In writing this paper we draw considerably on the work of Jo Boaler and Leone Burton. Boaler’s studies of classrooms have been particularly poignant in alerting the mathematics education community to a number of key features of successful classrooms, and how such features can turn around the successes for students who traditionally perform poorly in school mathematics. This is supplemented by the recent work of Leone Burton who worked extensively with research mathematicians in order to understand their communities and ways of working. Collectively these two seminal works provide valuable insights into potential ways to move the field of school mathematics forward. In times when there is international recognition of the plight of school mathematics, there is a need for new teaching practices that overcome the hiatus of contemporary school mathematics.