Originally written to coincide with the passage of important new reform legislation (Boyd-Barrett, 1990) this chapter outlines the principal features of education in the Franco period, and the major directions of change that have been introduced since the 1970 Ley General de Educación (LGE) onwards to the 1990 Ley Orgánica de Ordenación General del Sistema Educativo (LOGSE). Successful passage of LOGSE through the Spanish parliament was followed by a process of phased implementation. This has been subject to delay as a direct consequence of the economic recession of the early 1990s. It is still envisaged that the reform will be complete by the year 2000, by which date all children will receive compulsory comprehensive education to the age of 16. The government of Cataluña has endeavoured to anticipate the reform, amid union fears that the necessary preparations have not been undertaken. Economic difficulties notwithstanding (after increasing every year from 1983 to 1991, education spending then declined for three consecutive years), the rhetoric of reform has been sustained. To hostile union comment early in 1994 the Minister for Education, Gustavo Suarez Pertierra, introduced a consultative document outlining seventy-seven measures to improve the quality of education. The year 1994 also saw the establishment of the Instituto Nacional de Calidad y Evaluación, which will have responsibility for educational evaluation in general and evaluation of the implementation of reform in particular. A substantial number of schools, some of them involved in experimental pilots during the 1980s, have been allowed to anticipate the reforms.