LETTER: Another perspective on bullying
After reading the recent article detailing one student's experience with bullying at Destin Middle School, I'd like to offer another perspective. Although our students do not have PE, they participate in band, athletics and club activities. I have been on campus often and have always found the faculty and staff to be caring, professional and attentive and the students kind and encouraging to one another.
In just the last few weeks, I saw classroom lessons come to life at the annual 7th grade cardboard boat race where kids cheered on their peers even as their boats sank. At the tumbling showcase, I saw students at every level receive applause and recognition. At the band's spring concert, I heard musicians perform to meet the high standards set forth by their director. At the welcome night for upcoming 5th graders, our principal represented our school well and addressed parents' concerns about their child's transition from elementary school. Recently at the 8th grade Marlin Olympics, I saw teachers gather to comfort a student who was in tears. But most impressive was the display of our school's character education: I witnessed the kids rally around students with obvious limitations and encourage them to do their best in a spirit of camaraderie rather than competition.
While I am certainly sympathetic to any parent who feels his or her child is not safe at school, I hope your readers will consider our family's experience and not paint Destin Middle School with a broad brush; I hope your readers will see what an excellent community school we have at Destin Middle School with faculty, staff and students we can all be proud of.