POPLAR BLUFF, MO (KFVS) - Poplar Bluff Public Schools recently got a huge present for the second year in a row. The gift: $20,000 from an anonymous donor. Over the past two years, the mystery man has given the district $40,000.
This time Eugene Field Elementary will put the money to good use with new computers. The students are already excited.
"Computers help us do our work," said student Anna Willis.
"It's awesome," said student, Jadarius Pigg.
"I can't even put into words how happy we are," said Jim Thomas, Director of Media for the district. "I've never even met the gentleman but if I did I'd give him a big hug and a thank you."
Thomas says the donor contacted him through email with two requests. The alum requested his identity remain a mystery, and the money go towards computers.
"I don't think he understands the impact it's had on our school district," said Thomas.
This year's donation will fund a special classroom lab known as eMINTS. It puts the focus on digital instruction instead of paper. The term eMINTS stands for: enhancing Missouri's Instructional Networked Teaching Strategies.
"It will introduce the kids to technology they wouldn't otherwise have," said Pam Heaton.
About a dozen computers will soon replace a lot of paper in Pam Heaton's fourth grade class.
"I am so excited, We've needed this for a while," said Heaton. "It allows them to be prepared not only for our 5th and 6th grade and new requirements but also go on and be better prepared for high school."
Staff members say not only does this gift ease the district's budget in trying economic times, but simply gives staff and students a reason to smile.
"The kids can't wait, they think it's wonderful," said Heaton.
"It's just a morale boost," said Thomas. "For someone to just walk in and make a donation. It's great."
The computers will go in Ms. Heaton's class as soon as they round up the proper furniture.
Administrators say they are always thankful for donations of furniture as well and it's something they need.
Last year's donation went to put in a drafting lab at the high school.