If there’s one thing Kanye West will do –aside from spewing hot takes– it’s starting a new business.
His latest comes in the form of education with the creation of The Donda Academy which is named after his late mother who was a professor.
Rolling Stone investigated the inner workings of the Simi Valley, California institution to find out what it’s really about and unsurprisingly it seems to be in total disarray.
Rolling Stone figured out that the school still isn’t accredited despite its $15,000-per-year tuition, and was still looking for teachers right up until the beginning of the school year. One of the most startling facts dug up about the school is the lack of experience that the principal, named Brianne Campbell, has.
“Rolling Stone has learned that Campbell has never held a formal position as an educator. According to her résumé, Campbell’s closest brush with a teaching position appears to be running her own piano-, guitar-, and singing-tutoring business headquartered from her apartment,” writes the magazine. “The 28-year-old only enrolled in a master’s degree program in education at Pepperdine University in January and should complete it by next August.”
An interview request with Campbell went unanswered, but Rolling Stone was able to speak to Malik Yusef –a fellow Chicago native known for his producing and spoken word– who helped shape the school’s concept. He emphatically says that West’s approach toward education is something he’s had in mind for a while.
“I want to be emphatic that there’s never been a time that Kanye West did not want to do this,” Yusef said. “I think people don’t understand the gravity of that. This man always wanted to create a school in his mama’s name.… Look at what we’re doing with the choir and the fashion in school — I don’t think there’s a venture capitalist or anybody that’s had a vision this clear on what education can look like for you.”
Weeks ago Ye posted pictures of kids in class at the Donda Academy as they were all gathered around tables wearing matching outfits and many wondered who’d really enroll their kids in that school.
“Yusef described some of the students being children of West’s collaborators, creatives, and other celebrities, as Keyshia Cole posted a picture of her son in a Donda uniform and a popular family on YouTube also posted a picture of their child on the first day of school in uniform,” writes Rolling Stone.
The article consists of even more confusing facts like when Boston Celtic Jaylen Brown visited and several kids gave him THEIR autographs, educators quitting before the semester began, and more.