Several reforms that affected the different levels of instruction were implemented in Brazil during the decade of 1850. With respect to secondary education, the regulations proposed in Decree no. 1556 of February 17, 1855, by minister Couto Ferraz, significantly modified the program of studies of the College Pedro II, the model institution of the Empire, by dividing it into two cycles: the Studies of the First Class and the Studies of the Second Class. This study discusses changes in the curriculum, not only in its organization, but also in its composition and the emphasis given to the various disciplines in the program, as well as their repercussions for secondary education in Brazil.
Lorenz, Karl M. & Vechia, Ariclê. Inovação Curricular e a Reforma de 1855 de Luiz Pedreira do Couto Ferraz. In: Anais da VII Reunião Reunião da SBPH. São Paulo, Brasil: Sociedade Brasileira de Pesquisa Histórica, 1988, p. 139-142.