In the context of the growing diversity of contemporary societies and the central importance of the electronic media, the place of popular culture in the school curriculum has become an increasingly controversial political issue. Based on in-depth research in an ethnically mixed, working-class secondary school, Cultural Studies Goes to School is concerned with the relationships between young people's involvement in popular culture outside school and their experiences of media education within the formal school curriculum. The first part of the book provides a detailed analysis of students' readings and uses of popular media, ranging from computer games and soap operas to comics and rap music. It offers a further challenge to received notions of young people as passive victims of ideological manipulation by the media and develops a social theory of reading that acknowledges the complex roles of gender, race and social class. The second part describes a number of classroom projects involving both critical and practical aspects of media education. Through analysis of students' work in a range of media, including photography, video and print, the authors develop a challenging theory of learning about popular culture and its place in the school curriculum. This book offers an exciting and accessible account of young people reading and making popular culture, which challenges many of the political claims and received wisdoms of academic Cultural Studies.