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.

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ACKERMAN, GARY L, Democratic Party
New York

Total number of trips - 7
Total cost of trips - $33,243.44

Average cost per trip - $4,749.06
Total number of days spent traveling - 32 days
Rank of representative - 195 (Out of 638)


Individual trips


Sponsor(s) - Aspen Institute
Dates - February 18, 2000 - February 22, 2000 (5 days)
Location(s) - San Juan, Puerto Rico

Purpose - To participate in a conference on the global environment
Notes - Accompanied by wife Rita Ackerman

Travel Cost - $2,277.60
Lodging Cost - $1,924.00
Meal Cost - $1,280.00
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $5,481.60

Additional family members - Yes


Sponsor(s) - Aspen Institute
Dates - January 12, 2001 - January 17, 2001 (6 days)
Location(s) - Grand Cayman Island, British West Indies

Purpose - To participate in a conference on U.S. policy toward Cuba
Notes - Spouse Rita Ackerman

Travel Cost - $1,784.20
Lodging Cost - $2,355.00
Meal Cost - $1,650.00
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $5,789.20

Additional family members - Yes


Sponsor(s) - Center for Middle East Peace and Economic Cooperation
Dates - August 7, 2001 - August 17, 2001 (11 days)
Location(s) - NY - London, England - Damascus, Syria - Jerusalem, Israel - Amman, Jordan - Jeddah, Saudi Arabia - Cairo, Egypt - Tel Aviv, Israel

Purpose - Fact-finding
Notes -

Travel Cost - $13,929.12
Lodging Cost - $1,872.66
Meal Cost - $36.00
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $15,837.78

Additional family members - No


Sponsor(s) - Long Island Federation of Labor
Dates - September 21, 2003 - September 22, 2003 (2 days)
Location(s) - Saratose Springs, NY

Purpose - Speak on federal issues
Notes - Meals included in lodgings

Travel Cost -
Lodging Cost - $133.64
Meal Cost -
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $133.64

Additional family members - No


Sponsor(s) - New York Stock Exchange
Dates - January 29, 2004 - January 30, 2004 (2 days)
Location(s) - New York, NY

Purpose - Educational (market issues)
Notes -

Travel Cost - $234.00
Lodging Cost - $308.03
Meal Cost - $165.99
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $708.02

Additional family members - No


Sponsor(s) - Chinese International Economic Cooperation Association
Dates - January 11, 2004 - January 15, 2004 (5 days)
Location(s) - Taiwan

Purpose - Fact-finding
Notes - $70 for cell phone

Travel Cost - $3,700.00
Lodging Cost - $850.00
Meal Cost - $350.00
Other Cost - $70.00
Total Cost - $4,970.00

Additional family members - No


Sponsor(s) - NYSE
Dates - September 12, 2005 - September 12, 2005 (1 days)
Location(s) - New York, NY

Purpose - Learn about issues affecting the capital market
Notes -

Travel Cost - $248.20
Lodging Cost -
Meal Cost - $75.00
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $323.20

Additional family members - No

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.