Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Why does the HoLa Charter Administration misinform the community about their funding?"

The State funding formula is at the heart of the debate between Hoboken's district schools and Hoboken's Charter schools because the funding for Charter Schools comes directly out of the District School's budget.

This inequitable funding formula was created by the State even though the State does not fund the Charter schools and they offer NO additional funding to offset any financial impact to the home district.

There is only one pot of money and every additional Charter (resident) student's education is funded by the district budget that funds the educational needs of the district students in Calabro, Connors, Wallace, Hoboken High and Brandt school.

So when Charter enrollment increases, funding for district students decreases, regardless of the District school's enrollment.  It is this funding formula created by the State but not funded by the State that pits families against families and promotes an adversarial relationship.

So why is it that HoLa's website states that Charter schools are funded by the State?

http://holahoboken.org/


Welcome to Hoboken Dual Language Charter School


The Hoboken Dual Language Charter School (HoLa) is an exciting new dual language charter school that opened its doors to students in grades K-2 in September 2010 (a grade will be added each year until the school reaches K-8). HoLa offers a traditional core curriculum through instruction in both Spanish and English to children of all language backgrounds. The program utilizes the well-established immersion approach to dual language education with a range of opportunities for creative expression and experiential learning. Students will become bilingual and biliterate in a culturally diverse and nurturing environment. All families are welcome; no previous exposure to a second language required! Charter schools are free public schools funded by the State and operated independently of local school districts.

If you look closely at this page from HoLa's budget you can clearly see that they receive ZERO state funding.  So why is this misinformation allowed to stay on HoLa's website and mislead their parents and our community?  

I have publicly asked Executive Director Jen Sargent twice to correct this error and to post the facts. My request was ignored both times.  I will ask her a third time.  

You can see that in the budget year 2015/2016 the local contribution from the district budget to HoLa will increase from $3,074,439 to 3,423,538 an additional $349,099 for next year's budget.  I assume that this $349,000 will fund the educational costs for next year's 22 7th graders.

What services, programs or positions will the district schools have to cut in order to come up with the additional allocation of $349,099?  That's anyones guess and as a district parent I am greatly concerned about it.  Pitting families against each other I'm sure was not the intent of this funding formula but what more can families do then to advocate for their children.  This can only be done when the facts are provided and not lies.

Please Ms. Sargent revise your statement to accurately reflect the truth, Charter Schools are funded by the local district budget and are not State funded.




*note 
$8.3 Million of the District's $64.6 Million dollar budget is allocated to Charter Schools and an additional $10.5 Million that funds the district's PreK program.


Friday, June 13, 2014

Hoboken Public Schools says farewell to Dr. Toback



The most important role of a Board of Education is to hire a Superintendent, an Educational Leader who sets the tone for the entire school district.  

I am proud that during my tenure as Board Trustee I had the opportunity to participate in the selection of Dr. Toback for Superintendent.  He is without a doubt, a great educational leader that will be sorely missed. However, he built a strong foundation and set high expectations and is leaving the district in very good shape for the next Educational leader to build upon.

As a district parent I am excited about the future possibilities and wish Dr. Toback great success as he embarks on his new journey. 


Now the next chapter begins!!





Letter to Community from Dr. Mark Toback
June 13, 2014
Dear Residents,
Last night, the Wayne Township Board of Education appointed me to serve as their new superintendent of schools. While I am honored by their endorsement and confidence, I must admit that leaving Hoboken will be bittersweet, due to the many relationships built here over the past few years. Working with a dedicated staff, a talented administrative team, supportive parents, and a thoughtful group of school board members has been rewarding in so many ways.

The Hoboken Public Schools are a wonderful example of what is possible when a community redefines what it expects from the schools. By establishing higher expectations, and then investing in our schools at a level that matches our ambition, we have made significant progress in many areas. Substantial improvements in academic performance, school climate, safety, parental involvement, communication, technology and facilities are visible results of our new expectations. All of these changes will serve as a solid foundation for the work of the next school district leader.

It would be inappropriate for me not to express my appreciation for the support of the Hoboken Board of Education. Working as a trustee is possibly the most thankless volunteer community service job a citizen could undertake. On top of being thankless, it can be quite stressful due to many difficult decisions that must be made. The support from the trustees of your elected Hoboken Board of Education allowed for many positive changes to take place and continues to be a positive influence on the school system.

I will look back fondly on my days of service to this city and I remain appreciative of the opportunity to work as your educational leader. While some residents may not have agreed with me from time to time, know that my primary focus with any decision was the students attending our schools.

I have heard long-time residents and employees say “Once a Redwing, Always a Redwing." As I move along in my profession, I will always be proud to be counted as a Hoboken Redwing.

Sincerely,

Mark Toback

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

A MESSAGE FROM HOLA BOARD PRESIDENT, BARBARA MARTINEZ.





Here are my thoughts and comments about the email blast from Barbara Martinez that was shared with me.  (below my comments) 

What I find interesting is who wrote the letter.  Barbara Martinez is the Board President of Hola, Dual Language Charter School and she is simultaneously urging her parents to advocate for their school while vilifying the public school administration, board members and parents for advocating for their schools. Hardly fair....

Who is Barbara Martinez?
- Hola's Board President.  She is an appointed board member not an elected board member. Her board is unaccountable to the taxpayers who fund her school. 
- The Chief External Officer(http://uncommonschools.org/bio/1531/barbara-martinez) for Uncommon Schools.  The Chief Cheerleader.

- Opened and manages a network of 38 charter public schools across Massachusetts, New Jersey, and New York. 

The Hoboken Board of Education is made up of nine elected officials.  The tax increase that Martinez is asking her parents to argue against is in part raised to offset some of the additional costs associated with the expansion of Hola to 6th grade.

Martinez mentions the cost to the taxpayers of the additional funds necessary for the HBoE to continue to oppose the expansion of Hola.  Does Martinez consider the impact that Hola's expansion will have on the district children?

Will they experience an increase in size, cuts in funding to their music and arts programs, cuts in funding to their after school clubs or cut backs in their Athletics and Sports teams? 

Will the elected officials that supported Hola's expansion understand that they missed a great opportunity to be leaders in their communities instead of helping divide their communities: Mayor Dawn Zimmer, Council members Dave Mello, Ravi Bhalla, Michael Russo, Beth Mason, Tim Occhipinti and Theresa Castellano?

When she asks her parents NOT to "disparage the district schools in any way" maybe she should talk to her fellow unelected board member, Anthony Petrosino.  He spends a great deal of time attacking Hoboken High School.  Yet he never acknowledges that he is a disgruntled former employee of the Hoboken district schools.  

As one district parent opines:  What bothers me most about Dr. Anthony Petrosino's blog is that he uses his academic credentials to convey steely-eyed objectivity without ever disclosing anywhere his connections with Hoboken's HoLa charter school (who the state has decided must fight with public schools over funding), and his lawsuit with the public school district. These two facts undermine any "facts" he blogs about the public schools. Indeed, they explain the monomaniacal attacks on Kids First, Hoboken's fantastic public schools superintendent Dr. Toback, and Hoboken's public schools.

Martinez insists that Hola educates their students at half the cost that the Board of Education spends.  She fails to understand that the District is a full service K-12 district. Offering very specific support services to many of their low income and special needs students.  For example; Guidance Counselors, Social Workers, Out of District Placement for severely handicapped and disabled children and an in school Autism Center.  Also provided at no cost to the students are 14+ AP courses, TV-Media Studio and the Johns Hopkins Gifted and Talented program, to name just a few.
http://www.hobokenschools.com/2014/03/hoboken-junior-senior-highschool-open.html

It's time for Martinez to start being honest with the Hola families and the community.  They can start by removing the wholly inaccurate statement about how Charter Schools are funded.  This would be the second request that I have made publicly asking them to remove this statement from their website.  Let's see if they hear me this time.
"Charter schools are free public schools funded by the State and operated independently of local school districts."http://holahoboken.org/
At the end of the day we have two groups of families who both love their schools and are doing everything they should to advocate for them.  Let's all be patient and allow due process to run it's course.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Subject: Message from Barbara Martinez regarding BOE lawsuit

Dear Parents,
The Hoboken Board of Education is planning to vote tomorrow (6/10) to increase its litigation expenses to fight HoLa’s expansion to $50,000 from $20,000.
This is, of course, very disappointing and surprising news. It suggests that there’s no limit to what this board is willing to do to try to keep our children from staying in their school through 8th grade. We expect the Department of Education (DOE), who is the main subject of this lawsuit, to continue to vigorously defend its approval of HoLa’s expansion. However, as you know, our parent voices are critical to ensuring that the DOE and others fight on our behalf as well.
We suggest the following:
Every parent should, in the next 24 hours, send an e-mail to every elected official listed below, asking them to intervene before Tuesday night’s vote. Feel free to use some of the talking points below, but please include your own personal story about what our school means to your child and family as those are the most important and influential messages to elected officials. If you voted for the elected official, make sure you note that. If you have time to call their office, that’s even better.
Every parent should also make sure to tell as many non-HoLa Hoboken residents as possible what is going on and ask them to send e-mails as taxpayers. Unfortunately this situation is viewed as an HoLa fight only, and until other citizens chime in to say this is wrong, the Board of Ed will continue to think we are only looking out for our own kids’ interests. We need non-Hola residents to stand up and say this is wrong and a terrible waste of taxpayer money. Hoboken is a stronger city with more educational choices, not fewer.
Please commit to writing a letter to the editor. These letters matter as they are read by Hoboken at large, not just those who have children. We need to be making our case as widely as possible that this is a terrible use of taxpayer money and harmful for Hoboken in general. Our time is best spent over the next few days and weeks educating our broader community about charter schools, about choice, and about the decision that this Board of Education is making in wasting taxpayer dollars to limit choice in Hoboken. We need ordinary citizens—not just charter parents—to understand this.
If you do want to attend Tuesday’s meeting, you should. But I strongly urge us to follow these do’s and don’ts so that we can make our case stronger in the public eye, rather than weaker:
DO:
*Do talk about what HoLa has meant for your child (maintaining culture, now able to speak to grandma in Spanish, can read and write in two languages, child's special needs well supported....whatever is most salient to your family's experience)
*Do say that you appreciate that Hoboken is a town with many choices, and choice is good because not every school fits every kid perfectly
*Do re-iterate that HoLa makes up a fraction of the overall Hoboken public school budget and cannot possibly be the most important thing for them to focus on
*Do show respect for the families and teachers in the traditional district schools
DON’T:
*Don’t disparage the district schools in any way. Don’t say things like “the district schools aren’t an option for my family.” These types of comments can be misinterpreted as elitist, which hurts our case to many who might otherwise be on our side. What we really mean is that there are many choices, and I chose this one for my own reasons
*Don’t call attention to the district’s low academic performance. The children of our neighbors and friends attend district schools and many are getting a great education, and us coming across as believing we have something superior to them alienates us from many residents who would otherwise want to help us. We simply want to preserve our own choice for our children and help ensure that Hoboken families have a vibrant menu of options to choose from
TALKING POINTS FOR YOUR E-MAILS TO ELECTED AND NEIGHBORS
For elected official e-mails, try not to use these verbatim and only use them to support your e-mail after you’ve shared your personal story.
· The BOE lawsuit is now going to cost taxpayers $50,000 instead of $20,000
· Just a few weeks after raising our taxes 3.9%, the District’s first order of business is spending more money on litigating against a small public school
· At issue is just a handful of kids every year: all we want is for students to be able to stay for two more grades, 7thand 8th
· The District’s lawsuit would seek to kick our kids out of their school for their last two years of middle school
· The expansion of HoLa represents less than 1% of the overall Hoboken district budget; there are so many bigger costs at the Hoboken Board of Ed that should be attacked instead of HoLa
· Attacking another school never helped a District system get better
· The BOE lawsuit is spending tens of thousands of dollars asking the Department of Education to do what it already did. It asks the DOE to consider ALL of the factors if HoLa expands to 7thand 8thgrade, including the effect on the district. The DOE spent months poring over hundreds of documents and data points to determine that adding 7thand 8th grade was in the best interest of the Hoboken community. Spending $50,000 on a lawsuit asking the DOE to do the same thing again is a waste of money and terribly divisive to our community
· A vibrant, choice-filled community of schools is GOOD for Hoboken, it keeps families here longer and increases our real estate values.
· HoLa is a public school which uses taxpayer funds to offer a dual-language education. It has great results and spends half of the per-pupil funds as the district schools.
ELECTED OFFICIALS TO SEND EMAILS TO (ASKING THEM TO INTERVENE):
Mayor Dawn Zimmer, dzimmer@hobokennj.gov
Senator Brian Stack, SenStack@njleg.org
Assemblyman Carmelo Garcia, asmgarcia@njleg.org
Assemblyman Raj Mukherji, asmmukherji@njleg.org
City Council Member Ravinder Bhalla, rbhalla@hobokennj.org
City Council Member Theresa Castellano, terry@theresacastellano.com
City Council Member Beth Mason, beth@masoncitycouncil.org
City Council Member David Mello, dmello@hobokennj.org
City Council Member Michael Russo, councilmanrusso@aol.com
City Council Member Tim Occhipinti, timothy.occhipinti@gmail.com
County Freeholder Anthony Romano, aromano007@ymail.com
Thank you for doing your part and helping to protect HoLa. Please let me know if you have any questions.
Best,
Barbara


Wednesday, May 7, 2014

THE BEGINNING OF HOLA...PART 1



As Hola has been such a topic of community conversation lately, I have noticed that so many inaccuracies cloud the discussion. I want to set the record straight on the belief that Hola was proposed and rejected by the BOE, what the original concerns were of the district parents and why you never hear about the funding questions about where the money comes from and the impact on the public district students.  Let me start from the beginning.

In June 2008, I saw an email from the Hoboken Family Alliance that mentioned that a group of women; Camille Korschun Bustillo, Jennifer Hindman Sargent, Mary Azzarto Ciampa were planning a dual language school and that they were asking for parents to take a survey to gauge whether or not there was community interest.

The introduction to the survey stated that the program founders were
"developing a dual language public elementary school (Spanish - English), and
proposing it to the Hoboken School District as an independently run contract school."


As a parent of a young child at the time I was trying to raise my daughter to be bilingual in Italian and English.  It wasn't an easy process but a worthwhile one.

I filled out the survey and was supportive and positive of the concept.  After the Hola team read my survey and saw that I was supportive they contacted me directly.  They revealed to me that they were already in talks with the Assistant to the Superintendent, Anthony Petrocino.   As I was also a Hoboken Board of Ed trustee, since April 2006,  I was surprised that I was unaware of the discussions already taking place.

I also found out that there were continuous ongoing and serious conversations in the curriculum committee meetings with the Hola team about bringing this dual language program into the district.  I wasn't a member of the curriculum committee so I was not present during these meetings nor informed of them until much later in the process.  

I was intrigued and excited by the possibilities of the program, which soon turned to concern.  

So much time, energy and focus was being given to creating a new program that the focus was soon diverted from the entire district.

I wanted to know why the Superintendent and the curriculum committee:

-felt comfortable allowing three women without any educational experience, training or credentials to become the leaders of this program.

-wanted to award a no-bid contract to this same group of women, violating the state contract laws.

-wouldn't go out for a Request of Qualifications/Proposals to get the best qualified and experienced team to create a new program

What I was soon to learn:
-The Superintendent at that time had a personal relationship with one of the leaders of the Hola group and therefore he refused to go out for bid on the contract.

More concerns:
-How were we handling the educational needs of the students that were currently enrolled in the district instead of spending so much time creating a program for kids not yet enrolled.

-How to address the concerns of the parents whose children were already enrolled and committed.

-Why was the Superintendent and the Curriculum committee rushing the program to start in Sept. 2009?  Which I would later find out was b/c the founders children would have been too old to enroll if the start year was pushed back. 

More Unanswered questions
-The Superintendent hadn't budgeted for the first two years of the initial proposal nor any long range planning through the Fifth grade.

-The Superintendent hadn't budgeted for four new teaching positions which would have been necessary for the first year of the program implementation because all teachers needed dual certification of which there weren't any already on staff.

The Superintendent hadn't budgeted for writing the curriculum nor for textbooks nor any other support learning tools.

-The Superintendent didn't know where Hola would be housed. 

-The Superintendent wanted Hola to be separate, a school within a school.

-The Superintendent wanted to hire the Hola founders as unlicensed principals of the dual language program, against NJDoE laws and regulations.

-Eventually it came out that the Superintendent wanted to house Hola in Wallace displacing current students and infuriating current parents.

-The fact remained that this proposal for a "school within a school" meant that it was never really supposed to be a part of the district.  It was always meant to be separate.  The Hola children were never supposed to interact with the district students but the district was going to fund this separate but equal school.

Next Up, Part 2.  The presentation to the board.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

EDUCATION LAW CENTER - PRESS RELEASE

“Education Law Center supports Hoboken’s call for a comprehensive analysis by the NJDOE of the impact of charter expansion on district students,” said David Sciarra, ELC Executive Director. “The Legislature and the Court have made clear that the Department must consider student segregation and the ability to provide a thorough and efficient education before granting a charter application, renewal or expansion. This is essential to ensure charter schools improve, and not undermine, education for all Hoboken students.”

HOBOKEN CHALLENGES IMPACT OF CHARTER EXPANSION ON STUDENTS


RACIAL SEGREGATION AND LOSS OF FUNDING KEY ISSUES 

April 24, 2014
On April 14, the Hoboken Board of Education filed an appeal of the NJ Department of Education’s (NJDOE) decision to renew and expand the Hoboken Dual Language Charter School known as HoLa. In its petition, Hoboken details how the expanded charter school will exacerbate racial imbalance in the Hoboken schools and reduce funding available to students in district schools.
Hoboken argues the NJDOE failure to assess the impact of the HoLa expansion on the district’s racial balance and funding levels is a violation of the guarantee of a “thorough and efficient education” in the NJ constitution. Hoboken asks that the decision to approve the expansion be set aside so that NJDOE can undertake the constitutionally-required assessments.
The student demographic differences between the HoLa charter and district schools are stark. In 2012-13, 75% of the students enrolled in Hoboken schools were African-American or Latino. That same year, minority students comprised 39% of HoLa enrollment.
Hoboken’s petition also compares HoLa with the geographically nearest neighborhood public school, Connors Elementary School. While white students make up 60.6% of the students at HoLa, whites comprise 3.9% of the population at Connors. The Hispanic student population is 63.3% at Connors and only 28.8% at HoLa.  In 2012-13, 96% of Connors students were low-income compared to 11% at HoLa.
“It’s hard to believe forty years after the civil rights movement that I would be writing about the need to integrate public schools. The charter populations do not reflect the overall diversity and immediate intervention is needed from the NJDOE,” Hoboken Superintendent Dr. Mark Toback wrote to former NJ Education Commissioner Chris Cerf on December 10, 2013, in response to the HoLa’s application to expand.
The petition cites a recent NJ Supreme Court decision regarding Montclair Quest Academy Charter School’s unsuccessful applications. The Court makes clear that, when evaluating a charter application, “the Commissioner must assess the racial impact that a charter school applicant will have on the district of residence in which the charter school will operate” and “must use the full panoply” of State power to avoid segregation resulting from the grant of a charter application.
Hoboken also raised the funding issue by providing the NJDOE “statistical information related to the multi-year trend of charter school funding, noting that the amount of funding allocated to charter schools has increased exponentially and is trending towards a state of crisis for the non-charter school children.”
In four of the past five years, the district has experienced double-digit increases in the funds allocated to charter schools and anticipates sending almost $8.5 million to charters next year. According to Dr. Toback, Hoboken is facing the prospect of significant teacher and staff layoffs and program cuts.
“In approving the renewal and expansion of the Hoboken Dual Language Charter School, the NJDOE acted with disregard for our State constitution, Supreme Court guidance, and its very own administrative code,” Dr. Toback said. “Given the negative impact of the Department’s decision on the district, the Hoboken Board of Education was left with little choice but to take action to protect the educational programs for the children attending the public schools.”
“Education Law Center supports Hoboken’s call for a comprehensive analysis by the NJDOE of the impact of charter expansion on district students,” said David Sciarra, ELC Executive Director. “The Legislature and the Court have made clear that the Department must consider student segregation and the ability to provide a thorough and efficient education before granting a charter application, renewal or expansion. This is essential to ensure charter schools improve, and not undermine, education for all Hoboken students.”

Press Contact:
Sharon Krengel
Policy and Outreach Director
skrengel@edlawcenter.org
973-624-1815, x 24

Friday, April 18, 2014

Hoboken Board of Education v. N.J. Dept. of Education, Hoboken Dual Language Charter School

On April 14, 2014 the Hoboken Board of Education filed a petition requesting the N.J. Dept of Education revisit it's recent decision approving a charter school expansion. As required, the Hoboken Dual Language Charter School was also named in the petition.

The petition supports Dr. Toback's earlier statement of impact to the Dept. of Education and requests reassessment of the approval the NJ State Commissioner of Education in accordance with NJ statutes and the New Jersey Administrative code, including a comprehensive review of the school, including but not limited to the segregative effect and funding on non-charter school students; and  

The petition seeks specific relief:

- Renewal and Expansion to be set aside until such review is completed

-  Expansion not be granted until a remedial plan has been implemented and proven effective

- Implementation of a remedial plan to address the issues of funding and segregation within the currently approved grades, if a renewal is granted.

- Any other further relief the Commissioner deems just and equitable.

Petition

Exhibit A

Exhibit B

Exhibit C pt 1

Exhibit C pt 2

Exhibit D E F G

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

EXPLORING THE SEGREGATION ISSUES BETWEEN HOBOKEN PUBLIC AND CHARTER SCHOOLS.



This tape features Hola Dual Language Charter School parents advocating on behalf of their Charter expansion in direct opposition to Dr. Toback's impact statement to the NJ Department of Education that cites as one of his top concerns;  the segregative effect that Hoboken Charter schools have on the Public District Schools.   Commissioner Cerf letter for agenda 12-10-13.pdf (2,552 KB)

Hola, HCS, and Elysian do not serve a student population that is demographically similar to the total school-aged population -- public, charter, and private students combined -- of the City of Hoboken as examined here.


Friday, March 21, 2014

11th ANNUAL JUNIOR PREP DAY!!


11th Annual
Junior Prep Day

HOBOKEN Jr. Sr. HIGH SCHOOL – SBYSP STUDENT CENTER

April 3, 2014


 Volunteers needed in the following fields to share their experiences with the Junior class as they begin to explore their own future career paths!

  • Business
  • Civil Service & Military
  • Media, Performing & Fine Arts
  • Marketing, Publishing & Social Media
  • Technology
  • Law & Criminal Justice
  • Mental Health & Social Services

First Impressions: how to impress in a job interview





VOLUNTEER REGISTRATION
Here are some important details about the event.  Read through the entire document before you reply.
Note that you will need to reply with the information requested below.

Deadline to apply to be a volunteer March 27, 2014 (walk ins are not permitted)


You are welcome to join us for the Opening and Keynote (8:30 - 9:45 am) and Lunch (12:00 - 12:45 pm)
Please provide the following information as completely and soon as possible AND include your resume or biography (you may respond by using the “copy and paste” function and send by email to cdelia@hoboken.k12.nj.us).



Name:
Profession/Career Field:
Name of business:
Mailing Address:
Phone number/email:
Preference of panel/workshop topic:
Workshop times - please indicate what time slot/s you are available
A) 9:50 - 10:30 am
B) 10:35 - 11:15 am
C) 11:20 am - 12:00 pm
D) 12:45 - 1:25 pm

E) 1:30 - 2:10 pm

Thursday, March 13, 2014

WHO ADVOCATES FOR THE PUBLIC SCHOOL CHILDREN??



I am calling on Hoboken Board of Education Trustee, Frances Rhodes Kearns to reconsider her seat after what I witnessed at last night's Hoboken BoE meeting.  

Board President, Dr. Leon Gold revealed that Mrs. Rhodes-Kearns had asked the HBoE attorney to investigate one of the district schools PTO's because they had written, printed and provided an envelope to their school's parents supporting the Superintendent's impact statement to DoE Commissioner Cerf and asking that he NOT approve the expansion of Hola Dual Language Charter School because of the negative budgetary impact it would have on their children's education.

Why would a public school trustee, Frances Rhodes Kearns want to investigate a public school PTO for advocating for their children's education while supporting their Superintendent?  Even more curious considering she publicly applauded the Hola PTO for their passionate advocacy only a few months prior.

37:37 minute mark
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2laADT9awq8

click to read about segregation
http://www.hobokenschools.com/2014_01_01_archive.html

If Frances Rhodes-Kearns wants to advocate for Charter Schools I would suggest that she relinquish her seat on the Hoboken Board of Education and ask for a seat on the unelected Hola Dual Language Charter board.  Not that Hola would need another politician in their corner they already have a very powerful board and is supported by; State Senator Brian Stack, Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer, Freeholder Anthony Romano, Hoboken Councilman and NYC public school teacher David Mello, Hoboken Councilman Ravi Bhalla, Hoboken Councilwoman Theresa Castellano, Hoboken Councilman Michael Russo, Hoboken Councilwoman Beth Mason, Hoboken Councilman Tim Occhipinti,  Assemblyman and Hola parent Carmelo Garcia.

I wish my traditional public school had that kind of fire power behind it. I wonder who is left to support our public school students?  A traditional public school district that supports a wide range of students, including the neediest children in this community, the low income and often minority students?  They certainly can't count on Frances Rhodes Kearns.
It is unfortunate that the existing State funding formula pits one set of parents against each other. A situation where one local school districts' gain is another school district's loss. But I would fully expect a sitting Board member of the Hoboken Board of Education to advocate for the students and parents of the District she was elected and sworn to support, NOT call for an investigation of her district parents!

Monday, March 10, 2014

TONIGHT HOBOKEN JNR SNR HIGH OPEN HOUSE







HOBOKEN JUNIOR SENIOR HIGH SCHOOL OPEN HOUSE: 
OCTOBER 21, 2014 7:00 – 9:00 PM

  • DID YOU KNOW THAT HJSHS OFFERS: 
  • Advanced Placement  - college level courses that use the College Board Advanced Placement curriculum and prepare students for the AP exam.
  •  Honors Sequence – A challenging college preparatory program.  Students are expected to perform above grade level with critical analysis and in-depth study. 
  • College Preparatory Sequence – Courses designed for students who are average to above average and have a strong work ethic. 
  • Virtual High School - An online program that allows students to take semester and year-long courses in subjects as varied as biological science and poetry.

AP COURSES:
Language & Composition
Literature & Composition
U.S. History
Human Geography
U.S. Government & Politics
Spanish Language
Statistics
Calculus (AB)
Biology
Chemistry
Studio Art

HONOR’S COURSES:
English 1  & 2 (World Literature)
English IV:  Historical Fiction and Informational Texts
English IV:  (Multicultural Literature)
World History
United States History I
Human Geography
Algebra 8
Algebra I & II
Geometry
Environmental Science
Biology
Art History

VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL
This year students are enrolled in the following VHS courses:  AP Physics, Genes & Diseases,  International Business, Personal Finance, Russian Language & Culture, Japanese, Sign Language, Advanced Web Design

ELECTIVES:
Media Literacy & Journalism
Shakespeare on Film
Women in Literature
Creative Writing
Contemporary American Problems
Criminal Justice
Intro to Psychology
Women in Society

FUN FACTS ABOUT HJSHS....
Swimming Pool
Drivers Ed
Mac Lab
Media TV Studio

Commercial Kitchen

Robotics - Grade 7 Projects (pdf)
Click the title above to learn about what the grade 7 Robotics students have been doing.

Hoboken High's Literary Magazine Earns National Ranking
We are two for two! Under the tutelage of advisor Sharon Malenda, Hoboken’s Student Literary Magazine “CREATE” received its second national rank of “Excellent” from the NCTE (National Council of Teachers of English). Three hundred and seventy-three schools nationwide entered this prestigious competition and Hoboken High’s magazine fared very well with only twenty-six schools earning the highest ranking. We did even better in New Jersey, where only fifteen schools ranked higher with a “Superior” award. Hoboken’s magazine “CREATE” showcases the immense talent that our small school holds. 
Click title above to read more.



http://hoboken.patch.com/groups/hoboken-redwingss-blog/p/hoboken-junior-senior-high-school-participates-in-an-hour-of-code


http://hoboken.patch.com/groups/hoboken-redwingss-blog/p/the-2013-hoboken-junior-senior-high-school-hunger-games



http://hoboken.patch.com/groups/hoboken-redwingss-blog/p/hjshs-harvard-model-congress-team-performs-admirably-in-san-francisco_319480e8




Monday, February 24, 2014

CONGRATULATIONS MONICA STROMWALL!!


This is a follow up story to TAKING THE OATH OF OFFICE, posted on January 16th.

On January 28th the Hoboken Board of Education unanimously supported their recommendation to appoint Monica Stromwall to fill the vacant board seat of newly elected 33rd district Assemblyman Carmelo Garcia.  Mrs. Stromwall will serve out the last year of Garcia's three year term and then will have to win re-election in November 2014 if she wishes to retain her seat.

Attending the interviews: Board President, Dr. Gold, Board Vice President Ruth McAllister, Board members; Irene Sobolov, Jean Marie Mitchell, Jennifer Evans, Tom Kluepfel and Peter Biancamano.  
Frances Rhodes-Kearns was absent.

Stromwall is a parent of a first grade student attending Wallace Elementary School and her youngest child who will enter the district's early childhood program in September.  She is a member of the Wallace School PTO and is a co-founder of the Wallace after school enrichment program.


I wish her great success as the newest member of the Hoboken Board of Education! 
(second seat from the right).



Friday, February 7, 2014

TONIGHT IS OPENING NIGHT!!

THE HOBOKEN HIGH SCHOOL THEATRE PROGRAM PRESENTS: 

THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE



Dates: 
Friday, February 7th at 7:30 PM
Saturday, February 8th at 2:00 PM & 7:30 PM
Sunday, February 9th at 2:00 PM

Location: 
Hoboken High School, 800 Clinton St., Hoboken, N.J.

Tickets: 
$7 - General Admission 
$5 - Students
$3 - Seniors 

"THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE is a hilarious tale of overachievers' angst chronicling the experience of six adolescent outsiders vying for the spelling championship of a lifetime. The show's Tony Award winning creative team has created the unlikeliest of hit musicals about the unlikeliest of heroes: a quirky yet charming cast of outsiders for whom a spelling bee is the one place where they can stand out and fit in at the same time."

Music and Lyrics by William Finn
Book by Rachel Sheinkin

Direction by Danielle Miller
Musical Direction by Kristen Dziuba
Choreography by Guinevere DiPiazza

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Cast (in order of appearance):

Britney Colon/Allison Feinstein - Rona Lisa Peretti
David Rivera - Chip Tolentino
Gia Santiago - Logainne Schwartzand Grubenierre
Jazmin Vergara/Danielly Colon - Leaf Coneybear
Tim Sykes - William Barfée
Rachel Feinstein/Jeane Cummins - Marcy Park
Alexandra Yoon-Hendricks - Olive Ostrovsky
Jaemison Yoon-Hendricks - VP Douglas Panch
Angel Quinones - Mitch Mahoney
Jordan Yurnet - Carl Dad