The following pages provide a brief description of the context and the main reform events in each of the five jurisdictions. An overview is necessary to provide the background for the analysis in the following chapters. Putting a description of each setting and the complex events around education reform into a single chapter is an impossible task. What follows is much condensed and leaves out more than it includes. All that can be accomplished is to give some sense of the context and main events in a way that is not terribly misleading. Additional details on each setting are included in later chapters as well. Those wanting a fuller picture should also consult the chronology for each jurisdiction in Appendix 2, and the additional readings described in Appendix 1.