Sunday, April 10, 2011

Jean Marie Mitchell for Hoboken School Board- Editorial

Jean Marie Mitchell sent this editorial in for this weekend. She is running for re-election to the Hoboken School Board as part of the Kids Fist Slate.....

I am Jean Marie Mitchell and am running for reelection to the Hoboken Board of Education for a three-year term. I am presently an incumbent elected last April for a one-year term. It has been an absolute honor to serve this year, and I request your support to continue the positive momentum of progress in our Hoboken public school district.

Some of the progress noted this past year has been to strengthen the leadership in the district. I was proud to be on the presiding board to hire our new superintendent, Dr. Mark Toback. I was also delighted to be a part of approval process in hiring our new principal at Connors School, Ms. Laurinda Pereira. There is 30% new teaching staff at Connors School and with the new leader at the helm, the school is certainly part of that positive momentum of progress.

As a single parent homeowner and taxpayer, I am keenly aware of keeping costs in control. This year we were able to keep the tax levy flat for the second year in a row. The Hoboken school taxes today are set at the minimum allowed by law. In previous years, school taxes were consistently increased by a maximum of 4% each year. It is empowering to be associated with the team who reversed that trend.

As a board member, I do not have any power as an individual until I am up on that dais to VOTE. What particularly sets me apart from my other incumbent candidates is that I exercise that vote. Vote - that is the only real power of a board member. You can be extremely popular and charismatic, but if you are not there to discuss and vote on the issues, the duties as a board member are seriously compromised. I showed up. I stayed there. I did not miss a Board meeting this year. I also serve as chair of the Facilities/Transportation/Technology Committee. I have never missed a meeting. I have taken vacation days to attend other Board committee meetings such as Governance and Athletics. During the superintendent search process, I took more vacation time to travel to Sussex County Vocational School to continue the interview process with Dr. Mark Toback.

As you can see, I have a proven record as a dedicated board member and take that position very seriously. As a school parent, I am active with the Hoboken High School and consistently attend PTO meetings this school year.

I am a proud parent to my son, Andrew, who attends Hoboken High School in the eighth grade. I have been an active parent in this district since arriving in Hoboken in 2002 and enrolled my son into Kindergarten at Calabro. My son’s school experience in Hoboken has spanned Calabro, Connors, and Hoboken High Schools. As a member of the Kids First team, I am thrilled to be flanked by fellow candidates, Steven Feinstein and Cliff Godfrey. Please come out and vote on Wednesday, April 27 for the Hoboken Board of Education. Our Kids First ticket is 3-4-5. Please exercise your power as a Hoboken citizen and VOTE! Thank you for your time.

Jean Marie Mitchell
Hoboken Board of Education Trustee ◦