2012 Official Portrait Supervisor Caddigan


When the Prince William Board of County Supervisors meet again on Aug. 3, they will vote on whether or not to grant the school board $1 million for class size reduction.

The agreement is contingent upon the school division matching that $1 million with its own $1 million for class size reduction, but not signing upon the school board signing a memorandum of agreement.

Potomac Supervisor, Maureen Caddigan, who proposed the legislation, is willing to approve it even without the MOA. She hopes it will gain support of enough supervisors to pass next week.

At the July 12 Board of County Supervisors meeting, Caddigan withdrew the motion to vote on the $1 million for class size reduction after supervisors disagreed on whether the grant should be accompanied by a the signing of the MOA.

Supervisors Jeanine Lawson (Brentsville-R), Peter Candland (Gainesville-R) and Ruth Anderson (Coles-R) said the supervisors should require the school board put the agreement in writing. With Chairman Corey Stewart (R) and Woodbridge Supervisor Frank Principi (R) absent, it would have likely been a tie vote.


While on the dais, Lawson explained she was only asking the school board to do what it had done in the past.

However, this year, the school division has new legal council, who is advising the school board against signing the agreement, noting that the Virginia Constitution declares elected school board are independent of their county boards.

April 2016 Board Memo re BOCS Authority (1)

Supervisor Candland explained that he and Lawson originally proposed these grants. Candland said it would be a sign of good faith to the taxpayers for the school board to sign the agreement even if it could not be legally enforced.

Furthermore, he said the details of the deal were still being hotly debated, adding that the supervisors are not obligated to provide the money just because the school board had mistakenly expected it.

But other supervisors, hoped to have the issue resolved over the summer, saying the funds were needed to hire new teachers.

It’s really time for the pissing contest between Ryan Sawyers and Pete Candland to be over.  Pete, call off your other two pack  followers and let’s just do what’s best for the kids.   Ryan, stop poking at the bear.

I know what it is like to have 38 kids in a classroom.  I had that many in an algebra class  about a decade ago, not once but  twice.  The quality of instruction drops  with every student over 25.  You can’t reach kids with problems or their parents.  There aren’t enough hours in the day.  You can’t address individual questions.   Grading becomes increasingly difficult and turn around time is longer for students to get feedback.  Moving about the room is difficult even in classes that don’t have 38 kids.  The desks are still there.

A million dollars only gets you 10 teachers.  That’s a drop in the bucket in Prince William County.  The problem didn’t just start either.  I have been retired 9 years.  Class size was horrible before I pulled the plug.  However, PWC needs to start somewhere.  It needs to do it today.  Suck it up, taxpayers.  A few more dollars a month to fix this problem is just going to have to happen.  The retirees also have to suck it up.  I don’t want to hear that lame old excuse that I keep hearing out of the Gainesville supervisor.  It just doesn’t fly with me.  I am a retiree.  If I have so few assets that I can’t invest in education in my community, I need to move or at least apply for tax relief.

No MOU is needed.  Everyone knows what the money is for.  Pete and ladies–stop trying to bully the school board.  The money isn’t for them.  It’s ultimately for the kids.

Put aside all the petty bickering and listen to Mrs. Caddigan.  She has always been a defender of kids and teachers.

Ask the people who are in there doing the job darn few of our supervisors and school board members could do–TEACH!

20 Thoughts to “Maureen Caddigan: The adult in the room”

  1. Hitting them from both sides? Quite refreshing.

    1. I have been known to do that on occasion. It’s a good way to have everyone hate you. :mrgreen:

  2. NorthofNokesville

    PWC is long on problems, and short on problem solvers.

    I don’t know the right answer here. Eschewing accountability, even for a good cause, is fraught with risk and sets a horrible precedent. Those spending the money have shown questionable judgment on a regular basis. Those authorizing the funds (and their appointees and proxies) seem to be keeping score politically, not in terms of outcomes.

    I agree Maureen has an opportunity to show leadership, broker a deal, and provide a tiny bit of relief. I sincerely wish her luck.

    1. I think its all just political now with some of the players I called out. I don’t like dealing with issues from the standpoint of well…this could happen or that could happen. This is targeted money not from the general fund.

      The thing about questionable judgement…I guess that is in the eyes of the beholder. I saw waste of money (in MY opinion) all the time. Perhaps to someone else, it wasn’t so wasteful The thing that always got me, and still does, is the fact that the marching band at Stonewall always comes around in September, in full uniform, asking for a few crumbs–door to door. I want to see the football team having to do that. It isn’t going to happen.

      When the marching band is funded like the football team, then I would say our money is being used correctly.

      1. MoonHowler wrote:
        I think its all just political now with some of the players I called out.I don’t like dealing with issues from the standpoint of well…this could happen or that could happen.This is targeted money not from the general fund.

        The thing about questionable judgement…I guess that is in the eyes of the beholder.I saw waste of money (in MY opinion) all the time.Perhaps to someone else, it wasn’t so wastefulThe thing that always got me, and still does, is the fact that the marching band at Stonewall always comes around in September, in full uniform, asking for a few crumbs–door to door.I want to see the football team having to do that.It isn’t going to happen.

        When the marching band is funded like the football team, then I would say our money is being used correctly.

        Some would argue when the band brings in the same amount of funds that the football team does, then they should be funded equally.

      2. Yes, I have heard that argument. Basically, that argument invalidates anything or any body who isn’t a cash cow.
        Who pumps up that football team and enhances the school spirit that essentially gives us winning teams? The band.
        I see it as an integral part of the whole.

  3. Robin Hood

    Some political bloggers went after the School Board for years and then they were shocked when their party lost control to a new majority. Now they are playing the same tune for an encore with an added partisan undertone and hoping to flip it back their way. These same bloggers have gone after Republicans Stewart, Caddigan and Nohe as well as Democrats Jenkins and Principi for being the adults in the room on the Board of Supervisors. Let’s hope everyone shows up on Tuesday ready to put an end to this psychodrama.

    It’s targeted funding for class size reduction.

    1. You are correct about the political bloggers. There are really 3 people who remain unscathed….the perfect ones. The others have been attacked like they were dogs.

    2. NorthofNokesville

      @Robin Hood

      There’s a balance to be struck. PWC is addicted to spending money it does not have – and sometimes with questionable intent or effect. It makes sense to hold those doing the spending accountable, and to insist they put skin in the game. Good intentions are regularly abused.

      At the same time, those who enact that accountability have some duty of decorum, at the appointed and elected levels. That decorum has not only been absent, its opposite has been embraced and set up as a standard.

      Caddigan has a chance to thread the needle and bring both parties together, with happy effect if not happy simply.

      1. @NorthofNokesville

        If anybody can bring both Boards together, it would be Supervisor Caddigan.

      2. agreed. I can think of several who need to just SDASTFU.

      3. Basically, we shouldn’t even be talking about political party.

        Additionally, PWC is something like the 9th richest county in the nation and they have always gone on the cheap. Its actually sad.

      4. NorthofNokesville


        Only by median income, which can be a misleading metric (at 95-100K median income, PWC has a prosperous middle, but it says nothing about the ends of the distribution… like NYC, which can tax investment bankers and attorneys in the 1%). And taxes here are levied only against property. Add in some economically-challenged areas with more renters than owners…. you’ve got a mix that’s not stable. Now add in a marginal revenue versus marginal cost problem. Unstable, and unsustainable (makes you wonder how our pro-development Republicans can also claim to be fiscally conservative). We need to be fixing and not feeding our cost problem.

      5. @NorthofNokesville

        Excellent point about primarily taxing property, not food tax. Maybe that’s the next step?

      6. North–I have lived in the county for decades. All of those years PWC had the reputation of being a bedroom community. Most of our residents are commuters. I don’t know what you do about it. How do you attract businesses? That has been a goal ever since I have lived in the area. It has never been solved.

        When Disney tried to come in, for example, it was defeated by those who wanted to maintain the integrity of….fill in the blanks. I always thought the battlefield “integrity” was bs.

        Do we stop all development in the west? It sounds like some of our supervisors want to open up the rural crescent.

        I have no solutions other than something must be done with the class size. If real estate taxes are the only way to get this done, then so be it.

        Renters won’t get hit directly for the real estate tax. Those under 100k will probably live in less expensive houses. They will pay less tax.

      7. NorthofNokesville


        It’s still a bedroom community. Traffic flows east in the morning, west at night. Developing a business presence will take time. No easy answer.

        Opening up the rural area for more development is about as stupid an idea as our supervisors could concoct. Forget all the usual arguments: green, history, or current residents’ quality of life. It is financial suicide, pure and simple. Even if builders pay for assets, PWC can’t afford to maintain them. Period.

        There’s a lot of blog chatter (left and right) about whose thrift outdoes the others’. Opening up more development in the rural area will demolish any pretense of fiscal responsibility by BOCS. And it will hit individual supervisors differently. Any who aspire to county-wide office – or have an eye beyond – will find the blood on their hands impossible to wash off. Financial and political suicide run together on this issue.

      8. North, you certainly would agree with my close friends about the rural area. You develop that Agriculture zoned land at cheap prices…how many new schools, libraries and roads would you then have to provide?

        If the RC is ever busted up, I certainly hope they will go for really nice industrial centers that involve a great deal of open space. But of course, that won’t happen.

      9. NorthofNokesville


        If RC is broken, two political careers will be as well (and not Supervisor Lawson’s). This is fiscal… If the low-tax, high-transparency crowd goes squishy on this, they will become footnotes at best, and cautionary tales more likely. Remember “read my lips?”

      10. I am sure some people will have their handler come up with BS to attempt to excuse the political behavior, just like always.

  4. It passed!! The million dollar classroom reduction resolution passed unanimously. I was pleased to discover that Mr. Candland agreed to this funding.

    What I did not know is that this money goes to pay those teachers hired last year. It does not add 10 teachers, it continues the 10 who were already hired. (or however many)

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