Top Honour for Baroness Warnock
Baroness Mary Warnock, Honorary Fellow of St Hugh’s, has been awarded the highest honour in the 2017 New Year’s Honours List. The patron of the Progress Educational Trust, she was made a Companion of Honour, ‘for services to charity and children with special educational needs.’ Baroness Warnock chaired a Committee of Inquiry which published an influential report on special educational needs in 1978, leading to the Education Act of 1981. ‘The resulting transformation of the special educational system has had a significant impact on the lives of children and their families,’ states the Honours List, ‘ensuring that many children with special needs have been educated in mainstream schools alongside their peer group.’ In the 1980s, Baroness Warnock also took a key role in drafting the Inquiry into Human Fertilisation and Embryology report which proposed establishing a regulatory body to oversee assisted conception and embryo research, later to become the HFEA. Baroness Warnock served as Fellow and Tutor in Philosophy at St Hugh’s from 1949 to 1966, returning to the College as Senior Research Fellow from 1976 to 1984, before becoming an Honorary Fellow in 1985. She has written extensively on ethics, existentialism and philosophy of mind.