Local Schools, Local Decisions (LSLD) was a package of school autonomy reforms operating in the state of New South Wales, Australia from 2012 to 2020. The set of reforms centred on the devolution of additional powers and responsibilities to school principals, namely enhanced capacity to manage staffing and financial functions in response to local conditions. Using a conceptual lens of policy enactment, we analyse interview data gathered from 31 teachers and school leaders on how these reform areas were understood and enacted at the school level. Our findings highlight the tensions in enacting devolutionary reform in schools. While the centrality of the school principal’s role was emphasised, including in relation to contested levels of principal discretion, the enactment of devolved powers and responsibilities also produced a fracturing of staff relationships within schools, notably between principals and teaching staff. This finding is understood within a context of heightened workload and unclear expectations which attended the policy’s introduction. We contribute to the school autonomy literature through: (a) the inclusion of teachers’ voices, a stakeholder perspective often missing in the autonomy literature, enabling the impact of the reforms on interpersonal, relational dynamics to come to the fore; and (b) exploring implications for future reform suggested by the fate of LSLD. In doing so, this article deepens knowledge on the enactment of autonomy reforms in schools, drawing implications for understanding school autonomy reform around the globe.