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Kids First Changes Ticket for Election; Minutillo Not Running for School Board

School Board member Theresa Minutillo has decided not to seek another term.

Kids First announced its new slate for the School Board elections in November on Monday morning, according to a press release from school board member Ruth McAllister. 

Tom Kluepfel—one of the founders of the Elysian Charter School and the parent of a Hoboken High student—will run on the Kids First ticket. 

Minutillo, whose term was also up and , will not seek another term. 

As of June, Kluepfel was planning to run independently.

Now, he has been added to the Kids First ticket. 

"Although I was saddened to hear that long time friend and colleague Theresa Minutillo decided not to seek re-election, I fully understand the need for her to take this time and focus on her family and career," McAllister wrote. "I certainly appreciate her past efforts and the positive impact she had on the Hoboken Public Schools."

Former school board member Jean Marie Mitchell, who served a one year term before not being re-elected last year, will also be running on the Kids First slate. 

4thwarder August 14, 2012 at 06:26 PM
Funny how minutillo announces not to run right after the blogger lawsuit hits. Coincidence or is someone a blogger and fearful about getting nailed for it?
Hoboken Answer August 14, 2012 at 07:29 PM
Gosh some people still don't know. Beth Mason's online internet blogging team is some people's life. It's not a real life, it's actually a scummy life. One where you sign off on legal action that is total nonsense to give your desperate boss some hope the Feds ain't closing in. But they are.
puzzledone August 14, 2012 at 07:29 PM
Given the quality of your posts...and that you are posting as "redwing forever", it appears that you went to HHS before Kids First came in. As such, you present yourself as a prime example of the failings of the prior administration, who appear to have been more concerned with steak dinners than our students.
Csp August 14, 2012 at 10:06 PM
Kids First will prevail November 6! Tom is a hard working professional that understands that when you are a member of the BoE you work in the best interest of the district students. Not Charters. District schools. Theresa has a daughter in the district and is very happy with the progress the BoE has made. 6.5 years is a long run for a Volunteer who has put her time in. She believes in the district and will continue to support the Board. Theresa is not going anywhere. Many past board members have left and haven't looked back. Those that have left and do not have children in the district but attend meetings are solely there to create friction. You know who you are. I applaud all the hard work that Theresa Minutillo has put into improving the districting -- insuring that students that attend the schools are residents, insuring teachers are certified, insuring that employees who are being paid are actually showing up to work, negotiating fair contracts, hiring an astute superintendant, hiring top legal council and business administration, planning for capital improvements, stabilizing the budget, creating a successful Senior Prep day and much more. Theresa Minutillo has always put the KIDS FIRST and been very mindful of the taxpayers of this town. As a taxpayer and parent I applaud her. Again, thank you Theresa for all your hard work!
demosthenes August 14, 2012 at 10:06 PM
The only bloggers likely to have their identities revealed as a result of Bejardi's lawsuit are Prosbus and Curiousgal. I wonder if the Bejardis' lawyers have remembered to tell them that? Discovery is a glorious thing - sometimes less intelligent litigants forget its a two way street. Based on Bejardi's pontifications at City Council meetings he works very hard at trying to appear intelligent but in my opinion doesn't seem to actually be very intelligent. That's probably why people thought he might be Prosbus whose writing displays the same tendencies. It certainly wouldn't be surprising for him to choose an ill advised litigation strategy that led to his self destruction due to his failure to consider the level of exposure that he and his allies faced as a result of his foolish choices.
CuriousGal August 15, 2012 at 12:23 AM
Reformerus_Gianticus- No hatred for Minutillo. Let's address your "concerns" about my points. 1) Scores going down due to "more students taking the test"- This is categorically false. Every student must take the HSPT (High School Proficiency Test) before graduating. Granted, some are granted "waivers" but the % of waivers granted has gone UP not down under KIDS FIRST. Bonus: SAT scores in HHS for the most current reporting are Verbal (380) and Math (385). In 2007 those scores were Verbal (379) and Math (408). Indicating no change and a slight decrease over the period of KIDS FIRST. 2) Your claim that "Charter Schools are taking higher performing students out of the district schools."-- Charter schools work on a lottery system for enrollment- therefore all parents/students are eligible to participate. The high scores may be attributable to many things but charter school access is available equally to all children in the city. Enrollment in Hoboken's Charter's, parochial and private schools are booming due to the current state of the KIDS FIRST school system. 3) "Minutillo not against Hola"-- Minutillo's vote against the Hola Program and statements against it are well documented in the media and press. At the end of the day, Theresa Minutillo and the KIDS FIRST board members' decision not to have the HOLA program in the public schools (rather than a Charter) will cost the district hundreds of students and millions of dollars.
lorraine morgan August 15, 2012 at 11:54 AM
OH MY, 4thwarder you may be onto something. TM and RM have been unusually silent at recent board meetings. So out of character for both when you compare to prior meetings
I am Spartacus August 15, 2012 at 12:23 PM
demosthenes; very interesting point. I hadn't thought of that but it makes sense. In a libel case, you do have to prove what someone says is false. The only way to prove that is to positively identify who posts as curiousgal and probus, identify their IP addresses, attribute all their old posts to that IP address and probably also unmask all the other screen IDs that person and the plaintiffs use in addition to that. And did you notice, the one set of commenters that were not mentioned as needing to be subpenaed are Curiousgal and Probus? That suggests Lane & Kim know exactly who uses those names. And the constant hints about litigation from those SNs suggest they know Lane & Kim so well that you would almost think they all share the same toothbrushes.
puzzledone August 15, 2012 at 01:16 PM
demo, I agree completely. It is very interesting to me that at least 4 uninvolved parties (Beth Mason, Prosbus, CuriousGal, and ZB) all made significant references to this lawsuit before it was filed, showing that they were likely in some contact with the Bajardis, and purely as a matter of speculation, potentially planning it with them. It doesn't make sense to go after the bloggers against you, but not those who continuously stir the pot, trying to rile up insults directed towards you.
Redwing forever August 15, 2012 at 01:53 PM
Csp, you say Theresa Minutillo is insuring that employees who are being paid are actually showing up to work, well this year in Hoboken high a special ed teacher did not go to class 78 days yes 78 days and she was paid! where does Kids first stand on this for the special kids. Why is this Teacher still have a job in hoboken did she pay the money back that she was paid.
Csp August 15, 2012 at 02:21 PM
Lorraine u couldn't be more off base. It's the summer and there was no July Board meeting.
Scott M. Siegel August 15, 2012 at 03:16 PM
Met Tom last night for the first time. Highly impressed. Glad to see Jean Marie back on the ballot.Go Kids First!
Journey August 15, 2012 at 04:17 PM
Let's see, what happens when you start testing students that your predecessor ignored? Especially if they feared those students might have lowered the scores.
gettheledout44 August 15, 2012 at 04:32 PM
Theresa minutillo and kf FIRED paula Ohaus!!! on totally fabricated charges. That's why she's not running again. she knows that she would have to defend one of the stupidest decisions of her life. if she really wanted to put kids first, she would have saved paula and mrs. hillenbrand, another great teacher. too bad TM's quitting. i was looking forward to the debate. guess ruth macallister is left holding that smelly bag. and what about tom kluepfel? does he agree that paula was the biggest problem at hhs and had to be fired? or is he equally klueless? mitchell is just a head nodder so who cares what she "thinks"
poopie August 15, 2012 at 05:51 PM
Paula fired herself. How many times did she again? Then she changed her mind and decided she wanted tenure and not to do the theater program job at all. What a bunch of poop. We all got tired of her.
Scott M. Siegel August 15, 2012 at 05:57 PM
Let's see: Olhaus not being a teacher for many years contrary to state law and don't forget having sleepovers with students. PB etal said the theater division would end yet it is still thriving.
CuriousGal August 15, 2012 at 06:18 PM
Journey- Under Kids First the high school SAT scores are : 2011 SAT VERBAL HHS: 380 DFG: 488 State: 494 SAT MATH HHS: 385 DFG: 509 State: 518 AND...the high school has the 3rd lowest graduation rate in Hudson County (and below average state wide). This is after being in full control for 3 years..... stop with the excuses and accept responsibility for the dismal state of the schools under the watch of Kids First.
CuriousGal August 15, 2012 at 06:21 PM
You're easily impressed Scotty...and you are an apologist for the dismal stewardship KIDS FIRST has done for the Hoboken public schools. But thanks for your opinion--
tburns August 15, 2012 at 10:03 PM
With Minutillo not around to call and email the attorney - will the legal fees finally go down?
Csp August 15, 2012 at 10:27 PM
RF - I can not respond to your question because I don't believe what you stated is factual. Be careful.
Journey August 15, 2012 at 10:33 PM
Take a look at page 4. http://www.hoboken.k12.nj.us/hoboken/Recent%20News/Summer%202012%20Newsletter.pdf
franksinatra August 15, 2012 at 11:00 PM
Scott -- since libel is in the air these days--as well as endless allegations nationwide of teachers sleeping with students--let me point out that the way you've said this--"having sleepovers with students"--can certainly be construed as libel. You know as well as anyone that she had the district's complete permission for the overnight stays at her house, every student had a parent sign a permission form and the district even provided a bus to take the kids there. What's lost in all this is that not one -- NOT ONE -- of Toback's charges against Paula held up. There was no proof of any of them and in the end Toback admitted as much in his long memo about the case that Claire posted last year. Hoboken had one of the best theater programs in the state, if not the country, and now we have a mediocre one. Minutillo's main legacy will be ruining one of the best things about the high school and the town--all because KF Board Chairman Rose Markel wanted to do a favor for her BFF Judy Burrell. Burrell was insanely jealous of all the honors and kudos Paula got and infected Markel and Minutillo with that hate. Of course Burrell hated Paula--Paula worked endless hours putting on incredible shows and Burrell skipped 78 days of class this year and who knows how many in past years. And Minutillo, along with McAllister, that traitor Sobolov and that loudmouth Leon Gold went along. Good luck, Tom, defending all of this.
franksinatra August 15, 2012 at 11:28 PM
Regarding Minutillo--it's easy to say she's quitting because she was going to lose in November. But it probably has more to with not being able to live with herself any longer. Unlike many people in town, I do think she was really was a reformer when she started KF and in her first term. Her heart was in the right place. But she and Michael Lenz made the fatal mistake of putting Rose Markel on the ticket and once KF had the majority, Markel took over. Sullivan and Gilliard soon quit KF and Markel thoroughly dominated the other KF members. Markel, as a b&r, had virtually no interest in reform and has rarely voted differently than the b&r bloc on the board. And when KF made another mistake and added another b&r to the mix, Sobolov, t was like sending in reinforcements for the anti-reform troops. Minutillo and the other newcomers were outmatched and any ideas for fixing the schools went out the window. She knows she's been a failure. She knows that all of the things she campaigned on--reducing the bloat in the union contracts, cutting taxes, raising test scores by hiring a good superintendent and good principals, adding more programs (instead of chopping programs), etc.--she failed to do. The schools got worse and taxes went up with KF in control. Her spirit is broken. Did she set out to fire two of our best teachers? did she set out to leave the waste untouched and let taxes rise? was she planning to sign massive pay hikes for the staff? no, but that's how it turned out.
Redwing forever August 16, 2012 at 02:50 PM
Csp it did happen parents were notifed, special needs Teacher in Hoboken high did not go to her class 78 days so if we all care about kids in need than plaese say there needs to be something done about a teacher who does not work and gets paid. its about kids
Csp August 17, 2012 at 01:07 PM
Seriously Tburns? How about you take up the frivolous law suit your friend, and Asst. BA, Anthony Petrocino cost the district? Recall that he alledgedly double dipping -- working in TX and for the District... I believe he LOST and had to PAY BACK the district. The Attorney the Board hired, Vito Gagliardi, is meticulous, fast-thinking, ethical, courteous, well-organized, brilliant, formidable, wise and witty. Because of the above, many of the old guard thieves and former board members fear his abilities and rightly so.
Csp August 17, 2012 at 01:19 PM
So basically your saying because Rose and Irene have lived here all their lives that they should not be on the school board? They have added value because of what they know - They have also bridged the gab between the old and new. They are volunteers -- they do not do it for any other reason then to improve the city of Hoboken - Clearly they love the town - they never left, and many of us do also. I don't see how anyone can equate Volunteerism to Failure. Again, Theresa Minutillo leaves the district having made many incredible, selfless decisions. Hiring Vito Gagliardi and Mr. Davis was by far one of her best! Too very fast thinking, formidable, ethical and meticulous hires! Something the district has never had!
franksinatra August 17, 2012 at 05:50 PM
No, of course I'm not saying that. Everyone has a right to run for and serve on the school board. And of course their knowledge from having always lived here can be valuable. My point is, people voting for KF expecting wholesale reforms--a real push for excellence in the schools, a real focus on cutting and redeploying the huge amount of wasted money in the budget--were always going to be disappointed because Rose and Irene were never going to favor that. Just look at their votes: Rose and Irene virtually never vote for reform when there's a straight-up reform/no reform vote, from what I can see. For Rose, signing on to the dramatic changes that the district needs would mean acknowledging that the schools her kids went through had serious problems. She's not going to admit that. She doesn't have the objectivity, the distance to make the tough decisions. And unfortunately for Hoboken, Rose has the strongest personality on the board--she dominates the board and Theresa and the rest of KF quickly learned not to take her on. So the reform agenda that Theresa ran on was dead and the schools steadily got worse under KF control. As for Theresa, Vito seems to be a good hire but I'd doublecheck on whether she had much to do with that. And Davis was absolutely terrible. At the meetings I saw he was constantly making mistakes, getting numbers mixed up. He certainly didn't help with cutting waste. We could've done much better. But that wasn't Theresa either--Carter brought him in.
lorraine morgan August 31, 2012 at 01:53 PM
let me rephrase that: For TM & RM to be unusually silent at ANY BOE MEETING is so out of character for both.
lorraine morgan August 31, 2012 at 02:08 PM
Oh My ! As a Parent, I do not appreciate Scott's sleepover statement. I believed Mr. Siegel to be a fair person. He really should ask KidsFirst Bd. Member Irene Sobolov about those Parent approved and Parent Attended Sleepovers . Ms. Ohaus was gracious enough to welcome Irene into her home also.
Hobbs August 31, 2012 at 02:52 PM
The OLD GUARD politicos are desperate to regain control of Hoboken's BOE. That should never be allowed to happen. Knowing that they themselves are too politicaly toxic to the electorate in Hoboken they have enlisted fronts who if elected will do their bidding. The voters have seen those backed bt the same OLD GUARD politicos who claimed to be "independent" are anything but.

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