German School System vs. Us School System

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James Plett
English 101 EU
10 March, 2010
German school system VS. English school system
As we grow up, school seems to be so ordinary that we do not take the time to realize how different our schooling is compared to other countries. I have a friend who has experienced both the American and German school system. Through my conversations with him, I have learned much about the differences between them. The main American criticism of the German schooling system is how kids test into different schools at a young age. “Responsibility for educational oversight in Germany lies primarily with the federal states individually, while the federal government only has a minor role. In fifth grade, students take a test that determines whether they go into the Hauptschule. The Hauptschule (grades 5-9 in most German states) teaches the same subjects as the Realschule and Gymnasium, but at a slower pace and with some vocational-oriented courses. It leads to part-time enrollment in a vocational school combined with apprenticeship training until the age of 18, which is a trade school of sorts. The Germans end conventional school in ninth grade and get placed in a simple trade such as janitor or food service and what not. The Realschule (grades 5-10 in most states) leads to part-time vocational schools and higher vocational schools. It is now possible for students with high academic achievement at the Realschule to switch to a Gymnasium on graduation. Realschule is where the majority of students go; this is skilled trade school where you learn to become an electrician or a plumber or mechanic and so on. The third option is called the gymnasium (grades 5-13 in most states) which leads to a degree called the Abitur and prepares students for university study or for a dual academic and vocational credential. The most common education tracks offered by the standard Gymnasium are classical language, modern language, and mathematics-natural science. Now I can...
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