Teacher gets $30,000 classroom makeover

By: Erica Rakow Email
By: Erica Rakow Email

Panama City-- A 7th grade teacher at Jinks Middle School in Panama City is the envy of the district.

During the teacher's back to school teacher pep rally a few weeks ago, Simone Copeland won a $30,000 dollar classroom makeover from Gulf Coast Office Products.

Tuesday, company representative Jack Rowell, took measurements of Copeland’s classroom so the work can begin.

Copeland has moved into a modular classroom while this room gets the make-over. So the next time her students walk back into the classroom it will have brand new furniture and look extremely different.

"Well before I got selected, as I told my students, I didn't think I would win. But when I won, when I heard my name, I was ecstatic! I got up and ran to that stage! I'm going to have a new room for my kids," said Simone Copeland who teaches 7th grade ASPIRE.

"Bay District Schools has been a longtime customer of ours. And we just decided this would be a way to give back for all the work and all the dedication we've have from the Bay District Schools," said Area Representative for Gulf Coast Office Products, Jack Rowell.

Gulf Coast Office Products which is based in Pensacola, will renovate the room during the students’ Thanksgiving break.


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  • by Susan Location: Panama City on Aug 26, 2011 at 07:58 AM
    Way to go GCOP and congrats to Ms. Copeland! Most people don't realize how much money it takes to do a classroom and how much teachers spend of their own money in their rooms. What a wonderful way to give back to our community! Thank you for making things better for our students - one classroom at a time!
  • by Jennifer Location: Lynn Haven on Aug 24, 2011 at 06:22 PM
    What a great thing to do to give back to the community! Way to go Gulf Coast Office Products! Don't pay attention to the negative comments. Not suprised that we have some ignorant people in PC but a little shocking that they feel the need to document it in writing. Thanks again GCOP this is such a positive thing for the kids and the community!!
  • by ebl Location: Panama City on Aug 24, 2011 at 04:34 PM
    I think this is great! Congratulations to the teacher and the students. And how thoughtful it was of the company making the donation!
  • by Sheila Location: Callaway on Aug 24, 2011 at 02:40 PM
    She will probably use the cash to buy herself one of those golden apples. Mike jones had to shoot a man on live TV before he got an award. She just shows up and grabs the big prize.
  • by Janet Location: Panama City on Aug 24, 2011 at 10:31 AM
    The kind folks at Gulf Coast Office Products wanted to do something nice for a teacher. It is up to them to spend it the way they want to. I bet you wouldn't be complaining if it was your classroom! Congratulations to Simone and her students! Enjoy!
  • by Richard Location: Panama City on Aug 24, 2011 at 05:18 AM
    Why limit it to just one teacher and just one room? $30K is a lot of money for just one classroom when so many teachers are being forced to buy supplies out of their own pockets. This is just not right!
  • by scott Location: panama city on Aug 24, 2011 at 05:15 AM
    Think it is a shame that it takes a drawing to get rooms madeover.
    • reply
      by Janet on Aug 24, 2011 at 10:38 AM in reply to scott
      Until the way we fund our school system changes at the state and/or federal level or more good people like the folks at GCOP decide to get involved it will always be this way!
  • by Anonymous Location: PCB on Aug 23, 2011 at 06:49 PM
    This comment has been deleted.
    • reply
      by Janet on Aug 24, 2011 at 10:33 AM in reply to Anonymous
      Think about the blessing this will be for those students! How exciting for them to have such a wonderful opportunity.
  • by Anonymous on Aug 23, 2011 at 05:22 PM
    Wow, I think the money could have been used a little better !
    • reply
      by Gigimark on Aug 23, 2011 at 07:06 PM in reply to
      I think this is nice...Since this money isn't coming from tax or lotto money, I don't think we can suggest how Gulf Coast Office Products should have spent their money. Congratulations to the teacher and her kids!
      • reply
        by ebl on Aug 24, 2011 at 04:37 PM in reply to Gigimark
        I agree with Gigimark. It's not our money or taxes that's paying for it. Anonymous, if I wanted to give a donation to my neice for her Birthday, would you be mad because I didn't give the money to my nephew instead because maybe he wants a new bike or something? It's Gulf Coast Office Products' money to spend, not yours.
    • reply
      by annonymous on Aug 24, 2011 at 07:35 AM in reply to
      Was it your money?
    • reply
      by Janet on Aug 24, 2011 at 10:32 AM in reply to
      If you owned the company, what would you have done to help education?
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