Compulsory public education was invented by social engineers who wanted to control and command the teeming masses and make them pliant workers in their mills and plants. The folks who backed early mass education were the robber barons. (This is well documented by Gatto.)
The real point of public education is to dumb everyone down to the same level and beat any initiative or intellectual curiosity out of them. (See "Dumbing Us Down" by Gatto.) Oddly, some kids escape, most of them by learning on their own (as you've done).
Taylor's main book on the subject, which is great on a whole bunch of levels, is:
(check some of the reviews for others' takes).
Also see some of Paul Graham's essays, which are strongly related:
http://www.paulgraham.com/hs.html (What You'd Wish You'd Known)
http://www.paulgraham.com/nerds.html (Why Nerds are Unpopular)
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