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'This is a well written and thoroughly researched book on an issue of vital importance. It places the experiences of individual teachers under pressure into the larger UK and worldwide context. Policy makers need to wake up to its messages' - Sara Bubb, Institute of Education, University of London. What is it really like to be a teacher in today's demanding classrooms? Maurice Galton and John MacBeath spoke to teachers, parents and students in England, and compared their responses to similar inquiries in Asia, America, Australia and New Zealand. Their findings were disturbing. Teacher stress and workload were persistent themes in the four studies, with teachers frequently stretched to breaking point as they endeavour to 'make a difference' to their pupils' learning and welfare.Issues examined in the book include: frustrations facing those trying to make inclusive education work in practice; effects of constantly changing policies on the staff required to implement them; loss of status within the teaching profession; reasons for teachers choosing to leave the profession; and, the consequences of staying on and fighting for what one believes in. This fascinating read will be of interest to anyone involved in teaching, school leadership and educational policy.