Ye's Donda Academy abruptly closes in California

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(KTLA) – A private school founded by the rapper formerly known as Kanye West is shutting its doors Thursday amid the ongoing backlash over the rapper’s recent antisemitic comments.

An email confirming the immediate closure of Donda Academy, located in Simi Valley, California, was sent to parents by the school’s principal, Hollywood Unlocked first reported.

“Donda Academy will close for the remainder of the 2022-2023 school year effective immediately … THERE IS NO SCHOOL TOMORROW,” a portion of a screenshot showing the email sent Wednesday read.

The school does, however, intend to reopen in September 2023, according to the message.

The same email was also obtained by British newspaper The Times.

Donda Academy, founded by Ye in 2022, is an unaccredited private Christian school intended to “be a reflection of God’s glory in the world,” according to its website. The school offers a core curriculum of language, math and science as well as “full school worship” and enrichment courses, the site says.

Wednesday’s email did not go into detail about why the school is closing, but Ye has recently been under scrutiny over antisemitic comments. Earlier this month, the artist tweeted he would soon go “death con 3 on JEWISH PEOPLE,” making an apparent reference to the U.S. defense readiness condition scale known as DEFCON.

A Jewish educator at the Donda Academy also subsequently resigned from her position after the tweet, confirming she could “no longer support the organization,” according to a statement shared on her behalf to The Hollywood Reporter.

Ye’s antisemitic rhetoric also prompted him to be locked out of his Instagram and Twitter accounts. The repercussions continued, with Ye’s talent agency cutting ties with Ye, and companies including Gap and Adidas ending their partnerships with the rapper earlier this week.

“Adidas does not tolerate antisemitism and any other sort of hate speech,” Adidas wrote in a statement announcing their decision. “Ye’s recent comments and actions have been unacceptable, hateful and dangerous, and they violate the company’s values of diversity and inclusion, mutual respect and fairness.”

In addition to his recent antisemitic comments, Ye had previously suggested slavery was a choice and called the COVID-19 vaccine the “mark of the beast,” among other controversial remarks. He also was criticized for wearing a “White Lives Matter” T-shirt to his Yeezy collection show in Paris.

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