LETTER: I’m voting ‘Kids First’ in Hoboken BOE race to hold ‘entrenched’ board accountable


In a letter to the editor, retired teacher and Hoboken resident Mary Beth Yakoubian says she’s voting “Kids First” in the board of education race since they “are not beholden to the current entrenched school board.”

The Kids First Hoboken Board of Education slate, from left to right: Donna Magen, Pavel Sokolov, and Cindy Wiegand. Photo courtesy of the Kids First campaign.

Dear Editor,

No Kids in the school system? Your vote is just as important!

Kids already grown? Haven’t started a family yet? Not planning on having children? BOE elections impact all residents, those with children in the school system as well as all residents who pay rent and taxes.

The BOE makes decisions that impact our students and decisions that impact our tax dollars. We all fund the school system and we should all have a voice in electing the board that has financial oversight of our community dollars.

I’m a lifelong Democrat and a 30-plus year resident of Hoboken. I’m also a retired NYC teacher who knows very well how critically important a quality education is for kids’ lifetime prospects.

I want to help boost the success of Hoboken High School, where the education kids receive will properly prepare them for college and careers.

While test scores are not the full story, they are a significant factor that prospective families consider when making decisions for their children.

How might we achieve upward change in test scores and college readiness? NOT by building an amenity-rich building in the dead of winter, through an election process intended to suppress voter turnout and subvert democracy.

Instead, we should invest funds in enhanced and innovative teaching methods and academic-focused support programs.

We should provide more academic after school and summer programs and allocate funds for additional teaching assistants who can provide hands-on support to help struggling students.

The three independent “Kids First” candidates are not beholden to the current entrenched school board.

I’ll be voting for Pavel Sokolov, Cindy Wiegand, and Donna Magen to shake up the Hoboken Board of Education, and I hope you will too.

Mary Beth Yakoubian
Hoboken resident

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  1. …can’t you find a more constructive way of working out your anger over the referendum than endorsing rightwing, anti-teachers union, partisan extremists and/or incompetents for Hoboken’s school board?

    Did you know that the NJEA has never endorsed a slate of Hoboken candidates until now? I’ll take the HEA (Hoboken’s NJEA) endorsement for LTL over your’s any day.

    Based on the debate performances, the choice is clear:


    • That’s not true
      HEA endorsed not the NJEA
      Also the HEA has endorsed every BOE race that the former Russo administration supported

      Stop lying or retake history

  2. Another Hoboken resident tired of LTL/ and the HBOE’s hatred for people without kids
    Tired of the coded rhetoric by LTL and their MAGA supporters like Blanos and Clark? Seems that this woman was here, mary Beth a known Bhalla loyal supporter has broken from them in this election because of the outward and open HATRED of anyone without kids. ( Single people, disabled folks, women who can’t conceive, LGBTQ ) many in those groups wanted kids but cant or chose not to for deeply personal reasons. But Leadership that listens says you should not have a voice, their militant honor guard of FB and twitter mom trolls are slamming anyone without kids. Some openly post the election should only be for parents. LTL is the most elitist white leaning group I have ever witnessed
    They pretend to be inclusive, but the arent at all. As a Black woman I find them all a few states shy of Jim Crow Country. Bet they watch Tucker Carlson at night and Fox and friend in the am before they head to starbucks where they feign liberal ideas to win over Bhalla.