Architect Steven Bingler is the founder of Concordia, a planning and architectural-design firm in New Orleans. Bingler, who specializes in public buildings, especially schools, designed the Henry Ford Academy's unique facility on the campus of the Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village.
When Althea Williams learned that her daughter, Jakeitha, now fourteen, was going to be retained in the sixth grade, she met with school officials to investigate alternatives to what she believed was a drastic and potentially damaging step.
Editor's Note: Since this article was written, the students of Landry Middle School have moved into a new building, Raymond K. Smith Middle School, with Harold Blood as principal. Landry principal Dianne Powell is now running alternative programs for the St. Charles Parish Public Schools at the site of her old school.