In the first half of the twentieth century, English grammar disappeared from the curriculum of most schools in England, but since the 1960s it has gradually been reconceptualised, under the influence of linguistics, and now once again has a central place in the official curriculum. Our aim is not only to document these changes, but also to explain them. We suggest that the decline of grammar in schools was linked to a similar gap in English universities, where there was virtually no serious research or teaching on English grammar. Conversely, the upsurge of academic research since the 1960s has provided a healthy foundation for school-level work and has prevented a simple return to old-fashioned grammar-teaching now that grammar is once again fashionable. We argue that linguists should be more aware of the links between their research and the school curriculum.
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