American RadioWorks | Hearing is Seeing
Students in Kentucky taking a Common Core math test. (Photo: Emily Hanford)

Greater Expectations

The United States is in the midst of a huge education reform. The Common Core State Standards are a new set of expectations for what students should learn each year in school. The standards have been adopted by most states, though there's plenty of controversy about them among activists and politicians. Most teachers, however, actually like the standards. This American RadioWorks documentary takes listeners into classrooms to explore how the standards are changing teaching and learning. Teachers say Common Core has the potential to help kids who are behind, as well as those who are ahead. But many teachers have big concerns about the Common Core tests. The new, tougher tests are meant to let the nation know how kids are really doing in school -- but bad scores could get teachers and principals fired.

Recent Posts

  • 08.29.14

    Greater Expectations transcript

  • 08.28.14

    A teacher loses faith in the Common Core

    New York teacher Kevin Glynn was once a big fan of the Common Core, but he says the standardized testing that's come along with it is reducing students to test scores and narrowing what gets taught in schools.
  • 08.28.14

    Are you smarter than a Common Core student? Try a Common Core test

    New Common Core tests are supposed to measure students' ability to think critically, analyze information, and cite evidence as well as test their conceptual understanding of mathematics and their ability to apply math to the real world. See how you'd do on a Common Core test.
  • 08.28.14

    Questioning the Common Core tests

    In the United States, education standards come with tests. Most students haven't been tested on the Common Core yet. But in one state where they have, the controversy is so intense that it's threatening to bring down the Common Core altogether.

American RadioWorks | Hearing is Seeing
Students in Kentucky taking a Common Core math test. (Photo: Emily Hanford)

Greater Expectations

The United States is in the midst of a huge education reform. The Common Core State Standards are a new set of expectations for what students should learn each year in school. The standards have been adopted by most states, though there's plenty of controversy about them among activists and politicians. Most teachers, however, actually like the standards. This American RadioWorks documentary takes listeners into classrooms to explore how the standards are changing teaching and learning. Teachers say Common Core has the potential to help kids who are behind, as well as those who are ahead. But many teachers have big concerns about the Common Core tests. The new, tougher tests are meant to let the nation know how kids are really doing in school -- but bad scores could get teachers and principals fired.

Recent Posts

  • 08.29.14

    Greater Expectations transcript

  • 08.28.14

    A teacher loses faith in the Common Core

    New York teacher Kevin Glynn was once a big fan of the Common Core, but he says the standardized testing that's come along with it is reducing students to test scores and narrowing what gets taught in schools.
  • 08.28.14

    Are you smarter than a Common Core student? Try a Common Core test

    New Common Core tests are supposed to measure students' ability to think critically, analyze information, and cite evidence as well as test their conceptual understanding of mathematics and their ability to apply math to the real world. See how you'd do on a Common Core test.
  • 08.28.14

    Questioning the Common Core tests

    In the United States, education standards come with tests. Most students haven't been tested on the Common Core yet. But in one state where they have, the controversy is so intense that it's threatening to bring down the Common Core altogether.


Adoption stories


Carol Bromeland
Utica, MN

Birth Country: South Korea
Decade of adoption: 1970s

We have four adopted children who are now adults. The reaction we have often gotten from others when they discover that our children are adopted is, "Oh, what wonderful people you are". We have always been quick to point out that in fact, we adopted for very selfish reasons... we wanted a family and this was our way to get one!

Our first child was a six month old daughter from Korea. When she was three years old, we adopted a brother and sister who were one and two years old. They too arrive on a plane from Korea. These children came to us through Holt International Children's Services in Oregon.

Our adopting has opened many doors that would not have otherwise been opened to us. Probably the most important thing that happened was that many other family members adopted children after finding that adoption is indeed a wonderful way to make or enlarge a family. As a matter of fact, my parents who were in their forties, and the parents of eight children by birth, decided to adopt a ten year old Korean boy after our first child arrived. One of my sisters adopted an African-American child from Georgia, another sibling adopted a son from Chile, and my adopted Korean brother and his wife adopted a bi-racial child from the United States. Another brother married an adopted Korean woman. Several of our cousins and friends also adopted after observing our multi-racial family over the years.

When our three Korean children were in elementary school, we adopted our fourth child, a five year old boy from the United States who we found on Thursday's Child, a television program on a Mpls. television station that features domestic foster children. This son came from an abusive home situation and required special attention to help him grow to his full potential.

Adopting children, some from other countries, led to our becoming advocates for international adoptions and for children in foster care in the United States. We also became very involved in multicultural activities in our local community, school, and nearby university. We have hosted foreign students on international exchanges in our home, and have done international traveling and made international friends, all because our view of the world was expanded, the day we brought our first precious almond-eyed angel into our home.

My children are all adults now. They are all good, caring people. They have become doctors, lawyers, retail employees, and computer designers of computer software. We could not be more proud of them, nor could we love them more.

My mother-in-law gave me the following poem by an unknown author, the day we met our first child at the airport. It explains so well why adoptive families consider these children truly "their own."

Not flesh of my flesh
Not still miraculously my own.
Never forget for a single minute
You didn't grow under my heart,
But bone of my bone
But in it.



Back to Adoption Stories


American RadioWorks | Hearing is Seeing
Students in Kentucky taking a Common Core math test. (Photo: Emily Hanford)

Greater Expectations

The United States is in the midst of a huge education reform. The Common Core State Standards are a new set of expectations for what students should learn each year in school. The standards have been adopted by most states, though there's plenty of controversy about them among activists and politicians. Most teachers, however, actually like the standards. This American RadioWorks documentary takes listeners into classrooms to explore how the standards are changing teaching and learning. Teachers say Common Core has the potential to help kids who are behind, as well as those who are ahead. But many teachers have big concerns about the Common Core tests. The new, tougher tests are meant to let the nation know how kids are really doing in school -- but bad scores could get teachers and principals fired.

Recent Posts

  • 08.29.14

    Greater Expectations transcript

  • 08.28.14

    A teacher loses faith in the Common Core

    New York teacher Kevin Glynn was once a big fan of the Common Core, but he says the standardized testing that's come along with it is reducing students to test scores and narrowing what gets taught in schools.
  • 08.28.14

    Are you smarter than a Common Core student? Try a Common Core test

    New Common Core tests are supposed to measure students' ability to think critically, analyze information, and cite evidence as well as test their conceptual understanding of mathematics and their ability to apply math to the real world. See how you'd do on a Common Core test.
  • 08.28.14

    Questioning the Common Core tests

    In the United States, education standards come with tests. Most students haven't been tested on the Common Core yet. But in one state where they have, the controversy is so intense that it's threatening to bring down the Common Core altogether.