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Discovery salutes military families

MADISON – During “Month of the Military Child” in April, several campuses of Madison City Schools devoted time to recognize students who have a relative that serves in the Armed Forces.

Take Discovery Middle School as an example. More than 100 children at Discovery live in a ‘military family.’

Discovery observed “Purple Up Day” on April 14. Many youth and Discovery teachers wore clothing in hues in purple, which is the color that symbolizes all branches of the military,” John S. Peck said. Peck is Public Relations Manager for MCS.

During the sunny morning of April 14, Discovery students assembled on the football field for a large release of purple balloons. The observance at Discovery Middle School was a touching, visual recognition for these families.

The event was “in honor of families with students, parents and siblings connected to the military,” Peck said. Discovery teachers Sarah Baragona and Melissa Grayson sponsor JS2S, and they were instrumental in organizing the event.

“The balloon release capped a week of activities in Madison schools in conjunction with the national ‘Month of the Military Child’ annual observance, established in 1986 by former Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger,” Peck said.

Approximately one out of five students in Madison City Schools is associated with the military. Closely aligned with ‘military students,’ the Student 2 Student or S2S organization is active in high school, while Discovery and Liberty middle schools have Junior Student 2 Student or JS2S groups.

S2S and JS2S groups improve well-being for new students by helping them find their way around campus and within the community and understand their school’s academic requirements and processes, along with building relationships with other students, MCS Grant Administrator Cindy Davis said in a previous interview.

The S2S groups mentor their fellow classmates at school. They interact and offer advice to children of military parents as the students find their transition to new schools. S2S students have seen that social gatherings, friendship outreaches like an ice cream party and other activities help the ‘new kid on campus’ to feel a part of the school community.

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