FAMILY- As I sit here and write this article, I find myself in a place I never thought I would be.  It is the beginning of May and instead of prepping for the end of the school year and year end meetings, I am “social distancing” at home away from my students, my co-workers, my friends and life as I once knew it.  I have had a lot of time to think between online learning and trying to entertain a toddler that doesn’t understand why she can’t go to daycare and see her friends.  I have learned that I love my job and my students even more than I realized.  I have also learned that I love my fellow teachers and my MSTA family.  I decided a couple of months ago after talking to friends, family and a lot of praying that I wanted to take the next step in my teaching journey and run for Vice President of MSTA.  I have been an MSTA member my entire career, 23 years, and have come to respect not only the organization but the people I have met.  When you spend a lot of time with people, you can’t help but consider them family and that’s what I think of MSTA.  As I was thinking about how special family is I realized there truly is a correlation between the two and this is how my mind sees it:  F- foundation, MSTA is the foundation that supports teachers.  A- advocacy, MSTA advocates for teachers and is there to support them whenever needed.  M- members, MSTA exists because of members like you and me at the grassroots level.  I- interests, as teachers our biggest interest is the well-being and education of our students; we want the very best for them.  L- learning, MSTA works hard to ensure that members are continuously learning through professional development and keeping up with legislation that affects us. Y- you, MSTA cares about YOU.  You, the members, are the driving force behind everything MSTA does.  I don’t know about you, but it gives me a lot of encouragement knowing I have someone supporting and encouraging me along my teaching path.  I would love the opportunity to be your next Vice-President and to continue the long standing tradition of putting education first and making you a part of my MSTA family.  Thanks so much for your vote in November.