Yes, it's destructive system.
There is a chance that initially slow people will stand up and catch up to the group (Like I did after suffering from depression for 5 years), but that is a very low possibility and my education system didn't stop for me (International Baccalaureate program - one of the hardest programs in the nation) which shows that there's no need to such a system. If people are willing to work hard, they can catch up.
The No Child Left Behind System essentially brings the whole pack down for the few who don't care about education and is essentially not going to grow into anything special (with FEW exceptions of course).
America's pre-college system sucks. It's why we're getting more and more behind other countries who study their asses off.