Assemblyman: Why were so many kids waitlisted in Hoboken pre-K classes?
Jul 26, 2013 | 5933 views | 7 7 comments | 68 68 recommendations | email to a friend | print
HOBOKEN -- As reported here last month, many parents were surprised when their 3-year-olds were wait-listed in the Hoboken school district for the free pre-school programs for this coming fall. Hoboken is an urban Abbott "special needs" district and gets special funding for free pre-K education.

Apparently, more parents than usual received wait list notices this year than in years past. Superintendent Mark Toback has said that there was an extra classroom added this year, but still, the district couldn't keep up with the demand of a larger number of applicants this year.

Assemblyman Ruben Ramos, who is running for mayor against Mayor Dawn Zimmer in November, issued a press release Friday saying the news was "unacceptable."

The release says: "According to a report by the Education Law Center, about 70 parents received notice that their children have been put on a wait-list. A state Supreme Court ruling requires that Hoboken and 30 other 'Abbott' districts must provide pre-k for each eligible applicant."

Ramos said, "Early childhood education is essential for young children to succeed in their future education. That’s why I have been working in the Assembly to make sure the state of New Jersey meets its annual obligation to place every eligible child into a free, public pre-k program every September. The news that parents are being told there isn’t room for their children is unacceptable and needs to be addressed immediately and with urgency.”

Ramos added, “It seems like the Department of Education and the Hoboken School District Superintendent are engaged in a vigorous round of playing the blame game. I will do my best to work with the Department of Education to explore any solutions that could be pursued from my Assembly office. In the meantime, it is my sincere hope that the Hoboken School District drops its stance that in the six weeks between now and the first day of school that 70 spots will open for the families on the wait list.”

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July 28, 2013
Let's suspend judgment until we will see when Zimmer's campaign issues releases, whether they will post them or not. If her campaign is not giving out releases as yet, then that is why they are not posting them. Nixle is already covered. If the reporter posted this to stir controversy, we gave them that wish.
July 28, 2013
So you're saying press releases issued by political campaigns are covered immediately and included as briefs in the print edition because anything said by or on behalf of a political campaign is by definition more newsworthy than information put out by official government sources? So City releases are ignored, but the HR will cover Zimmer's political propaganda as news the way they cover Ramos's now if and when she starts putting some out?

I truly hope that you meant that as a joke and that you don't speak for the HR editorial staff. If they choose to explain the issues raised by their seemingly unbalanced editorial choices I'm sure they're smart enough to come up with a better rationale than that.
July 27, 2013
"Meanwhile press releases from the Mayor's office that I receive on nixle and see posted on other sites like MSV regularly go completely uncovered here."

I would guess You mean the releases you send out to them.

July 27, 2013
An interesting pattern appears to be emerging on this website. Mr. Ramos's press releases are covered without regard to the newsworthiness of their content and appear to be covered pretty much immediately.

Meanwhile press releases from the Mayor's office that I receive on nixle and see posted on other sites like MSV regularly go completely uncovered here.

In general I think the HR's coverage in recent months, since Dean came on board, has been extraordinarily fair and balanced, but the odd disparity in coverage of materials put out by Mr. Ramos vs the Mayor is pretty glaring.

ealnuv october
July 27, 2013
Perhaps Ruben should go back to grammar school and learn how to count without using his fingers and toes. I spoke to a mom recently and there was an unexpected huge increase in Pre-K class needs. I don't remember Ruben taking out his crystal ball and calling for an expansion prior to the registration period.
July 27, 2013
Shame on the hudson reporter for posting such an article! Anyone involved with the pre k program knows it has always been a lottery as there is only so much state funding for Hoboken. Ramos is trying to make the school super the bad guy where Ramos knows the super has no control over the situation. The super cannot go back to the state for more funding and Hoboken cannot provide more funding for the program as it is a state run program not city. Shame on Ramos for trying to misinform those parents whose children didn't get into the program. The real issue here (if Ramos would get his head out of his butt) is that this program should only be free to those who cannot afford it based on their overall income reported on their tax return. There are many people who use this program who can afford to contribute some money accordingly. If the state would change the system in that regard there would be more slots available for those who cannot afford private schooling. Of course this begs the question what the hell has Ramos been doing the last few years as assemblyman that he had not previously addressed the issue? Also what happened that Brian stack would not support him for state assemblyman again this year so in essence he could not run for re-election? In essence you lost your job? Guess you did something wrong? Maybe you cold explain what happened instead of pointing fingers at others?
July 27, 2013
This voter is wondering why Assembly Ramos is giving up his seat in order to run a sloppy negative campaign for mayor.

All Ramos has done is take pot shots at the mayor and offer as his agenda everything Zimmer is already working on.

That said...a long time ago I inquired of the HR about their lack of 'investigative' reporting and was informed that the HR doesn't have the resources for that type of journalism.

The HR style of journalism is to publish press releases as long as they don't offend their advertisers (you know who in particular).