The SAGE Handbook of Gender and Education brings together leading scholars on gender and education to provide an up-to-date and broad-ranging guide to the field. It is a comprehensive overview of different theoretical positions on equity issues in schools. The contributions cover all sectors of education from early years to higher education; curriculum subjects; methodological and theoretical perspectives; and gender identities in education. Each chapter reviews, synthesises, and provides a critical interrogation of key contemporary themes in education. This approach ensures that the book will be an indispensable source of reference for a wide range of readers: students, academics and practitioners.

Boys and Girls in the Elementary School

Boys and girls in the elementary school

The use of the words ‘boys and girls', rather than ‘gender’, in the chapter title is to draw attention to how recent education policy has focused on, and emphasized differences between, the two sexes. In fact, there was a great temptation to call the chapter ‘Boys Versus Girls in the Elementary/Primary School’ in order to highlight the extent to which current educational policy, research and literature in many Western countries are premised on the idea that elementary schools are a ‘utopia’ for girls but a ‘battleground’ for boys (see, for example, Biddulph, 1998). This simplistic juxtaposition of ‘girls' success’ equals ‘boys' failure’ is a by-product of the greater emphasis on assessment and ...

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