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date: 01 October 2023

Education in Spain under the Franco Regime, 1936–1975locked

Education in Spain under the Franco Regime, 1936–1975locked

  • António CanalesAntónio CanalesUniversidad Complutense de Madrid


Education under the Franco regime was divided into two clearly differentiated periods. The first 2 decades of the regime (1936–1959) were characterized by a policy inspired by a radical rejection of the modernization program designed by liberal Spain and especially of the progressive and secular policy of the Second Republic. The principles that formed the backbone of this first stage were a forced re-Christianization of education, a renewed role for ideologization and deprofessionalization of teachers, a contraction of the school network, and an emphasis on privatization. During this period, education was subordinated to the Catholic Church, with the state assuming a subsidiary position that allowed for an outstanding expansion of religious schools. At the beginning of the 1960s, there was a Copernican turn in the regime’s educational policy as a result of the directives of international organizations that sought economic development. The state abandoned its subsidiarity, and throughout the 1960s promoted an exponential growth of the country’s rickety education system. This new policy culminated in a general reform of the education system, the General Education Act of 1970, which put an end to the dual system inherited from the 19th century, and introduced comprehensive education in Spain.


  • Educational Politics and Policy
  • Education and Society
  • Educational History

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