Dr. Susan Bineham has assumed duties as head of school for The Academy at Morgan’s Wonderland, a unique learning environment for special-needs students ages 12 to 24 at 5235 David Edwards Drive next to the world’s first and only ultra-accessible theme park.

In addition to academic instruction, The Academy – through its Bridge Program – concentrates on teaching life skills that will help students become productive adults.  The school has earned accreditation from the Texas Education Agency, and it’s in line for nationwide accreditation by the National Association of Private Special Education Centers.  The Academy will begin its 2015 fall semester Aug. 21.

“I’m delighted and excited to work with our parents and faculty to help every student build upon his or her personal strengths and exceed expectations,” Dr. Bineham said.  “Such a team approach can result in significant progress for the young men and women attending The Academy.”

Gordon Hartman, who along with wife Maggie was instrumental in founding The Academy in 2011, said the school “is very fortunate to have a professional like Dr. Bineham at the helm.  No doubt her vast experience in working with special-needs students and her demonstrated leadership abilities will propel The Academy to new levels of achievement.”

Dr. Bineham, who grew up in San Antonio, traces her passion for special-needs individuals to a 3rd grade schoolmate with disabilities.  She earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from UTSA, master’s degrees in theology and education and a doctorate in special-education administration from the University of Texas at Austin.  She based her doctoral dissertation on the knowledge and skills essential for school administrators to serve students with special needs.

A published author and guest lecturer, Dr. Bineham has presented her research at gatherings of the Council for Exceptional Children, the University Council for Educational Administration, the International Conference on Learning Disabilities, the Council for Education Diagnostic Services and the American Association for Colleges of Teacher Certification.

Her career includes work in youth ministry at a local church, at the Bexar County Juvenile Justice Academy and a combined 16 years in the Northside Independent School District as a special-education teacher, special-education department coordinator and special-education campus coordinator.

William (Doug) Bineham, Dr. Bineham’s husband, is a St. Mary’s University Law School graduate who has been practicing law in San Antonio for more than 25 years.  He is president of the San Antonio Chapter of the Mexican-American Bar Association, and he is an active member of the St. Mary’s University School of Law Hispanic Law Alumni Association and the San Antonio Family Law Section.  The Binehams have three daughters and eight grandchildren, all living in San Antonio.

Dr. Bineham’s predecessor, Anne Bristol, retired after a career in education spanning more than three decades.