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Grades Released Yesterday

September 21, 2021

Superintendent A. Russell Hughes proudly announces that Walton County School District has been designated as an

A+ District

for the 3rd consecutive year (first time, EVER), ranking us as

#5 in the State!

That is a move up from #7 when our schools and district were last given a grade in 2018-2019.

That’s not all – as you may already know,

Walton County School District is also

#6 in the State

based on our 2020-2021 Assessment Results!

That is a move up from #8 when our students were last assessed in 2018-2019.

Superintendent Hughes wishes to thank all our stakeholders: students, parents, teachers, administrators, school staff, and our entire community for helping to move Walton County School District




National Arts in Education Week is this week, September 12 - 18, and we are continuing our tradition of celebrating by shining a spotlight on the amazing Arts educators making a difference in our community!

Meet this year's Arts Teacher of the Year: Heather Motter! Heather works with Pre-K children who have disabilities at Bay School in Santa Rosa Beach, FL. Most of them are non-verbal so she uses art in every expression of her teaching. She came to the classroom as an assistant but completed college coursework while acting as a full-time teacher and is now a fully licensed teacher.

Heather has come up with the most creative ways to help her students express themselves through their art and looks for new ways every day to incorporate art in her classroom. She takes the greatest delight in the things that most of us take for granted. To have a nonverbal child consistently use a certain sound to communicate a thought or need is a major breakthrough and she celebrates it like no one else. 

Please join us in congratulating Heather and ALL of the other amazing teachers in our community who utilize the Arts (music, visual art, performing art, literary art, etc) in their curriculum. Thank you for helping to ensure that #ArtMatters in Walton County! 

COVID Update September 17, 2021

September 17, 2021

COVID Update September 17, 2021

In the spirit of transparency, the Walton County School District (WCSD) will continue to update our stakeholders with COVID-19 data for the 2021-2022 school year. 

We look forward to a time where these numbers read 0%, likewise is our wish for our county, state, and country. We are glad that we are able to navigate through this second year of COVID like we have with the mitigation strategies in place that allow students to be in school, employees at work, and families enjoying some sense of normalcy.


COVID-19 Statistics

Single Day Data


% of total population (students and staff ~ 13,000)

Overall Data to Date

(8/10/21 – 9/16/21)

% of total population (students and staff ~ 13,000)

Positive COVID-19 Cases

of School District Students and/or Employees






Quarantined Due to On Campus Exposure of School District Students and/or Employees






Quarantined Due to Off Campus Exposure (Community/Family Exposure) of School District Students and/or Employees






Schools Involved in Positive Cases and/or Exposure







We are pleased to announce a new partnership in our efforts to help make COVID-19 testing more accessible to our students and employees, allowing students a speedy return if quarantined due to possible exposure and families immediate information and results.  Beginning immediately, COVID-19 testing will be offered through Stone Clinical Laboratories.  The tests are conducted by clinically trained personnel who are both vaccinated and tested on a weekly basis.  Those wanting testing need to pre-register at  Results are provided within 24 hours of testing.  As always, we want children in safe schools and experiencing educational success – this new partnership ascertains this goal and our moving 4wRd!

Walton County School District COVID-19 Mitigation Strategies for the 2021-2022 School Year

  1. If a person is sick (students, teachers, staff, and visitors), they should stay home.
  2. Face covering is optional for all, including the bus.
  3. Hand sanitizer is available at various areas inside the school.
  4. Social distancing from others is encouraged as much as possible.
  5. Signs will be displayed to remind those in schools about social distancing, as well as the use of hand sanitizer, washing of hands, and face coverings.
  6. Cleaning and disinfecting school facilities/buses which are occupied by students will be done daily.
  7. Adequate mitigation supplies are on hand at all schools/facilities (hand sanitizer, disinfectant wipes, masks, etc.).
  8. COVID-19 vaccination is optional for all students and employees.
  9. COVID-19 contact tracing is occurring in all schools/facilities (2021-2022 WCSD Decision Tree for employees and students).
  10. At this time non-essential visitors and volunteers are not allowed to enter schools. This mitigation strategy will be revisited in the next few weeks.

*Please keep in mind that although COVID positive cases may represent a student or staff member within the WCSD, it does not necessarily indicate that the virus originated within the WCSD.  It is also important to note that a portion of the positive cases involve individuals who may have never entered the school setting while sick due to proper quarantining. 


Sophia Bock Named Semifinalist

September 17, 2021

This week the National Merit Scholarship Corporation announced that SWHS Senior Sophia Bock is one of 16,000 semifinalists in the 67th annual National Merit Scholarship Program. 


Sophia is pictured with South Walton High School Principal Dr. Alexis Tibbetts.


Full STEAM Ahead at MSE!

September 16, 2021

In STEAM class, our 3rd-5th graders accessed both sides of their brain as they merged their scientific and artistic abilities to create artwork that represented the observable shape of the Moon over the course of a month.

FES is Rocking!!!

September 16, 2021

FES was Rocking today with Character Contracts developed by students and classes.  Writing in Kindergarten, reading in 2nd Grade, and just all around exceptional instruction and learning.  Construction on the outside and Building Future Leaders on the inside!!!  EPIC 4wRd…..Superintendent Hughes had a chance to stop and speak to teachers, students, and Cafeteria Staff!  Over 400 breakfast plates served yesterday!!!!!  READY & ROCKING school wide!!!!!

Commemorating 9/11 at SWHS!

September 16, 2021

An astonishing, moving, learning, and reflective event at SWHS commemorating 9/11 on Friday.  Dr. Tibbets, Mr. Libby, and Mr. Houp were phenomenal speakers that spoke from the heart about love for country, the cost of freedom, family sacrifice, and their real life experiences serving and remembering 9/11.  Jodi, a band student played Taps to perfection that brought tears to the eyes of many.  Thanks SWHS for Forever Remembering and Never allowing any to FORGET!!!!!  EPIC shows and knows the importance of Culture, Country, Freedom, and Family!!!!!

September 15 to October 15 is celebrated nationwide as National Hispanic Heritage Month. It traditionally honors the cultures and contributions of both Hispanic and Latino Americans as we celebrate heritage rooted in all Latin American countries. During this month and throughout the year, we, and our partners, share history, heritage, and accomplishments of Hispanic and Latino Americans of past and present.

On Monday, September 13, 2021 First Lady Casey DeSantis announced the theme for Hispanic Heritage Month would be “Celebrating Untold Stories and Contributions of Hispanic Americans in Florida.” Lady DeSantis also released information regarding student art and essay contests and Excellence in Education awards. Hispanic Heritage Month is recognized and celebrated in the United States from September 15 to October 15.

“There are thousands of Hispanic-American community leaders and champions across Florida, and I’m proud that as a state we will honor them this month,” said First Lady Casey DeSantis. “During Hispanic Heritage Month, the Governor and I look forward to celebrating and recognizing these individuals who have made our state, nation and world a better place including those on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic. This year’s theme encourages students to take a deeper look into the local leaders, innovators and community members who have contributed to Florida’s successful history and bright future.”

Students in grades K-3 are invited to participate in an art contest while students in grades 4-12 are invited to participate in an essay contest based on this year’s theme. Additionally, students, parents, teachers and principals are invited to nominate full-time educators of all student grades for the Hispanic Heritage Month Excellence in Education Award.

Walton County is excited to encourage students to participate in celebrating the history and culture of Hispanic Americans by participating in the art or essay contest.  If students or parents are interested in submitting an entry for either competition, please contact the Fine Arts, Spanish or Social Studies Departments at your school for further information.   Please note however, that all entries must be received by 5pm on Monday, October 11, 2021.

Click Here to View the Announcement