This study aimed to ascertain how teachers’ understanding and classroom practices affect the quality of Ugandan primary education. Several attempts have been made to define the concept of quality education. Both the practical and policy definitions of quality are derived from neoliberalism in terms of which examination scores are crucial. Teachers’ understanding of quality education and their classroom practices have been neglected, despite the fact that these affect the way teachers teach and assess learners. The study was guided by three research questions: How do teachers perceive policies related to quality education? How do teachers practise quality education in the classrooms? and Why according to teachers do they practise quality education in the ways they do? The study was conducted at six purposively selected primary schools in Bushenyi district in the western region of Uganda. Owing to the nature of the research questions, a case study design was adopted. The study was guided by a qualitative approach with an interpretivist paradigm. Data were generated from unstructured interviews with six head teachers and eighteen teachers, while classroom observations were conducted with a further six teachers. In addition, a document analysis was done of relevant policies. The generated data were coded and analysed following a process of data reduction, data display and conclusion drawing and verification. Atlas-ti software was used in the generation of linkages and networks in the data. The understanding of the internal structures and associations in the data helped in formulating the final explanations and inferences using content analysis. The study findings indicated that teachers understand quality education in different ways. Despite their wider understanding, what they practise tends to differ and is constrained by the existing national and school-specific policies on quality education. Moreover, classroom teachers are not consulted in the policy formulation process. The findings attest to the fact that the existing national policies are a reflection of the neoliberal movement that has influenced the meaning of quality education. Further, teachers practise quality education using a number of methods, but these were influenced by the environment in which they work and existing policies that focus on standards and accountability rather than the holistic, multipronged and long-term value of education. The study recommends that that teachers’ understanding of quality education should be incorporated in the formulation of education policies. Of importance, the government, through the line ministry, the MoES, should redesign the quality education parameters to go beyond academic performance to incorporate virtues of holistic teaching and learning, tolerance, citizenship, planning for the child’s future and gaining of survival skills beyond the formal education and the associated formal jobs.