Education has probably attracted a greater measure of idealism and determination than have other spheres of modernization in the period since 1982, presided over by the governing party of Spain, the Partido Socialista de Obrero Español (PSOE)—its power considerably weakened, at the time of writing, by the 1993 general election and by a succession of major corruption scandals in 1994. Education figured prominently in the national constitution signed in 1978 and although there are complaints of inadequate resourcing and of irresolute speed, there can be no doubt that firm directions for change have been projected, which are being implemented, and will be realized within the next few years. Measuring the gap between the rhetoric of intention and the reality, certainly no less urgent a task in Spain than in any other European country, is a part of what this volume is about. Nor are there too many such books, for academic analysis of the political economy of education in Spain is relatively recent. In the 1980s there would have been even fewer sources of analysis or of data, a dearth which now promises to be
eradicated with the gathering commitment to formal evaluation and analysis of education practice.