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.

Back to all reports


UDALL, TOM, Democratic Party
New Mexico

Total number of trips - 14
Total cost of trips - $89,891.56

Average cost per trip - $6,420.83
Total number of days spent traveling - 83 days
Rank of representative - 45 (Out of 638)


Individual trips


Sponsor(s) - Faith and Politics Institute
Dates - March 3, 2000 - March 5, 2000 (3 days)
Location(s) - Birmingham, AL - Selma, AL - Montgomery, AL

Purpose - Alabama pilgrimage to mark the 35th anniversary of the 1965 Voting Rights March
Notes - took wife, Jill Cooper Udall; member personally paid $1,000 toward transportation expenses for spouse

Travel Cost - $270.00
Lodging Cost - $214.00
Meal Cost - $280.00
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $764.00

Additional family members - Yes


Sponsor(s) - Politically Incorrect
Dates - November 27, 2000 - November 27, 2000 (1 days)
Location(s) - Los Angeles, CA

Purpose - News and analysis program
Notes - transportation is for limousine and airfare, lodging is for the Renaissance Beverly Hills Hotel

Travel Cost - $647.00
Lodging Cost - $188.10
Meal Cost -
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $835.10

Additional family members - No


Sponsor(s) - Aspen Institute
Dates - May 28, 2001 - June 3, 2001 (7 days)
Location(s) - Florence, Italy

Purpose - To participate in a conference on the convergence of US national security and the global environment.
Notes - Spouse Jill Cooper Udall accompanied.

Travel Cost - $5,175.60
Lodging Cost - $2,000.00
Meal Cost - $1,280.00
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $8,455.60

Additional family members - Yes


Sponsor(s) - Aspen Institute
Dates - March 9, 2001 - March 11, 2001 (3 days)
Location(s) - White Sulphur Springs, WV

Purpose - 2001 bipartisan congressional retreat
Notes - Spouse Jill Cooper Udall accompanied. Other costs are for registration fees and were paid by the campaign. Meal costs are included in lodging.

Travel Cost - $252.00
Lodging Cost - $950.00
Meal Cost -
Other Cost - $150.00
Total Cost - $1,352.00

Additional family members - Yes


Sponsor(s) - Aspen Institute
Dates - May 28, 2002 - June 2, 2002 (6 days)
Location(s) - Barcelona, Spain

Purpose - conference on global environment
Notes - Spouse Jill Cooper Udall accompanied

Travel Cost - $3,884.00
Lodging Cost - $1,650.00
Meal Cost - $1,500.00
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $7,034.00

Additional family members - Yes


Sponsor(s) - U.S. Association of Former Members of Congress
Dates - April 12, 2003 - April 17, 2003 (6 days)
Location(s) - Berlin, Germany - Heidelberg, Germany

Purpose - to attend 20th Annual Congress - Bundestag seminar
Notes - with spouse Jill Cooper Udall

Travel Cost - $2,064.40
Lodging Cost - $900.00
Meal Cost - $600.00
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $3,564.40

Additional family members - Yes


Sponsor(s) - Faith and Politics Institute
Dates - September 12, 2003 - September 14, 2003 (3 days)
Location(s) - Bethesda, MD

Purpose - leadership training in "leading with courage and compassion"
Notes - with spouse Jill Cooper Udall - lodging includes meal costs

Travel Cost - $25.00
Lodging Cost - $536.00
Meal Cost -
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $561.00

Additional family members - Yes


Sponsor(s) - Aspen Institute
Dates - June 27, 2003 - July 3, 2003 (7 days)
Location(s) - Helsinki, Finland

Purpose - conference on political Islam
Notes - with spouse Jill Cooper Udall - other covers ground transportation

Travel Cost - $3,860.00
Lodging Cost - $1,500.00
Meal Cost - $1,350.00
Other Cost - $250.00
Total Cost - $6,960.00

Additional family members - Yes


Sponsor(s) - Aspen Institute
Dates - May 24, 2003 - June 1, 2003 (9 days)
Location(s) - Rome, Italy

Purpose - conference on the global environment
Notes - with spouse Jill Cooper Udall - other covers ground transportation

Travel Cost - $4,063.20
Lodging Cost - $5,700.00
Meal Cost - $1,600.00
Other Cost - $200.00
Total Cost - $11,563.20

Additional family members - Yes


Sponsor(s) - Aspen Institute
Dates - February 17, 2004 - February 23, 2004 (7 days)
Location(s) - Cancun, Mexico

Purpose - conference on education reform
Notes - spouse Jill Cooper Udall - Jill Cooper Udall stayed until 2/22 - Tom Udall stayed until 2/23 but at his own expense

Travel Cost - $3,125.62
Lodging Cost - $2,000.00
Meal Cost - $1,620.00
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $6,745.62

Additional family members - Yes


Sponsor(s) - Conservation International
Dates - January 8, 2004 - January 19, 2004 (12 days)
Location(s) - Madagascar - South Africa

Purpose - land conservation - visits to land and animal preserves
Notes - spouse Jill Cooper Udall - other costs were gifts

Travel Cost - $14,032.30
Lodging Cost - $1,164.96
Meal Cost - $480.00
Other Cost - $85.00
Total Cost - $15,762.26

Additional family members - Yes


Sponsor(s) - Aspen Institute
Dates - January 9, 2005 - January 14, 2005 (6 days)
Location(s) - Punta Mita, Mexico

Purpose - Conference on US Policy in Latin America
Notes - Washington, DC - Punta Mita, Mexico - Albuquerque, NM

Travel Cost - $2,106.48
Lodging Cost - $2,950.00
Meal Cost - $1,818.00
Other Cost - $200.00
Total Cost - $7,074.48

Additional family members - Yes


Sponsor(s) - Aspen Institute
Dates - June 27, 2004 - July 2, 2004 (6 days)
Location(s) - Lausanne, Switzerland

Purpose - Conference on the global environment
Notes - Including spouse

Travel Cost - $7,288.40
Lodging Cost - $2,000.00
Meal Cost - $1,600.00
Other Cost - $200.00
Total Cost - $11,088.40

Additional family members - Yes


Sponsor(s) - Aspen Institute
Dates - May 30, 2005 - June 5, 2005 (7 days)
Location(s) - Istanbul, Turkey

Purpose - To participate in a conference on Political Islam
Notes - Including spouse

Travel Cost - $4,681.50
Lodging Cost - $2,250.00
Meal Cost - $1,200.00
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $8,131.50

Additional family members - Yes

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.