"State evaluation scores increase" [Hoboken Reporter]- UPDATED

UPDATE- December 2, 2016

In response to Anonymous at 12:38 PM below, who wrote:
"The demographic differences [between HoLa and the Hoboken district] are minimal, if any, as has been shown again and again."
Um, ... false.  See below, from the 2014-2015 NJ-DOE School Performance Report: 

There is nothing "minimal" about the demographic differences between the two student populations.

GA would  be curious to read HoLa's Charter Application, if anyone has it

I ask because the school was proposed (as I recall) as having a 50% native Spanish speaking population and a 50% English speaking population.  In fact, only 5.5% of their student body speaks Spanish at home (same as District schools), and the majority are white and affluent.

And HoLa has no English language learners. Nada.

Hence  I am curious if the school applied as a white majority, affluent school where 5.5% of the student body spoke Spanish at home, or if it just ended up that way.  Why isn't the school recruiting more Spanish language speakers for the true immersion experience?

Just curious.


Original post

GA was delighted to see The Hoboken Reporter publish the good news that  I've been posting for weeks- remember:

Published on October 30, 2016

As you can see, the Hoboken District scores have been steadily rising since the "bottom" in 2008, the first year QSACs were given.

In 2008, under the guidance of HoLa Board member /former District Assistant Superintendent Anthony Petrosino, the district scored an abysmal 34% in Instruction and Programming (now 76%), a miserable 41% in Fiscal Management (now 95%), a sad 83% in Operations (now 100%), a lackluster 80% in Personnel (now 90%) and a pathetic 33% in Governance (now 100%).

Since 2009, progressive parents of the Hoboken District Reform movement have fought hard to 'take back' our District Schools. The pocket-liners and double-dippers have been replaced with honest, competent Board members, who've hired excellent leaders like Superintendent Christine Johnson, brought innovative programs. Reform management is attracting the next generation of parents to stay in district schools.

And, the Nov. 8  election was a referendum on Reform management of the Hoboken District; would voters choose to "keep the progress going"or go back to the way things were; Parents United backers were former "Dark Side" BoE members   Voters were pounded with relentless negative messaging about Hoboken schools from the Parents United campaign.

 GA is grateful that the voters rejected the negativity and stayed the course.

And, for those who follow Hoboken school politics, the apparent "Ground Zero" of negative messaging flows from the website of an HoLa Board Trustee.

GA is not talking about the wonderful parents, and children of HoLa.

HoLa's administration has allowed a representative of their school to disparage Hoboken District schools for years on his "education blog'- long before the school expansion  These attacks are very personal to the teachers, children and staff of Hoboken District schools.  The failure of HoLa administrators to DENOUNCE the attacks, to DISASSOCIATE themselves from him, can only be interpreted as an endorsement of his views.
In fact, the negative campaign backfired badly.  Voters rejected the messaging, the lies.

The most insidious of the Hola Trustee's attacks the one that continues to this day- is the attack on district test performance while ignoring obvious demographic differences between Hoboken district and his own.   More on that later.

GA is delighted  that our local media is reporting the advances our schools are making.

How much further we can all go if our community-at-large supports our district schools and acknowledges good works, and progress.

Thank you, Board members and Superintendent Johnson.


  1. I wonder what sort of scores HoLa would receive - especially with respect to Governance. My guess is pretty bad.

    1. HOLA just came in 8th place in the state PARCC scores for elementary.

    2. Actually they are tied for 1st.

    3. The question was accountability measures for governance issues, not student test scores. But I think you knew that right? Your board is not democratically elected by the city like the BOE is. So you get tax payer dollars, but the community gets no say about the makeup of your board of directors. Hoboken spoke loud and clear on Nov 8th and 1-2-4 swept as a result. This town will not be held hostage by your grievances over two grades.

    4. 1st in what category? among public schools and charters? among its cohort of schools with similar size population of students and socioeconomic status? among charter schools?

      Not to knock the families and kids at Hola but "1st" doesn't mean anything if the comparison is with other charter schools in the state. Socioeconomic status is strongly correlated to test scores so it's no surprise that Hola, one of the charters in NJ with lowest % of students who receive for free/reduced lunch, would score well on PARCC. When 90% of the school population are children of well-to-do Hoboken parents, then it makes you wonder whether it's the school and methods or parental privilege that drives the test scores.


    5. 1st is 1st!!!

      Hola is spiking the football like President Elec Donald Trump did last night.

    6. ...What is the percentage of hola children in grades 3, 4, and 5 who have free and reduced lunch status? What is the percentage of hola children in grades 3, 4, and 5 who have IEP's that require testing accommodations?

  2. Hola does not have to follow qsac.
    They are feed from such oversight.

    1. If they ever had financial oversight, I bet none of us would be shocked with the results.

  3. It is about time that the Reporter starts covering news with accuracy. Al Sullivan's commentary this last election season was not only abominable, but completely inaccurate. As for the "educational" blog in question, it is repugnant that this person has any platform or standing. The blog is vicious and offensive and reflects very poorly on the board he serves.

    1. if he worked at a hedge fund, he'd have blown it up b/c of all his completely wrong calls. too bad journalists aren't held to some sort of accuracy standard.

  4. "...the attack on district test performance while ignoring obvious demographic differences between Hoboken district and his own..."

    The demographic differences are minimal, if any, as has been shown again and again. Also, HoLa only receives about HALF the funding per pupil that the district gets, AND the district gets to keep the other half-ish for their own uses. SO, one could easily recognize this NOT as a demographic issue, but as a wasteful district unwilling to make innovative improvements which drove some students away and into the halls of HoLa, where they clearly continue to excel with far LESS FUNDING.

    1. You don't know what you are talking about. The demographic differences are striking. 70% (District) economically disadvantaged vs. 10% (Hola). Simple math. As for the funding, the District does not keep the difference. That is a lie many times refuted though often repeated. The difference in what the charters each get is never taxed and so does not go into anyone's pocket. The District is told how much goes to each charter and that amount is put into the tax bill. There is no extra.

      Keep saying nasty things about the District and our kids who work hard every day even though your elitist school deprives them of resources. You are a bad parent and horrible role model.

    2. Hey Anonymous 12:38, the shadiest Hoboken kleptocrats are welcomed into the hola school circle as long as they promise to drop the lawsuit. They serve on your board and emcee your events. Clean out your own criminal element baggage before barking in our neighborhood. Hey GA, what to repost about Petrosino having the chutzpah to sue the district for holding a job in Texas while supposedly serving as Assistant Superintendent in Hoboken? You are not on planet earth if you think this is commendable behavior for an "educational" leader.

    3. HoLa is what happens when a bunch of Trump supporters don't want to use a public school system that serves a significant number of kids who are minorities and economically disadvantaged. Next watch them try and start an immersion school that teaches the Queen's English.

    4. GA, my love for you is huge (Donald Trump yuge), but can you use 2015-2016 demographics, that is the year we are discussing. Hola came in tied for 1st in the 2015 - 2016 school year.

    5. Ha, good one! The most current Performance reports online are 2014-2015. There's no 2015-2016 yet, unless I missed it.

    6. Get a room, you two. This is a G rated blog lol.

      But seriously your comparison is not fair. You are comparing Elementary school demographics to High School demographics. Can you show us; Hola, Hoboken Charter, Elysian, Wallace, Calabro, and Connors. For the 2014 - 2015 year?

    7. 5:14- I've spoiled you.

      This post is about increasing district scores. It also notes the harmful impact of an HoLa board member whose blog has trashed the district for years. It also cites how the HoLa administration has done NOTHING to denounce the uncivil attacks of its board member on our community public schools.

      The NJDOE data was posted because a commenter stated that demographics between HoLa and the district schools are essentially the same. FALSE. I've posted the NJDOE data to show that is false. HJSHS is representative of the district school demographic.

      As for Elysian and Hoboken charters, neither attack Hoboken district schools, neither canoodle with scumbags, neither have scumbags on their boards, neither try to hijack our school board by running campaigns against our board members, neither coordinate with a sitting board member to unseat competent, trusted parents on our board, neither send selected obnoxious persons to meeting to attack our children's test scores and performance. Both charters peacefully coexist with the district. Neither have never tried to tear us down. Hence, Elysian and Hoboken Charter are not in this discussion.

      Here is the link for you to look up the data yourself since you have the time: https://homeroom5.doe.state.nj.us/pr/

    8. I think it's actually someone in Austin who has the problem! It's really illuminating when hola supporters drag down Elysian and Hoboken Charter because the talking point that "all charter schools are under threat" is one of the most spurious claims coming from this camp. Elysian and Hoboken Charter simply know how to follow the right protocols for submitting their paperwork for renewal.

    9. 7:25- Try the Netherlands. The Austin Truth-Twister comes in on a proxy from the Netherlands. What a jackass.

    10. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    11. Why did you delete the numbers from the web site you referenced. Because they do not prove your point?

    12. 12:30- you are answering a question that wasn't asked, and Elysian /Hoboken Charter schools/Brandt pre-k are not relevant to the PARCC discussion of the elementary grades of the Hoboken district and those of HoLa. I will post the performance reports directly from the NJDOE.

    13. 1:14- No. I am not available to play with the Austin/Netherlands Truth Twister & co. I will post the performance reports later. Why don't you enjoy the day?

    14. Hola receives the same funding as the district students they get 90% of the student aid based on their demographics.
      if base rate is is 14k, hola would get $13,860. per student. If they have spec ed students they get the full aid for that student.
      They dont get some aid because it isnt applicable to their costs: eg: 90% of the tranportation costs, because the district pays for transp. , they dont get school choice aid because that is aid for students choosing to attend the district school from another district, most charters dont get adjustment aid because adjustment aid is a hold harmless aid to protect districts who would have been underfunded from 2008 levels. Charters can never be underfunded and infact, the state since christie has been in office actually configured amounts per pupil above the legal amount allowable. In hoboken's case the state took an additional 800k above the legal limit from the district and gave it to the hoboken charter schools
      Here is an example of k-12 state aid data for this year:
      K-12 2015-2016 Total Aid: $10,656,560
      Equalization Aid: $0
      Education Adequacy Aid: $0
      Choice Aid: $2,645,874
      Transportation Aid: $124,453
      Special Education Aid: $1,492,059
      Security Aid: $727,825
      Under Adequacy Aid: $0
      Supplemental Enrollment Growth Aid: $0
      PARCC Readiness Aid: $24,610
      Per Pupil Growth Aid: $24,610
      Adjustment Aid: $5,362,105
      Additional Adjustment Aid: $255,024
      Professional Learning Community Aid: $25,960
      Host District Support Aid: $0
      K-12 2016-2017 Total Aid: $10,682,520
      One Year Aid Change: $25,960
      % Aid Change: 0.20%

      When the SFRA was enacted in 2008, legislators included adjustment aid to prevent a sudden drop in funding to districts receiving less state aid under the new formula. Adjustment aid was intended to hold districts harmless at pre-SFRA state aid levels. Districts received adjustment aid if their 2008-09 SFRA state aid allocation was less than their state aid level in 2007-08, the year prior to implementation of the new formula.

  5. I agree with with 12:50, I feel really bad for the teachers, and administrators in the Hoboken Board of Education, they try their best to educate the less fortunate and economically disadvantage. They just can't get thought to them. Most of those kids probably come from broken homes or parents that are probably recovering from drug addictions.

  6. Unlike hola, the district is on its way to becoming far more integrated of an institution thanks to Superintendent Johnson. Enrollment is growing and families are staying. Unlike what anonymous 12:38 spews, innovative programs have been put in place. They will bear fruit and help test scores rise. Stick to STEM research, Petrosino.

  7. I just heard from a mom that Hola is now planning on applying for the 9th thur 12th grade. A Hola high school like Hoboken Charter. She said they are almost guaranteed to be approved since they came in first in the PARCC exam, and that the current High School was deemed a High School in need of improvement and nobody wants to send their childen there (not even the elected board of education members or city council members).

    1. You've got an active imagination. Once the Trenton fatso is gone, the environment at the NJ-DOE will be much different under a Gov. Phil Murphy. If you didn't know, Phil is a huge advocate for public education, not so much for charters. Expect Phil to clean house.

    2. Brietbart news alert

    3. Not gonna happen. They can definitely try. But when the state constitutional requirement is not worsening segregation of district schools (and that's MOST obvious at the high school level) then it doesn't matter what Hola's PARCC scores are. Scores do not trump the State constitution!

      Also... Hola parents need to get some oversight of their Board members and better legal counsel. Their board misfiled the expansion application in the first place by submitting their paperwork to the wrong officer and trying to squeak the expansion request through without the appropriate paperwork. Hopefully they learn from their mistakes when they try to apply for a high school as well and submit the appropriate documentation. Good luck!

    4. Anon 3:29 your comment is in need of improvement. Have a seat dear.

    5. Someone is smoking the wacky weed. Any attempt to expand HoLa will get litigated long enough that Christie is out of office before it happens. I'd bet money that the new governor - a Democrat shoots it down permanently.

  8. Speaking of fake and completely fabricated news... Thanks for squatting on this board. We see you and can easily infer who had the gall to post this garbage.

  9. It's no surprise white affluent kids test well. How come HoLa's Hispanic enrollment is so low? They cant be trying real hard. There are plenty of Spanish speaking households in wards 4, 5, 2. Mix it up demographically with more affluent kids and the public school test scores will be competitive with hola.

    1. How can we get more public information about how the first year of the weighted lottery went? Must have been very successful if the demographics are all now precisely the same!!!

    2. Thats easy:
      They went from 11% econ dis to 12% econ dis
      NO SIGNIFICANT change.

      Probably the reason they (charter community) proposed a change of wording in the regs: from school aged district of residence comparison to community comparison. Seems they'd like to include private school students in their financial comps of student demographics.

      re: the hs expansion rumor:
      Probably explains this requested change too:
      An amendment is proposed to add the term “satellite campus.” Allowing charter schools to
      amend their charters to open a satellite campus, in a district with a priority school or in a former
      Abbott District as of July 1, 2012, will enable proven, high quality charter schools to expand their
      capacity to serve additional students by operating an additional facility.

      The charter orgs have basically made a wish list and the state boe is ready to change and reqrite the regs so they can expand with even less oversight.
      its quite astoudning actually and no on eknows its happening. That's just how they like it.
      2nd reading of new regs will be Dec 7th if anyone wants to attend.

  10. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  11. You need to get a life. You've been spamming this thread all day, now you spew bile at the Hoboken district. Go take your dump elsewhere.

  12. http://www.state.nj.us/education/pr/1415/80/806036921.pdf
    Interestingly enough- 38% of their 3rd grade hispanic students passed while 80% of their white students passed
    If the school is responsible for test scores, why doesnt every child in that school get the same score and why the stark difference?
    Also, districts list their lower socio-economic status pass rates. Hola doesnt have anything listed for lower ses pass rates. That indicates they dont have enough students in that subgroup to list their scores, how is that similar to the district?

    Interesting thing, right?


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