It took a year and a half, but students in Poplar Bluff now have great protection against the threat of tornadoes.
A new safe room is just one part of upgrades at the school.
A ribbon cutting Thursday officially marks the completion of the FEMA safe room at the Poplar Bluff Junior High School.
The whole process started more than a year ago and was partially funded through a local levy.
The room can easily hold the school's population with room for 904 people total.
Officials say this safe room is an example of how the school is growing.
"Even from the conception of it a year and a half ago, it was this awesome idea and it finally came together. And we see it now. We're standing in it right now and kids have actually used it. We've practiced tornado drills in here. It's just an awesome thing to have for our kids, our school and our community," said Poplar Bluff Junior High School Principal Bob Case.
The tax levy also paid for nine new classrooms at the school.
Other schools in the system are undergoing minor improvements as well.