Arbitrator Rules Prince William School Board Committed Unfair Labor Practices

Ruled school division did not fairly bargain with Educators last yer


Prince William Education Association [PWEA], the largest public-sector education local representing over 11,000 educators in Prince William County Schools [PWCS], files unfair labor practice charges and wins.

According to PWEA leadership, the PWEA bargaining team readily and willingly showed up in good faith from April through December of 2023, making proposals on a substantial number of issues related to our wages, benefits and working conditions.

However, after multiple attempts to negotiate in good faith within the PWCS Collective Bargaining Resolution parameters, the School Board continually refused to bargain.

Therefore, PWEA took the necessary steps and filed multiple unfair labor practice charges against the school board with a neutral arbitrator per the process outlined in the Resolution.

The arbitrator found that the PWCS School Board acted in bad faith and committed multiple violations, "meaning they did not adhere to the terms of the Resolution they wrote and passed while bargaining with Educators."

The arbitrator ruled that both parties are to return to the table and bargain in good faith over multiple issues that the School Board initially refused for months to negotiate.

PWEA Attorney Broderick Dunn said that the board will return to the table with the school division bargaining team, " following the neutral arbitrator’s decision that PWCS committed multiple unfair labor practices."

"I hope that the parties continue to negotiate in good faith and the best interests of PWEA’s 11,000 bargaining unit members, PWCS students, and PWC taxpayers," he said. 

PWEA calls on the Prince William County School Board to follow the rules they wrote and voted on within their Resolution.

"We ask that the School Board have their team come to the table next week with renewed good faith and respect for all educators across the division. As the Resolution states, any changes to wages, benefits, and terms and conditions of employment that fall within the scope of bargaining must always be negotiated with PWEA. PWEA continues to advocate for the deserving educators, staff, and students of PWCS. PWEA looks forward to ensuring better working conditions for all employees and better learning conditions for the students they serve."

PWEA continues to ask the PWCS School Board to value our students and their success by engaging with PWEA in good faith while negotiating the following: 

  • Fair employee leave policies.
  • Defining and narrowing the concept of “other duties as assigned."
  • Ensuring employees receive a duty-free unpaid daily lunch protected in the contract.
  • Ensuring work outside of an employee’s contract is compensated fairly.

“PWEA leadership continues to work effectively on behalf of our members, who work hard for their students,"  "We will continue to hold the PWCS board and division leadership accountable for their actions," said PWEA President Maggie Hansford.

Hansford continued, "I hope the school board returns to the table in good faith and works with the employees who work to ensure all students in PWCS can achieve their potential. I and the PWEA board continue to call upon the school board to uphold the collective bargaining resolution and fairly work towards achieving mutually agreeable terms.”

"Our staff is the best in the state, and their contract should match what they give to our students daily. Sadly, the results of these charges were not surprising based on their recent decision to appoint members of Moms for Liberty* to the committees of PWCS," Jefferson said.

"I stand by protecting the rights of our students and staff when we return to bargaining in the near future to continue negotiations in good faith.”

PWEA is hopeful that our victory over unfair labor practices with PWCS will serve as a lesson to other school boards throughout the Commonwealth. We believe that our students deserve fully staffed schools by certified Educators, and our educators deserve to be treated fairly and with respect. We hope this encourages all school boards to follow the rules they create and approve and offers educators a fair opportunity to negotiate. PWEA is committed to ensuring fairness in the bargaining process with Prince William County Schools and looks forward to our future bargaining sessions.

*Jefferson referenced Moms for Liberty.  Brentsville school board representative Erica Tredinnick nominated several parents to the Prince William Advisory Committees. Tredinnick nominated  Prince William Moms for Liberty Chapter President Merianne Jensen to the  Gifted Education Advisory Committee;  Moms for Liberty Chapter Vice Chair Jen Donnelly to the Safe Schools Advisory Committee; and member Chris Funderburg to the Superintendent’s Advisory Council on Equity. 

The Southern Poverty Law Centers added the national group to its watch list, primarily for its anti-LGBQT+ sentiments. Moms for Liberty representatives have also represented themselves as fiercely anti-union. 

PWEA, Prince William Education Association, Prince William County Schools, bargaining, collective bargaining, resolution, unfair labor practices, Moms for Liberty