Culture

Kanye West’s Donda Academy Abruptly Shuts Down

Ye’s California-based Christian school Donda Academy has closed amid controversy of the rapper’s recent antisemitic comments.

Even more bad news for Ye this week. According to reports, the artist formerly known as Kanye West has temporarily shuttered the doors to Christian school Donda Academy, which is located in California’s Simi Valley. An email was sent to parents of students attending the institution, saying, “at the discretion of our founder, Donda Academy will close for the remainder of the 2022-2023 school year effective immediately.”

It seems that Ye first broke the news in a since-deleted Instagram post aimed at Hollywood Unlocked founder Jason Lee. “Here’s the clout you’re looking for,” the Donda 2 artist said in the deleted post. “My school is being shut down.”

Although the academy is being closed for the remainder of the 2022-2023 school year, the email says that it will reopen in September 2023 for students to “continue to advance as creative innovators, courageous influencers and academic leaders of the next generation.” The school, which is not accredited, costs families $15,000 per year, with students previously wearing uniforms designed by Balenciaga.

In an unusual twist, parents and students of the school received an email on Wednesday at midnight calling for “worship in return of Donda Academy.”

With the help of our parents and community, we are back and returning with a vengeance,” the letter reads, per TMZ. “The children of Donda are going to change the world. Apologies for the late email! See you bright and early!”

Along with potentially losing Donda Academy, Adidas, Gap and other companies cut ties with Ye this week, leading to the Yeezy founder showing up at the Skechers headquarters on Wednesday (October 27). The shoe brand says that upon his arrival, Ye was immediately escorted out by security due to his recent antisemitic remarks.

“Skechers is not considering and has no intention of working with West,” Skechers said in a statement. “We condemn his recent divisive remarks and do not tolerate antisemitism or any other form of hate speech,” the statement continued. “The Company would like to again stress that West showed up unannounced and uninvited to Skechers corporate offices.”

Jaelani Turner-Williams

Jaelani Turner-Williams is a contributing news writer for Okayplayer with bylines at Billboard, MTV News, NYLON, Recording Academy and more. Read her mind on Twitter at @hernameisjae.

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