Pacific females are achieving significantly better than males at secondary through to tertiary level study. This paper argues the need to review educational outcomes through a Pacific gender lens to identity how cultural expectations might influence the school experience today. The concept of a Samoan gender lens is explored and applied. Findings are that Samoan males and females are limited by cultural values and expectations, but in different ways. While Samoan women are using their customary place to access and negotiate educational ventures, Pacific males’ sporting successes and the role of the peer group (bros) may be encouraging males (and their parents) to hold more strongly to non-academic ways of maintaining prestige. The paper concludes that some renegotiation of the faaSamoa gendered roles is needed within families and, within educational policies and programmes.