I’m a fourth generation Hoboken native from a large local family, and I have never expressed a public opinion on any local election, simply because I have people that I care about who support both “factions” of Hoboken politics. But this Board of Education election is too important for me to be comfortably silent.
I’m done with the harmful “Yuppies” VS “BnR” narrative. Being loyal to your hometown shouldn’t mean settling for things that don’t work. I have a daughter in first grade at Brandt and a son who will be entering preK3 next year. With Hoboken schools progressing so well right now, the stakes are too high for complacency.
Newcomers may not remember the shenanigans of past Boards of Education. Taxpayer money that should have gone to students, school infrastructure and educators was squandered on trips to Atlantic City, lavish meals at steakhouses, and my personal favorite, over 1000 “employees” on payroll whose names and other personal details weren’t documented. In classic Jersey fashion, a few of them were still on the payroll after they died. It would be hilarious…if it weren’t funded with our money, which should have gone to educate our children. This information is all in the public record.
I refuse to go back to this. We deserve better, and so do our children. Current board member Irene Sobolov, a fellow Hoboken native, was part of the team that closed the overflowing spigot of waste and corruption. She is running with Jennifer Evans and Sheillah Dallara as the Forward Together slate, 1, 2, 4. All three of these women have been working for years for Hoboken schools and Hoboken students. Their challengers are supported by the same cast of characters involved in improper spending in the past. They have never attended a single school board meeting, and (judging by their comments in the debate) they don’t seem to have any idea what’s actually happening right now in the Hoboken school system.
Hoboken schools are on a great path right now. New classrooms are opening as enrollment numbers rise. The Passport to Learning enrichment program offers programs that rival any private school, and my daughter is thriving with her current curriculum. For those of you that disagreed with the HOLA lawsuit, I beg you: please don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater over a single issue when the fate of the entire district school system is at stake. We cannot go back. We need to go forward. Please vote Forward Together: 1, 2, 4.