Anton J. Massopust

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Anton J. Massopust
Anton J. Massopust.jpg
Perth Amboy Board of Education, At-large
Former member
Term ends
November 2013
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 5, 2013
Next generalNovember 4, 2014
AppointedDecember 2012
Term limitsN/A
High schoolPerth Amboy High School
Bachelor'sVillanova University
Anton J. Massopust is a candidate for at-large member of the Perth Amboy Board of Education in New Jersey. He previously served on the board following an appointment on December 20, 2012. He replace Kurt Rebovich and served until 2013.[1] Massopust lost his election bid on November 5, 2013, against eight other candidates for three available seats. He is running for a new term in the general election on November 4, 2014.


Massopust graduated from Perth Amboy High School in 1958. He later earned a B.S. in biology in 1962. Massopust worked as a biology teacher at Perth Amboy High School before his retirement. He has been active as a member of the Beautification Committee of the Bicentennial Commission in 1976 as well as in his current role as City Historian. Massopust and his wife, Marcella, have two adult children.[2]



See also: Perth Amboy Public Schools elections (2014)


Three seats on the Perth Amboy Board of Education are up for general election on November 4, 2014. Former board member Anton J. Massopust and incumbents Dianne Roman and Milady Tejada are running against Jose Rodriguez, Junior Iglesia, Thomas Thor and Manuel Nunez in the general election. While incumbent Maria Garcia's term also expires at the end of the year, she did not file to run for re-election.[3] Roman, Thor and Iglesia are running as a slate called Restoring Educational Priorities.


This election will be held November 4, 2014.


Massopust reported no contributions or expenditures to the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission as of October 16, 2014.[4]


Massopust had not received any official endorsements as of October 16, 2014.


See also: Perth Amboy Public Schools elections (2013)


Massopust sought election to a full term on the board against eight other candidates in the November 5, 2013, general election.


Perth Amboy Board of Education, At-large General election, 3-year term, 2013, 2013
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngIsrael Varela Incumbent 17.1% 1,741
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngAnthony Bermudez 16.4% 1,666
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngSamuel Lebreault 15.3% 1,559
     Nonpartisan Mark Carvajal Incumbent 11.4% 1,161
     Nonpartisan Anton J. Massopust Incumbent 10.7% 1,090
     Nonpartisan Reyes Ortega 10.4% 1,061
     Nonpartisan Benjamin L. Salerno 10.1% 1,026
     Nonpartisan Junior Iglesia 4.6% 472
     Nonpartisan Damaris Isales 3.9% 392
Total Votes 10,168
Source: Middlesex County, "Election Results," November 12, 2013


Massopust reported $5.00 in contributions and $5.00 in expenditures to the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission, which left his campaign with no cash on hand.[5]


Massopust did not receive any endorsements in this election.

Campaign themes


During a December 20, 2012 interview with the board for a vacant seat, Massopust explained his views on the major issues facing the district:
Charter schools

Mr. Massopust stated that Charter Schools are not new - you had Catholic, Jewish, and Quakers running them forever. It's a place where kids want to go and make up their own rules. It's not the only way to work and they don't have the resources the public schools do. He was a teacher for 31 years; he had good students who went on to do many things. Everything a student needs is here if they are willing to take advantage of it. Charter Schools can't compete with what we have here.[6]

—Perth Amboy Board of Education minutes, (2012), [7]

Role of board members

Mr. Massopust stated it's the eyes and ears of the community. Ensure that the child who enters the school system gets the best education that they can and make sure that it's done right. They should guide things, talk to teachers to see how they are doing and support them.[6]

—Perth Amboy Board of Education minutes, (2012), [7]

District's biggest challenges

Mr. Massopust stated that he's taught all grades K through grade school. Kids having kids, the parents are not old enough to guide their kids correctly.[6]

—Perth Amboy Board of Education minutes, (2012), [7]

What's at stake?


With two incumbents running for three open seats, at least one seat will be seeing a switch in ownership. However, with five challengers including one former board member, a number of new board compositions will be possible following the 2014 election.


Superintendent and ethics complaints

Perth Amboy Public Schools hired Superintendent Janine Walker Caffrey in 2011. During her time with the school district, Caffrey filed at least 13 ethics complaints against the school board. Caffrey's contract was set to expire on June 30, 2014, but she was placed on administrative leave by the board in the fall of 2013. It was the board's third attempt to place and keep her on administrative leave. On June 13, 2014, the board and Caffrey agreed to a settlement that paid Caffrey and her attorney $184,000 while requiring her to never live in the city again and to not testify voluntarily in any of the ethics complaints cases.[8]

John Paff, a Libertarian activist and Franklin resident, posted copies of several of the ethics complaints on his website.[9] After the revelation of the school board's agreement with Caffrey, Paff wrote to the School Ethics Commission requesting that they compel Caffrey to testify on the ethics complaints. Paff stated in his letter, "In our representative form of government it is essential that the conduct of members of local boards of education and local school administrators hold the respect and confidence of the people. Given this legislative policy, I find it offensive when school-board members who are subject to the Ethics Act negotiate a secret settlement agreement."[10]

Several ethics complaints by Caffrey had been dismissed by the School Ethics Commission, though several remained unresolved at the time of the settlement agreement.[10]

NJM ranking

The magazine New Jersey Monthly ranked all 339 New Jersey high schools in 2012 and 2014. The analysis for the report was conducted by the research company Leflein Associates. The report weighted school environment at 1, student performance at 1.5 and student outcomes at 2.1.[11] Perth Amboy High School dropped from 320th in 2012 to 322nd in 2014.[12]


Incumbents Massopust, Mark Carvajal and Israel Varela sought re-election to the board. They were challenged by six other candidates for three available seats.


Tense relationship with superintendent

The Board of Education and Superintendent Janine Caffrey have developed a contentious relationship over the past four years. Caffrey has been removed by board votes in April and October 2012 but remained in office due to the intervention of the New Jersey Education Commissioner. These suspensions occurred because of allegations that Caffrey circumvented the board when implementing counseling programs and manipulated contracts to avoid bidding procedures.[13] The board voted in October 2013 to remove Caffrey and seek an interim superintendent to serve through June 2014. Board member William Ortiz noted after the vote that the district is seeking someone with "emotional IQ with people" to replace Caffrey.[14] Judge Kimberly Moss rejected Caffrey's appeal for reinstatement on November 7.[15]

Caffrey countered that board members Obdulia Gonzalez, Milady Tejada and Israel Varela were deflecting attention from state ethics investigations. The Office of Administrative Law held hearings on October 16 into accusations of ethics violations by the three board members. Gonzalez, Tejada and Varela were accused of colluding with local unions to increase pressure for Caffrey's removal and paying reporters to write inaccurate stories about the superintendent. The second allegation stemmed from local reports that Caffrey spent time in a mental health hospital in 2009.[14]

About the district

Perth Amboy Public Schools is located in Middlesex County, New Jersey
See also: Perth Amboy Public Schools, New Jersey

Perth Amboy Public Schools is located in Middlesex County, New Jersey. The county seat of Middlesex County is New Brunswick. In 2013, Middlesex County was home to approximately 828,919 residents according to estimates by the United States Census Bureau.[16] In 2011-2012 school year, Perth Amboy Public Schools was the 15th-largest school district by enrollment in New Jersey and served 10,258 students.


Middlesex County overperformed compared to the rest of New Jersey in terms of education achievement in 2012. The United States Census Bureau found that 39.8 percent of Middlesex County residents aged 25 years and older had attained a bachelor's degree compared to 35.4 percent for New Jersey as a whole. The median household income for Middlesex County was $79,442 compared to the state average of $71,637. The unemployment rate in the county was 8 percent while it was 9.9 percent statewide.[16]

Racial Demographics, 2013[16]
Race Middlesex County (%) New Jersey (%)
White 62.8 73.4
Black or African American 11.0 14.7
American Indian and Alaska Native 0.6 0.6
Asian 23.5 9.2
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander 0.1 0.1
Two or More Races 2.0 2.0
Hispanic or Latino 19.5 18.9

Presidential Voting Pattern, Middlesex County[17]
Year Democratic Vote Republican Vote
2012 190,555 107,310
2008 193,812 123,695
2004 166,628 126,492
2000 154,998 93,545

Note: The United States Census Bureau considers "Hispanic or Latino" to be a place of origin, not a race. Therefore, the Census allows citizens to report both their race and that they are from a "Hispanic or Latino" place of origin simultaneously. As a result, the percentages in each column of the racial demographics table will exceed 100 percent. Each column will add up to 100 percent after removing the "Hispanic or Latino" place of origin percentages, although rounding by the Census Bureau may make the total one or two tenths off from being exactly 100 percent.[18]

Recent news

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See also

External links

Suggest a link


  1. The Amboy Guardian, "It’s Unanimous — Massopust In," January 4, 2013
  2. PAF-AFT, "Biography," accessed October 21, 2013
  3. Margaret Koenig, "E-mail correspondence with Claudia P. Jackson, Middlesex County Clerk's Office," September 8, 2014
  4. New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission, "View a Candidate or Election Related Committee Report," accessed October 16, 2014
  5. New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission, "Standard Search," accessed December 27, 2013
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Note: This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 File:Perth Amboy Board of Education Regular Meeting, December 20, 2012.pdf Perth Amboy Board of Education, "Regular Meeting Minutes," December 20, 2012
  8., "Perth Amboy pays ex-superintendent $121G to leave town," September 8, 2014
  9. Random notes on NJ government, "Thirteen recent ethics cases against Perth Amboy school board members," August 29, 2014
  10. 10.0 10.1, "Activist: Don't let Perth Amboy BOE pay hush money," September 8, 2014
  11. New Jersey Monthly, "Top Schools 2014: Methodology," September 2, 2014
  12. New Jersey Monthly, "Top Schools Alphabetical List 2014," September 2, 2014
  13., "Perth Amboy school board puts superintendent on paid leave," April 25, 2013
  14. 14.0 14.1, "Perth Amboy superintendent may be out for good; continues to collect $177,500 salary," October 3, 2013
  15., "Judge rules Perth Amboy schools chief will not be returning to work soon," November 8, 2013
  16. 16.0 16.1 16.2 United States Census Bureau, "Middlesex County, New Jersey," accessed September 9, 2014
  17. New Jersey Department of State, "NJ Election Information and Results Archive," accessed September 8, 2014
  18. United States Census Bureau, "Frequently Asked Questions," accessed April 21, 2014