Monday, September 21, 2009

Wheatley Elementary School :: make your voice heard

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"The school and Lafitte, they were one. When you said Phillis Wheatley, you said Lafitte,” recalls Michelle Nelson, who went to the Wheatley school in the 60s and lived at Lafitte. He has vivid memories of an annual parade when school kids stepped to the Bell High School band and threw Mardi Gras beads to neighbors and also of directing all the young students across Saint Ann Street when he worked as a patrol guard in the sixth grade under the guidance of his favorite teacher, Mr. Grand Prix. The Lafitte housing complex that grounded this community was almost entirely demolished for redevelopment last spring and summer and now the school is slated to be razed by the New Orleans Recovery School District. “They’re just removing all memory,” laments Michelle, “They’ve taken all the places where I grew up. Now they’re tearing down the school.” *
As part of the section 106 review FEMA is sponsoring a public meeting in addition to the online public comment period. The meeting will be held at the Sojourner Truth Neighborhood Center 2200 Lafitte Street from 6:30 - 9 pm on Tuesday, September 22, 2009.

Public comments may also be submitted online.
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* interview conducted by Bethany Rogers for the Cornerstones Project

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