Primary and Secondary education in the United States begins with Pre-School and Kindergarten and ends with High School. Unlike Germany, we do not track students into different levels of public school such as the Hauptschule, Realschule, or Gymnasium. Students with the financial means can, however, opt out of public schools and decide to pay for a private education.
Public schools are currently held to a set of common standards developed at the federal level known as Common Core. The video below explains what the Common Core is, how it we arrived at this educational policy, and what effects the standards have on public schooling in the United States.