The Prince George’s County teachers union endorsed former Democratic congresswoman Donna F. Edwards for county executive on Tuesday, supporting her calls for change in the Washington suburb’s scandal-battered school system.
Edwards’s opponents in the June 26 Democratic primary include state’s attorney Angela Alsobrooks and state Sen. C. Anthony Muse.
All three major candidates have been critical of the school system leadership appointed by outgoing County Executive Rushern L. Baker III (D), who is term-limited and running for governor.
If elected, they say, they would replace schools chief Kevin M. Maxwell, Baker’s handpicked superintendent, following the loss of millions in federal HeadStart funding, the arrest of a school aide charged with producing child pornography, a grade-tampering scandal, questions about administrative pay raises and, most recently, the discovery of a surveillance camera inside a school office.
“It is time to restore accountability and transparency to our school system, and we are confident that Ms. Edwards is the right person for the job,” said union president Theresa Mitchell Dudley, whose organization represents 9,000 educators and took a vote of “no confidence” in the school system’s leadership in February. “We look forward to mobilizing our members — and all voters throughout Prince George’s County — on behalf of the candidates we have endorsed.”
Edwards said educators are “ready for new leadership” in Prince George’s. “It’s time for someone to show up for them, like they show up for our children.”
Edwards also has the backing of several progressive labor unions across Prince George’s County, some of which were instrumental in persuading her to make a run for the top job in the county. But Alsobrooks won the endorsement of Service Employees International Union 1199 and International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 26, both of which had backed Edwards in previous races.