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Jared Heady, 8th grade student at Walton Middle School, won a special award at the 62nd Annual State Science and Engineering Fair on March 28-30, 2017 in Lakeland, Florida. Jared won the Pasco Regional Science and Engineering Fair Special Award for Earth and Environmental Sciences. Project Title: "Invasive Plants vs. Oil Spills.” In December, Jared won 1st place in the Junior Environmental Category at the Walton County School District Science Fair and he also placed in the Regional Science and Engineering Fair in February. Congratulations! Submitted by Crystal Appel.

WMS Science Award Recipient

Van R Butler Elementary School participated in "Every Kid Healthy Week" April 24-28,  by doing Zumba during physical education classes!  Submitted by Chelsey Jewell/Tammy Smith.

VRB Zumba

Freeport High School, Kelsea Roberts is nominated Sunshine State Scholar for the Walton County School District. Each school district throughout Florida selects its top 11th grade student in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) based on established criteria. Each Scholar, along with their parents and teachers, convene to receive recognition for their achievements. Kelsea will have opportunities to meet with representatives from Florida’s colleges and universities, learn about STEM-related programs of study and internships, and experience why Florida is the best place to learn and pursue an exciting career. Kelsea Roberts will represent our school district in May at the 2017 Sunshine State Scholars Program in Orlando, Fl. We are very proud of Kelsea! Congratulations! Submitted by Crystal Appel.

Teachers give us so much. A boost of confidence when we really need one. Extra help when we’re having trouble. A welcoming presence when everything else seems out of control. And though we know we can’t ever thank them enough, we can take a moment during Teacher Appreciation Week to share our appreciation for the special educators in our lives.

Please join Superintendent Hughes and all the District Administration and staff in thanking the amazing teachers of the Walton County School District this week, May 1-5, as we celebrate Teacher Appreciation Week.  Submitted by Keitha Bledsoe.

Walton Middle School Students Named National Finalists in the Bright Schools Competition

Team Warriors is One of 50 National Finalists in Innovative STEM Competition for Students in Grades 6-8

DeFuniak Springs, FL. April 18, 2017— Ethan Mckee, Larissa Singletary, Atterol Walters, and Chloe Wilder along with teacher Greer Harvell, of Walton Middle School in Defuniak Springs, Florida have been named national finalists in the 2nd annual Bright Schools Competition™. The competition is a collaborative effort of the National Sleep Foundation and the National Science Teachers Association that encourages students in grades 6-8 to explore the correlation between light and sleep and how it influences student health and performance. Team Warrior is one of 50 national finalist teams, chosen among 150 teams, made up of nearly 500 students from 53 schools. In early May, first-, second- and third-place national winning teams will be announced. The complete list of the national finalists can be found at

Team Warrior’s winning project, entitled “Lace Case,” proposed a uniquely manufactured phone case that would block the emittance of blue light. The materials to be used were specifically selected as they have been determined to be hypoallergenic, alleviating a potential problem for those who are allergic to latex. The phone case would include an amber tinted screen protector. Studies have shown that those who wear amber glasses for three hours before bedtime reported increased sleep quality and an enhanced overall mood.  The team theorized that the same concept could be applied through the use of an interchangeable screen for smart phones.

“The National Sleep Foundation would like to congratulate the finalists on their innovative projects. The Bright Schools Competition™ has shined a light on the importance of sleep and overall health, and we’re encouraged to see so many students interested in how light directly affects their sleep and academic performance” said David Cloud, CEO of the National Sleep Foundation. Submitted by Greer harvell/Kristen Rhodes.

The Walton County Academic Team has won the State Championship in Division 3 of the 32nd Commissioner’s Academic Challenge in Orlando, Florida with 188 points!

In the final competition Saturday morning, April 29, team Members Sean Brown, Malcolm Griffith, Jordan Nichols, Evan Cowie, Kier Teves,and Griffon Murphy were behind 1 point after the 5 point round, and behind 3 points after the 15 point round. They played smart and conservatively and made their way back up with the lead, which they maintained throughout the rest of the competition. As a team, they scored more points than any other team in the final competition on the Team Bonuses.

Two of the WCSD Academic Team coaches that traveled to the event with them, Coach Carla Griffith and Coach Glen Harrison, said it was amazing to see how well they worked together and functioned as a team! Special thanks to ALL the Academic Team coaches throughout the District who have worked with these students, some as early as 6th grade, to help prepare them for this exciting moment! 

Additional congratulations goes to Evan Cowie, Walton High School, for being selected for the Team Florida Academic Team! He will go on to compete in the National Academic Team competition! This is a great honor, and we know Evan will represent WCSD and the state of Florida well in this event!


Academic Team with Florida Commissioner of Education Pam Stewart 

Academic Team with Commissioner 



Sheriff Michael Adkinson presented a check for $20,000 to Superintendent Hughes and Board Member Kim Kirby at the School Board meeting on April 18th. This donation is to support the Criminal Operations program at Freeport High School. This program will provide training to high school students in the areas of 911 Telecommunications and Crime Scene Investigations. Sheriff Adkinson spoke a few words about how he loved being able to support his community and turn bad money into good as the donation came from drug money that was seized by the Sheriff's department. Mr. Hughes thanked Sheriff Adkinson for his generous donation and said that he looked forward to continuing their work together through the Children's Advocacy Center. Photo provided by DeFuniak Herald Beach Breeze.  Submitted by Donna Honish.