Sophisticated monograph focussing on attainment at the end of secondary/high school education (and the interface with tertiary education). Combines re-analysis of secondary literature (including official statistics, institutional histories, interview data) and analysis of qualitative and quantitative primary research using descriptive and inferential statistics, value-added analysis and grounded theory. The results show the siginificance and weakness of both the mid-twentieth century classic analyses of social clas and the late-twentieth century feminist approaches. Shows how a joint consideration of social issues, in particular of gender and social stratification, produce a powerful model for explaining attainment with important implications for policy on (a) boys' underachievement and (b) participation in higher education.

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