The Missouri State Teachers Association (MSTA) is a grassroots professional association that serves as an alternative to the National Education Association (NEA). After a few years as a member of NEA, I could not support many of their practices, proclamations, or political leanings. Without going into too much detail about it, I made the switch to MSTA after a year of teaching in Missouri.
Since then, I've served as an observer, a commenter, president-elect, and president. The role I am most comfortable in, however, is one I have served in on many occasions - communications officer.
With fairly late notice, I agreed to be one of three Joplin teachers (I recruited the other two fourth grade teachers to attend the event with me.) with voting credentials at our Assembly of Delegates. We voted as a grassroots team with some 700 other teachers from across the state, concerning ourselves with the issues education faces in 21st Century America, two topics of which included transgender and gender-identification policies for school districts, and whether to back new mothers by accommodating their needs for breastfeeding at intervals throughout the school day.
Before we head back to Joplin, at noon today, we have the opportunity to listen to a keynote address, during which I hope to glean inspiration to use in my educational walk.