LETTER: ‘Leadership that Listens’ Hoboken BOE team would serve with integrity


In a letter to the editor, Hoboken resident and parent Nicole Jala explains why she feels the “Leadership that Listens” board of education slate would serve with integrity.

Photo courtesy of Nicole Jala.

Dear Hoboken Voters:

I’m writing regarding the upcoming Hoboken Board of Education (“BOE”) election, in which there are 8 candidates running for 3 open BOE Trustee seats.

Leslie, Antonio and Alex (running together as the Leadership that Listens (“LTL”) BOE slate) all have proven track records of public service within Hoboken and are the most qualified candidates for the role of Hoboken BOE Trustee.

All 3 candidates have kids in the district schools across elementary, middle school and high school and they have collectively been involved for many years as tireless advocates and in hands-on leadership and support roles within the district – including Antonio as a long-time Connors Elementary School PTO Officer and now Hoboken Middle School PTO Officer, Leslie as a Board Member of the Hoboken Public Education Foundation and advocate for literacy education advancement, and Alex as a current Trustee and part of the Board that successfully led the district through the pandemic by accomplishing the huge feat of safely offering full-time, in-person learning for the entire 2020-2021 school year for those families who desired it (in addition to a remote learning option).

The LTL candidates are incredibly knowledgeable about the responsibilities (and purview) of the Trustee position and will without a doubt perform the role with integrity and to the betterment of our entire community.

Leslie, Antonio and Alex are honest, detail-oriented, hard-working, reliable, ethical, they understand the legal and financial implications of various actions/inactions, they’re committed to carefully managing the district budget in a fiscally responsible way, they’re completely dedicated to the success of ALL children within our schools, and they’re running to serve for all the right reasons.

The Hoboken Education Association has endorsed the LTL slate, and the LTL candidates have each earned the Moms Demand Action Gun Sense candidate distinction.

The Gun Sense Candidate Distinction is especially important because it recognizes the candidates’ ongoing advocacy for gun violence prevention and their commitment to serve with gun safety in mind, and this work makes a difference.

Contrary to some misinformation being spread, the LTL candidates are NOT “anti-charter school.”

Rather, all 3 candidates very clearly understand that they have no ability to determine the proportion of Hoboken city tax levy that is paid by the Hoboken BOE to the charter schools; this is solely for the NJDOE to dictate.

They have explicitly vowed never to vote for the revoking or non-renewal of the charter of an existing charter school in Hoboken, and have publicly agreed to collaborate “shoulder to shoulder” with Hoboken charter schools to seek more money from Trenton for all of our city’s public schools.

I urge all Hoboken voters to learn more about the LTL slate (including their platform, experience and well-earned testimonials) by visiting their website here, by watching their recent live interviews on “The Pulse” (click here for Antonio’s interview and click here for the interview of Leslie & Alex), or by watching the recent BOE candidate debate (which 7 of the 8 BOE candidates participated in, including 4 of LTL’s opponents).

The BOE plays a critical role in the school district — including overseeing budget, curriculum, staffing (superintendent, teachers), equitable opportunities, facilities – and the upcoming BOE election is vitally important to the continued upward trajectory of the success of our district schools.

In order to build upon the incredible potential already being unlocked over the past several years in our public schools, I’m asking you to vote 2-3-4 for the LTL slate this election.

Leslie, Antonio and Alex each have the benefit of many years of firsthand and historical knowledge of the district – what’s already been done, what’s working, what hasn’t worked, what needs to be improved and how – all of which will enable them to hit the ground running and make an immediate, positive impact.

As with all local elections, the results of this vote will directly affect our community. Whether you have children or not and whether you rent or own your home, it’s crucial that you exercise your voting right.

There are numerous studies describing the interconnection between local schools and the wider community, including the success of local schools leading to increased community satisfaction and how local schools can positively influence local economies, public safety and resident services.

This race is likely to be very close, and every single vote matters.

The polls will be open on Tuesday, November 8th from 6am-8pm (find your polling location here)!

Your voice matters! Please vote.

Nicole Jala
Hoboken Resident and Parent

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  1. After the painful January surprise quarter billion dollar construction referendum that Hoboken voters voted down. It is very important that we have even a few independent HBoE members who will not blindly follow but question and engage all of our residents on the important school issues and not just those in a political echo chamber like they did in the last round.

    I do not see LTL capable or willing to be that change we need. Kids First will be.

  2. Vote Kids First 6-7-8 for. Better Brighter Future!

    Alex hid the 241,000,000.00 referendum from the public during last years election.

    Antonio accepted $2000 from a architect that appears in front of the zoning board he is on.

    Lessie donated $9000 to a pac that funds election deniers.

    As President Biden always says “Come on Man!”

  3. Already voted Kids First 6-7-8. Can’t support BOE members who tried to sneak in a ridiculous project AND whom have not improved higher school results. Bhalla admin endorsement of LTL told me i was right – anything he is for, I am against.

  4. If LTL had even a shred of integrity they’d have called themselves something besides Leadership That Listens.

    The most appropriate name would have been something along the lines of “A fancy new school for OUR kids, not YOURS”, because that school would have served affluent families and done NOTHING for the children of working families.

    Tomorrow- Vote 678!

  5. Of all the nasty hostile trolling My Jala has done online and in public meetings she has the nerve to come on here all sweetness and humility thar we all need to work together?
    Nope- fraud alert !
    She and her group of mean girls have no interest in listening- just screeching and trolling anyone that asks questions.
    They want to silence anyone without kids while taking their tax money to pay for their little angels.
    They don’t care about the HHA kids
    Only refer to them to get a slate elected or a useless high school to attract more rich kids and literally white Wash the HHA voices

  6. I voted for Patty Waiters and wrote in Kanye and Kyrie as her running mates. I hope they would actually come serve with her — this is the ticket that understands my struggle!

  7. “he public needs to be educated on understand Supply and Demand says the ” consultant”

    Well, hopefully the votes to supply dummy Grand will not be in demand!

    Jala is a vicious, online bully