Focusing on pupils moving from primary to middle or secondary school, it describes and evaluates the schools' programmes to ease transfer, and includes material provided by the pupils themselves. The main body of the book is a rich and detailed account of the first months of life in new secondary schools, where the pleasures and perils of new friends, new teachers and new subjects, and a new approach to teaching are encountered. The book conveys vividly how pupils experience a new environment, and meet its dangers, rules and regulations, timetable, complex groupings and ideology.
Inside the Secondary Classroom was the first comparative ethnography of school life in Britain, carried out in six schools. It reveals surprising similarities and differences between them.The cases studied range from highly successful pupils with nine `O' levels to others with severe social and personal problems.