Kids within each grade are separated into groups by capability. These kids know if they are in the "dumb" group or the "smart" group, or one of the in-between groups. Kids in the dumb group feel "less than special".
Here, at the second grade level, kids get the SAT10 test, which assesses them on both language and math skills. And their parents and the kids know exactly where they stand relative to other kids.
If you misbehave in class, you get your marker moved a level, and all the other kids know you messed up. If your marker gets to a certain level, parents are called into to meet with the principal. If you don't finish up your in-class work on time, you have to finish it instead of going to recess.
I did just confirm with my daughter that kids are not supposed to play tag, but that they "do it anyway". Playgrounds are as tough as they have been in the past. My son's best friend broke his arm falling from the jungle gym. My daughter's classmate broke his permanent tooth off at the gum line during recess.
Kids have soccer tryouts starting in the second grade. My daughter tried out, but didn't make the cut, for the upper level. Her current coach still yells at her, and other teammates when they do something boneheaded out on the field. And none of the parents storm up to him to tell him to lay off.