Thursday's Thoughts

PSTA Weekly News

PSTA Virtual Candidate Town Halls

Election Day is almost here! PSTA hopes that all members will find the time to vote, as the outcomes of the elections this fall will have a significant impact on education policies at the local, state, and national levels. To help you prepare to vote, you will be receiving an email soon that has candidate information that is specific to your county of residence.

Included in those emails will be linked to responses from candidates in your area to the questionnaire PSTA sent to ALL candidates for the General Assembly, as well as recording of the videos of town hall conversations with candidates. If you don't see a questionnaire response or town hall conversation for a candidate, that means they declined the opportunity to share their positions and thoughts with PSTA members. We also have two more town halls next week:

  • Tuesday, October 27th (4:00-4:30)- Andrea Bejarano-Robinson, House 7, Abbeville and Anderson Counties
  • Wednesday, October 28th (4:00-4:30)- Raye Felder, House 26,York County

If you want to join a town hall conversation live, please use the link for the appropriate date and time on this schedule. If you missed a conversation and would like to see what was discussed, check out this playlist on the PSTA TV YouTube channel.


PSTA is encouraging all members to "get out the vote" (GOTV) this year. This effort starts with making sure that you vote- but it extends to encouraging your colleagues and other supporters of South Carolina schools to vote. In a recent conversation, a top political consultant in our state told PSTA staff that his research showed that teachers vote at the same rate as all other South Carolinians. As a result, politicians feel less pressure to listen to educator concerns- and this is something that has to change if we want to see improved education policy in our state.

Here are some quick resources to assist in encouraging your colleagues to get out and vote:

  • PSTA GOTV Video Playlist- This playlist provides quick videos providing 5 important- but lesser known- reasons why voting is so important in 2020.
  • In-Person Absentee Voting- This year, ALL South Carolinians are able to vote early due to COVID-19, and each county has at least one location for in-person early voting.
  • Mail-In Voting- All South Carolinians can also opt to vote by mail this year. Information on how to apply for a mail-in ballot can be found here. Please note: the deadline for requesting mail-in ballots is Saturday, October 24th!
  • Sample Ballot- Go to this website and enter your information to see which contests are on the ballot in your area.

PSTA President Nikkina McKnight's Adventures of Teaching During the First Month of a Pandemic

Click here to read PSTA President Nikkina McKnight's article in The Lily.

Columbia College Professional Development

Beginning this month, Columbia College's APEC program will be presenting the Polishing your Performance Series.

Upcoming dates:

  • October 24th: REVIVED! Finding the Passion and Power of Teaching by Dr Akil E. Ross. (Click here for more information)
  • November 9th: Teacher Leadership and Advocacy by Patrick Kelly. (Click here for more information)

Transatlantic Outreach Program Workshop

Click on the image above to register.

Friendly Reminder!

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Teacher Clothes Closet- Midlands Event

We are excited to announce a Teacher Clothes Closet event at our office on Monday, October 26, 2020, from 11:00 AM-6:00 PM. The event will be held in our back parking lot under tents to allow for social distancing. Plastic gloves and hand sanitizer will be available. Masks are required. This event is for any student majoring in education, as well as first-year teachers.

2020 Census Deadline Extended

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Help Us Grow!

Please help us continue to grow PSTA by encouraging your colleagues to consider joining the largest professional organization for educators in South Carolina. This year more than ever, teachers need to know that PSTA is working hard to support and advocate for their needs. Thank you for all you do! Remember PSTA is here for you so you can be there for your students.

We are still offering our incentive program. For every new member* you sign up, you will receive $10 (up to $499 each year). Please feel free to print a membership application here and sign up as many new members as you can!! If you have any questions please contact our office at 803-256-2065 or email us at

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Click on the image below to view the COVID-19 FAQs.