Burlington check presentation

Burlington Coat Factory local store manager Russ Thigpen and assistant manager Yolanda Gillard display the $10,000 check presented to Southaven Intermediate School Friday morning under the corporate Adopt A Classroom program.  

Bob Bakken|DTT

Teachers at one DeSoto County school will not have to dig as deep into their pocketbook to help pay for school supplies they need for their classrooms as they used to. 

The instructors of Southaven Intermediate School are benefitting from a check presentation for $10,000 they were given from the Adopt A Classroom program that Burlington Coat Factory stores partner with on a corporate basis throughout its franchise.

The check was presented during a student assembly in the school gymnasium Friday morning.

Burlington recently moved its Southaven store from behind the Chamber of Commerce headquarters on Main Street east of I-55 to the shopping center next to Office Depot on Goodman Road.

The company’s marketing arm reached out to the DeSoto County School District about a school they could provide funding for under the program. Southaven Intermediate’s close proximity to the Burlington store was a factor in making the school the beneficiary, said principal Kenneth McKinney and local store manager Russ Thigpen.

“It makes sure that teachers have money for supplies,” Thigpen said. “Burlington knows that teachers spent a lot out of their pocket, so this helps with that. It’s a big company-wide initiative to give back to the teachers. The cool thing about this is that it is local. All of the money goes to a local school.”

McKinney added, “Our teachers, most of the time, use their own funds and money to bring to the classroom things that they use and this is going to help them tremendously.”

The principal said it had not yet been determined how to spend the donation, but “we’re just excited to be getting it,” he said.

Adopt A Classroom works with other corporate partners, such as Kohl’s, Farmer’s Insurance and Lake Bryant. The 501(c)3 foundation is based in Minneapolis, Minn. Information from Adopt A Classroom states teachers, on average, spend $600 a year out of their own pocket on classroom supplies because more states provide less support each year for K-12 schools.

Bob Bakken is Staff Writer and may be reached at 662-429-6397 ext. 240.

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