Abstract While much evidence has accumulated in recent years concerning the differential access and rewards to the education of women in developing countries, economic modeling has remained relatively fixed in its treatment of the issue. This paper begins with a discussion of the problems inherent in attempting to fit the complexities of gender differential access and costs of education in existing economic models and implied paradigms. The article then uses the case of Zimbabwe to demonstrate that what appears to be a rather straight-forward costing of the education of girls is complex. Existing treatment of such costs undervalue both the contributions of female labor and the obstacles they face in gaining equal access to schooling.

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