School systems are shifting towards forms of post-bureaucratic governance (PBG), implying higher levels of school autonomy, choice, and performancebased management. Under this governance approach, which combines forms of administrative and market accountability, schools face greater levels of competition and external pressure to perform. Schools experience such pressures unevenly and address them through different responses. The paper develops a mixed-methods case study conducted in Madrid, a Spanish region where PBG reform has intensified in the last decades, and proposes a novel index to position schools within their reference local education markets. The results show that schools articulate a broad range of logics of action, largely interrelated with their position in the education marketplace. We also show that schools’ responses to external pressures are dynamic and marked by tensions of a different nature, which schools need to navigate, often without sufficient support from public authorities.