SOLID GREEN Teacher Feature – Amy Whetstone

Story by Jen Jordan / September 26, 2023

At which MSS campus do you teach?

Meeting Street Brentwood

Why did you decide to be a teacher?

I love working with children and helping them grow, not only academically but socially and emotionally as well.

Why do you choose to stay in the classroom?

I love the reward of the end of the year by seeing how much your students have grown. I love that there is a routine, but each day is different at the same time. I love how students walk in each morning with a smile on their face and a big hug and they’re so excited to be here and to learn.

What is the most challenging part of being a teacher?

You can’t fix everything. There are some students who you work so hard for to give your all, and sometimes you feel like it’s not quite enough. It’s a work in progress, but I’ve had to learn to keep my school emotions at school so I don’t stress so much at home.

What is the most rewarding part of being a teacher?

Seeing a child’s face when it finally “clicks.” Learning can be tough, and some students don’t always get it right away. But when you help them to put in that extra work and they finally get it, it’s so rewarding to see their face light up and you just know how proud they are of themselves.

Why did you choose to teach at Meeting Street Schools?

I loved how on my first day, I walked into a room full of strangers but we all had a very similar mindset. We all had the same goals, not necessarily for ourselves but for our students. We all were ready and willing to do what it takes to make sure these students are successful.

What makes Meeting Street Schools different?

Meeting Street Schools are different, because everyone isn’t there just for themselves. Our grade level teams are actually a team. We work together and do what’s best not just for our class but the whole grade level. I don’t feel like I’m in any competition with other classes. We want all of our students to succeed. If one classroom is teaching a small group that a student from another class would benefit from, we will switch students around for that one block to make sure everyone gets what he or she needs.

If you were to write a letter to yourself during your first year of teaching giving yourself advice, what would you say?

I would tell myself to take a deep breath and just relax. Your first year is all about learning. You have to find that balance of being friendly with your students while also gaining respect. You can know the curriculum from front to back, but it doesn’t always go how you plan and that’s okay! Each day there’s a curve ball and you learn to adjust to make it work.

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About Meeting Street Schools

Meeting Street Schools (MSS) is an innovative non-profit where schools, families, and the community collaborate to create environments where all children can achieve their full potential. With a network of schools across South Carolina, including MSA-Charleston (Charleston, SC), MSA-Spartanburg (Spartanburg, SC), MS-Brentwood (North Charleston, SC), MS-Burns (North Charleston, SC), and MS-Jasper & Beaufort (Jasper, SC), we are committed to providing students with the rigorous education they deserve.

Founded on the principle that every child deserves an excellent education regardless of their socio-economic background, Meeting Street Schools has been a beacon of hope and a testament to what's possible in education. Our schools are driven by a strong focus on student achievement, evidence-based instruction, and relentless support of our students and their families.

While united by our shared mission, each MSS campus, is unique in its character, tapping into the local spirit of the communities they serve. Explore each of our schools and discover how they're creating a brighter future for students in South Carolina.

News & NotesFrom Clemson University to Master Teacher and Player Coach: Emily Godwin

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Our Schools

MSA – CharlestonDowntown Charleston, SC - Independent School - Since 2008 - 364 Students

Nestled in the heart of Charleston, South Carolina, MSA Charleston is more than just a school—it’s a hub for innovative learning and community engagement. As part of the Meeting Street Schools network, MSA Charleston embodies a commitment to excellence through its rigorous academic programs, inclusive culture, and focus on developing the whole child. With a curriculum that emphasizes both academic and personal growth, MSA Charleston prepares students to be curious learners and active citizens of their community.

MSA – SpartanburgDowntown Spartanburg, SC - Public School - Since 2012 - 323 Students

MSA Spartanburg stands as a pillar of educational innovation in the Spartanburg community. The school’s dedicated educators and supportive learning environment ensure that each child receives a high-quality, personalized education with exceptional faculty and teachers. MSA Spartanburg is distinguished by its emphasis on community partnership, fostering relationships that extend beyond the classroom to build a strong foundation for lifelong learning and success.

MS – BrentwoodNorth Charleston, SC - Public School - Since 2014 - 694 Students

MS Brentwood is a place where education meets opportunity. Serving the Brentwood area, this school is a testament to the transformative power of education. With a student-centered approach that celebrates diversity and encourages excellence, MS Brentwood is dedicated to equipping students with the skills they need to thrive in the 21st century. MS Brentwood also serves as a hub for the Brentwood community to access educational and wellness services. The school’s commitment to innovation, coupled with a warm, welcoming environment, makes it a standout in the MSS network.

MS – BurnsNorth Charleston, SC - Public School - Since 2018 - 478 Students

Located in a community rich with history and culture, MS Burns is renowned for its dynamic educational approach that intertwines traditional learning with modern teaching techniques. The school’s focus on experiential learning ensures that students at MS Burns are not only recipients of knowledge but also active participants in their educational journey. MS Burns exists to spark an educational revolution for the students and families in the Dorchester-Waylyn Neighborhood in North Charleston. With a commitment to creating a supportive and challenging academic environment, MS Burns is forging a new path in public education.

MS – Jasper & BeaufortJasper County, SC - Public Charter School - Fall 2023 -

MS Jasper represents the Meeting Street Schools’ dedication to community-based education with a global perspective. The school provides a nurturing environment where students are encouraged to explore their potential and cultivate a love for learning. With its diverse programs such as Eureka Math, and Wit and Wisdom, MS Jasper puts a major emphasis on character development, specialized learning and equips students to become thoughtful, engaged members of society, reflecting the MSS ethos of empowerment through education.

CommunityVoices

  • 1/3

“MSA is a family. Once you’re in, you’re in. They said they would follow our kids from K-3 to college and they actually lived up to what they said they would do. Not only did MSA challenge my daughter academically but it also exposed her to new things that she probably wouldn’t have been exposed to at our previous neighborhood school. Our journey at MSA was exciting and rewarding. They actually walk the walk.”

— Tyeka GrantParent

  • 2/3

“We come into work everyday truly believing that our students are capable of achieving anything that is put in front of them. Here at MSS, students are provided the opportunity to achieve success through the facilitation of well-educated teachers, resources, and a responsive classroom school environment.”

— NikToshia GilesTeacher

  • 3/3

“Meeting Street Academy is my family. They taught me that I am valuable. I am an asset to the world…They asked me, ‘What is your dream?’ I had never been asked that before. The MSS community gives me the strength to pursue my dreams.”

— Kadelyn SteedStudent