Faculty and staff at the Pioneer Valley Performing Arts Charter Public School have officially unionized, becoming one of only a few unionized charter schools in the state.

On Feb. 8, the state’s Department of Labor approved the faculty and staff’s petition to unionize with Local 2322 of the United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers of America, or UAW. That decision makes the school only the third charter school out of 80 operating in the state — and the first in the Pioneer Valley — to unionize, according to a spokeswoman for the state’s education department.

“Unions have a long history of empowering workers in our country and around the world, and we are eager to bring the benefits of collective bargaining to our PVPA community,” high school math teacher Elmo Wright, a member of the bargaining committee, said in a statement.

Read the full article on the Daily Hampshire Gazette website.