I teach in a private school. I look forward to the day when I can teach in a public school. Please find me a public school in the DC area that feels like a community (so it would have a lot less than 1000 kids), with class sizes less than 12, with awesome teachers and leadership, and with students doing authentic project-based learning.
There. Why is school reform hard? The only thing stopping the school reform described above is money. Money. Not socioeconomics or history or unions or the interwebs. Really, just money.