Treasury Minute of 29 August set out rules regarding the distribution of the first 20,000 grant.

1833 1833 Factories Act (29 August): the first Act to create an inspectorate, but it allocated no funds for the education it required.

16 July 1834 William Lamb, Viscount Melbourne (Whig)

1834 1834 Chimney Sweepers Act (25 July): the second of six Acts regulating the work of chimney sweepers. Repealed the 1788 Act and set the minimum age for climbing chimneys at 10 years. (See also the Acts of 1788, 1840, 1864, 1875 and 1894).

1834 1834 Poor Law Amendment Act (14 August): proposed that all relief should be given in workhouses, and that pauper children should receive education on a daily basis.

14 November 1834 Arthur Wellesley (Tory)

10 December 1834 Sir John Peel (Tory)

18 April 1835 William Lamb, Viscount Melbourne (Whig)

1835 Yorkshire School for the Blind founded.

1836 University of London incorporated as an examining body.

1836 Home and Colonial Institution (later Society): founded by Charles Mayo (1792-1846) to establish infant schools and train teachers.

1836 Central Society of Education: aimed to keep religion out of schools altogether.

1836 Thomas Wyse (1791-1862): Education reform or the necessity of a national system of education.

1836 David Stow: Training System of Education for the Moral and Intellectual Elevation of Youth, especially in large Towns and Manufacturing Villages.

1837 Normal School of Design established in London by the government.

1837 Select Committee appointed 'to consider the best means of providing useful education for the children of the Poorer Classes in large towns throughout England and Wales'. Report published in 1838.

1837 Thomas Wyse: Education Reform criticised traditional secondary education.

1838 Chartists published the People's Charter.

1838 Henshaw's Blind Asylum opened in Manchester.

1838 Royal Polytechnic Institution in Regent Street founded (now the University of Westminster).

1839 Committee of the Privy Council on Education - the first government department with specific responsibility for education - was established by an Order in Council dated 10 April. Dr (later Sir) James Kay-Shuttleworth appointed as first Permanent Secretary. The Committee's first report on the distribution of funds for public education was approved by an Order in Council of 3 June 1839.

1839-59 Minutes of the Committee of Council on Education:

24 September 1839: regulations governing the appropriation of grants.
25 August and 21 December 1846: appointment of inspectors; teachers' qualifications and pensions; education of pupil teachers and stipendiary monitors; support for Normal Schools.
6 August 1851: grants to certificated teachers in training schools.
23 July 1852: grants to assistant teachers in elementary schools.
2 April 1853: grants for the support of schools.
20 August 1853: Queen's Scholars, apprentices and certificated teachers.
2 June 1856: admission of Queen's Scholars and annual examination of students in training colleges.
4 May 1859: cancelled Section 9 in the Minute of 20 August 1853.
1839 Owenite Halls of Science began to be established in many towns.

1839 Liverpool Rational School Society founded.

1840 1840 Grammar Schools Act (7 August): allowed some schools to spend endowment funds on modern and commercial subjects, but only on the death of the master.

1840 1840 Chimney Sweepers Regulation Act: the third of six Acts regulating the work of chimney sweepers. Allowed 16 year olds to be apprentices, but no one under 21 was to climb chimneys. (See also the Acts of 1788, 1834, 1864, 1875 and 1894).

1841-52 Five School Sites Acts facilitated the purchase of land for school buildings and allowed for 'Parliamentary Grants for the Education of the Poor':

1841 School Sites Act (21 June)
1844 School Sites Act (19 July)
1849 School Sites Act (28 July)
1851 School Sites Act (24 July)
1852 School Sites Act (30 June)
30 August 1841 Sir John Peel (Tory)

1841 William Lovett and John Collins (1802-1852): Chartism; a New Organization of the People.

1841 Cheltenham College opened. Other boarding schools followed:

1843 Marlborough College
1844 Rossall School
1847 Radley College
1853 Wellington College
1855 Epsom College
1859 Bradfield College
1862 Haileybury
1862 Clifton College
1863 Malvern School
1867 Bath College.
1843 James Graham's Bill 'for regulating the employment of children and young persons in factories, and for the better education of children in factory districts, in England and Wales' was withdrawn after nonconformists campaigned against it.

1843 Governesses' Benevolent Institution founded to provide a system of examinations and certificates for governesses.

1843 Committee of Council on Education began making grants for furniture and apparatus as well as for school buildings.

1843 Edward Baines: The Social, Educational, and Religious State of the Manufacturing Districts argued that the state should not provide education.

1844 Ragged School Union established (see 1818 John Pounds).

1844 Liverpool Mechanics' Institution opened a school for the daughters of tradesmen, clerks and shopkeepers.

30 June 1846 Lord John Russell (Liberal)

1846 Committee of Council on Education began making grants to day schools of industry.

1846 Government began making annual grants to Baptist and Congregationalist schools.

1846 College of Preceptors established for the promotion of middle-class education and for the training and certification of teachers.

1846 Kay-Shuttleworth's new pupil-teacher scheme inaugurated.

1846 Government began making annual grants towards the salaries of workhouse teachers.

1847 Government began making annual grants to Wesleyan Methodists and the Catholic Poor School Committee.

1847 Asylum for Idiots established at Highgate.

1847 General Institution for the Blind founded in Birmingham.

1848 Commission of Inquiry The State of Education in Wales: three Commissioners were required to report on 'the means afforded to the labouring classes of acquiring knowledge of the English language'. (See also 1927 Welsh in Education and Life.)

1848 Nathaniel Woodard (1811-1891) founded the Woodard Society to provide Anglican boarding schools.

1848 Queen's College in Harley Street founded for women.

1848 William Ellis opened his first 'Birkbeck' school in the hall of the London Mechanics' Institute.

1848 Public Libraries Act allowed authorities to use a halfpenny rate (raised to one penny in 1855) to subsidise provision.

1849 The Ladies' College in Bedford Square founded by Elizabeth Jesser Reid (1789-1866) - the first higher education college for women in the UK. Later became known as Bedford College and in 1900 it became part of the University of London.

1850 Frances Buss (1827-1894) opened North London Collegiate School.

1850 Royal Commission appointed to enquire into the Universities of Oxford, Cambridge and Dublin.

1851 Great Exhibition drew public attention to the lack of facilities for technical education in England compared with continental countries.

1851 Cripples Home and Industrial School for Girls founded at Marylebone - the first separate educational provision for physically handicapped children.

23 February 1852 Earl of Derby (Conservative)

1852 Department of Practical Art created under the Board of Trade.

1852 Scotland's first establishment for the education of 'imbeciles' opened at Baldovan in Dundee - later became Strathmartine Hospital.

19 December 1852 Earl of Aberdeen (Peelite)

1853 Government began making annual grants to Manchester Jewish community school.

1853 Edward Thring (1821-1887) became head of Uppingham School.

1853 Cheltenham Ladies' College opened.

1854 1854 Reformatory and Industrial Schools (Scotland) Act (7 August): empowered Sheriffs or Magistrates to require the attendance of vagrant children at reformatory schools, industrial schools, or other similar institutions in Scotland.

1854 1854 Oxford University Act (7 August): provided for the appointment of Commissioners to investigate the government of the university, and for the establishment of a Hebdomadal Council.

1854 1854 Youthful Offenders Act (10 August): empowered magistrates and justices to send offenders under sixteen who had served a minimum of fourteen days in prison to reformatory schools for between two and five years.

1854 1854 Literary and Scientific Institutions Act (11 August): facilitated the establishment of institutions for the promotion of literature, science and the arts.

1854 Horace Mann produced his report on education, based on the 1851 Census of Great Britain. It dealt largely with popular education, but also provided statistics of grammar and private schools.

6 February 1855 Lord Palmerston (Whig)

1855 1855 School Grants Act (14 August): laid down stricter conditions relating to Parliamentary grants for education.

1856 1856 Oxford University Act (23 June): extended some of the provisions of the 1854 Oxford University Act.

1856 1856 Cambridge University Act (29 July): provided for the appointment of Commissioners to investigate the government of the university, and for the establishment of the Council of the Senate.

1856 1856 Education Department Act (29 July): single-paragraph Act which created the post of Vice-President of the Committee of Council on Education.

1856 Department of Practical Art moved into the Education Department as the Department of Science and Art.

1856 James Pillans (1778-1864): Contributions to the Cause of Education criticised the public schools.

5 February 1857 William Cowper

1857 Oxford Local Examinations began.

1857 1857 Oxford University Act (10 August): extended the powers of the Commissioners for Oxford University and St Mary's College Winchester.

1857 Dorothea Beale (1831-1906) became mistress at the Clergy Daughters' School in Casterton. A year later became head of Cheltenham Ladies' College.

20 February 1858 Earl of Derby (Conservative)

12 March 1858 Charles Adderley

1858 Cambridge Local Examinations began.

12 June 1859 Lord Palmerston (Liberal)

24 June 1859 Robert Lowe

1859 1859 Universities of Oxford and Cambridge Act (13 August): abolished the requirement that the mayor, aldermen and citizens of Oxford and Cambridge should swear oaths in relation to the universities.

6 1860-1900 : A state system of education

1860 1860 Oxford University Act (13 August): made clear that Craven Scholarships, mention of which had been omitted from the 1854 Oxford University Act, were to be deemed to be university emoluments within the meaning of that Act.

1861 Newcastle Report Royal Commission on the State of Popular Education in England (appointed 1858): recommended provision of 'sound and cheap' elementary education; led to the 1870 Elementary Education Act.

1861 Herbert Spencer: Essays on Education stressed the importance of science.

1861 The Royal Institution for the Blind opened in Bradford; workshops for the blind in Liverpool.

1862 Revised Code ('Lowe's Code'): introduced 'payment by results'. Minutes and Regulations of the Committee of the Privy Council on Education; Instructions to HMI: advice on the administration of the Revised Code.

1862 1862 Oxford University Act (30 June): extended the University's power to make statutes regarding professorships.

26 April 1864 Henry Bruce

1864 1864 Chimney Sweepers Regulation Act (30 June): the fourth of six Acts regulating the work of chimney sweepers. Allowed 10 year olds to be employed, but no one under 16 was to be present when chimneys were being swept. (See also the Acts of 1788, 1834, 1840, 1875 and 1894).

1864 Clarendon Report Royal Commission on the Public Schools (appointed 1861): made recommendations relating to the nine 'great' public schools; formed the basis for the 1868 Public Schools Act.

1865 Girls admitted to Cambridge Local Examinations.

1865 1865 Oxford University (Vinerian Foundation) Act (29 June): empowered the university to make statutes relating to the Vinerian Foundation, with certain provisos.

1865 Home for Crippled Boys opened in Kensington.

29 October 1865 Lord John Russell (Liberal)

1865-8 Argyll Commission made recommendations regarding education in Scotland, implemented in the 1872 Education (Scotland) Act.

28 June 1866 Earl of Derby (Conservative)

26 June 1866 Henry Lowry-Corry

1866 College for the Blind Sons of Gentlemen opened at Worcester, later became Worcester College for the Blind.

19 March 1867 Lord Robert Montagu

1867 North of England Council for the Higher Education of Women formed.

27 February 1868 Benjamin Disraeli (Conservative)

1868 1868 Endowed Schools Act (25 June): a brief Act preparing the ground for the 1869 Endowed Schools Act.

1868 1868 Public Schools Act (31 July): laid down new rules for the management of Eton, Winchester, Westminster, Charterhouse, Harrow, Rugby and Shrewsbury, as recommended by the 1864 Clarendon Report.

1868 Taunton Report Schools Inquiry Commission (appointed 1864): recommended a national system of secondary education based on the existing endowed schools; led to the 1869 Endowed Schools Act.

3 December 1868 William Gladstone (Liberal)

9 December 1868 William Edward Forster

1869 1869 Endowed Schools Act (2 August): created the Endowed Schools Commission and gave its members considerable powers and duties, including the creation of new schemes of government for the schools, as recommended by the 1868 Taunton Report.

1869 Headmasters' Conference (public school heads) founded by Edward Thring, head of Uppingham School.

1869 Trades Union Congress (TUC) founded (August): first meeting calls for national, unsectarian and compulsory education.

1869 National Education League formed (October), with George Dixon as chairman, Jesse Collings as secretary, and Joseph Chamberlain as vice-president.

1869 National Educational Union formed by the churches to counter the secularist policies of the National Education League.

1869 Girton College Cambridge founded for women by Emily Davies.

1870 Girls admitted to Oxford Local Examinations.

1870 1870 Elementary Education Act (9 August): the 'Forster Act' introduced compulsory universal education for children aged 5-13 but left enforcement of attendance to school boards.

1871 Code of Regulations: created an infant stage below Standard 1 for the 5-7 age range and expanded the curriculum for older pupils.

1871 1871 Universities Tests Act (16 June): abolished the requirement that those taking lay degrees or holding Iay offices at Oxford, Cambridge or Durham should make a declaration of religious belief.

1871 1871 College Charter Act (31 July): a brief Act which required that charters for the foundation of colleges or universities were to be laid before Parliament.

1871 London School Board appoints a committee chaired by TH Huxley to review the system of school organisation.

1871 Newnham College Cambridge founded to prepare women for the new Cambridge Higher Local Examination.

1871 National Union for the Improvement of the Education of Women of all Classes founded.

1871 New university college founded at Newcastle. Others followed:

1874 Leeds
1876 Bristol
1879 Sheffield
1880 Birmingham
1881 Nottingham and Liverpool
1892 Reading.
1871-75 Devonshire Reports Royal Commission on Scientific Instruction and the Advancement of Science: eight reports which called for more and better science teaching in schools, colleges and universities, and recommended the appointment of a Minister of Science or a Minister of Science and Education.

1872 Royal Normal College and Music Academy for the Blind opened at Crystal Palace; moved to larger premises in Upper Norwood within a year.

1872 1872 Education (Scotland) Act (6 August): created school boards to oversee both secondary and elementary education, and made attendance compulsory.

1872 Girls' Public Day School Company (later Trust), founded by the Women's Education Union (founded 1871).

1872 University College Aberystwyth (Wales) founded.

1873 1873 Employment of Children in Agriculture Act (5 August): aimed to improve school attendance, but it was largely ineffectual because the fines it imposed were derisory.

1873 1873 Elementary Education Act (5 August): amended various provisions of the 1870 Elementary Education Act.

1873 1873 Endowed Schools Act (5 August): extended and amended the 1869 Endowed Schools Act.

1873 London School Board appoints an instructor in kindergarten exercises.

1873 University Extension Movement began: Cambridge offered lectures, followed by London (1876) and Oxford (1878).

20 February 1874 Benjamin Disraeli (Conservative)

2 March 1874 Viscount Sandon

1874 1874 Infants Relief Act (7 August): made contracts entered into by infants unenforceable.

1874 1874 Endowed Schools Act (7 August): transferred functions of the Endowed Schools Commission to the Charity Commission.

1874 Cavendish laboratory at Cambridge opened with James Clerk Maxwell as its first professor of experimental physics.

1875 1875 Chimney Sweepers Act (11 August): the fifth of six Acts regulating the work of chimney sweepers. Required all chimney sweepers to obtain a certificate of authorisation from the local chief officer of police. (See also the Acts of 1788, 1834, 1840, 1864 and 1894.)

1876 Oxford and Cambridge Joint Board admits girls to examinations.

1876 1876 Elementary Education Act (15 August): tightened the rules on child employment and created a system of certificates to give free education in certain cases.

4 April 1878 Lord George Hamilton

1878 Maria Grey Training College founded for women teachers in higher grade girls' schools.

1878 London University opened all its examinations and degrees to women.

1878 1878 Factory and Workshop Act (27 May): consolidated and amended previous laws.

1879 1879 Elementary Education (Industrial Schools) Act (11 August): a brief Act extending the powers of school boards in relation to the establishment and extension of industrial schools.

1879 1879 Summary Jurisdiction Act (11 August): child offenders (aged 7 and over) could be tried by magistrates, rather than appear before a jury, unless their parents objected.

23 April 1880 William Gladstone (Liberal)

3 May 1880 AJ Mundella

1880 1880 Elementary Education Act (26 August): the 'Mundella Act' obliged local authorities to make by-laws requiring school attendance.

1880 Victoria University (including the colleges at Leeds and Liverpool) founded as an examining university on the model of London.

1880 City and Guilds of London Institute founded with Sir Philip Magnus as Director.

1880 Workshops for the blind opened in West London.

1881 Normal School of Science opened in October with TH Huxley as Dean.

1881 Cambridge opened its Triposes to women.

1882 First Samuelson Report Royal Commission on Technical Instruction (17 February): preliminary report of the Commissioners charged with reviewing the provision of technical instruction in foreign countries; dealt mainly with France. (See also Second Samuelson Report 1884.)

1882 Westfield College London for women opened.

1882 Departmental Committee on Intermediate and Higher Education in Wales and Monmouthshire (appointed 1880): the Aberdare Report's recommendations formed the basis of the 1889 Welsh Intermediate Education Act.

1882 Code of Regulations: the 'Mundella Code' loosened the grip of the payment-by-results system; code committee created to conduct annual reviews.

1883 National Society (Church of England) sends memorandum to Gladstone asking for assistance for its schools.

1883 Finsbury Technical College founded by the City and Guilds of London Institute.

1883 Departmental Committee appointed on 9 August 1883, chaired by Chancellor of the Exchequer HCE Childers (1827-1896), to consider ministerial responsibility for education.

1883 University College of South Wales and Monmouthshire at Cardiff opened.

1883 Andrew Mearns: The Bitter Cry of Outcast London: an 'Inquiry into the Condition of the Abject Poor'.

1884 Second Samuelson Report Royal Commission on Technical Instruction (4 April): the Commission's main report warned that Britain's industrial leadership was being challenged around the world by countries with well-educated populations. (See also First Samuelson Report 1882.)

1884 Social Democratic Federation formed: campaigned for school meals.

1884 Interdenominational Voluntary Schools Association began lobbying for more public funding for church schools.

1884 Report to the Education Department upon the alleged over-pressure of work in public elementary schools by Dr Crichton-Browne found high levels of poverty and hunger.

1884 London School Board set up a committee of enquiry which reported that 50,000 children in the capital's schools were hungry.

1884 Oxford University allowed women to sit for examinations in certain of its schools.

1884 University College of North Wales at Bangor opened.

1884 Fabian Society founded - members included Keir Hardie (1856-1915) and Sidney Webb (1859-1947).

23 June 1885 Marquis of Salisbury (Conservative)

24 June 1885 Edward Stanhope

1885 Scottish Education Department established - based in London.

17 September 1885 Sir Henry Holland

1 February 1886 William Gladstone (Liberal)

13 February 1886 Sir Lyon Playfair

25 July 1886 Marquis of Salisbury (Conservative)

3 August 1886 Sir Henry Holland

1886 National Association for the Promotion of Technical and Secondary Education founded.

1886 Holloway College for Women founded.

1886 Charles Booth began work on The Life and Labour of the People of London: found that up to a third of the population were living in poverty.

25 January 1887 Sir William Hart Dyke

1887 1887 Technical Schools (Scotland) Act (16 September): empowered school boards to set up technical schools, but few were opened.

1888 London School Board invited the Froebel Society to suggest an examiner for their training classes; the National Froebel Union was founded as an examining body.

1888 1888 Local Government Act (13 August): created the county councils and county borough councils which (following the 1902 Education Act) became the local education authorities (LEAs) for their areas.

1888 Cross Report Final Report of the Commissioners appointed to inquire into the Elementary Education Acts, England and Wales: reviewed the working of the Elementary Education Acts of 1870, 1873, 1876 and 1880, and recommended public funding for the secular curriculum in church schools (implemented in the 1902 Education Act). Eight of the 23 members of the Commission felt unable to sign the main report and instead submitted minority reports.

1888 1888 Victoria University Act (24 December): gave graduates of Victoria University (Manchester) the same employment rights as those of Oxford, Cambridge and London.

1889 Egerton Report Royal Commission on the Blind, the Deaf and Dumb (10 July): recommended the introduction of compulsory education from 5 to 16 for the blind, and the deaf and dumb; and improvements in the care and training of those it called 'imbeciles' and 'idiots'.

1889 1889 Welsh Intermediate Education Act (12 August): required each county in Wales to establish a Joint Education Committee whose duty was to prepare a scheme for intermediate and technical education in their areas.

1889 1889 Prevention of Cruelty to, and Protection of, Children Act (26 August): imposed penalties for the ill-treatment or neglect of children, prohibited their use as beggars or entertainers in streets or licensed premises, and set out arrangements for the care of such ill-used children.

1889 1889 Technical Instruction Act (30 August): empowered county and county borough councils to make grants to secondary schools and to provide scholarships.

1889 Advisory Committee for funding of colleges established - became the University Grants Committee in 1919.

1890 1890 Education of Blind and Deaf-Mute Children (Scotland) Act (14 August): required school boards in Scotland to pay for the education of blind and deaf-mute children if their parents were unable to do so, and empowered the boards, with the consent of the Scotch Education Department, to establish or contribute to the costs of schools for such children.

1891 1891 Custody of Children Act (26 March): a brief Act which laid down new rules relating to parents' rights in relation to the custody of their children.

1891 1891 Army Schools Act (11 May): a brief Act extending to army schools the benefits of endowments relating to elementary schools.

1891 1891 Elementary Education Act (5 August): effectively introduced free elementary education for all by requiring central government to pay a 'fee grant' of ten shillings (50p) for each child between the ages of 3 and 15 and by prohibiting the charging of fees in elementary schools.

1891 1891 Schools for Science and Art Act (5 August): facilitated the transfer to local authorities of Schools for Science and Art.

1892 1892 Betting and Loans (Infants) Act (29 March): made it illegal to incite children to bet or borrow money.

1892 1892 Technical and Industrial Institutions Act (27 June): facilitated the acquisition of land by the governors of technical and industrial institutions.

1892 1892 Technical Instruction Amendment (Scotland) Act (28 June): clarified and amended the powers of local authorities in Scotland to provide technical instruction.

1892 Scottish Leaving Certificate opened to candidates from board schools.

15 August 1892 William Gladstone (Liberal)

25 August 1892 Arthur Dyke Acland

1892 Socialist Sunday School movement founded.

1893 School leaving age raised to 11.

1893 Education Department circular to HM Inspectors on The Training and Teaching of Infants (Circular 322, 6 February): promoted kindergarten methods.

1893 1893 Elementary Education (Blind and Deaf Children) Act (12 September): required school authorities to make better educational provision for blind and deaf children.

1893 London County Council set up a Technical Education Board chaired by Sidney Webb.

1893 University of Wales founded, incorporating colleges in Aberystwyth, Cardiff and Bangor.

1893 Independent Labour Party (ILP) founded: called for 'free, unsectarian, primary, secondary and university education'.

1893 British Child Study Association founded.

5 March 1894 Earl of Rosebery (Liberal)

1894 1894 Cheltenham College Act (20 July): provided for a new governing body for the College and set out its powers and duties.

1894 1894 Chimney Sweepers Act (25 August): the last of six Acts regulating the work of chimney sweepers. Prohibited chimney sweepers from 'cold calling' (as it is known today) to sell their services. (See also the Acts of 1788, 1834, 1840, 1864 and 1875.)

25 June 1895 Marquis of Salisbury (Conservative)

4 July 1895 Sir John Eldon Gorst

1895 Bryce Report Royal Commission on Secondary Education: reviewed the progress made since the report of the Schools Inquiry Commission in 1868. Its recommendations were implemented in the 1899 Board of Education Act and the 1902 Education Act.

1895 Code of Regulations: ended inspection without notice and 'mischievous deductions from the grant'.

1896 The registration of teachers: report.

1896 International conference of socialists: delegates (including Keir Hardie) argued that all working people should receive a full education.

1897 1897 Voluntary Schools Act (8 April): provided voluntary elementary schools with annual Exchequer grants of up to five shillings (25p) per child and exempted the schools from paying rates.

1897 1897 Elementary Education Act (3 June): amended Section 97 of the 1870 Elementary Education Act to allow for a small increase in expenditure per child.

1898 Sharpe Report Report of the Departmental Committee on Defective and Epileptic Children (7 January): aimed to improve the education and lives of children who were 'feeble-minded' or epileptic. Its recommendations formed the basis of the 1899 Elementary Education (Defective and Epileptic Children) Act, though because of the costs involved, the Act's provisions were not as far-reaching as the Committee had wished.

1898 1898 Libraries Offences Act (12 August): a brief Act providing for penalties of up to 2 for anyone behaving badly in a public library.

1898 1898 Elementary School Teachers (Superannuation) Act (12 August): set out arrangements for paying pensions and incapacity benefits to certificated teachers in elementary schools.

1899 1899 Elementary Education (Defective and Epileptic Children) Act (9 August): empowered school authorities to ascertain the number of 'defective' or epileptic children in their areas, and to make appropriate educational provision for them; it required the parents of such children to ensure that they received appropriate elementary education; and it set the upper age limit for the compulsory education of such children at 16.

1899 1899 Board of Education Act (9 August): established the Board of Education and provided for a Consultative Committee.

1899 School leaving age raised to 12.

1899 Cockerton Judgement: prevented school boards from funding 'higher tops' (advanced classes) and higher grade schools.

1899 Seebohm Rowntree (1871-1954) conducted the first of his three surveys of poverty York in 1899 (the others were in 1935 and 1951).

1899 Ruskin College Oxford: working men's college founded by American philanthropists Walter Vrooman and Charles Beard.

3 March 1900 Spencer Compton Cavendish - first President of the newly-established Board of Education

1900 London became a teaching university.

1900 University of Birmingham was granted its charter.

1900 1900 Elementary Education Act (8 August): amended previous Acts in relation to expenses and attendance byelaws.

7 1900-1923 : Secondary education for some

1901 1901 Education Act (1 Edw. 7 c. 11): the 1899 Cockerton Judgement prevented school boards from funding 'higher tops' (advanced classes) and higher grade schools. This brief Act permitted them to continue doing so for one further year.

1901 Trade School for Furniture and Cabinet-making founded at the Shoreditch Technical Institute.

11 July 1902 Arthur Balfour (Conservative)

1902 1902 University of Wales Act (22 July): extended employment rights to graduates of the University of Wales.

1902 Report of the Inter-Departmental Committee on the Employment of School Children led to the 1903 Employment of Children Act. In 1909 an inquiry into the working of the Act recommended a ban on the employment of under-thirteens.

11 August 1902 Charles Vane-Tempest-Stewart

1902 1902 Education Act (18 December): the 'Balfour Act' established a system of secondary education integrating higher grade elementary schools and fee-paying secondary schools; abolished school boards and established local education authorities (LEAs).

1903 1903 Elementary Education Amendment Act (21 July): a brief Act amending Section 2 (6) of the 1899 Elementary Education (Defective and Epileptic Children) Act.

1903 Board of Education Regulations for the Instruction and Training of Pupil-Teachers and Students in Training Colleges (July): regulations and exam syllabuses for 1903-4 (see also 1904, 1905 and 1906).

1903 1903 Education (London) Act (14 August): extended to London the provisions of the 1902 Education Act (see above).

1903 1903 Employment of Children Act (14 August): empowered local authorities to make byelaws prohibiting or restricting the employment of children and young persons below the age of 16.

1903 University of Liverpool was granted its charter.

1903 Workers' Educational Association founded by Albert Mansbridge (1876-1952).

1903 Heritage Craft Schools and Hospital at Chailey, Sussex, established for physically handicapped children.

1904 Regulations for Secondary Schools: Board of Education document defining a four-year subject-based course.

1904 Board of Education Consultative Committee Report on Examinations in secondary schools (exact title currently unknown).

1904 Fitzroy Report Report of the Inter-Departmental Committee on Physical Deterioration: investigated the causes of 'physical deterioration ... in certain classes'; led to the 1906 Education (Provision of Meals) Act.

1904 Board of Education Regulations for the Instruction and Training of Pupil-Teachers (5 July): regulations and exam syllabuses for 1904-5 (see also 1903, 1905 and 1906).

1904 1904 University of Liverpool Act (15 August): extended employment rights to graduates of the University of Liverpool.

1904 1904 Leeds University Act (15 August): extended employment rights to graduates of the University of Leeds.

1904 Universities of Manchester and Leeds were granted their charters.

1905 Board of Education Additional Grants on Account of Pupil Teachers (Circular 532, 9 March): provided for increases in the grants paid from the 1903 and 1904 levels.

1905 Board of Education Regulations for the Instruction and Training of Pupil-Teachers (11 July): regulations and exam syllabuses for 1905-6 (see also 1903, 1904 and 1906).

1905 University of Sheffield was granted its charter.

1905 Board of Education Reports on children under five years of age in public elementary schools, by Women Inspectors: five reports containing interesting information not only about the schools but about the home conditions of the children.

1905 Swinton House School of Recovery at Manchester established for physically handicapped children.

5 December 1905 Henry Campbell-Bannerman (Liberal)

10 December 1905 Augustine Birrell

1906 Board of Education Regulations for the Instruction and Training of Pupil-Teachers (July): regulations and exam syllabuses for 1906-7 (see also 1903, 1904 and 1905).

1906 Dyke Report Questions Affecting Higher Elementary Schools: report of the Board of Education Consultative Committee made recommendations regarding the role, staffing and curriculum of Higher Elementary Schools.

1906 Advisory Committee on Grants to University Colleges established. Superseded by the University Grants Committee in 1919.

1906 1906 Education (Provision of Meals) Act (21 December): empowered local education authorities to provide buildings and fittings for 'school canteen committees', and, with the consent of the Board of Education, to subsidise the cost of meals in cases where parents were unable to pay. (See also 1914).

23 January 1907 Reginald McKenna

1907 Elementary Code: aimed to improve the quality of elementary education.

1907 1907 Education (Administrative Provisions) Act (28 August): extended the powers of local education authorities in relation to the acquisition of sites for schools, scholarships for secondary education (the 'free place' system), the provision of holiday activities, and medical inspections of elementary school children.

1907 Free Place Regulations aimed 'to secure that all secondary schools aided by grants shall be made fully accessible to children of all classes'.

1907 Imperial College formed by the amalgamation of the Royal College of Science, the Royal School of Mines and the City and the Guilds College.

1907 London County Council's Open Air School at Plumstead established for physically handicapped children.

1907 College of Teachers of the Blind established.

1907 Welsh Department of the Board of Education established.

7 April 1908 Herbert Asquith (Liberal)

12 April 1908 Walter Runciman

1908 Acland Report School Attendance of Children Below the Age of Five: report of the Board of Education Consultative Committee made recommendations regarding the provision and content of nursery school education.

1908 Royal Commission on the Care and Control of the Feeble-Minded.

1908 Oxford Report Oxford and Working-class Education: recommendations by a joint committee of Workers' Educational Association and University representatives.

1908 Lord Mayor Treloar Cripples' Hospital and College at Alton established for physically handicapped children.

1908 Matthew Arnold Reports on Elementary Schools 1852-1882 edited by FS Marvin; contains a selection of Arnold's annual reports on schools and teacher training colleges.

1909 Acland Report Attendance, Compulsory or Otherwise, at Continuation Schools (8 July): report of the Board of Education Consultative Committee argued that LEAs should be empowered to require under 17s to participate in some form of post-elementary education.

1909 Trevelyan Report Partial Exemption from School Attendance (23 July): report of the Inter-Departmental Committee recommended that partial exemption should be completely abolished and that there should be strict limits on total exemption. (See also the 1917 Lewis Report.)

1909 University of Bristol was granted its charter.

1909 Lord Curzon Principles and Methods of University Reform: the Chancellor of Oxford University set out his thinking on reform.

1909 Ruskin College students founded the Plebs League and established the first Central Labour College in Oxford. It moved to London in 1911 but struggled to survive.

1909 Fircroft residential college in Birmingham founded by George Cadbury.

1910 Education (Choice of Employment) Act: foundation of the careers service.

1911 Acland Report Examinations in Secondary Schools: report of the Board of Education Consultative Committee - their second report on exams (the first - not currently online - was published in 1904). It argued that the existing system needed simplifying.

1911 Edmund Holmes What is and what might be: the former Chief Inspector condemned the arid drill methods of the contemporary elementary school in a book which has been seen as the first manifesto of the 'progressive' education movement (see also Holmes 1914 below).

1911 LEAs began opening Central Schools.

23 October 1911 Joseph (Jack) Pease

1912 Association of Teachers of the Blind founded; School for Blind Children opened at Gorleston-on-Sea.

1913 Acland Report Practical Work in Secondary Schools: report of the Board of Education Consultative Committee argued that secondary schools should provide teaching in 'some branches of Educational Handwork' as an integral part of the curriculum.

1913 Board of Education Regulations for new category of 'Junior Technical Schools'.

1913 Central Association for Mental Welfare founded.

1913 Cyril Burt (1883-1971) appointed psychologist to London County Council.

1913 1913 Children (Employment Abroad) Act: made it illegal to take a child abroad to perform for profit, and required a licence to be obtained in the case of a young person.

1913 1913 Mental Deficiency Act (15 August): set out arrangements for dealing with those considered to be 'mentally defective'. Local education authorities were to identify 'defective' children aged 7 to 16 in their areas.

1913 1913 Intermediate Education (Ireland) Act (15 August): a brief Act prohibiting the holding of public examinations for pupils aged under 14; empowering the Intermediate Education Board for Ireland to conduct annual inspections of intermediate schools; and extending the powers of the Board in relation to superannuation.

1913 Federation of Educational Societies established to coordinate the provision of adult education.

1913 Edmond Holmes Introduction to A Montessori Mother by Dorothy Canfield Fisher, whose book commended the Montessori system of education to mothers in the US and elsewhere.

1914 1914 Sheffield University Act (31 July): extended employment rights to graduates of the University of Sheffield.

1914 1914 Education (Provision of Meals) Act (7 August): extended the powers of local education authorities to provide meals for undernourished elementary school children.

1914 1914 Elementary Education (Defective and Epileptic Children) Act (10 August): required local education authorities to make provision for 'defective' children.

1914 Edmond Holmes In Defence of What Might Be: Holmes responded to criticisms of his 1911 book (see above).

25 May 1915 Arthur Henderson

1915 AF Leach The Schools of Medieval England: a book charting the history of English schools before the Reformation. (Leach is not without his critics, however. See for example Joan Simon's Education and Society in Tudor England Cambridge University Press 1966.)

18 August 1916 Robert Crewe-Milnes (Marquess of Crewe)

1916 Scholarships for higher education: report of the Board of Education Consultative Committee. (After this report, the Committee was suspended until 1920.)

1916 Education Reform Council formed by Liberal educationists.

1916 Bradford Trades Council agreed a programme of 'universal, free, compulsory secondary education' which became known as the Bradford Charter.

6 December 1916 David Lloyd George (Liberal)

10 December 1916 HAL (Herbert) Fisher

1917 Secondary Schools Examinations Council: established to administer the new School Certificate and Higher School Certificate exams.

1917 Lewis Report Juvenile education in relation to employment after the war: Departmental Committee report proposed a school leaving age of 14 with no exemptions, followed by attendance for at least 8 hours a week or 320 hours a year at 'day continuation' classes up to age 18.

1918 Thomson Report The Position of Natural Science in the Educational System of Great Britain (19 February): report of the Committee of Enquiry made 83 recommendations covering elementary and secondary schools, technical education, the professions and the universities.

1918 Leathes Report The Position of Modern Languages in the Educational System of Great Britain (2 April): argued the importance of modern languages for Britain's schools and universities.

1918 1918 Education Act (8 August): the wide-ranging 'Fisher Act' extended education provision in line with recommendations of 1917 Lewis Report. (See 1921 Circular 1190 below).

1918 Royal National Institute for the Blind opened its first residential home for deprived blind children.

1918 New Ideals in Education Educational Experiments by Head Teachers in Elementary Schools: part of the progressive education movement of the early 20th century, New Ideals in Education held annual conferences between 1914 and 1937. This book contains papers from those held in 1914 and 1915.

1918 1918 School Teachers' (Superannuation) Act (21 November): amended the Elementary School Teachers' (Superannuation) Acts 1898-1912.

1918 WH Kilpatrick The Project Method (reprinted from Columbia University's Teachers College Record): an article by the American pedagogue who became a major figure in the progressive education movement of the early twentieth century.

1919 Burnham Committees (primary and secondary) established by HAL Fisher to advise on teachers' pay; abolished in 1987.

1919 University Grants Committee (UGC) established.

1919 1919 Ministry of Health Act (3 June): created the Ministry of Health and transferred to it some of the powers of the Board of Education.

1920 University College Swansea was granted its charter as part of the University of Wales.

1920 Unemployment Insurance Act: gave the government power to link benefits to training, but no national funding was allocated for training courses, which were instead developed locally.

1920 Queen's College Belfast became Queen's University.

1920 Alice Woods Educational Experiments included an account of the Dalton Plan, devised by American teacher Helen Parkhurst.

1920 Young Report Report of the Departmental Committee on Scholarships and Free Places: argued that 'practically all children, except the subnormal' were capable of profiting by full-time education up to 16 or beyond.

1920 1920 Employment of Women, Young Persons, and Children Act (23 December): incorporated into UK law the provisions of the Conventions agreed by the International Labour Organisation of the League of Nations in 1919 and 1920.

1921 Board of Education Circular 1190: suspended implementation of the provisions of the 1918 Education Act because of the economic situation.

1921 1921 Education Act (19 August): consolidated all previous laws relating to education including the 1918 Education Act's provision for the school leaving age to be raised to 14.

1921 Crewe Report The position of the Classics in the Educational System of the United Kingdom: report of a committee appointed by Prime Minister David Lloyd-George.

1921 Newbolt Report The Teaching of English in England: made 105 wide-ranging recommendations. (See also Bullock 1975, Kingman 1988, Cox 1989, Warwick 1994 and Ofsted 2012.)

1921 Chorleywood College opened: secondary school for blind girls.

1921 Catholic Workers' College founded.

1921 'Geddes Axe': report of the Geddes Committee recommended severe cuts in public services.

1921 Summerhill: progressive independent school founded by AS Neill.

1921 Ordinary and Higher National Certificates (ONCs and HNCs) introduced as new routes to professional qualifications in industry.

1922 1922 Universities (Scotland) Act (20 July): extended the powers of the Courts of Scottish universities in relation to the superannuation of principals and professors, and gave lecturers and readers the right to participate in the government of the universities.

1922 RH Tawney (ed) Secondary Education for All: set out the Labour Party's education policy.

23 October 1922 Andrew Bonar Law (Conservative)

24 October 1922 Edward Wood

8 1923-1939 : From Hadow to Spens

23 May 1923 Stanley Baldwin (Conservative)

1923 Hadow Report Differentiation of the Curriculum for Boys and Girls Respectively in Secondary Schools: Consultative Committee made 24 recommendations including greater freedom in the curriculum for boys and girls.

1923 Secondary education for all became Labour Party policy.

1923 1923 Universities of Oxford and Cambridge Act (31 July): provided for the appointment of Commissioners to make statutes for the two universities.

1924 Hadow Report Psychological Tests of Educable Capacity and their possible use in the public system of education: Consultative Committee made 37 recommendations and expressed some concerns about the use of tests.

22 January 1924 James Ramsay MacDonald (Labour)

22 January 1924 Charles Trevelyan

4 November 1924 Stanley Baldwin (Conservative)

6 November 1924 Lord Eustace Percy

1925 1925 Universities and College Estates Act (9 April): consolidated all the provisions of previous Acts relating to the ownership, procurement and sale of land by the Universities of Oxford, Cambridge and Durham, and to Eton and Winchester colleges.

1925 Burnham Report The Training of Teachers for Public Elementary Schools (April): Departmental Committee chaired by Viscount Burnham made 69 recommendations.

1925 Board of Education Circular 1371 (25 November): no educational development for at least three years because of budget cuts.

1926 Hadow Report The Education of the Adolescent: Consultative Committee proposed primary and secondary schools with transfer at age 11, secondary education for all, and increase in school leaving age to 15.

1926 University of Reading was granted its charter.

1926 Kenneth Lindsay Social Progress and Educational Waste: a critical study of the free-place and scholarship system of the early twentieth century.

1926 1926 University of London Act (15 December): provided for the appointment of Commissioners to make new statutes for the University.

1927 Owen Report Welsh in Education and Life (4 July): report of a Departmental Committee whose aim was the promotion and preservation of the Welsh language. (See also 1848 The State of Education in Wales.)

1927 Child Guidance Council established: beginning of the recognition of maladjustment.

1927 Coleg Harlech: workers' college founded in Wales.

1927 Labour Party annual conference called for the development of comprehensive schools (though the term was not used at the time).

1928 Hadow Report Books in Public Elementary Schools: Consultative Committee called for greater expenditure on books for schools.

1928 Board of Education The New Prospect in Education: Pamphlet No. 60 set out the Board's response to the 1926 Hadow Report.

1928 NUT The Hadow Report and After: set out the union's response to the 1926 Hadow Report.

1929 Wood Report Report of the Mental Deficiency Committee: made recommendations regarding the classification and education of 'mentally defective' children.

1929 1929 Local Government Act (27 March): provided for the reorganisation of local government services in England and Wales: education is mentioned briefly.

1929 1929 Local Government (Scotland) Act (10 May): provided for the reorganisation of local government services in Scotland, including education.

5 June 1929 James Ramsay MacDonald (Labour)

7 June 1929 Charles Trevelyan

1930 Eustace Percy (former Board of Education President) Education at the Crossroads: argued for better technical education.

2 March 1931 Hastings Lees-Smith

1931 Hadow Report The Primary School: Consultative Committee made 70 recommendations setting out its vision of primary education.

1931 RH Tawney Equality: noted that more than three-quarters of the holders of high office in church, state and industry about whom there was information had been educated at public (ie independent) schools.

25 August 1931 Donald Maclean

1932 Royal Commission on Unemployment Insurance: recommended that 'Attendance at a Junior Instruction Centre or at a Course of Instruction should everywhere be regarded and enforced as a normal condition in respect of unemployment, whether through the Insurance Scheme or in the form of Unemployment Assistance'.

15 June 1932 Edward Wood (as Lord Irwin)

1932 1932 Universities (Scotland) Act (16 June): extended the powers of the Courts of Scottish universities.

1932 Board of Education Circular 1421 (15 September): required means-tested fees to be charged in all grant-aided secondary schools.

1932 First LEA child guidance clinic opened in Birmingham (there were 22 by 1939, 79 by 1945).

1933 Hadow Report Infant and Nursery Schools: Consultative Committee made 105 wide-ranging recommendations.

1933 1933 Children and Young Persons Act (13 April): consolidated previous legislation relating to the welfare and employment of young people and the treatment of young offenders.

1933 Cyril Burt (ed) How the Mind Works: Burt and fellow eugenicists propound their spurious theory of fixed intelligence.

1934 Board of Education Committee of Inquiry into Problems relating to Partially Sighted Children: recommended that where possible such children should be educated in mainstream classes.

1934 Labour won control of London County Council (LCC) for the first time. A sub-committee recommended the creation of 'multi-bias' (ie comprehensive) schools but the LCC's Director of Education EM Rich was not in favour.

1934 School Age Council established to campaign for the raising of the leaving age.

7 June 1935 Stanley Baldwin (Conservative)

7 June 1935 Oliver Stanley

1935 Marion Richardson Writing and Writing Patterns: 'Marion Richardson handwriting' was widely taught in primary schools for many years.

1936 Board of Education Circular 1444 (January): offered some prospect of better funding for schools.

1936 1936 Education Act (31 July): provided for the leaving age to be raised to 15 in September 1939 (postponed because of the outbreak of war) and encouraged the churches to provide secondary schools by offering building grants of up to 75 per cent for new 'Special Agreement' schools.

1937 Board of Education Handbook of Suggestions (January): the Board's advice for teachers in elementary schools. This was the last edition of the Handbook, which had first been published in 1905.

1937 1937 Education (Deaf Children) Act (29 April): lowered the school starting age for deaf children.

1937 Board of Education Homework (May): Pamphlet No. 110 set out the Board's views on the setting of homework in elementary, secondary and vocational schools.

28 May 1937 Neville Chamberlain (Conservative)

28 May 1937 Earl (James) Stanhope

1937 1937 Children and Young Persons (Scotland) Act (1 July): made provisions relating to the care, well-being and employment of children and young persons, and set out arrangements for the treatment of juvenile offenders.

1937 1937 Physical Training and Recreation Act (13 July): provided for National Advisory Councils and a National College of Physical Training.

1937 1937 Factories Act (30 July): a wide-ranging and detailed Act which consolidated all previous legislation relating to working conditions in factories and other industrial premises.

1937 GAN Lowndes The Silent Social Revolution: an account of the expansion of public education in England and Wales between 1895 and 1935.

1938 1938 Chimney Sweepers Acts (Repeal) Act (29 July): repealed the remaining Chimney Sweepers Acts.

27 October 1938 Earl de la Warr (Herbrand Sackville)

1938 Spens Report Secondary Education with Special Reference to Grammar Schools and Technical High Schools: report of the Board of Education Consultative Committee recommended 'tripartite' system of grammar, technical and secondary modern schools.

9 1939-1945 : Educational reconstruction

1939 1939 Education (Scotland) (War Service Superannuation) Act (5 September): teachers' war service to be reckoned for superannuation.

3 April 1940 Herwald Ramsbotham (Viscount Soulbury)

10 May 1940 Winston Churchill (Conservative)

1940 Sir Fred Clarke (Director of the University of London Institute of Education) Education and Social Change.

1940 Graham Savage appointed London's Chief Education Officer in July.

1941 The 'Green Book' Education After the War: confidential memorandum produced by Board of Education officials. Many of its recommendations - including the 'tripartite' system of secondary schools - were included in the 1943 White Paper.

20 July 1941 Rab Butler

1942 Harold Dent (1894-1995) A New Order in English Education. Dent had just been appointed editor of The Times Educational Supplement.

1942 Association of Directors and Secretaries of Education A Plan for the Future: called for public schools (ie private schools) to be brought into the state system of education.

1942 Conference for the Democratic Reconstruction of Education formed by a group of grammar school heads to campaign for the 'absorption' of the public schools (ie private schools) into the state system of education.

1942 National Association of Schoolmasters The Post-War Reconstruction of Education: demanded abolition of the public schools (ie private schools).

1942 Council for Educational Advance formed by the TUC, Co-operative Union, WEA and NUT to campaign for a single secondary code for all children and a school leaving age of fifteen.

1942 Labour Party annual conference voted for comprehensive schools.

1943 1943 Universities and Colleges (Trusts) Act (11 March): provisions regarding trust property at Oxford, Cambridge and St Mary's College Winchester.

1943 Norwood Report Curriculum and Examinations in Secondary Schools (June): backed the tripartite system recommended by the 1938 Spens Report.

1943 White Paper Educational Reconstruction: formed the basis of the 1944 Education Act.

1943 Board of Education Sex Education in schools and youth organisations (November): Pamphlet No. 119 offered the 'warm support and encouragement' of the Board to those who were 'giving serious attention to this subject'.

1943 Nuffield Foundation created by William Morris (Lord Nuffield), founder of Morris Motors, to fund projects in social policy.

1944 McNair Report Teachers and Youth Leaders (May): recommended rationalisation of teacher training provision, a three year course and salary increases.

1944 Fleming Report The Public Schools and the General Educational System (June): considered how independent boarding schools might be integrated into the post-war education system; recommendations largely ignored.

1944 1944 Education Act (3 August): the 'Butler Act' set the structure of the post-war system of state education.

3 August 1944 Rab Butler becomes Minister of Education

1944 Ministry of Education Circular 1 Education Act 1944 (15 August) informed local authorities that from 1 April 1945 they must start preparing development plans.

1944 HC Dent Education in Transition: a sociological study of the impact of war on English education 1939-1943.

1945 Many of the provisions of the 1944 Act (including the 'tripartite' system of secondary schools) came into force on 1 April. Burnham Committee announced a new salary structure for teachers.

1945 (May) University Grants Committee (UGC) asked universities to prepare expansion plans.

25 May 1945 Richard Law

1945 1945 Education (Scotland) Act (15 June): the Scottish version of the 1944 Act.

1945 Emergency Training Programme began to provide one-year 'crash courses' for teachers.

10 1945-1951 : Labour and the tripartite system

1945 Percy Report Higher Technological Education (19 July): recommended that some Technical Colleges should offer degree-standard courses.

26 July 1945 Clement Attlee (Labour)

3 August 1945 Ellen Wilkinson

1945 Ministry of Education The Nation's Schools: written under the previous government, Pamphlet No. 1 explained and sought to justify the 'tripartite' system of secondary schools.

1945 Ministry of Education A Guide to the Educational System of England and Wales: Pamphlet No. 2 set out the structure of the post-war educational system for England and Wales, as provided for in the 1944 Education Act.

1945 Ministry of Education Youth's Opportunity: Pamphlet No. 3 set out the government's proposals for the new county colleges which the 1944 Education Act required local authorities to provide.

1945 Ministry of Education Building Crafts: Pamphlet No. 4, written by HM Inspectors with assistance from staff in the building industry, set out syllabuses for part-time day and evening courses in a range of crafts.

1946 Fyfe Report Training of Teachers (5 January): report of the Scottish Advisory Council on Education; sometimes referred to as the McClelland Report since it was William McClelland who convened the Council and wrote the report.

1946 Barlow Report Scientific Man-Power (13 April): argued that Britain's universities needed to double their output of scientists to 5,000 a year.

1946 GCT Giles The New School Tie: set out his views on the 1943 White Paper, the 1944 Education Act, and the Labour government's commitment to the 'tripartite' system.

1946 1946 Education Act (22 May): made miscellaneous amendments to the 1944 Education Act.

1946 Ministry of Education Circular 103 Examinations in Secondary Schools (May): argued that external exams at age 16 should be replaced with 'objective Intelligence Tests' (an attempt to prevent the new secondary modern schools from entering pupils for the School Certificate).

1946 Ministry of Education Circular 113 Secondary School Examination Council (June): the Minister effectively took control of the Council.

1946 National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER) established.

1946 Ministry of Education Special Educational Treatment: Pamphlet No. 5 explained the implications of sections 33 and 34 of the 1944 Education Act for the provision of education for children with special needs.

1946 Ministry of Education Art Education: Pamphlet No. 6 gave advice on art education in publicly-supported schools of all kinds from the primary school to the college of art.

1946 Ministry of Education Entrants to the Mining Industry: Pamphlet No. 7 provided guidance for those concerned with the training of entrants to the mining industry.

1946 Ministry of Education Circulars 83, 90 and 120: encouraged local authorities to pay for places for 'normal' children in private boarding schools.

1946 (July) Chancellor of the Exchequer Hugh Dalton announced a new relationship between the government and the universities: the government accepted its role in the expansion of higher education.

1946 Free milk provided for all pupils.

1946 1946 Education (Scotland) Act (6 November) further enactments building on the 1945 Education (Scotland) Act.

1946 Universities and the Increase of Scientific Manpower (December): report of the Parliamentary and Scientific Committee proposed increasing the total number of students to 108,000 and establishing a Council of Higher Education.

10 February 1947 George Tomlinson

1947 Ministry of Education Further Education: Pamphlet No. 8 explained the existing provision of further education in England and Wales and set out plans for the future.

1947 Ministry of Education The New Secondary Education: written before Wilkinson died, Pamphlet No. 9 reiterated the government's commitment to the 'tripartite' system of secondary schools.

1947 Clarke Report School and Life: the first report of the newly-created Central Advisory Council for Education (England) was an inquiry into the transition from school to independent life.

1947 1947 Education Act (Northern Ireland) (27 March): a major Act of the Northern Ireland Parliament setting out arrangements for the education system.

1947 School leaving age raised to 15 on 1 April.

1947 London County Council The London School Plan (June): LCC's development plan for post-war education in London (submitted to the Minister for approval in 1949) included proposals for comprehensive secondary education. Here is the Plan itself, and also Replanning London Schools, a 64-page booklet explaining the background to, and contents of, the Plan.

1947 Area Training Organisations: 13 ATOs were established in England and one in Wales to coordinate teacher training.

1947 1947 Education (Exemptions) (Scotland) Act (31 July): this brief Act made temporary provision for children to miss school in order to help with harvesting the potato crop.

1947 1947 Local Government (Scotland) Act (31 July): a major Act consolidating all previous legislation relating to local government in Scotland.

1947 Examinations in Secondary Schools (September): Secondary School Examination Council report proposed a new examination - the General Certificate of Education (GCE) - to replace the School Certificate.

1947 Fyfe Report Secondary Education (17 October): report of the Scottish Advisory Council on Education recommended a comprehensive system for all secondary pupils aged 12 to 16 with a common core curriculum and a common leaving exam.

1948 1948 Local Government Act (24 March): amended previous laws relating to local government, including education authorities. Mainly concerned with financial matters - Exchequer grants, rateable values, travelling expenses etc.

1948 Ministry of Education Circular 168 (23 April): the Minister accepted in principle the report of the Secondary School Examination Council recommending the new General Certificate of Education (GCE) exam.

1948 1948 Education (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act (30 June): made amendments to the 1944 and 1946 Education Acts, the Endowed Schools Acts, and the 1913 Mental Deficiency Act.

1948 1948 Children Act (30 June): made provision for the care and welfare of children without parents or whose parents were considered unfit or unable to take care of them.

1948 1948 Employment and Training Act (13 July): established the Youth Employment Service.

1948 1948 Nurseries and Child-Minders Regulation Act (30 July): required the registration of nurseries and child-minders by local health authorities and set out arrangements for their regulation and inspection.

1948 Clarke Report Out of School: the second report of the Central Advisory Council for Education (England) looked at facilities for out-of-school activities.

1948 Tomlinson rejected Middlesex County Council's plan for a fully comprehensive system of secondary schools.

1948 Clarke Report The Education of the Young Worker: the third report by the Central Advisory Council for Education (England).

1948 Ministry of Education Local Studies - Bishop Aukland: Pamphlet No. 10 used the Ministry's Visual Unit to illustrate the use that could be made of local studies.

1948 Ministry of Education Organised Camping: Pamphlet No. 11 gave advice - in extraordinary detail - on planning and running camps for young people.

1948 Ministry of Education UNESCO and a World Society: Pamphlet No. 12 set out Britain's response to the creation of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation, whose constitution was adopted in London on 16 November 1945.

1948 Ministry of Education Safety Precautions in Schools: Pamphlet No. 13 provided some statistics on accidents in schools and advised teachers on the measures to be taken to ensure the safety of pupils.

1949 1949 Education (Scotland) Act (9 March): made various amendments to the 1946 Education (Scotland) Act.

1949 Ministry of Education Story of a School: Pamphlet No. 14 - a former primary school head described how liberal methods could be introduced in an archaic building.

1949 Ministry of Education Citizens Growing Up (June): Pamphlet No. 16 originated in the conviction of Minister of Education George Tomlinson that 'in a democratic community we must all take a share in preparing our young people for the responsibilities of active citizenship'.

1949 Ministry of Education Circulars 209 and 210 (28 October): imposed budget cuts because of the worsening national economic position.

1949 1949 Adoption of Children Act (16 December): made amendments to the 1926 Adoption of Children Act and several other Acts.

1950 London School Plan (February) receives Ministerial approval 'in principle'.

1950 Labour Party Conference (October): calls on the government to implement the Party's 'declared policy of the comprehensive school'.

1950 Ministry of Education Challenge and Response: Pamphlet No. 17 explained how the Ministry set about training 70,000 teachers in the immediate aftermath of World War 2.

1950 Ministry of Education Reading Ability (November): Pamphlet No. 18 was a response to concerns that reading standards had fallen as a result of the second world war. It offered 'some suggestions for helping the backward'.

1951 Labour Party A policy for secondary education (June): pamphlet setting out the policy on comprehensive schools which the party had adopted in October 1950.

1951 Ministry of Education The Road to the Sixth Form: Pamphlet No. 19 set out the post-war Labour government's thinking on the grammar school.

1951 The first General Certificate of Education (GCE) exams were taken, replacing the School Certificate.

11 1951-1964 : The wind of change

26 October 1951 Winston Churchill (Conservative)

2 November 1951 Florence Horsbrugh

1951 Circular 242 (December) called for a five per cent reduction in local authority estimates for 1952.

1951 Nuffield Foundation trust deed amended to include 'the advancement of education' as an objective.

1952 Circular 245 (February) made further cuts to the school building programme.

1952 1952 Children and Young Persons (Amendment) Act (1 August): made amendments to the 1933 Children and Young Persons Act and the 1948 Criminal Justice Act.

1952 Ministry of Education Metalwork in Secondary Schools: Pamphlet No. 22 gave advice on the planning of instruction in metalwork as part of a non-vocational course of workshop craft in secondary technical, grammar and modern schools.

1952/3 Ministry of Education Physical Education in the Primary School: published in two parts as Pamphlet No. 24 Moving and Growing (1952) and Pamphlet No. 25 Planning the Programme (1953).

1953 1953 Education (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act (14 July): required LEAs to provide free dental treatment for children and amended the provisions of the 1944 Education Act relating to school attendance orders etc.

1953 1953 University of St Andrews Act (31 July): provided for the reorganisation of university education in St Andrews and Dundee.

1953 1953 School Crossing Patrols Act (31 July): allowed school crossing patrols to control traffic.

1953 Brian Simon Intelligence Testing and the Comprehensive School.

1954 (March) Florence Horsbrugh prevented London County Council from closing Eltham Hill Girls' Grammar School and transferring pupils to the new (comprehensive) Kidbrooke School.

1954 National Advisory Council on the Training and Supply of Teachers (NACTST) fourth report: training of special needs teachers.

1954 Alice Heim The Appraisal of Intelligence.

1954 Robin Pedley Comprehensive Schools Today: contained Pedley's survey of early comprehensive schools, plus critical essays by HC Dent, Harold Shearman, Eric James and WP Alexander.

1954 Ministry of Education Language: Pamphlet No. 26 explored the relations between language, thought and culture; offered suggestions for teaching the mother tongue; and illustrated the contribution of imaginative literature and of broadcasting to education.

18 October 1954 Sir David Eccles

1954 Gurney-Dixon Report Early Leaving (November): a report by the Central Advisory Council for Education (England) which examined the problem of premature school-leaving in England.

6 April 1955 Anthony Eden (Conservative)

1955 1955 Children And Young Persons (Harmful Publications) Act (6 May): banned the publication and sale of what were commonly known as 'horror comics'.

1955 Underwood Report Maladjusted Children (October): the committee appointed by George Tomlinson in October 1950 recommended that LEAs should set up Child Guidance Services.

1955 Diploma in Technology introduced: overseen by the National Council for Technological Awards.

1955 Ministry of Education Evening Institutes: Pamphlet No. 28 (reprinted 1956) gave an account of the history of evening institutes and described the courses on offer in the mid 1950s.

1956 White Paper Technical Education (29 February): proposed the concentration of advanced technological courses in a number of 'Colleges of Advanced Technology'. Ten technical and FE colleges were designated and were later upgraded to university status.

1956 1956 Children and Young Persons Act (15 March): made amendments to the1933 Children and Young Persons Act and the 1937 Children and Young Persons (Scotland) Act relating to escapes from approved schools and remand homes.

1956 1956 Teachers (Superannuation) Act (5 July): amended previous legislation relating to teachers' pensions in England and Wales and in Scotland.

1956 Ministry of Education Music in Schools: Pamphlet No. 27 (second edition, 1960) was a comprehensive survey of music education.

1956 Ministry of Education Modern Languages: Pamphlet No. 29 offered advice on 'the choice of modern foreign languages to be taught in our schools', which it described as 'an educational problem of great importance'.

1956 Ministry of Education Education of the Handicapped Pupil 1945-1955: Pamphlet No. 30 reviewed the progress which had been made in the education of handicapped pupils in the decade after the war.

1956 Ministry of Education Health Education: Pamphlet No. 31 was an updated version of the Board of Education's Handbook of Suggestions in Health Education, first published in 1928 and revised in 1933 and 1939.

1956 1956 Education (Scotland) Act (5 November): made various amendments to the 1946 Education (Scotland) Act.

1956 Jameson Report An Inquiry into Health Visiting.

1956 Robin Pedley Comprehensive Education: a New Approach.

10 January 1957 Harold MacMillan (Conservative)

13 January 1957 Viscount Hailsham

1957 Ministry of Education The story of post-war school building: Pamphlet No. 33 outlined the progress that had been made towards providing 2m new schools places between 1945 and 1961 at a cost of 360m and how the Ministry had endeavoured to secure value for money in the process.

1957 Ministry of Education The Training of Teachers: Pamphlet No. 34, written by a group of H.M. Inspectors, made proposals regarding the extension of the teacher-training course from two years to three, which took effect in 1960.

1957 The Leicestershire Experiment: booklet by Leicestershire CEO Stewart C Mason on the reorganisation of the county's schools.

1957 Jackson Report The Supply and Training of Teachers for Technical Colleges.

1957 Philip Vernon Secondary School Selection: report of a British Psychological Society inquiry.

1957 Brian Simon New Trends in English Education.

17 September 1957 Geoffrey Lloyd

1958 Carr Report Recruitment and Training of Young Workers in Industry: employers overwhelmingly opposed vocational instruction being provided by schools.

1958 1958 Matrimonial Proceedings (Children) Act (7 July): sought to protect the interests of children in divorce cases.

1958 1958 Local Government Act (23 July): mainly concerned with administrative and financial matters; allowed county district councils to apply to the Minister of Education for 'excepted district' status.

1958 1958 Children Act (1 August): made new provisions for the protection of children living away from their parents, and amended the law relating to adoption.

1958 Admission to Grammar Schools NFER report on selection procedures.

1958 Forum: pro-comprehensive campaigning journal founded by Brian Simon and Robin Pedley.

1958 Ministry of Education Teaching mathematics in secondary schools: Pamphlet No. 36 was the Ministry's first major publication concerning secondary school maths. It updated the Board of Education's Senior School Mathematics, published in 1934.

1958 Michael Young The Rise Of The Meritocracy.

1958 White Paper Secondary Education for All: A New Drive (December) announced a 300m school building programme consisting mostly of new secondary modern schools.

1959 Ministry of Education Primary Education: offered suggestions for the consideration of teachers and others concerned with the work of primary schools.

1959 Younghusband Report Social Workers in the Local Authority Health and Welfare Services.

1959 Crowther Report 15 to 18 (24 July): recommended raising the school leaving age to 16 and the provision of further education for 15-18 year olds; questioned the value of day-release provision for apprenticeships.

1959 1959 Education Act (29 July): empowered the Minister of Education to make grants of up to 75 per cent for the building and maintenance of aided and special agreement schools (previously the limit had been 50 per cent).

1959 1959 Mental Health Act (29 July): a major Act updating previous legislation relating to the treatment of those suffering from mental incapacity; included a revised version of Section 57 of the 1944 Education Act.

1959 Ministry of Education Suggestions for the Teaching of Classics: Pamphlet No. 37 gave detailed advice on the teaching of Latin (mainly to grammar school boys). It was a revised version of that published by the Board of Education in 1939.

14 October 1959 Sir David Eccles

1959 McMeeking Report Report by the Advisory Committee on Further Education and Commerce.

1959 Critical Quarterly founded by CB (Brian) Cox and AE (Anthony) Dyson to promote right-wing views on education.

c1960 Middlesex County Council School Health Services: Notes for Parents: a pamphlet setting out the services available in Southgate, Wood Green, Friern Barnet and Potters Bar.

1960 Albemarle Report The Youth Service in England and Wales (February): the report of a Committee appointed by the Minister of Education in November 1958. (See also the the 1982 Thompson Report Experience and Participation.)

1960 Anderson Report Grants to Students (26 April): the Committee was unanimous in opposing the idea of student loans but divided on the issue of means-tested parental contributions: the majority wanted them abolished.

1960 Risinghill School in Islington opened on 3 May with head teacher Michael Duane. Acrimonious disputes with London County Council and HMI led to its closure in 1965.

1960 1960 Indecency with Children Act (2 June): increased the maximum prison sentences for sexual offences against children.

1960 Beloe Report Secondary School Examinations other than the GCE (July): the report of a Committee appointed by the Secondary School Examinations Council which led to the introduction of the Certificate of Secondary Education (CSE) in 1965.

1960 Ministry of Education Science in Secondary Schools: prepared by a group of HM Inspectors, Pamphlet No. 38 aimed 'to help and stimulate the better teaching of science'. Part I contains a useful history of science teaching. (See also Pamphlet No. 42 (1961) Science in Primary Schools.

1960 Teacher training course extended from two years to three.

1960 Coldstream Report National Advisory Council on Art and Education.

1960 Wolfenden Report Sport and the Community.

1960 Association for the Advancement of State Education established in Cambridge - this and other groups merged in 1962 to form the Confederation for the Advancement of State Education, which later became the Campaign for State Education (CASE).

1960 Advisory Centre for Education (ACE) founded by Michael Young and Brian Jackson.

1961 Ministry Circular 11/61 Special educational treatment for educationally sub-normal pupils (3 July): reviewed some of the ways in which special education could be arranged for 'educationally sub-normal' pupils and the progress which was being made in providing extra special school places.

1961 Ministry of Education Schools and the Commonwealth: written by a group of HM Inspectors, Pamphlet No. 40 made the case for more time for Commonwealth studies in the school curriculum.

1961 Ministry of Education Science in Primary Schools: Pamphlet No. 42 discussed some of the possibilities for primary science. (See also Pamphlet No. 38 (1960) Science in Secondary Schools.

1961 Sussex University founded.

1962 Curriculum Study Group set up by the Minister (announced in February). Opposition to it led to the establishment of the Schools Council in 1964.

1962 1962 Education Act (29 March): required local education authorities to provide students on first degree or teacher training courses with grants, and revised the law on school leaving dates.

1962 1962 Health Visiting and Social Work (Training) Act (3 July): established two Councils to oversee training for health visitors and social workers.

1962 Royal Charter granted to Keele University.

1962 Brian Jackson and Dennis Marsden Education and the Working Class.

1962 Confederation for the Advancement of State Education (CASE) formed (see 1960).

13 July 1962 Sir Edward Boyle

1962 1962 Education (Scotland) Act (1 August): major Act consolidating all previous legislation relating to education in Scotland.

1963 1963 Remuneration of Teachers Act (10 July): gave the Minister powers relating to the remuneration of teachers.

1963 1963 Education (Scotland) Act (10 July): miscellaneous provisions relating to examinations and teachers' salaries and pensions.

1963 1963 London Government Act (31 July): reorganised local government in London. It provided for the establishment of the Greater London Council (GLC) and the Inner London Education Authority (ILEA).

1963 1963 Children and Young Persons Act (31 July): amended the the 1933 Children and Young Persons Act ('the principal Act') and the 1937 Children and Young Persons (Scotland) Act ('the principal Scottish Act').

1963 Newsom Report Half our Future (August): a report of the Central Advisory Council for Education (England) on children of average or below-average ability.

1963 The Years of Crisis: Report of the Labour Party's Study Group on Higher Education.

19 October 1963 Alec Douglas-Home (Conservative)

1963 Robbins Report Higher education (October): recommended a massive expansion of higher education to cater for all who had the necessary ability. (See also Oakes 1978, Dearing 1997 and Browne 2010.)

1963 Ministry of Education English for Immigrants: Pamphlet No. 43 gave advice on the teaching of English as a foreign language to immigrant children and adults.

1963 Middle schools championed by Alec Clegg, Chief Education Officer of the West Riding of Yorkshire.

1963 East Anglia and York Universities founded.

1963 Newcastle became an independent university.

1963 Robin Pedley The Comprehensive School: Pedley's most influential book was reprinted many times.

1963 Sybil Marshall An Experiment in Education.

1963 National Extension College at Cambridge founded by Michael Young and Brian Jackson.

1964 1964 Industrial Training Act (12 March): provided for the establishment of industrial training boards and the Central Training Council.

1964 Conference organised by the Ministry of Education and the universities and colleges to review content of teacher training courses (March).

1964 Greater London Council (GLC) and Inner London Education Authority (ILEA) established (1 April).

1964 Ministry of Education reorganised as the Department of Education and Science (1 April) - Quintin Hogg (formerly Viscount Hailsham) became the first Secretary of State for Education and Science.

1 April 1964 Quintin Hogg

1964 Stewart C Mason The Leicestershire Experiment and Plan (April): booklet on Leicestershire's scheme for comprehensivisation.

1964 1964 Universities and College Estates Act (16 July): amended previous legislation relating to property held by or on behalf of universities and colleges.

1964 1964 Public Libraries and Museums Act (31 July): placed the public library service provided by local authorities in England and Wales under the superintendence of the Secretary of State, and made provisions for regulating and improving the provision and maintenance of libraries, museums and art galleries.

1964 1964 Education Act (31 July): the 'Boyle Act' allowed the creation of middle schools.

1964 Essex and Lancaster Universities founded.

1964 Royal Charter granted to Strathclyde University.

1964 JWB Douglas The Home and the School: report of the National Survey of Health and Development.

1964 Schools Council for the Curriculum and Examinations established (1 October), as recommended by the Lockwood Report, to disseminate ideas about curricular reform in England and Wales.

1964 Labour manifesto (for general election on 15 October 1964) promised to abolish selection for secondary education - the 'eleven plus'.

12 1964-1970 : The golden age?

16 October 1964 Harold Wilson (Labour)

18 October 1964 Michael Stewart

1964 HMI Survey of Industrial Classes in Greater London, Hertfordshire and Essex (October): a 7-page pamphlet setting out the findings of a survey of courses for industrial groups provided by the London Joint Tutorial Classes Committee and by the London and Eastern Districts of the Workers' Educational Association in 1963-4.

22 January 1965 Anthony Crosland

1965 1965 Remuneration of Teachers Act (23 March): set out new provisions for determining the remuneration of teachers.

1965 1965 Education (Scotland) Act (23 March): amended the Education (Scotland) Act 1963.

1965 Crosland launched an ambitious emergency programme to expand teacher training, and declared the government's commitment to the binary system of higher education (as opposed to the unitary system proposed by the Robbins report) (27 April).

1965 HMI Training for Adult Education in England and Wales (May): a 15-page pamphlet reporting the findings of an HMI survey into the provision of training for adult education tutors by the Responsible Bodies and by Departments of Adult Education.

1965 1965 Teaching Council (Scotland) Act (2 June): provided for the establishment of the General Teaching Council for Scotland, and set out its powers and duties.

1965 DES Circular 7/65 The education of immigrants (14 June): advised schools on the education of the 'increasing numbers of immigrants from Commonwealth and other countries overseas' who had recently arrived in the country. (See also DES Survey 13 (1971) below).

1965 DES Circular 10/65 The organisation of secondary education (12 July): requested LEAs to submit plans for comprehensivisation. (See also Circulars 10/70 and 4/74).

1965 Bachelor of Education (BEd) courses began.

1965 National Education Association formed to coordinate local campaigns to preserve grammar schools (autumn).

1965 Comprehensive Schools Committee formed by reformers including Brian Simon and Caroline Benn.

1965 Circular 600: Scotland's version of Circular 10/65.

1965 Certificate of Secondary Education (CSE) introduced in England and Wales (see the 1960 Beloe Report).

1965 Schools Council Change and Response: the Council's report on its first year of operation.

1965 Kent and Warwick Universities founded.

1965 Jennie Lee, Minister of State for Education, produced a White Paper outlining plans for the Open University.

1966 1966 Universities (Scotland) Act (10 March): amended previous legislation relating to the Universities of St. Andrews, Glasgow, Aberdeen and Edinburgh, and prepared the way for the foundation of the University of Dundee.

1966 DES Circular 10/66 School building programmes (10 March): set out proposals for 1967-70.

1966 White Paper A Plan for Polytechnics and Other Colleges (May).

1966 Aston University founded.

1966 Royal Charters granted to Universities of Bath, Bradford, Brunel, City University London, Heriot-Watt, Loughborough and Surrey.

1966 Aberfan disaster (21 October): colliery waste engulfed the junior school in the Welsh village, killing 116 children and 28 adults.

1966 1966 Local Government Act (13 December): includes references to education in section 14 (abolition of grants for school meals and milk) and in Schedule 1 paragraph 13(4) (adjustment of various grants for schools and colleges). Section 11 empowered the Secretary of State to make grants to local authorities which had 'substantial numbers of immigrants'.

1967 Plowden Report Children and their Primary Schools (10 January): arguably the best known of all education reports, it promoted child-centred education and was much maligned by traditionalists.

1967 Conservative leader Edward Heath appointed Margaret Thatcher Shadow Secretary of State for Education (10 January).

1967 1967 Education Act (16 February): gave the Secretary of State greater powers in relation to grants and loans for aided and special agreement schools etc.

1967 First student 'sit-in' at the London School of Economics (LSE) (March). The protest movement reached its peak in 1968-9 when Essex, Birmingham, Manchester, Leicester, Oxford, Bristol, Sussex, Warwick universities were all affected.

1967 DES Administrative Memorandum 20/67 Inhalation of asbestos dust (18 July): advised of the dangers of asbestos in school and college buildings.

1967 Schools Council The Educational Implications of Social and Economic Change: contains the papers read at a Schools Council conference held at the University of Nottingham in July 1966 as part of the Council's work in preparation for the raising of the school leaving age to 16 (which eventually took place in 1972).

1967 DES Units for Partially-hearing Children (Education Survey 1): this survey, the first in a series published by the Department of Education and Science, was written by members of HM Inspectorate and Medical Officers of the Department.

29 August 1967 Patrick Gordon-Walker

1967 Schools Council began working on ideas for a single examination system (October).

1967 Royal Charters granted to Universities of Salford and Stirling.

1967 David Hargreaves Social Relations in a Secondary School: analysis of the impact of streaming on pupils' attitudes.

1967 Schools Council Society and the Young School Leaver (Working Paper No. 11), produced in preparation for the raising of the school leaving age to sixteen.

1968 Summerfield Report Psychologists in Education Services (20 February): the first government-commissioned report on the work of psychologists.

1968 1968 Teachers Superannuation (Scotland) Act (13 March): amended previous legislation relating to superannuation and other benefits for Scottish teachers and their dependants.

1968 Newsom Report The Public Schools Commission: First Report (5 April): like Fleming in 1944, made recommendations about integrating private boarding schools into the state education system. (See also Donnison 1970.)

6 April 1968 Edward Short

1968 1968 Education Act (10 April): amended previous legislation relating to procedures for making changes in the character, size or situation of county and voluntary schools.

1968 1968 Education (No. 2) Act (3 July): made further provision for the government of colleges of education, other further education institutions and special schools maintained by local education authorities.

1968 Dainton Report Enquiry into the Flow of Candidates in Science and Technology into Higher Education: prompted by the falling number of science students.

1968 DES Drama (Education Survey 2): this survey of drama in schools, the youth service and colleges of education was written by John Allen and colleagues in HM Inspectorate.

1968 DES Blind and Partially-sighted Children (Education Survey 4): this Survey of more than 2,000 children in 54 special schools and eight special classes in England and Wales was written for the DES by Dr Shirley R Fine.

1968 DES Parent/Teacher Relations in Primary Schools (Education Survey 5): this Survey was a response to the 1967 Plowden report's recommendation that the DES 'should issue a booklet containing examples of good practice in parent/teacher relations'.

1968 School Meals Agreement: teachers were no longer obliged to supervise children at lunchtimes.

1968 Middle schools: the first opened in Bradford and the West Riding of Yorkshire.

1968 Leila Berg Risinghill: Death of a Comprehensive School.

1968 Royal Charter granted to the University of Ulster.

1968 JWB Douglas, JM Ross and HR Simpson All Our Future: report of the National Survey of Health and Development.

1969 First three colleges to be designated polytechnics - Hatfield, Sheffield and Sunderland - became operational in January; thirty had been designated by 1973.

1969 Fight for Education: A Black Paper (March) edited by CB Cox and AE Dyson. The first of five right-wing papers published between 1969 and 1977.

1969 National Union of Teachers (NUT) conference called for the abolition of selection for secondary education (April).

1969 1969 Education (Scotland) Act (25 July): amended previous legislation relating to education in Scotland, particularly the 1962 Education (Scotland) Act.

1969 1969 Children and Young Persons Act (22 October): amended previous legislation relating to the treatment of young offenders and children in care or in foster homes. It extended the powers and responsibilities of local authorities.

1969 Black Paper Two: The Crisis in Education (October) edited by CB Cox and AE Dyson.

1969 National Union of Students President Jack Straw gave the first Granada Guildhall lecture (October), attacking 'the last great unreformed institutions of our time - the universities and colleges of higher education'.

1969 DES Peripatetic Teachers of the Deaf (Education Survey 6): this Survey was carried out by the members of HM Inspectorate and Medical Officers of the Department. (See also Survey 1, 1967.)

1969 Haslegrave Report: promoted technical and business education.

1969 Royal Charter granted to Cranfield University.

1969 Leicestershire abolished the eleven plus - the first English county to do so.

1970 Training requirement for graduates wishing to teach introduced in January.

1970 Donnison Report The Public Schools Commission: Second Report (29 January): considered the part independent day schools and direct grant grammar schools might play in a state education system which was undergoing comprehensive reorganisation. (See also Newsom 1968.)

1970 DES Towards the Middle School: Pamphlet No 57 set out suggestions on the curriculum and organisation of middle schools.

1970 1970 Education (School Milk) Act (26 March): extended the provision of free school milk to junior pupils in middle schools.

13 1970-1974 : Applying the brakes

19 June 1970 Ted Heath (Conservative)

20 June 1970 Margaret Thatcher

1970 DES Circular 10/70 The organisation of secondary education (30 June): withdrew Labour's Circular 10/65 (see above) and allowed LEAs to decide whether to proceed with plans for comprehensivisation. (Withdrawn by Circular 4/74 - see below).

1970 1970 Education (Handicapped Children) Act (23 July): discontinued the classification of handicapped children as unsuitable for education at school, and transferred responsibility for the education of severely handicapped children from health authorities to local education authorities.

1970 Black Paper Three: Goodbye Mr Short (November): edited by CB Cox and AE Dyson.

1970 DES HMI Today and Tomorrow: an account of the history, role and organisation of HM Inspectorate.

1970 Durham Report The Fourth R: Report of the Commission on Religious Education in Schools, appointed in 1967 under the chairmanship of the Bishop of Durham. Church of England report on church schools and religious education.

1970 Sir Alec Clegg Education in Society (text): in his Arthur Mellows Memorial Lecture, Sir Alec offered some radical ideas for the future.

1970 Sir Alec Clegg The centenary of public education: Sir Alec's address as one of the two guests of honour at the celebration in Westminster Hall, which was chaired by Rab Butler (mp4 audio file - click to play, option-click to download).

1971 DES Survey 13 The Education of Immigrants: set out the 'policies and courses of action pursued by the Department, by local education authorities, and by other statutory and voluntary bodies'. (See also DES Circular 7/65 above).

1971 1971 Teaching Council (Scotland) Act (17 February): allowed membership fees for the General Teaching Council for Scotland to be deducted from teachers' salaries.

1971 1971 Education (Scotland) Act (1 July): amended the law relating to free education and the charging of fees in Scotland.

1971 1971 Education (Milk) Act (5 August): abolished provision of free school milk for 8- to 11-year olds (and led to the jibe 'Thatcher, Thatcher, milk snatcher').

1971 DES Circular 8/71 Raising of the school leaving age to 16 (24 August): set out arrangements for the raising of the school leaving age to 16 in September 1972.

1971 Open University enrolled its first students.

1972 James Report Teacher Education and Training (January): proposed new arrangements for the training of teachers and argued for a broader role for the higher education colleges.

1972 1972 Children Act (27 July): ensured that the minimum age at which children could be employed would not be affected by any further change in the school leaving age.

1972 Sir Alec Clegg Making the whole world wonder (3 August) (text): an after dinner speech given at the end of a vacation course for teachers at Bingley College of Education.

1972 1972 Education and Libraries (Northern Ireland) Order 1972 (14 August): made new arrangements for education and public libraries in Northern Ireland. It provided for the establishment of five education and library boards in place of the previous eight local education authorities and sixteen library authorities.

1972 1972 Local Government Act (26 October): this major Act restructured and reorganised local government in England and Wales.

1972 White Paper Education: A Framework for Expansion (December): announced planned increases in nursery provision but mainly focused on the expansion of higher and further education.

1972 Standards for School Premises Regulations (28 December): this Statutory Instrument consolidated and amended previous regulations prescribing the standards to which the premises of schools maintained by local education authorities were to conform. It also substituted metric units for the imperial measures used in previous regulations.

1973 DES Circular 7/73 Development of higher education in the non-university sector (26 March): advised local authorities about how they could meet the government's targets for non-university higher education up to 1981.

1973 Russell Report Adult education (27 March): recommended expansion of the provision of non-vocational adult education.

1973 1973 Education Act (18 April): amended previous legislation relating to certain educational trusts and local education authority awards to higher education students.

1973 1973 Education (Work Experience) Act (23 May): enabled local education authorities to arrange for children under school-leaving age to have work experience as part of their education.

1973 1973 Employment of Children Act (23 May): amended the 1933 Children and Young Persons Act and the 1937 Children and Young Persons (Scotland) Act to place further restrictions on the employment of children.

1973 1973 National Health Service Reorganisation Act (5 July): transferred responsibility for the school health service in England and Wales from local education authorities to new Area Health Authorities (though LEAs were still responsible for dental and medical inspections): the change was effected in April 1974. A similar change took place in Scotland.

1973 1973 Employment and Training Act (25 July): amended the 1964 Industrial Training Act; provided for the establishment of the Manpower Services Commission (MSC), the Employment Service Agency, and the Training Services Agency; and required local education authorities to provide careers advice for pupils. The MSC would later oversee the Technical and Vocational Initiative (TVEI) (see below).

1973 1973 Education (Scotland) Act (25 October): increased the powers of the Secretary of State in relation to the employment of teachers in Scotland.

1973 School leaving age raised to 16 (September).

1973 Circular 7/73: halved the number of places for student teachers.

1974 1974 Local Government Act (8 February): wide-ranging Act including some provisions relating to education.

14 1974-1979 : Progressivism under attack

4 March 1974 Harold Wilson (Labour)

5 March 1974 Reginald Prentice

1974 DES Circular 4/74 The organisation of secondary education (16 April): reinstated the request (made in Circular 10/65 and cancelled in 10/70) that LEAs should submit plans for comprehensivisation.

1974 (June) ILEA voted to draw up plans for the final abolition of selection throughout inner London.

1974 1974 Education (Mentally Handicapped Children) (Scotland) Act (17 July): required Scottish education authorities to provide for the education of mentally handicapped children.

1974 White Paper Educational disadvantage and the educational needs of immigrants (August): set out the government's response to the Report on Education of the Select Committee on Race Relations and Immigration.

1974 Finer Report Report of the Committee on One-Parent Families: special needs of one-parent families.

1974 Swann Report The flow into employment of scientists, engineers and technologists.

1974 Assessment of Performance Unit (APU) established by the DES to 'promote the development of methods of assessing and monitoring the achievement of children at school'.

1974 Houghton Report Report of the Committee of Inquiry into the pay of Non-University Teachers (December): recommended substantial pay increases for teachers.

1975 1975 Education Act (25 February): amended the law relating to local education authority grants, awards to students at adult education colleges, and increased central government funding for aided and special agreement schools.

1975 Handicapped Pupils (Certificate) (Amendment) Regulations (1975 No. 328): this brief Statutory Instrument amended the form of the certificate issued by a medical officer of a local education authority showing whether a child was suffering from any disability of mind or body.

1975 DES Circular 2/75 The discovery of children requiring special education and the assessment of their needs (17 March): provided 'a fresh statement of what is involved in discovering which children require special education'.

10 June 1975 Fred Mulley

1975 DES Circular 7/75 Phasing out of direct grants to grammar schools (30 July): explained how the Direct Grant Grammar Schools (Cessation of Grant) Regulations 1975 would be implemented.

1975 1975 Child Benefit Act (7 August): replaced family allowances with child benefit.

1975 Bullock Report A language for life (September): major report on the teaching of English. (See also Newbolt 1921, Kingman 1988, Cox 1989, Warwick 1994 and Ofsted 2012.)

1975 1975 Sex Discrimination Act (12 November): aimed to promote equality of opportunity between men and women, and provided for the establishment of the Equal Opportunities Commission. Education is dealt with in sections 22-28.

1975 1975 Children Act (12 November): amended previous legislation relating to the welfare of children. It dealt with adoption, children in custody and care, and fostered children; and it set out the duties and responsibilites of local authorities, parents and guardians.

1975 How to Save your Schools by Tory MPs Norman St John Stevas and Leon Brittan: handbook giving guidance to activists on how to 'save the grammar schools'.

1975 Black Paper The Fight for Education: edited by CB Cox and R Boyson.

1976 1976 Education (Northern Ireland) Order (25 March): Statutory Instrument made minor amendments to the 1972 Education and Libraries (Northern Ireland) Order (see above).

1976 1976 Education (School-leaving Dates) Act (25 March): amended section 9 of the 1962 Education Act relating to the summer school leaving date.

5 April 1976 Jim Callaghan (Labour)

1976 Neville Bennett Teaching styles and pupil progress (April): argued that formal teaching methods were more effective than progressive methods.

1976 1976 Education (Scotland) Act (10 June): miscellaneous provisions relating to school starting and leaving dates, supply of milk etc.

1976 Auld Report (July): criticised the management and teaching at the William Tyndale primary school in London.

1976 DES School Education in England: problems and initiatives (July): the so-called 'Yellow Book' set out the state of school education in England in the mid-1970s.

10 September 1976 Shirley Williams

1976 Jim Callaghan Ruskin College speech (18 October) (text): called for a 'Great Debate' about education.

1976 1976 Race Relations Act (22 November): updated the law on racial discrimination and provided for the establishment of the Commission for Racial Equality, replacing the Race Relations Board and the Community Relations Commission, which were abolished. It amended the 1975 Sex Discrimination Act to bring it into line with this Act. Education is dealt with in sections 17-19..

1976 1976 Education Act (22 November): gave the Secretary of State the power to ask local education authorities to plan for non-selective (ie comprehensive) secondary education. It was repealed by Margaret Thatcher's Conservative government in 1979.

1976 DES Circular 11/76 Education Act 1976 (25 November): explained that local authorities which had not submitted schemes for comprehensive reorganisation would now be expected to do so.

1976 DES Circular 12/76 Education Act 1976: Support by Local Education Authorities of Education in Non-Maintained Schools (25 November): required arrangements to be 'consistent with the Government's policy of abolishing selection for secondary education'.

1976 DES Circular 13/76 Provision of Milk and Meals (Amendment No. 2) Regulations 1976: revised arrangements for the remission of the school dinner charge (25 November): a brief circular explaining explaining the implications of the new regulations for local education authorities.

1976 Court Report Fit for the future (December): report on Child Health Services recommended that 'child guidance clinics and psychiatric hospital services should be recognised as part of an integrated child and adolescent psychiatry service'.

1977 Better Schools For All: A Conservative Approach to the Problems of the Comprehensive School (January): Norman St John Stevas' pamphlet launched the Tory 'Standards 77' campaign.

1977 The West Indian Community (17 February): report of the Commons Select Committee on Race Relations and Immigration. Includes a section on education (pages 19-23.)

1977 BBC television's Panorama programme (March): painted a misleading picture of Faraday High School in Ealing.

1977 Black Paper 1977 (March): the last of the five Black Papers, edited by CB Cox and R Boyson, argued for education vouchers.

1977 Taylor Report A New Partnership for Our Schools (June): recommended major changes in the management of schools, implemented in the 1980 Education Act.

1977 Green paper Education in schools: a consultative document (July): requested LEAs to review their curriculum policies as part of the 'Great Debate'.

1977 The Attack on Higher Education (September): the so-called Gould Report by Julius Gould and various Black Paper contributors claimed that there was a Marxist conspiracy to subvert higher education.

1977 DES Circular 15/77 Information for Parents (25 November): set out the nature and extent of the information the Secretary of State believed schools should provide.

1977 DES Circular 14/77 Local Education Authority Arrangements for the School Curriculum (29 November): invited local authorities to 'assemble relevant information and to report the results to the Secretaries of State by 30 June 1978'.

1977-82 HMI Matters for Discussion A series of 15 discussion documents:

1 Ten Good Schools (1977)
2 Classics in Comprehensive Schools (1977)
3 Modern Languages in Comprehensive Schools (1977)
4 Gifted Children in Middle and Comprehensive Secondary Schools (1977)
5 The Teaching of Ideas in Geography (1978)
6 Mixed Ability Work in Comprehensive Schools (1978)
7 The Education of Children in Hospitals for the Mentally Handicapped (1978)
8 Developments in the BEd Degree Course (1979)
9 Mathematics 5 to 11 (1979)
10 Community Homes with Education (1980)
11 A View of the Curriculum (1980)
12 Modern Languages in Further Education (1980)
13 Girls and Science (1980)
14 Mathematics in the Sixth Form (1982)
15 The New Teacher in School (1982)

1977 HMI Curriculum 11-16 (dated 1977 but not published until March 1978 because of a printers' strike); second edition published in 1979: the first of the three 'Red Books' (see also 1981 and 1983).

1978 Oakes Report The Management of Higher Education in the Maintained Sector (March): report of the working group appointed by Shirley Williams. (See also Robbins 1963, Dearing 1997 and Browne 2010.)

1978 Warnock Report Special Educational Needs (March): major report on provision for children and young people with special needs.

1978 Youth Opportunities Programme launched (April) for 16- to 18-year-olds.

1978 1978 Education (Northern Ireland) Act (25 May): facilitated the establishment in Northern Ireland of integrated schools for pupils of different religious affiliations.

1978 Waddell Report School Examinations (June): recommended a single exam at age 16 to replace the GCE O Level and CSE. (The first GCSE exams were taken in 1988).

1978 1978 Protection of Children Act (20 July): made illegal the making and distribution of indecent photographs of children.

1978 1978 Education (Northern Ireland) Order (25 July): Statutory Instrument made further amendments to the 1972 Education and Libraries (Northern Ireland) Order (see above).

1978 HMI Primary education in England (September): the first of five surveys published between 1978 and 1985 (see also 1979, 1982, 1983 and 1985).

1978 White Paper Secondary School Examinations - A single system at 16 plus (October): set out the government proposals for replacing GCE and CSE with the General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE).

1978 Sneddon Report Learning to Teach: a report of the General Teaching Council for Scotland.

15 1979-1990 Thatcher and the New Right

4 May 1979 Margaret Thatcher (Conservative)

5 May 1979 Mark Carlisle

1979 1979 Education Act (26 July): allowed local education authorities to retain selective secondary schools by repealing sections 1-3 of the 1976 Education Act.

1979 DES/Welsh Office Local Education Authority Arrangements for the School Curriculum Report on the Circular 14/77 Review (November): report summarising the responses received from local authorities.

1979 HMI Aspects of secondary education in England (December): the second of five surveys published between 1978 and 1985 (see also 1978, 1982, 1983 and 1985).

1980 DES/Welsh Office A framework for the school curriculum (January): set out the government's thinking on the school curriculum.

1980 1980 Child Care Act (31 January): consolidated previous legislation relating to the care of children by local authorities or voluntary organisations.

1980 1980 Foster Children Act (31 January): consolidated previous legislation relating to the fostering of children in England and Wales (for Scotland, see the 1984 Foster Children (Scotland) Act).

1980 Microelectroncs Education Programme for England, Wales and Northern Ireland: announced by the government (March). The Strategy for the Programme was written by Richard Fothergill in April 1981.

1980 1980 Education Act (3 April): instituted the assisted places scheme (public money for children to go to private schools), gave parents greater powers on governing bodies and over admissions, and removed LEAs' obligation to provide school milk and meals.

1980 HMI Educational Provision by the Inner London Education Authority: report summarising inspectors' findings over the previous five years.

1980 1980 Education (Scotland) Act (1 August): a wide-ranging Act which consolidated previous legislation and gave effect to recommendations of the Scottish Law Commission.

1980 White Paper Special Needs in Education: in this White Paper Margaret Thatcher's first government responded to the recommendations of the 1978 Warnock Report Special Educational Needs. Its proposals formed the basis of the 1981 Education Act.

1980 1980 Local Government, Planning and Land Act (13 November): a wide-ranging Act which amended previous legislation relating to various aspects of local government, including changes to the Rate Support Grant.

1980 Inside the primary classroom by Maurice Galton, Brian Simon and Paul Croll: part of the Observational Research and Classroom Learning Evaluation (ORACLE) project, funded by the Social Science Research Council between 1975 and 1980.

1981 DES/Welsh Office The School Curriculum (March): advice for LEAs on curriculum development.

1981 Rampton Report West Indian Children in our Schools (June): interim report of the Committee of Enquiry into the education of children from ethnic minority groups. (The final report was Swann 1985 - see below).

1981 Education (School Premises) Regulations (24 June): this Statutory Instrument revoked the Standards for School Premises Regulations 1972 and made fresh provision as to the standards to which the premises of schools maintained by local education authorities were to conform.

1981 Racial Disadvantage (20 July): report of the Commons Home Affairs Committee. Includes a section on education (pages 54-70.)

1981 1981 Employment and Training Act (31 July): amended the 1964 Industrial Training Act and abolished the Employment Service Agency and the Training Services Agency abolished the Employment Service Agency and the Training Services Agency.

14 September 1981 Sir Keith Joseph

1981 DES Circular 6/81 The School Curriculum (6 October): required LEAs to review curriculum policies in the light of what was said in The School Curriculum (1981).

1981 Trenaman Report Review of the Schools Council (October): report by Nancy Trenaman for the Secretaries of State for Education and Science and for Wales.

1981 1981 Education (Scotland) Act (30 October): extended to Scotland the Thatcher government's assisted places scheme (introduced in England by the 1980 Education Act); amended the 1965 Teaching Council (Scotland) Act; and transferred the power of appointing the Principals of the Universities of St Andrews, Glasgow and Aberdeen to the respective University Courts.

1981 1981 Education Act (30 October): gave effect to some of the proposals of the 1978 Warnock Report Special Educational Needs.

1981 DES Circular 8/81 Education Act 1981 (7 December): explained, for local education authorities (LEAs), the provisions of the 1981 Education Act.

1981 White Paper A New Training Initiative (December): set out the government's plans for implementing the proposals of the Manpower Services Commission, including the Youth Training Scheme.

1981 Schools Council The practical curriculum (Working Paper 70): the Council's contribution to the 'Great Debate'.

1981 HMI Curriculum 11-16: a Review of Progress: the second of the three 'Red Books' (see also 1978 and 1983).

1982 1982 Industrial Training Act (29 March): consolidated previous legislation relating to industrial training boards.

1982 1982 Children's Homes Act (28 June): provided for the registration, inspection and conduct of homes for children in local authority care.

1982 Thompson Report Experience and Participation (October): report of the Review Group on the Youth Service in England. (See also the 1960 Albemarle Report The Youth Service in England and Wales.)

1982 Technical and Vocational Education Initiative (TVEI) announced in the Commons by Margaret Thatcher (12 November): aimed at 14- to 18-year-olds, to be administered by the Manpower Services Commission (MSC).

1982 Cockcroft Report Mathematics counts (November): major report on the teaching of maths.

1982 Thompson Report Experience and Participation: review of the Youth Service in England.

1982 HMI Education 5 to 9: the third of five surveys published between 1978 and 1985 (see also 1978, 1979, 1983 and 1985).

1982 Study of HM Inspectorate in England and Wales: part of the 'Rayner Review', a series of studies commissioned by the first Thatcher government.

1983 1983 Education (Special Educational Needs) Regulations (17 January): this Statutory Instrument made regulations relating to the assessment of special educational needs and to statements of such needs under the 1981 Education Act.

1983 DES Circular 1/83 Assessments and statements of special educational needs (31 January): in this circular, the DES explained the implications of the 1981 Education Act and of the 1983 Education (Special Educational Needs) Regulations for the assessment of a broad range of special educational needs.

1983 White Paper Teaching Quality (March): set out the first Thatcher government's thinking on teacher supply and training.

1983 1983 Education (Fees and Awards) Act (13 May): empowered the Secretary of State to require universities and further education establishments to charge foreign students higher fees.

1983 Youth Training Scheme (YTS): one-year scheme introduced, administered by Manpower Services Commission (MSC).

1983 Technical and Vocational Education Initiative (TVEI): pilot schemes began.

1983 HMI 9-13 Middle Schools: the fourth of five surveys published between 1978 and 1985 (see also 1978, 1979, 1982 and 1985).

1983 HMI Curriculum 11-16: Towards a Statement of Entitlement: the third of the three 'Red Books' (see also 1978 and 1981).

1983 DES Circular 7/83 Education Act 1980: application of section 2 to maintained special schools (6 December): this circular and its attached Order extended the provisions of 1980 Education Act relating to governing bodies to all maintained special schools to which those provisions did not already apply.

1983 DES Circular 8/83 The School Curriculum (8 December): required LEAs to report on progress in developing curriculum policy as requested in Circular 6/81.

1983 HMI Young children with special educational needs: set out the findings of an HMI survey of the provision made for children with special educational needs in 61 nurseries of various types.

1984 Schools Council abolished (31 January): its work was shared between the School Examinations Council (SEC) and the School Curriculum Development Council (SCDC), both of whose members were appointed by the Secretary of State.

1984 1984 Education (Amendment) (Scotland) Act (13 March): gave the Secretary of State power to control the use of dangerous materials or apparatus in Scottish schools.

1984 1984 Education (Grants and Awards) Act (12 April): allowed the Secretary of State to direct that up to 0.5 per cent of the budget for local education authorities should be spent on government-specified projects through Education Support Grants (ESGs).

1984 Green Paper Parental Influence at School (May): proposed that parents should play a major role on school governing bodies.

1984 1984 Rates Act (26 June): set limits on local authority expenditure by 'rate-capping'.

1984 1984 Child Abduction Act (12 July): amended previous legislation relating to the abduction of children by parents or others.

1984 1984 Foster Children (Scotland) Act (31 October): consolidated previous legislation relating to the fostering of children in Scotland (the Scottish version of the 1980 Foster Children Act).

1984 Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (CATE) established to set standards for initial teacher training courses.

1984-9 Curriculum Matters: A series of 17 discussion documents from HMI:

1 English (1984)
2 The Curriculum from 5 to 16 (1985)
3 Mathematics (1985)
4 Music (1985)
5 Home economics (1985)
6 Health education (1986)
7 Geography (1986)
8 Modern foreign languages (1987)
9 Craft, design and technology (1987)
10 Careers education and guidance (1988)
11 History (1988)
12 Classics (1988)
13 Environmental education (1989)
14 Personal and social education (1989)
15 Information Technology (1989)
16 Physical education (1989)
17 Drama (1989)

1985 Oxford University's Hebdomadal Council voted to reject the proposal to confer an honorary degree on Margaret Thatcher.

1985 White Paper Better Schools (March): incorporated proposals from the 1984 Green Paper; formed the basis of the 1986 (No. 2) Education Act.

1985 Swann Report Education for All (March): final report of the Committee of Enquiry into the education of children from ethnic minority groups (their interim report was Rampton 1981 - see above).

1985 Jarratt Report Report of the Steering Committee for Efficiency Studies in Universities (March): a report commissioned by the Committee of Vice Chancellors and Principals.

1985 DES/Welsh Office Science 5-16: A statement of policy (March): booklet setting out policies for the school science curriculum.

1985 1985 Further Education Act (16 July): empowered local education authorities to supply goods and services through further education establishments, and repealed section 28(b) of the 1975 Sex Discrimination Act in relation to teachers of physical education.

1985 1985 Child Abduction and Custody Act (25 July): enabled the UK to ratify two international Conventions relating respectively to the civil aspects of international child abduction and to the recognition and enforcement of custody decisions.

1985 HMI Education 8 to 12 in Combined and Middle Schools: the last of five surveys published between 1978 and 1985 (see also 1978, 1979, 1982 and 1983).

1985 DES Quality in Schools: Evaluation and Appraisal: based on surveys by HMI of practice in a small number of schools and LEAs.

1985 Green Paper Education and training for young people: announced major expansion of the Youth Training Scheme (YTS) from April 1986.

1985 TVEI-related in-service training (TRIST) courses began.

1985 Advisory Committee on the Supply and Education of Teachers (ACSET) abolished by Keith Joseph.

1986 1986 Education (Amendment) Act (17 February): amended the 1984 Education (Grants and Awards) Act to double the limit on funding for education support grants to 1 per cent of local authority budgets, and removed payment for lunch duties from the 1965 Remuneration of Teachers Act.

1986 1986 Law Reform (Parent and Child) (Scotland) Act (26 March): amended previous legislation relating to the rights of children born out of wedlock.

1986 1986 Local Government Act (26 March): prohibited local authorities from publishing party-political material.

1986 1986 Education and Libraries (Northern Ireland) Order (26 March): this Statutory Instrument set out arrangements for the provision of education and library services in Northern Ireland. It consolidated the Education and Libraries (Northern Ireland) Order 1972 and the provisions amending that Order.

1986 Greater London Council (GLC) abolished on 31 March. Margaret Thatcher had wanted to abolish the Inner London Education Authority (ILEA) at the same time but was persuaded that the London Boroughs were not yet ready to take on its responsibilities.

21 May 1986 Kenneth Baker

1986 The Framework Description of BTEC-City and Guilds Pre-Vocational Programmes for Pupils Age 14-16 (May): incorporated existing programmes into a common framework.

1986 DES Local Authority Policies for the School Curriculum (June): booklet summarising local education authorities' responses to Circular 8/83.

1986 1986 Children and Young Persons (Amendment) Act (8 July): amended the law relating to children and young people in care.

1986 1986 Education Act (18 July): empowered the Secretary of State to make grants to the Fellowship of Engineering and the Further Education Unit and amended the provisions of the 1980 Local Government, Planning and Land Act relating to the pooling of expenditure by local authorities.

1986 DES A new choice of school (October): glossy brochure setting out the Thatcher government's proposals for city technology colleges.

1986 1986 Education (No. 2) Act (7 November): required local education authorities to formulate and publish their curriculum policies, and governors to publish annual reports and hold parents' meetings; laid down rules on pupil admissions, political indoctrination and sex education; abolished corporal punishment; and ended the Secretary of State's duty to make annual reports to Parliament.

1986 On London Weekend Television's Weekend World programme (7 December), Baker announced a 'national core curriculum'.

1986 National Council for Vocational Qualifications (NCVQ) established as the accreditation body for National Vocational Qualifications (NVQs).

1986 Youth Training Scheme (YTS) extended to two years.

1987 Croham Report Review of the University Grants Committee (10 February).

1987 DES Circular 1/87 Follow-up to HMI Reports (18 February): explained how local education authorities and others should report on the measures taken following HMI inspections, as mentioned in paragraph 269 of the White Paper Better Schools.

1987 Oxford Review of Education 13(1) special issue (February): Plowden Twenty Years On.

1987 1987 Teachers' Pay and Conditions Act (2 March): abolished the negotiating procedures set up by the 1965 Act - from now until 1991 the Secretary of State imposed teachers' pay and conditions.

1987 1987 Education (School Teachers' Pay and Conditions of Employment) Order (S.I. 1987/650) (6 April): made under section 3 of the 1987 Teachers' Pay and Conditions Act, this Statutory Instrument set out the pay and conditions of employment of school teachers in England and Wales.

1987 White Paper Higher education: meeting the challenge (April): set out the government's proposals for changes in the structure and planning of higher education.

1987 Local management of schools (LMS) announced by Baker at Secondary Heads Association Conference (April).

1987 The Queen's Speech (25 June): included the government's plans for reforming education.

1987 DES/Welsh Office The National Curriculum 5-16 (July): consultation document setting out proposals for the introduction of the National Curriculum and associated assessment procedures.

1987 Grant-related in-service training (GRIST) courses began (as a result of Section 50 of the 1986 Education (No 2) Act).

1987 DES Circular 11/87 Sex education at school (25 September): explained the new duties and responsibilities of governors, heads, teachers and local authorities in relation to sex education, following the passing of the 1986 Education (No. 2) Act.

1987 Education Reform Bill: published on 20 November; second reading in the Commons on 1 December - passed by 348 votes to 241.

1988 National Curriculum Mathematics and Science Working Groups issued their interim reports (January).

1988 Kingman Report The Teaching of English Language (17 March): made recommendations on attainment targets and programmes of study for the English component of the new National Curriculum. (See also Newbolt 1921, Bullock 1975, Cox 1989, Warwick 1994 and Ofsted 2012.)

1988 Local Government Act 1988 (24 March): sought to force local authorities to put out to tender work (such as cleaning and maintenance) which had previously been undertaken by their own workforces; included the notoriously homophobic Section 28 (which was repealed by New Labour in November 2003).

1988 Education Reform Bill: lengthy debates in the Lords began on 11 April.

1988 1988 Employment Act (26 May): mainly concerned with imposing restrictions on the practices of trades unions. There is nothing specifically about education, but Part II deals with training for employment. The Manpower Services Commission was renamed the Training Commission.

1988 Higginson Report Advancing A Levels (June): its recommendations for broadening the sixth form curriculum were rejected by the Thatcher government.

1988 General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE) (June): common 16+ exam system replaced GCE O Level and CSE.

1988 1988 Education Reform Act (29 July): arguably the most important education act since 1944. Its major provisions concerned the curriculum (the National Curriculum, religious education and collective worship, establishment of curriculum and assessment councils); the admission of pupils to county and voluntary schools; local management of schools (LMS); grant-maintained (GM) schools; city technology colleges (CTCs); changes in further and higher education; and the abolition of the Inner London Education Authority (ILEA).

1988 1988 School Boards (Scotland) Act (15 November): required education authorities in Scotland to establish a School Board for each school in their area.

1988 Black Report National Curriculum Task Group on Assessment and Testing (TGAT Report) (24 December): made recommendations on tests and school league tables.

1988 White Paper Top-up loans for students.

1989 Elton Report Discipline in Schools (31 January): commissioned by Education Secretary Kenneth Baker, it included the findings of a national survey of teachers (Appendix D).

1989 Cox Report English for ages 5 to 16 (June): the report which formed the basis of the English component of the new National Curriculum. (See also Newbolt 1921, Bullock 1975, Kingman 1988, Warwick 1994 and Ofsted 2012.)

1989 DES Circular 15/89 Education Reform Act 1988: temporary exceptions from the National Curriculum (11 July): offered guidance on section 19 of the 1988 Education Reform Act and the 1989 Education (National Curriculum) (Temporary Exceptions for Individual Pupils) Regulations, which allowed head teachers of maintained schools to make temporary exceptions from the National Curriculum for individual pupils.

24 July 1989 John MacGregor

1989 DES Circular 22/89 Assessments and statements of special educational needs: procedures within the education, health and social services (29 September): updated previous advice to local education and health authorities on the making of assessments and statements for children with special educational needs. It replaced DES Circular 1/83, Health Circular HC(83)(3) and Local Authority Circular LAC(83)2.

1989 1989 Employment Act (16 November): the main purpose of this Act was to amend the 1975 Sex Discrimination Act in order to comply with Directive No. 76/207/EEC, which called for equal treatment for men and women regarding access to employment, vocational training and promotion, and working conditions.

1989 1989 Self-Governing Schools etc. (Scotland) Act (16 November): made provision for Scottish schools to opt out of local authority control. In the event, hardly any did so.

1989 1989 Children Act (16 November): wide-ranging Act which reformed the law relating to local authority services, children's homes, fostering, child minding and adoption.

1989 1989 Education Reform (Northern Ireland) Order (1989 No. 2406 (N.I. 20)): this wide-ranging Statutory Instrument may be seen as the Northern Ireland version of the 1988 Education Reform Act, though there are significant differences.

1989 Youth Training Scheme (YTS) renamed Youth Training and placed under the management of local Training and Enterprise Councils.

1990 Inner London Education Authority (ILEA) abolished (1 April): responsibilities transferred to London boroughs.

1990 1990 Education (Student Loans) Act (26 April): introduced 'top-up' loans for higher education students and so began the diminution of student grants.

1990 DES/HMI Public Education in England 1839-1989: this publication, celebrating 150 years of public education in England, contains useful histories of the education department and Her Majesty's Inspectorate.

1990 HMI Language Awareness and Foreign Language Taster Courses (August): a survey of secondary schools concluded that there was 'very great variability in the aims, content and structure of the courses'.

1990 Rumbold Report Starting with Quality (27 September): the report of the Committee of Inquiry into the quality of the educational experience offered to 3 and 4 year olds, chaired by Angela Rumbold.

1990 HMI The Teaching and Learning of Language and Literacy: this inspection review was one of the Aspects of Primary Education series.

1990 HMI The Teaching and Learning of Reading in Primary Schools: this HMI survey concluded that there had been no fall in reading standards since 1978 but that there was still room for improvement.

2 November 1990 Kenneth Clarke

16 1990-1997 : John Major: more of the same

28 November 1990 John Major (Conservative)

1991 Approval was given for Kingswood City Technology College, Bristol (April): the fifteenth and last CTC.

1991 White Paper Education and Training for the 21st century (May): its proposals were included in the 1992 Further and Higher Education Act.

1991 White Paper Higher Education: A New Framework (May): its proposals were included in the 1992 Further and Higher Education Act.

1991 Standard Assessment Tests (SATs): the first Key Stage 1 tests were conducted during the summer term.

1991 The 5-14 Programme (Scotland's version of the National Curriculum): the first National Tests faced widespread opposition.

1991 1991 Education (School Teacher Appraisal) Regulations (1991 No. 1511) (24 July): this Statutory Instrument required local education authorities (in respect of maintained schools) and governing bodies (of grant-maintained schools) to secure that the performance of teachers was regularly appraised.

1991 DES Circular 12/91 School Teacher Appraisal (24 July): provided local education authorities and schools with guidance on implementing the 1991 Education (School Teacher Appraisal) Regulations.

1991 1991 School Teachers' Pay and Conditions Act (25 July): provided for the establishment of a teachers' pay review body but allowed the Secretary of State to ignore its recommendations.

1991 NCC Religious Education: A Local Curriculum Framework (July): a National Curriculum Council paper offering advice to SACREs, agreed syllabus conferences and LEAs.

1992 'Three Wise Men Report' Curriculum Organisation and Classroom Practice in Primary Schools: A discussion paper (5 February): produced by Robin Alexander, Jim Rose and Chris Woodhead at the request of Education Secretary Kenneth Clarke.

1992 1992 Further and Higher Education Act (6 March): removed further education and sixth form colleges from LEA control and established Further Education Funding Councils (FEFCs); allowed polytechnics to apply for university status; unified the funding of higher education under the Higher Education Funding Councils (HEFCs); introduced competition for funding between institutions; abolished the Council for National Academic Awards (CNAA).

1992 1992 Further and Higher Education (Scotland) Act (16 March): (the Scottish version of the 1992 Further and Higher Education Act) set out new arrangements for the funding and management of colleges in Scotland.

1992 1992 Education (Schools) Act (16 March): provided for the creation of a new (privatised) system of school inspection in England and Wales.

1992 The Department of Education and Science was renamed the Department for Education (DFE) (10 April).

10 April 1992 John Patten

1992 DFE/Welsh Office Circular 9/92 Initial Teacher Training (Secondary Phase) (25 June): set out new criteria and procedures for the accreditation of initial teacher training courses.

1992 White Paper Choice and Diversity: A new framework for schools (July): its proposals (including making it easier for schools to achieve grant-maintained status) formed the basis of the 1993 Education Act.

1993 NCC Spiritual and Moral Development (April): a discussion paper produced by the National Curriculum Council.

1993 1993 Education Act (27 July): a huge and wide-ranging Act which sought to make it easier for schools to become grant-maintained, laid down rules for pupil exclusions and for 'failing' schools, replaced the National Curriculum Council (NCC) and the School Examinations and Assessment Council (SEAC) with the School Curriculum and Assessment Authority (SCAA), and defined special educational needs.

1993 Learning to succeed: a radical look at education today and a strategy for the future: final report of the independent National Commission on Education chaired by Lord Walton of Detchant.

1994 DFE Circular 1/94 Religious Education and Collective Worship (31 January): set out the legal responsibilities of head teachers, governors, local authorities, SACREs, agreed syllabus conferences, teachers and teacher trainers in the light of the 1993 Education Act.

1994 DFE Circular 2/94 Local Management of Schools (31 January): consolidated the guidance on local management of schools previously given in Circulars 7/88 and 7/91, which were now withdrawn.

1994 Higher Education Quality Committee (HEQC) established by the bodies representing the universities and colleges to contribute to the maintenance and improvement of quality in UK institutions.

1994 Warwick Evaluation Implementation of English in the National Curriculum (completed in August 1993, published in 1994): commissioned by the NCC in response to widespread concerns about the English curriculum; produced by a team based at the University of Warwick. (See also Newbolt 1921, Bullock 1975, Kingman 1988, Cox 1989 and Ofsted 2012.)

1994 Dearing Review The National Curriculum and its Assessment: Final Report (submitted to John Patten on 20 December 1993, published in 1994): the National Curriculum and its assessment arrangements had proved hopelessly complicated. Ron Dearing's review sought to make them more manageable.

1994 Robertson Report Choosing to change: Extending access, choice and mobility in higher education (6 April): a report by Professor David Robertson and team for the DfE, Employment Department, the former CNAA and the Higher Education Quality Council.

1994 DFE Circular 5/94 Education Act 1993: Sex Education in Schools (6 May): underlined the requirement to provide a 'moral framework'.

20 July 1994 Gillian Shephard

1994 Tony Blair elected leader of the Labour Party (21 July).

1994 1994 Education Act (21 July): provided for the establishment of the Teacher Training Authority (TTA) and made new regulations relating to student unions.

1994 Labour Party Opening doors to a learning society (26 July): education policy document prepared by Ann Taylor for the party's annual conference in 1994: Tony Blair declined to endorse it.

1994 Russell Group of universities formed.

September 1994 Chris Woodhead became HMCI/Head of Ofsted

1994 Code of Practice on the Identification and Assessment of Special Educational Needs came into force (as provided for in the 1993 Education Act).

1994 1994 University of London Act (3 November): made new provision for the making of statutes for the University.

1995 Labour Party Diversity and excellence: A new partnership for schools (June): New Labour's first education policy document.

1995 The Department for Education was merged with the Department for Employment to become the Department for Education and Employment (DfEE) (5 July).

1995 1995 Children (Scotland) Act (19 July): reformed Scottish law relating to adoption, relationships between children and their parents/guardians, children's homes and local authority responsibilities.

1995 Modern Apprenticeships launched.

1995 London head teacher Philip Lawrence murdered (8 December) trying to help a pupil being attacked by a gang of youths.

1995 Guidance on the Inspection of Nursery and Primary Schools: handbook for inspectors and schools published by Ofsted.

1996 Dunblane massacre (13 March): Thomas Hamilton shot dead 16 children and a teacher at Dunblane Primary School, near Stirling, before committing suicide.

1996 Dearing Review Review of Qualifications for 16-19 Year Olds (March): commissioned by Gillian Shepherd, this was the second review produced by Sir Ron Dearing.

1996 Worlds Apart? A Review of International Surveys of Educational Achievement involving England (March): prepared for Ofsted by David Reynolds and Shaun Farrell, this review looked at the major international surveys of educational achievement between 1964 and 1990.

1996 1996 Education (Student Loans) Act (29 April): allowed the Secretary of State to subsidise private sector student loans.

1996 White Paper Self-Government for Schools (June): set out the government's proposals for giving grant-maintained schools more freedom, extending choice and diversity, and encouraging the establishment of new grammar schools.

1996 Tomlinson Report Inclusive Learning (September): a major report about further education by the Committee on Students with Learning Difficulties and/or Disabilities, appointed by the Further Education Funding Council (FEFC).

1996 1996 Education (Scotland) Act (18 July): provided for the establishment of the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA); enabled grants for nursery providers etc.

1996 1996 Nursery Education and Grant-Maintained Schools Act (24 July): provided for the making of grants for nursery education and permitted grant-maintained schools to borrow money.

1996 1996 Education Act (24 July): a huge Act consolidating previous legislation from the 1944 Education Act onwards.

1996 1996 School Inspections Act (24 July): consolidated previous legislation on school inspections.

1996 Tomlinson Report Inclusive Learning (September): a major report about further education by the Committee on Students with Learning Difficulties and/or Disabilities, appointed by the Further Education Funding Council (FEFC).

1996 White Paper Learning to Compete: Education and Training for 14-19 Year Olds (December): set out 'the Government's vision of the education and training world we shall need to meet the demands of the next century'.

1996 Tony Blair Ruskin College lecture (16 December) (text): marked the twentieth anniversary of Jim Callaghan's 1976 Ruskin College speech (see above).

1997 1997 Education Act (21 March): this was the Conservatives' last education act before Labour returned to power. It extended the assisted places scheme to primary schools, laid down new rules for the restraint, detention and exclusion of pupils, and replaced the National Council for Vocational Qualifications (NCVQ) and the School Curriculum and Assessment Authority (SCAA) with the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA). It was seen by many as evidence that the government was more concerned about the poor behaviour of school pupils than with the disreputable activities of some of its own MPs.

17 : 1997-2007 Tony Blair and New Labour

2 May 1997 Tony Blair ('New Labour')

2 May 1997 David Blunkett

1997 Kennedy Report Learning Works: Widening Participation in Further Education (June): report by the Widening Participation Committee of the Further Education Funding Council, chaired by Helena Kennedy QC.

1997 Dearing Report Higher Education in the learning society (July): commissioned by the previous Conservative government with the support of the Labour Party, Ron Dearing's third review recommended wider participation in higher education. (See also Robbins 1963, Oakes 1978 and Browne 2010.)

1997 DfEE Circular 10/97 Teaching: High Status, High Standards (July): set out new criteria for courses of Initial Teacher Training and specified (in extraordinary detail) the English and mathematics curricula to be taught to all trainees on all courses of primary initial teacher training (replaced DFE Circulars 9/92 and 14/93). (See also DfEE Circular 4/98.)

1997 White Paper Excellence in schools (July): formed the basis of the 1998 School Standards and Framework Act.

1997 1997 Education (Schools) Act (31 July): abolished the assisted places scheme (which had been created by Margaret Thatcher's Conservative government in section 17 of the 1980 Education Act).

1997 Literacy Task Force The Implementation of the National Literacy Strategy (August): report of the working party under Michael Barber appointed by David Blunkett in May 1996.

1997 Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA) established: independent assessment of how UK higher education institutions maintain their academic standards and teaching quality.

1997 Green Paper Excellence for all children: Meeting Special Educational Needs (October): set out five-year plan.

1998 1998 Education (Student Loans) Act (27 January): amended the 1990 Education (Student Loans) Act to allow public sector student loans to be transferred to the private sector.

1998 Green Paper The Learning Age: a renaissance for a new Britain: set out government proposals for lifelong learning which formed the basis of the 1999 White Paper Learning to Succeed.

1998 CESC Report Disaffected Children (6 April): report of the Commons Education Select Committee made recommendations relating to the 14-19 age group.

1998 National Childcare Strategy: introduced in May.

1998 DfEE Circular 4/98 Teaching: High Status, High Standards (May): repeated the content of Circular 10/97 (see above) and added curricula for ICT (information and communications technology), primary science, and secondary English, maths and science (replaced DFE Circulars 9/92, 14/93 and 10/97).

1998 Education Action Zones: scheme launched by David Blunkett in June.

1998 1998 Teaching and Higher Education Act (16 July): a wide-ranging Act which included provision for the establishment of General Teaching Councils for England and Wales; arrangements for the registration and training of teachers; and provisions relating to students in higher and further education and the funding of higher education.

1998 1998 School Standards and Framework Act (24 July): a wide-ranging Act which, among other things, encouraged selection by specialisation, changed the names of types of schools, limited infant class sizes, and established Education Action Zones.

1998 National Literacy Hour: introduced in primary schools in September.

1998 Crick Report Education for citizenship and the teaching of democracy in schools (22 September): recommended that citizenship education should be a statutory entitlement in the school curriculum.

1998 Green Paper Teachers: meeting the challenge of change (December): New Labour's first Green Paper on the teaching profession.

1999 Education (School Premises) Regulations 1999 Statutory Instrument No. 2 (4 January): this Statutory Instrument revoked and re-enacted with modifications the Education (School Premises) Regulations 1996. The Regulations applied to schools maintained by local education authorities (including pupil referral units) and, until 1st September 1999, to grant-maintained and grant-maintained special schools in England and Wales.

1999 Moser Report Improving literacy and numeracy: a fresh start (26 February): report of the Working Group on adult literacy and numeracy appointed by David Blunkett in June 1998.

1999 Excellence in Cities (EiC): three-year initiative launched in March.

1999 Ofsted Report Summerhill School (March) (see also 2007).

1999 Privatisation of LEA services began (March): Hackney, Liverpool and Leicester the first affected.

1999 Sure Start programme launched (April): aimed at improving the health, well-being and educational attainment of 0- to 3-year-olds in disadvantaged areas.

1999 White Paper Learning to Succeed: a new framework for post-16 learning (June): proposed Individual Learning Accounts and the University for Industry (UfI).

1999 1999 Protection of Children Act (15 July): provided for a list to be kept of persons considered unsuitable to work with children and those suffering from mental impairment.

1999 DfEE Circular 4/99 Fitness to Teach (1 September): gave advice about the Regulations relating to the physical and mental fitness to teach of those applying for teacher training and existing teachers, and of other staff working with young people.

1999 National Numeracy Hour: introduced in primary schools in September.

1999 Education Maintenance Allowance (EMA): 15 pilot schemes launched in September to encourage greater take-up of post-16 education.

1999 Fresh Start scheme: launched in September to revitalise 'failing' inner-city schools.

1999 Robinson Report All our Futures: Creativity, Culture and Education: report of the National Advisory Council on Creative and Cultural Education commissioned by David Blunkett and Chris Smith in February 1998.

1999 DfEE/QCA The National Curriculum: Handbook for primary teachers in England (November): set out details of the revised National Curriculum.

1999 Ofsted inspection documents effective from January 2000:

Handbook for Primary and Nursery Schools
Handbook for Secondary Schools
Handbook for Special Schools and Pupil Referral Units
Inspection Forms: forms and guidance notes for all schools.

2000 Specialist colleges: scheme announced in January by Tony Blair.

2000 Ripon Grammar School: survived the first parental ballot on selection (10 March).

2000 City academies (15 March): David Blunkett announced the government's intention to create a network of academies - publicly-funded schools with private sponsors.

2000 QCA Curriculum Guidance for the Foundation Stage (May): handbook for early years practitioners produced by the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority and the DfEE.

2000 Sutton Trust Entry to Leading Universities (May): report by the Sutton Trust showed that the seven per cent of children who attended private schools took 39 per cent of the places at top universities.

2000 DfEE Circular 0116/2000 Sex and Relationship Education Guidance (July): replaced Circular 5/94.

2000 2000 Standards in Scotland's Schools etc. Act (14 July): this wide-ranging Act was one of the first of the devolved Scottish Parliament, established in May 1999.

2000 2000 Care Standards Act (20 July): a wide-ranging Act which established the National Care Standards Commission, the General Social Care Council, the Care Council for Wales, and the office of the Children's Commissioner for Wales.

2000 2000 Carers and Disabled Children Act (20 July): required local authorities to assess the needs of carers and to provide services to support them.

2000 2000 Learning and Skills Act (28 July): provided for the establishment of the Learning and Skills Council for England, the National Council for Education and Training for Wales, and the Adult Learning Inspectorate. It abolished the Further Education Funding Councils, required the Secretary of State's approval for external qualifications, and allowed city technology colleges to be renamed city academies.

2000 King's Manor School, Guildford: reopened in September as King's College for the Arts and Technology, run by 3Es - the first state school to be privatised.

2000 Chris Woodhead resigned as HMCI/Head of Ofsted (November).

2000 2000 Children (Leaving Care) Act (30 November): amended the 1989 Children Act to give local authorities further responsibilities in respect of children leaving care.

2000 Policy Paper A Sporting Future for All: published by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, this paper set out New Labour's vision for increasing participation in sport.

December 2000 Mike Tomlinson became HMCI/Head of Ofsted

2001 National Audit Office Education Action Zones: Meeting the Challenge (26 January): report on the lessons identified from auditing the first 25 zones.

2001 Green Paper Schools: building on success (February): trumpeted the achievements of the first New Labour administration and set out an agenda for a second term, proposing greater diversity in secondary schools.

2001 2001 Special Educational Needs and Disability Act (11 May): amended Part 4 of the 1996 Education Act and made further provision against discrimination on grounds of disability in schools and in further and higher education institutions.

2001 2001 Children's Commissioner for Wales Act (11 May): amended the 2000 Care Standards Act to make further provisions relating to the role of the Children's Commissioner for Wales.

2001 The Department for Education and Employment (DfEE) was renamed the Department for Education and Skills (DfES) (8 June).

8 June 2001 Estelle Morris

2001 The Learning Country (August): the National Assembly for Wales announced its intention to create a fully comprehensive system of secondary schools.

2001 White Paper Schools: achieving success (September): formed the basis of the 2002 Education Act.

2001 QCA Planning for learning in the foundation stage (October): handbook for early years practitioners produced by the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority.

2001 Cantle Report Community Cohesion (December): report by the Community Cohesion Review Team into the riots in northern towns in 2001.

2001 Grammar schools: 500,000 scheme for partnerships between 28 grammar schools and nearby secondary moderns and comprehensives announced in December.

2002 Green Paper 14-19: extending opportunities, raising standards (February): set out proposals for the 14-19 curriculum.

2002 Ofsted Report Inspection of Birmingham Local Education Authority (April): described Tim Brighouse's leadership of the Authority as 'outstanding'.

2002 Roberts Review SET for success (April): report of the enquiry into the supply of people with science, technology, engineering and mathematics skills.

May 2002 David Bell became HMCI/Head of Ofsted

2002 2002 Education Act (24 July): wide ranging Act which implemented the proposals in the 2001 White Paper Schools: achieving success.

2002 Education (Middle School) (England) Regulations (24 July): a brief Statutory Instrument which specified whether middle schools would be classified as either primary or secondary schools; came into force 1 September 2002.

2002 City academies: the first 3 opened in September.

2002 DfES Languages for all: languages for life: set out the government's strategy for the teaching of foreign languages.

24 October 2002 Charles Clarke

2003 Scottish Executive Educating for Excellence: Choice and Opportunity (January): the Scottish Executive's response to the National Debate on education.

2003 White Paper The future of higher education (January): controversially proposed allowing universities to charge variable top-up fees; formed the basis of the 2004 Higher Education Act.

2003 Green Paper 14-19: opportunity and excellence (January): set out proposals for the 14-19 curriculum taking into account responses to the 2002 Green Paper.

2003 Green Paper Widening participation in higher education (April): set out the government's proposals for the creation and remit of the Office for Fair Access.

2003 CESC Secondary Education: Diversity of Provision (22 May): report of the Commons Education Select Committee criticised the government's specialist schools policy.

2003 Policy Paper 21st Century Skills: Realising Our Potential (July): set out the government's Skills Strategy.

2003 Ofsted The education of six year olds in England, Denmark and Finland (July): a comparative study which described 'what England might learn, particularly in terms of the curriculum, teaching and learning, from Denmark and Finland'.

2003 City academies: 9 more opened in September.

2003 Workforce remodelling launched in September: 1bn three-year initiative aimed at reducing teachers' workload by employing more classroom assistants.

2003 Green Paper Every child matters (September): proposed the integration of children's services so as to take a holistic view of children and their life chances; formed the basis of the 2004 Children Act.

2003 Section 28 of the 1988 Local Government Act (which had banned the 'promotion' of homosexuality) repealed by Section 122 of the 2003 Local Government Act (18 September).

2003 Ofsted/Audit Commission School place planning: The influence of school place planning on school standards and social inclusion (October): warned that parental choice was exacerbating social divisions.

2003 Ofsted Bullying: effective action in secondary schools: a report based on visits by HMI to LEAs and schools in 2001/02.

2004 Building Schools for the Future: ambitious schools rebuilding programme launched by Tony Blair in February.

2004 Smith Report Making Mathematics Count (February): report of Professor Adrian Smith's inquiry into post-14 mathematics education.

2004 Scottish Executive Assessment, Testing and Reporting 3-14 (March): final report of the Consultation on Partnership Commitments conducted by Dr Effie Maclellan.

2004 Modern Apprenticeships: Charles Clarke announced an overhaul of the programme in May.

2004 2004 Higher Education Act (1 July): provided for the establishment of the Arts and Humanities Research Council and for the appointment of a Director of Fair Access to Higher Education; set out arrangements for dealing with students' complaints about higher education institutions; and made provisions relating to grants and loans to students in higher and further education..

2004 Green Paper Five Year Strategy for Children and Learners (July): formed the basis for the 2005 White Paper Higher standards, better schools for all.

2004 Welsh education minister Jane Davidson announced in July that SATs tests for 11- and 14-year-olds would be scrapped in Wales.

2004 Academies (the 'City' had now been dropped): 5 more opened in September.

2004 Tomlinson Report 14-19 Curriculum and Qualifications Reform (18 October): recommended replacing GCSEs, A Levels and vocational qualifications with a new single modular diploma at four levels.

2004 DfES/QCA The National Curriculum: Handbook for secondary teachers in England (October): set out details of the revised National Curriculum.

2004 2004 Children Act (15 November): based on the 2003 green paper Every Child Matters (see above), which sought to take a holistic view of the welfare of children, this Act provided for the establishment of Children's Commissioners for England and Wales; and made provisions regarding the services provided for children and young people by local authorities and others.

2004 Scottish Executive A curriculum for excellence (November): report of the Curriculum Review Group.

2004 Scottish Executive Ambitious, excellent schools (November): Scotland's version of the Five Year Strategy for Children and Learners.

2004 Every Child Matters: change for children (December): provided advice and support to those required to implement the 2004 Children Act.

2004 Ofsted Reading for Purpose and Pleasure: An evaluation of reading in primary schools (December): called for further intervention in schools where reading standards were poor.

2004 DfES Building Bulletin 98: Briefing Framework for Secondary School Projects.

2004 DfES Building Bulletin 99: Briefing Framework for Primary School Projects.

15 December 2004 Ruth Kelly

2005 White Paper 14-19 Education and Skills (February): rejected most of the 2004 Tomlinson Report's recommendations.

2005 CESC Secondary Education (17 March): report of the Commons Education Select Committee critical of the academies programme and the government's plans for 'independent specialist schools'.

2005 2005 Education Act (7 April): made provisions regarding school inspections and organisation, and the training of the school workforce. Section 74 provided for the Teacher Training Agency (established by the 1994 Education Act) to be renamed the Training and Development Agency for Schools (TDA).

2005 New Ofsted inspection regime introduced in September: inspections would be shorter and sharper and schools would only be given only a couple of days' notice of inspectors' visits.

2005 Academies: ten more opened in September.

2005 White Paper Higher Standards, Better Schools for All (October): proposed independent trust schools; formed the basis of the 2006 Education and Inspections Bill.

2005 Steer Report Learning behaviour (October): report of the Practitioners' Group on School Behaviour and Discipline.

2005 NFER Excellence in Cities: The National Evaluation of a Policy to Raise Standards in Urban Schools 2000-2003 (November): Report by the National Foundation for Educational Research for the DfES.

2006 CPAC DfES: Improving school attendance in England (19 January): report by the Commons Public Accounts Committee.

2006 2006 Equality Act (16 February) established the Commission for Equality and Human Rights with implications for schools.

2006 Independent review of the teaching of early reading (March): the final report of the review conducted by Jim Rose endorsed the use of synthetic phonics.

5 May 2006 Alan Johnson

2006 2006 Childcare Act (21 June): set out new arrangements for the provision, regulation and inspection of childcare in England and Wales.

2006 DfES Primary National Strategy (September): Primary Framework for literacy and mathematics.

2006 Wanless Review Getting it. Getting it right. (September): report of the Priority Review chaired by Peter Wanless into the number of black pupils excluded from school. See also this letter from Martin Bull at the DfES explaining the background.

2006 University top-up fees: the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) revealed in October that 15,000 fewer students had started university compared with the previous year.

2006 Green Paper Care Matters: Transforming the Lives of Children and Young People in Care (October): formed the basis of the 2007 White Paper Care Matters: Time for change.

October 2006 Christine Gilbert became HMCI/Head of Ofsted

2006 The Cambridge Primary Review, sponsored by the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and led by Professor Robin Alexander, was launched in October.

2006 2006 Education and Inspections Act (8 November): a very controversial Act consisting mainly of amendments to the 1998 School Standards and Framework Act and the 2002 Education Act.

2006 2020 Vision (December): report of the Teaching and Learning in 2020 Review Group, chaired by Christine Gilbert.

2006 DfES School Admissions Code (December): came into force in February 2007.

2007 Ajegbo Report Diversity and Citizenship (January): pupils should have the skills to 'participate in an active and inclusive democracy, appreciating and understanding difference'.

2007 The Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA) published plans in February for a more flexible Key Stage 3 curriculum.

2007 NAO Report The Academies Programme (23 February): National Audit Office review of the performance and cost of academies.

2007 Green Paper Raising Expectations: staying in education and training post-16 (March): proposed that all young people should stay in education or training up to the age of 18.

2007 CESC Bullying (27 March): report of the Commons Education Select Committee called for a national inquiry into the scale of bullying in schools and was critical of the Roman Catholic Church for refusing to follow government guidelines relating to homophobic bullying.

2007 Ofsted became 'The Office for Standards in Education, Children's Services and Skills' on 1 April, taking responsibilities from three other existing inspectorates: the Adult Learning Inspectorate (ALI); the work relating to children of the Commission for Social Care Inspection (CSCI); and the work relating to the children and family courts of HM Inspectorate of Court Administration (HMICA).

2007 London Schools Commissioner Tim Brighouse announced his decision to retire (April).

2007 Our Shared Future (14 June): the final report of the Commission on Integration and Cohesion included recommendations relating to schools. (See also the government's response in 2008.)

2007 White Paper Care Matters: Time for change (21 June): the Blair government's last education White Paper set out proposals for improving 'the plight of children in care'.

2007 General Teaching Council called for all national school tests for 7-, 11- and 14-year-olds to be scrapped (June).

2007 Ofsted Making sense of religion (June): report on religious education in schools and the impact of locally agreed syllabuses.

2007 Tackling low educational achievement (June): Joseph Rowntree Foundation report called for reform of school league tables, especially at GCSE, which it said discouraged many schools from admitting pupils who might lower their scores.

18 2007-2010 Brown and Balls

27 June 2007 Gordon Brown (Labour)

2007 The Department for Education and Skills (DfES) split in two (28 June): Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF), and Department of Innovation, Universities and Skills (DIUS).

28 June 2007 Ed Balls (DCSF), John Denham (DIUS)

2007 CESC Sustainable Schools: Are we building schools for the future? (9 August): report of the Commons Education Select Committee.

2007 Faith in the System (September): produced jointly by 'the Government and the providers of publicly funded schools with a religious character' to try to tackle the problem of faith schools and community cohesion.

2007 CPAC The Academies programme (18 October): report by the Commons Public Accounts Committee argued that academies were 'a relatively costly means of tackling low attainment'.

2007 Ofsted Annual Report 2006-7 (19 October): newly-appointed HMCI Christine Gilbert's report on the previous year's inspections and on Ofsted's new (broader) remit.

2007 2007 Further Education and Training Act (23 October): set out new arrangements relating to further education and the Learning and Skills Council for England.

2007 Ofsted Report Summerhill School (November) (see also 1999).

2007 DCSF Homophobic bullying (November): guidance for schools.

2007 Conservative Party Raising the bar, closing the gap (November): Policy Green Paper No. 1 - 'an action plan for schools'.

2007 Education and Skills Bill (29 November): became the 2008 Education and Skills Act.

2007 The Children's Plan: Building brighter futures (December): ambitious plan for all future government policy relating to children, families and schools.

2008 The Government's Response to the Commission on Integration and Cohesion (February): the government's reponse to Our Shared Future (see above).

2008 National Union of Teachers (NUT) members staged one-day strike over pay (24 April).

2008 CSFC Testing and Assessment (13 May): report by the Commons Children, Schools and Families Committee expressed concerns about England's testing regime.

2008 Ofqual (Office of the Qualifications and Examinations Regulator): launched on 16 May, led by Kathleen Tattersall.

2008 SATs fiasco: widespread IT problems (May).

2008 White Paper Back on Track (May): set out the government's proposals for the education of children excluded from school.

2008 National Challenge launched by Ed Balls on 10 June: targeted 360 of the 638 state secondary schools said to be 'failing'.

2008 Green Paper Excellence and fairness: Achieving world class public services (June): set out the government's proposals for increasing social mobility.

2008 SATs fiasco: delayed and inaccurate results (July).

2008 2008 Sale of Student Loans Act (21 July): allowed the government to sell student loans to private companies.

2008 2008 Special Educational Needs (Information) Act (21 July): amended the 1996 Education Act in relation to the provision and publication of information about children with special educational needs.

2008 Ofsted Using data, improving schools (August): aimed to help schools to make use of data but also to understand its limitations.

2008 Academies: 51 opened in September.

2008 Ofsted Report Mathematics: understanding the score (September): presented evidence from inspections of mathematics between April 2005 and December 2007 in 192 maintained schools in England. Two follow-up documents were published in March 2009 - one for Primary schools and one for Secondary schools.

2008 Michael Gove (shadow children's secretary) announced in September that a Conservative government would create 'free schools'.

2008 CPAC Preparing to deliver the 14-19 education reforms in England (7 October): report by the Commons Public Accounts Committee expressed reservations about aspects of the government's diploma proposals.

2008 2008 Children and Young Persons Act (13 November): made new provisions about the care of children and young persons, including the enforcement of care standards in children's homes and arrangements for fostering and adoption.

2008 National Audit Office Mathematics Performance in Primary Schools: Getting the Best Results (November): evaluated the extent to which the National Strategy for Mathematics had succeeded in raising performance levels.

2008 NUT/NCSL Successful leadership for promoting the achievement of white working class pupils (November): report by Denis Mongon and Christopher Chapman for the National Union of Teachers and the National College for School Leadership.

2008 Cabinet Office Strategy Unit Getting on, getting ahead (November): discussion document analysing the trends and drivers of social mobility.

2008 2008 Education and Skills Act (26 November): replaced the school leaving age of 16 with an education leaving age of 18 and made a variety of provisions relating to the education or training of young adults.

2008 IRPC Interim Report Interim Report of the Independent Review of the Primary Curriculum (December): first report of the 'Rose Review'.

2008 SATs fiasco: Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA) chief executive Ken Boston resigned (December).

2008 Green Paper 21st Century Schools: A World-Class Education for Every Child (December): DCSF consultation paper, part of The Children's Plan.

2008 School Admissions Code (December): new Admissions Code came into force on 10 February 2009.

2009 Liberal Democrats Equity and Excellence (January): paper setting out education policies for discussion at the party's spring conference.

2009 White Paper New opportunities: Fair chances for the future (January): set out the government's vision of post-recession Britain.

2009 Apprenticeships, Skills, Children and Learning Bill (4 February): became the 2009 Apprenticeships, Skills, Children and Learning Act.

2009 Cambridge Primary Review Towards a New Primary Curriculum interim reports (February): Past and Present and The Future.

2009 Stonewall Homophobic bullying in Britain's schools (March): results of a survey of teachers and non-teaching staff in primary and secondary schools.

2009 MSIC The cumulative impact of statutory instruments on schools (13 March): House of Lords Merits of Statutory Instruments Committee urged the DCSF to reduce the number of regulations affecting schools.

2009 DCSF Breaking the Link between disadvantage and low attainment (March): the first of two documents aimed at breaking the link between children's circumstances and their achievements (see also 2010).

2009 CSFC National Curriculum (April): report by the Commons Children, Schools and Families Committee said the National Curriculum was in 'urgent need of significant reform'.

2009 IRPC Final Report Final Report of the Independent Review of the Primary Curriculum (April): final report of the 'Rose Review'.

2009 Steer Report Learning Behaviour: Lessons Learned (April): follow-up to the Steer committee's first report Learning Behaviour (2005).

2009 SATs (April): National Union of Teachers (NUT) conference voted to boycott the tests; National Association of Schoolmasters/Union of Women Teachers (NASUWT) conference voted to strike if the tests were abolished.

2009 Macdonald Report Independent Review of the proposal to make Personal, Social, Health and Economic (PSHE) education statutory (28 April): published by the DCSF.

2009 Report of the Expert Group on Assessment (May): commissioned by Ed Balls to make recommendations about England's testing regime.

2009 Nuffield Foundation Education for All: The future of education and training for 14-19 year olds Summary, Implications and Recommendations (June): final report of the Nuffield Review of 14-19 education and training.

2009 Ofsted Report Planning for change: the impact of the new Key Stage 3 curriculum (June): evaluated the progress being made in implementing the new Key Stage 3 curriculum, based on visits to 37 schools between May 2008 and March 2009.

2009 DIUS abolished after just two years (June): responsibilities transferred to new Department of Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) led by Peter (Lord) Mandelson.

2009 White Paper Your child, your schools, our future (June): wide-ranging proposals, including the abandonment of the National Literacy and Numeracy Strategies; formed the basis of the Children, Schools and Families Bill.

2009 Milburn Report Unleashing Aspiration (July): Final Report of the Panel on Fair Access to the Professions (for the government's response, see 2010 Unleashing Aspiration below).

2009 Eleven plus abolished in Northern Ireland (September), but grammar schools (mostly Roman Catholic) vowed to set their own tests.

2009 Higher Ambitions - The future of universities in a knowledge economy (2 November): the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills set out its 10- to 15-year strategy.

2009 2009 Apprenticeships, Skills, Children and Learning Act (12 November): created a statutory framework for apprenticeships, and established the Young People's Learning Agency for England (YPLA), the office of Chief Executive of Skills Funding, the Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual) and the School Support Staff Negotiating Body (SSSNB).

2009 Children, Schools and Families Bill (19 November): intended to become the 2010 Children, Schools and Families Act, but a general election meant that most of its provisions were lost.

2009 Parental choice of primary school in England: what 'type' of school do parents choose? (November): report by Simon Burgess, Ellen Greaves, Anna Vignoles and Deborah Wilson of the University of Bristol.

2009 Ofsted Annual Report for 2008-2009 (November).

2010 CSFC School Accountability (7 January): report by the Commons Children, Schools and Families Committee on school self-evaluation, inspection, league tables etc.

2010 Unleashing Aspiration: (January): the government's response to the Final Report of the Panel on Fair Access to the Professions (see 2009 Milburn Report in above).

2010 Ofsted Report The National Strategies: a review of impact (February): evaluated which aspects of the National Strategies' programmes had been effective and which less so.

2010 Steer Report Behaviour and the role of Home-School Agreements (15 March): advice on implementing changes to home-school agreements as specified in the Children, Schools and Families Bill.

2010 DCSF Breaking the Link between special educational needs and low attainment (March): the second of two documents aimed at breaking the link between children's circumstances and their achievements (see also 2009).

2010 2010 Child Poverty Act (25 March): set targets relating to the eradication of child poverty and provided for the establishment of the Child Poverty Commission.

2010 2010 Equality Act (8 April): the last major Act of Gordon Brown's New Labour administration. With many provisions relating to schools, it replaced nine previous Acts and almost a hundred sets of regulations which had been issued over several decades.

2010 2010 Children, Schools and Families Act (8 April): amended previous legislation relating to provision for children with disabilities or special educational needs, governing bodies' powers, and Local Safeguarding Children Boards; and made provision about the publication of information relating to family proceedings. It was less wide-ranging than had been intended because of the impending general election.

19 2010-2015 : Gove v The Blob

11 May 2010 David Cameron (Conservative) - Conservative/Liberal Democrat coalition

12 May 2010 Michael Gove

2010 SATs: a quarter of all primary schools boycotted the tests in May.

2010 Academies Bill (26 May): the coalition government's proposals for speeding up the conversion of local authority schools into academies.

2010 Gove announced the scrapping of Labour's Building Schools for the Future programme (5 July).

2010 2010 Academies Act (27 July): Michael Gove's first Act provided for rapid expansion in the number of academies.

2010 Browne Review Securing a Sustainable Future for Higher Education (12 October): recommendations mostly ignored. (See also Robbins 1963, Oakes 1978 and Dearing 1997.)

2010 Cambridge Primary Review Children, their World, their Education (16 October): final report published (see my review of it here).

2010 White Paper The Importance of Teaching (24 November): wide-ranging document covering teaching, leadership, behaviour, new schools, accountability etc.

2010 Higher education: Vince Cable announced the tripling of university tuition fees (9 December).

2011 Education Bill (26 January): proposals included the abolition of the General Teaching Council for England, the Training and Development Agency for Schools, the School Support Staff Negotiating Body, the Qualifications and Curriculum Development Agency, and the Young People's Learning Agency for England.

2011 CESC Behaviour and Discipline in Schools (3 February): a report by the Commons Education Select Committee.

2011 Henley Review Music Education in England (7 February): a review by Darren Henley for the DfE and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. See also the government's response to the review and The Importance of Music: A National Plan for Music Education (25 November 2011).

2011 Tickell Review The Early Years: Foundations for life, health and learning (March): made recommendations relating to the EarlyYears Foundation Stage (EYFS).

2011 Green Paper Support and aspiration: A new approach to special educational needs and disability (March): proposed the abolition of statementing and advocated personal budgets.

2011 Wolf Report Vocational Education (March): made wide-ranging recommendations.

2011 DfE The National Strategies 1997-2011 (March): set out the education department's (positive) assessment of the impact and effectiveness of the National Strategies.

2011 Bew Review Independent Review of Key Stage 2 testing, assessment and accountability (June): called for a greater focus on progress and broader accountability measures, and recommended that the statutory assessment system should include both external testing and teacher assessment.

2011 White Paper Higher Education: Students at the Heart of the System (June): published by Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.

2011 DfE Training our next generation of outstanding teachers (June): discussion document from new education secretary Michael Gove.

2011 APPGE Report of the Inquiry into Overcoming the Barriers to Literacy (July): report of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Education criticised the government's (phonics) approach to the teaching of reading.

2011 DfE Teachers' Standards (July): teaching reduced to one side of A4. Came into force in September 2012.

2011 CESC Participation by 16-19 year olds in education and training (19 July): report by the Commons Education Select Committee expressed concerns about the government's decision to abolish the Education Maintenance Allowance.

2011 CESC The English Baccalaureate (28 July): report by the Commons Education Select Committee warned that there was little support for the government's proposals.

2011 2011 Education Act (15 November): a retrogressive Act which dismantled many of the structures and arrangements put in place by the New Labour governments of Tony Blair and Gordon Brown.

2011 DfE Training our next generation of outstanding teachers (November): Gove's plan for teacher training - employ troops.

2011 National Curriculum Review The Framework for the National Curriculum (December): report of the advisory panel chaired by Tim Oates.

2012 DfE School Admissions Code (1 February) and Admission Appeals Code. (See also three Statutory Instruments: Admissions Regulations; Admission Appeals Regulations; and Admissions (Infant class sizes) Regulations.)

2012 Henley Review Cultural Education in England (29 February): review by Darren Henley for the DfE and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. See also the government's response to the review.

2012 Ofsted Moving English forward (March): report setting out proposals for raising standards in English. (For other reports on the teaching of English see Newbolt 1921, Bullock 1975, Kingman 1988, Cox 1989 and Warwick 1994.)

2012 Lingfield Report Professionalism in Further Education (27 March): the interim report of the Independent Review Panel.

2012 DfE Statutory Framework for the EYFS (27 March): set out the standards for learning, development and care for children from birth to five (see also 2014).

2012 CESC Great teachers: attracting, training and retaining the best (1 May): report by the Commons Education Select Committee advocating performance-related pay.

2012 CESC The administration of examinations for 15-19 year olds in England (3 July): a report by the Commons Education Select Committee.

2012 White Paper Reform of provision for children and young people with Special Educational Needs (September): its recommendations formed the basis of Part 3 of the 2014 Children and Families Act.

2012 Lingfield Report Professionalism in Further Education (October): the final report of the Independent Review Panel.

2012 National Audit Office Managing the expansion of the Academies Programme (20 November): warned that there had been a 1bn overspend on academies in two years.

2012 Standards and Testing Agency 2013 EYFS Profile Handbook (4 December): set out details of the profiles for five-year-olds.

2012 DfE Equality Act 2010: Advice for school leaders, staff, governors and local authorities: non-statutory advice for schools and local authorities.

2013 Academies Commission Unleashing Greatness: getting the best from an academised system (January): the self-styled Academies Commission presented a mixed picture of the academies programme.

2013 CESC From GCSEs to EBCs: the Government's proposals for reform (31 January): the Commons Education Select Committee criticised Gove's plans for an English Baccalaureate (which were abandoned a week later).

2013 National Audit Office Capital funding for new school places (15 March): warned of a 256,000 shortfall in school places by 2014.

2013 CPAC DfE: Managing the expansion of the Academies Programme (15 April): Commons Public Accounts Committee report criticising the DfE for its management of the academies programme.

2013 CESC School sport following London 2012: No more political football (22 July): report of the Commons Education Select Committee urged schools to offer both competitive and non-competitive sporting opportunities to their pupils.

2013 DfE The national curriculum in England: Framework document (July): set out the overall framework of the National Curriculum. See also:

Equalities impact assessment (July 2013);
Key stages 1 and 2 framework document (September 2013);
Consultation summary (September 2013);
Statutory Instrument (Attainment Targets and Programmes of Study) (2013, undated);
Key stages 3 and 4 framework document (December 2014).
2013 The School Food Plan (July): prepared for the government by Henry Dimbleby and John Vincent.

2013 Ofsted The framework for school inspection (September). (See also: School inspection handbook; and Subsidiary guidance.)

2013 DfE School uniform: Guidance for governing bodies, school leaders, school staff and local authorities (September): non-statutory, but the DfE expected schools 'to take full account of this guidance'.

2013 SMCPC Social mobility and child poverty in Great Britain (October): the first annual State of the Nation report by the Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission blamed schools in deprived areas for their pupils' lack of progress.

2013 National Audit Office Establishing Free Schools (11 December): reported that the first 174 free schools had cost 1.1bn.

2014 APPGSM Character and Resilience Manifesto (January) report of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Social Mobility.

2014 DfE Behaviour and discipline in schools (February): advice for heads and school staff.

2014 2014 Children and Families Act (13 March) wide-ranging Act covering adoption, family justice, special educational needs and disabilities, childcare, welfare of children, the Children's Commissioner, statutory rights to leave and pay, time off work and ante-natal care, flexible working rights.

2014 DfE Statutory Framework for the EYFS (31 March): set out the standards for learning, development and care for children from birth to five (see also 2012).

2014 Blunkett Review Review of education structures, functions and the raising of standards for all: Putting students and parents first (April): Labour Party policy review prepared by David Blunkett.

2014 CESC Underachievement in Education by White Working Class Children (18 June): report by the Commons Education Select Committee.

15 July 2014 Nicky Morgan

2014 ULIE Conflicts of interest in academy sponsorship arrangements (16 September): report by the University of London Institute of Education for the Commons Education Select Committee.

2014 City & Guilds Sense and Instability (October): report examining how changing government policies had affected the skills landscape over the previous three decades.

2014 SMCPC Cracking the code: how schools can improve social mobility (October): report by the Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission.

2014 National Audit Office Academies and maintained schools: Oversight and intervention (30 October): called for more coherent inspection regimes and systems for raising standards.

2014 National Audit Office Investigation into the Education Funding Agency's oversight of related party transactions at Durand Academy (13 November): report on the use of public money by Durand Academy Trust which had a 'large number of conflicts of interests'.

2014 DfE The national curriculum in England: Key stages 3 and 4 framework document (December).

2015 CESC Academies and free schools (27 January): report by the Commons Education Select Committee argued that academy chains should be as fully scrutinised as local authorities.

2015 CESC Life lessons: PSHE and SRE in schools (17 February): report by the Commons Education Select Committee said sex education should be compulsory in all primary and secondary schools.

2015 LDSC Make or Break: The UK's Digital Future (17 February): House of Lords Digital Skills Committee report argued for greater emphasis on the teaching of digital skills.

2015 Warwick Commission Enriching Britain: Culture, Creativity and Growth (February): warned that creativity, culture and the arts were being neglected in the school curriculum.

2015 CESC Apprenticeships and traineeships for 16 to 19 year-olds (9 March): report by the Commons Education Select Committee argued for better quality apprenticeships which would not be seen as a 'second class option'.

2015 CESC Closing the gap: the work of the Education Committee in the 2010-15 Parliament (16 March): report by the House of Commons Education Select Committee summarising its work.

2015 CESC Extremism in schools: the Trojan Horse affair (17 March): report by the Commons Education Select Committee warning the DfE to be alert to the risks of abuse of academy freedoms.

2015 Sutton Trust Subject to Background (March): ULIE report for the Sutton Trust looked at A Level results of children from disadvantaged backgrounds.

20 2015-2018 Postscript

11 May 2010 David Cameron (Conservative)

2015 Education and Adoption Bill (3 June): aimed to speed up the conversion of local authority schools into academies.

2015 Sutton Trust Missing Talent (June): Education Datalab report for the Sutton Trust looked at GCSE results of children from disadvantaged backgrounds.

2015 NFER A Guide to Regional Schools Commissioners: Schools Commissioners were part of the government's academisation policy, which aimed to make local education authorities redundant.

2016 2016 Education and Adoption Act (16 March): demonstrated the government's continuing obsession with 'failing' schools. It amended previous legislation relating to 'coasting' schools and other schools 'causing concern'.

2016 White Paper Educational Excellence Everywhere (March): set out the government's proposals for turning all schools into academies.

2016 CPAC Training new teachers (10 June): report of the Commons Public Accounts Committee expressed disappointment that the DfE had 'missed its targets to fill teacher training places four years running'.

13 July 2016 - 24 July 2019 Theresa May (Conservative)

14 July 2016 Justine Greening

2016 Green paper Schools that work for everyone (12 September): proposed the creation of new grammar schools and more faith schools.

2016 Rochford Review Assessment for pupils working below the standard of national curriculum tests (October): final report of the panel chaired by Diane Rochford for the Standards and Testing Agency.

2016 National Audit Office Financial sustainability of schools (14 December): noted that cost pressures would result in an eight per cent real-terms reduction in per-pupil funding for mainstream schools between 2014-15 and 2019-20.

2017 Ofsted Report on Kings College Guildford (January): inspection report on the first school to be privatised by New Labour in September 2000.

2017 CPAC Capital funding for schools (26 April): report of the Commons Public Accounts Committee described the system for funding new schools and new school places as 'increasingly incoherent and too often poor value for money'.

2017 2017 Children and Social Work Act (27 April): made provisions about looked-after children, the welfare of children, and the regulation of social workers. The implications for schools and local education authorities are dealt with in sections 4-7.

2017 2017 Technical and Further Education Act (27 April): there is little about education in this Act: it is almost entirely concerned with the procedures to be followed when a further education institution becomes insolvent. Gone are the days when education was seen as a public service ...

2017 2017 Higher Education and Research Act (27 April): provided for the establishment of the Office for Students (OfS) and United Kingdom Research and Innovation (UKRI) and abolished the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) and the office of Director of Fair Access to Higher Education (DFA).

2017 Ofsted Bold beginnings (November): report on the Reception curriculum in a sample of good and outstanding schools visited by HMI in the summer term 2017.

8 January 2018 - 23 July 2019 Damian Hinds

2019 Disinformation and 'fake news' (14 February): final report of the House of Commons Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee recommended that 'digital literacy should be a fourth pillar of education, alongside reading, writing and maths'.

2019 DfE Relationships Education, Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) and Health Education (25 June): Statutory guidance. The new curriculum to be mandatory from September 2020.

2021 Speak for Change (April): final report of the Oracy All-Party Parliamentary Group Inquiry made a range of recommendations aimed at improving education in oracy.

2022 DfE The reading framework (January): guidance in the teaching of phonics for primary schools, teacher trainers and others in England.

2023 National Audit Office Condition of school buildings (28 June): a comprehensive review of the state of the nation's school buildings in the light of concerns about reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete (RAAC).

2023 DfE The reading framework (July): an expanded version of the 2022 framework.


Chitty C (2004) Education policy in Britain Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan

Mackinnon D and Statham J (1999) Education in the UK: facts and figures (3rd edn) London: Hodder and Stoughton/Open University

Number 10 website British prime ministers

Chapter 20 | Glossary