I have come to believe that "No Child is Left Behind" was created to manufacture evidence to influence us into replacing our public school with a private system. Even with all of the evidence that shows when you take factors like socio-economic and the educational levels of parents that public schools do a much better job than private, parochial, and home school kids, only public schools are mandated to come up with the impossible to achieve 100% proficient levels.
That being said (and can be debated elsewhere), I have an effective answer to anyone that states we must privatize our schools to compete with the world.
Ask them which country that is supposedly kicking our butts, has the vast privatized school system. The go ahead and ask them which country has a better privatized healthcare system than ours.
The point being, "The market place can not provide good services when there is no profit to be made!"
There is no profit in educating poor kids or those with special needs. There is no profit in providing healthcare for the elderly, kids, or anyone who gets sick. There isno profit in paving the street on which you live. Yet providing these services as a society has a long term benefit for everyone.
As long as there is no profit, the market system does not work and government has to step in.