DESTIN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
To grow critical thinkers capable of overcoming any challenge by fostering a growth mindset and a love for learning.
To provide the highest quality instruction and environment designed purposefully to meet all the needs for students to grow academically, socially, emotionally, and physically. Working hard to develop a culture centered on having a growth mindset in all aspects of a students’ life.
Destin Elementary School (DES) is a public school located in the heart of the growing vacation destination Destin, Florida. This once small Northwest Florida panhandle fishing community opened the doors of its only elementary school in 1955 and it has since become an integral part of Okaloosa County School District. Destin, being a vacation destination for fishing, beaches, shopping and golf, as well as its proximity to Eglin and Hurlburt Air Force Bases, makes for a somewhat transient population which changes with the tourism seasons. The current population of DES is 985 students which represents an increase of 5.3% from August 2020. Currently 42% of the student body in on the Free and Reduced Lunch Program. The minority population of 23% consists of 1.7% African American, 14% Hispanic, 11.2% Multiracial and 2.1% Asian.
DES successfully serves its 985 students in grades Pre-Kindergarten through fourth grade. Fifty-three certified teachers provide quality instruction to meet high academic standards. Students are assessed frequently to verify levels of academic performance followed by appropriate instruction designed to move all students forward at the most appropriate rate possible. Instruction is differentiated in all classrooms to meet the needs and challenge all students. Students are enrolled in a 45 minute activity block of time daily which consists of 4 days per week of physical education and 1 day every week alternating art and music. Reading and math incentive programs along with tutorial and remedial programs are used to reinforce the general curriculum based on the Florida Standards. DES has an academically supportive child care program and offers a variety of after school activities such as art, drama, and piano lessons. The following programs are provided to help students meet their individual academic needs: Pre-Kindergarten Disabilities, Specific Learning Disabilities, Speech and Language, and Gifted Education. Students performing below proficiency receive additional interventions outside the 120 minute ELA block and 90 minute math block.
Community and parental involvement plays a major role in the success of DES. Establishing high expectations for every student and addressing individual academic needs has contributed to DES achieving 20 straight A+ ratings from the State of Florida Department of Education. The academic successes students have attained has placed DES among the top performing schools in Okaloosa County and the state.