Constructive Feedback ...
I would say that the "sudden" increase in discussion regarding education and, in particular, NCLB is because GeeDub brought it up!! He's the one that came up with the idea (campaign rhetoric) to completely transform the educational system in this country and make major successes of our schools and our children. If he has kept his mouth closed, you're right, I'm sure that "silence" would still prevail.
He offered a plan. He offered a solution. He offered success. He offered to leave no child behind. Decades-old concern over the education of our children (all children) is what keeps the discussion alive. And it will continue, because still no viable solution has been reached. For whatever gains you want to attribute to NCLB, we are still the dumbest industrialized country in the world. Even with all the brilliant scholars we have produced ... again, bottom of the totem pole here!
In our community, I think the increase of caring adults, mentors, organizations dedicated to going into afterschool centers and tutoring is helping to bring our children's education up in increasing numbers.
And for all the children that are NOT being left behind due to this NCLB program ... would you really believe a majority of them are Black? I don't think so.
And lastly ... how many of our great musicians never had any formal musical education? Many were born with the talent. And many of them were not allowed or able to go to school back in the day. No, we don't have to look to the state to become a viable and sustained community within ourselves. You're right about that. We have all the tools necessary to be self-subsisting. And we don't use them. But the "state" ain't doing such a great job of sustaining us either! Six in one hand, half a dozen in the other, and we're still screwed!