Recent reforms in the governance of schooling have affected roles, relationships and decision-making within schools and between them and the wider community. Using empirical and theoretical approaches this book describes, analyses and compares the effects of devolved management on secondary schools in a number of countries. It casts a critical light upon policy assumptions and aims, challenging assumptions about the way policy works in practice. Through a comparative international perspective, which looks at countries including the UK and the US, the conflicting options for school governance are addressed. These include: *parental participation and school management policy *professional, managerial and market principles in education *school-based decision-making and the implications of overarching government policies *devolution and centralisation. This is a timely study for practitioners in education, policy-makers in local and central government, academics and students of education policy and management.