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Gwendolyn C. Parker, I consider teaching to be a blessing and to be part of WCSD family. 

Gwen is a veteran teacher with more than a decade of experience at WHS. I am an Algebra 1, 1-B, and 1-A teacher. I am also an AVID 4 teacher, and I am a track coach. I am a graduate of Chipola Junior College ( Chipola College) and the University of West Florida. Go Braves!

Medical scientist Patricia E. Bath was born November 4, 1942 in Harlem, New York, the daughter of a Trinidadian immigrant father and Cherokee Native mother who was a descendant of African slaves.

Bath developed an interest in science early in her life while attending school at Charles Evans Hughes High School.  Patricia received a grant in 1959 from the National Science Foundation to attend the Summer Institute in Biomedical Science at Yeshiva University in New York.  She worked on a project studying the relationship between cancer, nutrition, and stress and this institute.  Graduating from Hunter College with a degree in chemistry, she went on to attend Howard University Medical School.  Ms. Bath graduated with honors in 1968 winning the Edwin J. Watson Prize for Outstanding Student in Ophthalmology.

From 1970 until 1973, Bath was the first African American resident in ophthalmology at New York University’s School of Medicine.  Bath first conceived her invention, the Laserphaco Probe in 1981, and decided to learn more about laser technology traveling to Berlin University in Germany to study the skill.  During the next five years, she developed, tested and produced a model laser instrument that could be tested. The Laserphaco Probe was patented in 1988.  The probe is used during eye surgery to correct cataracts, an eye condition that clouds vision and leads to blindness.  The Laserphaco Probe was a less invasive, less risky and more precise than previous devices and is currently used around the world.

Mrs. Bath’s list of “firsts” are many:   First African American to complete a residency in ophthalmology; the first woman to chair an ophthalmology residency program in the United States and the first African American female doctor to secure a medical patent.  To complete this list is her status as co-founder of the American Institute for the Prevention of Blindness.  Bath was inducted into the International Women in Medicine Hall of Fame in 2001.

We salute you, Patricia Bath and thank you for your groundbreaking work in the field of ophthalmology! 


Mrs. Jackson has humbly served in education for 20 years and even had the honor of teaching at her high school alma mater eleven of those years.  Born and raised in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, she developed a respect and love for learning from her dad, who served in World War II and her mother, who was an avid reader.  Mrs. Jackson graduated from Salem College where she earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in English and a Master of Arts in Teaching.  It was not until she was blessed to meet and marry her husband that she moved to Florida four years ago.  Then in 2019, Mrs. Jackson was thrilled to be given the opportunity to join the outstanding team of teachers, students, staff, and administrators at Freeport Middle School.  As a 7th grade ELA teacher, she brings a wealth of educational experience, hard-work ethic, and professionalism to the classroom.  

-Teaching is not what I do…it’s who I am-

Mrs. Tania Eastman joined Freeport Elementary this school year as the guidance counselor. Before becoming a guidance counselor, Mrs. Eastman was in the United States Air Force. She is a valuable asset to our leadership team at FES. She implemented a program at our school that shows how she puts students first.  She is always wanting to learn more to grow as a guidance counselor. 

Chelsey has been teaching for 3 years, and loves being a teacher.  She loves to watch her students grow in their knowledge and to learn new things every day.  In her free time she enjoys spending time with family.

Antonio Harrison is proud to be part of the WCSD family. 

Antonio is a veteran teacher with more than a decade of experience teaching in Alabama and Florida. He is joining us for his first year at Walton High School as an ESE teacher and football coach.  Coach Harrison is a graduate of the University of Alabama and holds and MBA from the Auburn University System.

Meet Mr. Owen Cole, coach and teacher at Freeport High School.  Coach Cole graduated from Freeport High School in 2013.  He went on to play college football at Tabor College and Troy State University.  Coach Cole has been in education for  3 years and finally returned “home” to Freeport in 2020.


When Coach Cole was asked about coming back to his alma mater, Coach Cole responded by saying, “Being a teacher back at FHS has been a neat experience. As an alumnus of Freeport High School, it makes me want to get the most out of these students and show them their full potential.” 


We are so fortunate to have Coach Cole as part of our Freeport family.  He adds positivity and integrity to our staff and is a wonderful role model for all our students.  Coach Cole is giving back to the community.


Thank you, Coach Cole!

Alexander Miles- Inventor

February 19, 2021

The invention of Alexander Miles’ elevator doors dramatically improved safety for passengers. Early elevators were different from the mostly automated devices we’re familiar with today.  Passengers in any elevator in the late 1880s and early 1900s had to manually open and close doors including the doors leading to the actual elevator shaft.  If the door was accidentally left open, other passengers could fall down the shaft when expecting to step into the elevator.  Alexander Miles invented a device that triggered the shaft doors to open and close along with the elevator doors, which made the elevator ride much safer.  Although rarely connected with this invention, we can all agree Miles’ ingenuity and foresight plays an integral part of our 21st Century world.  In fact, the elevators we use currently still feature automatic shaft doors similar to the invention Miles Patented in 1887!

Miles’ exact birthplace and birthdate are unknown, but he was living in Duluth, Minnesota when he came up with his famous invention.  For more history and African American collections, and preserved culture visit the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture at

Walton Middle School AVID students had the unique opportunity to visit Emerald Coast Technical College last week.  While there, students received hands-on opportunities to experience the array of programs the local college offers.  By visiting nursing, 3D printing, cosmetology, pharmacy tech, automotive, welding, and construction classrooms, among others, students' eyes were opened to the vast range of career opportunities they can one day train for right here in Walton County.  Instructors emphasized the importance of a dedicated work ethic and professionalism while learning to pave the path to future success.  The WMS AVID program graciously thanks ECTC for opening their doors to plant the seeds of future homegrown success for our students.

Not even the frigid weather could stop the Seahawk fans from cheering on their girls and boys soccer teams to victories tonight for quarter final regional playoffs. Go Hawks!