7 Hoboken BOE candidates, seeking 3 seats, square off on budgets, charter schools

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The seven Hoboken Board of Education candidates squared off on issues such as budget cuts, Hoboken High School and charter schools at the debate at the Church of Our Lady of Grace.

Presented by the Hoboken Quality of Life Coalition and moderated by Bob Bowden, all seven candidates appeared prepared for the topics that the Hoboken community asked especially on budget cuts.

While most candidates mentioned the need to cut legal spending, Sheillah Dallara and Addys Velez said they would definitely revisit the books to make sure the budget only goes towards children’s education.

Patricia Waiters proposed to cut the cost of consulting fees and outsourcing talents.

“I would start by using the educated professors and the qualified candidates right here in town.”

What created the largest stir in the audience was when Bowden asked the candidate’s opinions on the two different stories about Hoboken High School.

Alanna Kauffmann, John Madigan and Britney Montgomery brought up the issues with SAT scores, as well as the low number of graduating students form the school.

Madigan also brought up that parents do panic when they send their children to Hoboken High School.

“They need leadership there, I don’t think they have a person in charge that’s really there for every student.”

Tom Kluepfell, a current board member seeking re-election, stated: “It’s in appropriate to talk about actual personnel but I’d don’t think there is a lack of leadership at the high school.”

Waiters weighed in and added: “Hoboken High School is horrible and it needs some fixing it.”

A third interesting topic was on charter schools whether or not the candidates supported them.

Most answered that their must be a need for fair budgeting when it comes to both charter and district schools.