Thursday's Thoughts

PSTA Weekly News

General Assembly Budget Process

This week, the Senate Finance Committee met and approved their version of H. 5201, the State Appropriations Act. This action by the Finance Committee would largely maintain current state spending levels with a few exceptions. Most importantly, one of these exceptions includes a $50 million increase in Education Finance Act funding to districts. This funding could be used to provide step increases to teachers, and the Senate Finance Committee also moved to eliminate the freeze on step increases that was included in the continuing resolution passed in the spring.

The Senate Finance amendments will be discussed by the full Senate, starting on Tuesday, September 15th. Please get in touch with your Senator this weekend to express your support for the Senate Finance Committee's proposed budget. Also, please contact your representative in the House to ask them to concur with the Senate Finance Committee's version of the budget if it is passed by the full Senate. The increase of funding to the EFA represents 82% of the total increase in recurring funds approved by the Senate Finance Committee, so it is vitally important to make sure your representatives are aware of the importance of this action for our state's teachers.

To find contact information for your representatives, click here and enter your address.

PSTA Virtual Candidate Town Halls

PSTA Virtual Candidate Town Halls

Next week, PSTA will continue hosting virtual town halls with candidates for the General Assembly. We have a town hall scheduled for every afternoon next week from 4:00-4:30 PM. The schedule for this week includes:

  • Monday, September 14th- Eunice Lehmacher, House 3, Pickens County, Zoom Link, Passcode- 245098
  • Tuesday, September 15th- Barb Nash, House 124, Beaufort County, Zoom Link, Passcode- 501831
  • Wednesday, September 16th- Keith Grey, Sr., House 45, Lancaster and York Counties, Zoom Link, Passcode- 615131
  • Thursday, September 17th- David Ellison, Senate 32, Berkeley, Florence, Georgetown, Horry, and Williamsburg Counties, Zoom Link, Passcode- 035550
  • Friday, September 18th- Ryan Arioli, House 47, York County, Zoom Link, Passcode- 832732

If you missed last week's town halls but would like to see what was discussed, you can view recordings of completed town halls on our PSTA TV YouTube channel. If you subscribe to the channel, you can set it to send you alerts when new town halls are posted. If you have any questions about the town halls, please contact Patrick Kelly at

Upcoming National Board Webinars

Since March, the National Board has offered free professional development webinars to all educators. The webinars cover topics such as remote learning, technology, building community and more. Upcoming topics include teaching literacy virtually, Special Education in a virtual setting and partnering with parents.

Click here to register for September webinars!

If you have any questions about National Board, please contact Toni Chewning or Craig King.

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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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PSTA 2020 Member Video

2020 PSTA Member Video

DHEC COVID-19 in Schools: Frequently Asked Questions

Click on the image below to visit the DHEC COVID-19 in Schools: Frequently Asked Questions document.

50% Discount for all Books by Kate Salley Palmer

During this difficult time, Kate Salley Palmer and Warbranch Press want to support administrators, teachers, media specialists, parents and students by offering a special 50% discount for all of Kate's books published by Warbranch Press. Anyone wishing to order books should just contact Jim at or call him (864) 650-6180. Descriptions and reviews for each book on our website,

The following picture books are available for puchase for the prices listed:

Francis Marion and the Legend of the Swamp Fox - $7

Palmetto: Symbol of Courage - $5.50

Almost Invisible: Black Patriots of the American Revolution - $6

First South Carolinians - $7.50

Hostie - $5

The Pink House - $5

The Little Chairs - $5


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

Memorandums and Press Releases

The latest memorandums from the State Department of Education and PSTA press releases can now be found on our website! Click here to view the memos from the SDE and click here to view the press releases.

Important Information Regarding the 2020 Census

- The US Census Bureau announced on July 31st that the self-response and door-knocking operations of the 2020 census will cease on September 30th (instead of the October 31st extension)

- SC is ranking 44th in the nation in self-reporting

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