Prince William County voters in November will decide on the leadership for the county’s public schools with eight races determining the makeup of the school board.
Seventeen candidates have filed to appear on the ballot Nov. 5, according to county election officials. The countywide board chair position and five of the seven magisterial district seats will be contested; two incumbent school board members will not face opposition.
The school board sets policy for the school division, including approving the annual budget — set at $1.5 billion for the fiscal year that starts July 1. The school division employed more than 11,500 people and had 90,203 students enrolled in October.
Board Chairman Babur Lateef, an ophthalmologist, is running for re-election in November after winning a special election in November 2018 to fill the remaining term of the former chair, Ryan Sawyers.
Lateef will face familiar competition as the two other candidates who were on the ballot in last year’s special election are both running again: two-term board member Alyson Satterwhite of the Gainesville District and retired Woodbridge resident Stanley Bender.Of the 153,638 votes that were cast in the school board chair race last November, Lateef received 47.7%, Satterwhite 41.5% and Bender 9.6%.
Voters countywide will see that race on their ballot, along with a local race to decide their district school board member. School board members serve four-year terms.
School Board members Justin Wilk, Potomac District, and Loree Williams, Woodbridge District, are running unopposed.
Next year’s board will receive a salary increase. The current board approved an increase effective Jan. 1 from $12,000 to $26,520 per year. The board chair will receive an increase from $13,100 to $28,250 a year.
Three-term board member Gil Trenum is not seeking re-election. Shawn Brann and Adele Jackson are running for the open seat.
Brann, a Bristow resident, is a former Prince William teacher and was appointed a temporary board member from September 2016 until October 2017 Trenum was deployed overseas.
A 14-year teacher, Jackson resigned in June to run for the school board after working for two years in Prince William schools.
Incumbent Willie Deutsch has two challengers in his run for re-election: Jacqueline Gaston and Lisa Zargarpur.
Deutsch works in digital marketing and communications, Gaston is a career and transition specialist for Fairfax County Public Schools, and Zargarpur is an elementary school music teacher.
With Satterwhite running for chair, two candidates are running to represent the Gainesville District on the board: Jennifer Wall and Patricia Kuntz.
Wall has raised her children for 18 years and previously worked as a lawyer in legislative research, she said.
Kuntz is an outreach specialist for the Catholic Charities, Diocese of Arlington.
Incumbent Diane Raulston will face two challengers for the Neabsco District seat: Joseph George and Latifa Garrison.
Raulston is a longtime public education advocate. George is a U.S. Army veteran and a senior criminal investigative analyst at the Pentagon. Information about Garrison wasn’t available.
Incumbent Lillie Jessie is being challenged for re-election by Karen Boyd.
Jessie has served on the board since a special election in 2012. She was a teacher and administrator in Prince William schools, including 20 years as principal at Vaughn Elementary School.
Boyd is an assistant principal at Mt. Vernon H.S. in Fairfax County and a Lake Ridge resident for 19 years.