The first French-American class took place between Cedar Rapids, Iowa and Versailles France. The experience was so successful that the program was introduced in many primary schools in America. In three years the number of classes went from two in 1975 to 30 in 1977!
The first class from the South side of Chicago ( all the children were black) participated in 1978: the reception by the French was outstanding. However the Chicago class was place in 1981 with a class from Neuilly sur Seine. The school administrator in that city was the actual president of France : Nicolas Sarkozy. The reaction of the city was poor and the program was cvanceled in Neuilly sur Seine so " as not host black children" according to the representative of the city. This was a racist reaction which is mentionned in André Girod' book!