I have to toss in a comment on this topic myself. After trying to work "within" the system for change for years, I also finally gave up and pulled our last son out of public school. This was before the home schooling movement really became an entity so it was a hard go.
From my perspective the public education system overall is in shambles. I'm speaking of this in regards to the U.S of course, but from interaction with numbers of people all over the world, I suspect that in general it's not much different.
It seems we've lost sight of what "learning" truly is !
"Learning" is NOT about being able to parrot back a given list of factoids on a given subject. It's not about absorbing massive amount of information like a computer system to have at ready recall should we need it.
"Learning" is about connecting dots. About critical thinking skills. And above all, "learning" is about understanding the VALUE of learning ! And the love of it. You hear people espouse phrases such as "life-long learners" and it seems to sail right over the top of most.
Life and living is a constant evolution. Flexibility is paramount. If you fail to develop the skills of not only memory, but of fitting the pieces together in different ways to adapt to life's changes, your life will be one of hardship and struggle.
And this more than anything seems to be what's missing from public education.
We no longer attempt to teach people how to THINK !
Because "thinking" is VERY dangerous to any entrenched institution. Just learn the facts folks - don't go asking questions or rocking the boat !