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Fathers and Sons

The role of fathers in education has escaped scrutiny. They are often viewed as marginal, unlike women whose participation in the educational development of children and young people is widely acknowledged and researched. Indeed, an absence of male involvement in the wider processes of schooling has increasingly been blamed for the under-performance of boys. It is claimed that too few models exist of fathers' positive engagement with formal education. "Fathers and Sons" explores a range of themes arising from fathers' engagement with - or alienation from - their children's schooling. It examines their participation in a variety of school situations, based on their own words. Their accounts offer insights into a hidden world and reveal a complex variety of expectations, alienation, guilt, confusion, and soul-searching. These fathers provide telling information and views that will help schools to construct their 'partnership' with parents so that men are empowered to support their own sons. The chapters feature rich narratives accentuating the real lives of fathers who have experienced various levels of engagement with their son's schooling. Fathers discuss their involvement in nursery provision, their sometimes tentative relationships with primary schools, their struggles to deal with sons who experience learning difficulties, and their responses to the education system when they are encountering stress in their own lives. Each chapter suggests ways for schools to help support evolving parent-partnership approaches, and provides professional development opportunities for teachers.
Product Details

Table of Contents

CONTENTS: Acknowledgements; 1. Introduction, rationale and orientation; 2. Land of my fathers and sons: An overview; 3. The literature on fathers and sons; 4. 'Wait 'til your dad gets home': Fathers, masculinity and role(play); 5. 'In my day...': Fathers and sons as pupils; 6. Fathers and early nurturing; 7. Being a teaching dad: Trails and tribulations; 8. Fathers as classroom helpers; 9. Who needs them? Non-resident fathers; 10. Dealing with difficulties: SEN and disabilities; 11. Tyrants on the touchline: Fathers and sport; 12. Fathers and bereavement; 13. Bad dads, bad lads: Fathers, sons and 'criminal careers'; 14. 'Is that your dad?': Fathers outside the school gates; 15. Young fathers; Useful resources for fathers and sons; References; Index.

About the Author

Philip Garner is Professor of Education at Nottingham Trent University and Peter Clough is Professor of Education at Queen's University, Belfast.


The qualitative narrative accounts from three generations of fathers and sons not only provide a unique insight into expectations and personal beliefs surrounding father and son relationships and education, they also help identify cultural shifts and new expectations regarding fatherhood. - Studies in the Education of Adults

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