Hoboken Public School District
School Community Message
Over the past three months, we have had to make major changes in our lives. As adults, it's been difficult for everyone. We would be hard pressed to find someone who has not experienced anxiety, fear and loss of some sort. We have the advantage of years to help us process the wide range of emotions that we feel. Children do not have that advantage. As a result, it is critical that we keep all lines of communication open so that children of all ages are comfortable asking questions, laughing or even crying.
On top of the pandemic, the nation has witnessed the tragic loss of George Floyd. While our eyes have seen the news reports and live footage, our hearts are broken and we are angry. We have watched communities throughout each day on television protesting the actions that took the life of Mr. Floyd in Minneapolis and systemic racism. Our students are watching too. Some may be scared. Others may be confused. Many are angry. The academic and social well being of our students is a primary function. However, social justice and the elimination of systemic racism is a moral imperative.
Hoboken is a beautifully diverse community, as is our public school district. In each of our classrooms, our students push us to do better, not only for each of them but also for our community. They inspire us each and every day. The events that unfolded in Minneapolis are a reminder that we must take a stand both on a micro and a macro level. The life of Mr. George Floyd cannot be forgotten or ignored. It must spur large scale societal actions to protect the lives of all human beings. It must also cause every institution, big or small, to examine its own practices and policies in order to continuously improve. This includes our district. Each and every child and staff member must feel that their life, words and feelings are as important as the individual standing to their left or right. If that is not how one or more of our school community members are feeling, we must foster dialogues to get at those roots so that each can flourish.
Within our school community, we will continue to strive to gain an even deeper understanding and appreciation for one another, and we can do that through conversations as well as actions. Learning, reflecting and having courageous conversations can lead us to a more equitable society and enrich our school community.
The Hoboken Public School District, has a plethora of resources to help bring about those conversations and to continue the work that we are currently doing with the NAACP, the Amistad Commission, the New Jersey Association of Black Educators, the North Jersey Consortium of Excellence and Equity and Kean University's Council on Global Education and Citizenship. Our advisors, under the leadership of Dr. Tamika Pollins (Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion), Mr. Christopher Munoz (Coordinator of Student Activities) and Mr. Steve Dickerson (Vice Principal) have distributed resources to assist school administrators, staff members and students in order to process their feelings. A student group from both Hoboken and Weehawken High School's Black Student Union/African American Club will be virtually coming together to discuss mental wellness, social justice and empowerment so that they may also provide support to their peers. Dr. Pollins will be hosting conversations with student groups, and she and I will be facilitating conversations with families.
As a school district, we will continue to amplify and strengthen our efforts to ensure equity, inclusion and respect for students and staff of every race and culture. As parents and guardians, you may find the resources below helpful as you begin or continue to engage in conversations at home:
In closing, we stand firmly with all human beings who are committed to eliminating racism in all forms.
Dr. Christine Johnson, Superintendent of Schools
Dr. Tamika Pollins, Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
Hoboken Public Schools - A District Dedicated to Rigor, Relevance, and Relationships
The Hoboken Public School District will be recognized as a premier educational choice and widely known as a best-practice model for academic growth, high quality instruction, innovative and equitable programs, engagement, facilities and personalized pathways that are essential for college, career and life-preparedness in our ever-changing, interconnected global society.
The Hoboken Public School District will prepare confident and resilient graduates who value academic achievement, embrace challenge, honor diversity, appreciate collaboration, and respectfully contribute to their local and wider communities.
Our District Goals
The Hoboken Public School District will implement a rigorous, relevant and responsive curriculum that meets the needs of all students, fosters personalized pathways for learning, and ensures continuous academic growth.
The Hoboken Public School District will support its diverse staff in professional growth, encourage them to serve as role models, and empower them to provide the highest quality of instruction for our students.
The Hoboken Public School District will develop and implement unique and innovative programs that promote global learning, ensure equitable access, and foster the social, emotional and academic growth of each student.
The Hoboken Public School District will engage and communicate with families and the wider community to bridge understanding and advance partnerships.
The Hoboken Public School District will operate well-maintained and safe facilities that respond to our growing student enrollment, support our academic and co-curricular programs, and promote pride across the city.