HMI Red Books 1977-1983

Red Book 1 (first edition, 1977)
Curriculum 11-16 Working papers by HM Inspectorate: a contribution to current debate

Red Book 1 (second edition, 1979)
Curriculum 11-16 Working papers by HM Inspectorate: a contribution to current debate

Red Book 2 (1981)
Curriculum 11-16 A review of progress

Red Book 3 (1983)
Curriculum 11-16 Towards a statement of entitlement

HMI Red Books (1977-1983)

Curriculum 11-16

London: Department of Education and Science 1977
Crown copyright material is reproduced with the permission of the Controller of HMSO and the Queen's Printer for Scotland.

Background notes

Historical context

In his Ruskin College speech of 1976, Labour Prime Minister Jim Callaghan called for what quickly became known as the 'Great debate' about the nature and purpose of education.

During the later 1970s and early 80s, dozens of working parties produced hundreds of documents concerning the curriculum and its development. Many were written by HM Inspectors, others by officials in the Department of Education and Science (DES), some by members of the Schools Council.

The three HMI books presented here, published between 1977 and 1983, concerned curriculum development projects in 41 schools in five local education authorities. They were intended as a contribution to the Great Debate.

The first Red Book is dated December 1977: a printers' strike prevented its publication until March 1978.

The Red Books online

A second edition of the first Red Book was published in 1979, containing additional Statements by HMI Subject Committees. For the sake of completeness, I have put both online.

The full text of each book is presented in a single web page. I have not reproduced the two-column format of the books, but in other respects the formatting is as in the originals.

Red Book 2 included a subject index; the others did not.

I have corrected a dozen or so typing errors.

The above notes were prepared by Derek Gillard and uploaded on 24 September 2017.