This intriguing book challenges the usual idea of how a weak or failing school can be turned into a successful one by the simple introduction of effective leadership and management. Bernard Barker describes the journey of a struggling Midlands comprehensive through special measures. He relates how Ofsted inspectors impose a conventional regime, based on improved leadership, to drag the institution from the mire. But he shows that schools, heads, teachers and pupils are infinitely diverse and have an infinite range of motivations, priorities and personalities. This in-depth and analytical yet thoroughly human account of a school's struggle away from the stigma of special measures is a must-read for all involved in education, from policy makers and officials to local authorities, researchers, leader-watchers, heads, teachers, governors and parents.