- Kanye West’s Tonda Academy sued by two former teachers for racial discrimination and wrongful termination
- A bombshell case obtained by DailyMail.com makes several bizarre and disturbing allegations against the secretive school’s practices.
- There are allegations that students were given one meal of sushi a day while classes were banned from the second floor due to fear of western stairs.
Kanye West’s Tonda Academy is being sued by two former teachers in a bombshell wrongful-firing case, with educators making a series of disturbing allegations about what happened inside the secretive school.
Court documents obtained by DailyMail.com detail allegations made by Cecilia Hailey and her daughter Chekarey Byers, who say they saw children at the academy being fed sushi one meal a day, while campus staff violated a number of troubling health and safety regulations.
They claim they were discriminated against on the basis of their race, illegally paid wages and fired from school in retaliation for reporting code violations.
Among the strange and unsettling accusations against the school were that all color, including artwork, was banned from classrooms, everyone was forced to wear head-to-toe black, and classes were banned from the second floor for fear of the West. Stairs’.
The controversial Grammy Award-winning artist opened a $15,000-a-year academy in California in 2021, but he now faces more than $1 million in damages, along with the school and its three directors.
Shortly after taking the job as a fifth-grade teacher in January 2023, Byers alleges she began noticing a number of confusing rules and procedures within the school, including rampant bullying and a lack of safety measures at the top-ranked academy.
After school principal Moira Love repeatedly raised concerns about health and safety violations and illegal educational practices, the suit claims ‘no action was taken’ to address the issues.
Students were told that they would be served only one sushi meal a day and were prohibited from bringing any outside food or drinks into the campus except water.
‘It is widely known that West spends $10,000 a week on sushi,’ the suit says.
Students are said to be banned from using ‘crossword puzzles’ or ‘coloring sheets’, while the school does not allow students to go outside during the day, even for lunch or recess.
The rapper would ban all classes on the second floor of the academy because ‘he’s said to be afraid of stairs’.
According to previous reports, parents at the school are required to sign non-disclosure agreements to enroll their children in the academy.
In October, parents at the school revolted after hearing that Tonda Academy was closing its doors amid the collapse of the West’s empire following a series of anti-Semitic outbursts, leading it to remain open.
While the exclusive Christian school was previously believed to be closing its doors, it was revealed last year that the secretive academy had actually relocated to Simi Valley.
Among the outlandish charges mentioned in court filings were that ‘the West does not want children to use forks or utensils’, he demanded that cups and bowls be exclusively grey, and forbade hanging any color on classroom walls.
‘We’re standing up because it’s the right thing to do. This is not an attempt to defame a celebrity. It’s about the right thing to do for these kids,” Hailey said.
The Yeezy fashion mogul was accused of ‘disliking jewellery’, leading to teachers and children being banned from wearing any, while chairs were banned from the academy because he forced children to sit or stand on foam cushions.
The academy’s doors are locked from the outside, posing a fire hazard, with former teachers alleging repeated health and safety codes were breached at the school.
Byers and Hailey, who say they were the only two black female teachers at the school, are seeking wrongful termination damages after they allegedly faced racial discrimination.
This included being subjected to ‘stereotypes about African American girls’ after raising concerns over the school’s practices.
When Hailey threatened to take her complaints directly to West, she was ‘threatened not to approach him,’ according to the suit.
Both women say they were fired ‘without reason’ on March 3, 2023, in the academy’s parking lot. Plaintiffs have now sought more than $1 million in damages for Dailymail.com.
Also, among the various issues cited in the suit, teachers were not trained in basic life support, no nursing staff was employed on campus, lack of security, and students were allowed to be taken off campus by strangers without any sign-in procedure. .
According to the lawsuit, bullying and assaults occurred frequently at the school because there were no disciplinary procedures in place to address them.
In addition, the lawsuit alleges that the academy had no cleaning staff because West ‘did not believe in cleaning things with chemicals, so teachers were only allowed to clean with acidic water and microfiber cloths’.
The rapper reportedly banned Nike and Adidas from campus because he insisted everyone wear only his designer clothes in ‘head-to-toe’ black.
Ron Zambrano, the duo’s attorney, said Kanye West was as bad at running the school as he was at managing his personal and professional life, creating an unsafe and illegal school environment for students and discriminating against the plaintiffs on the basis of race. .
These egregious violations at Tonda Academy are yet another example of West’s unethical behavior. Regardless of his celebrity status, our clients will not stand for it.
Kanye should realize his genius is in creating music, not in school administration.
Speaking about the case, Pires said, ‘I am deeply saddened by this. It has been a great honor and privilege to work on the Tonda Academy for Kanye West.
‘I’m a big Virgo fan. His first album was the first album I ever bought. I still enjoy his music and I’ll never deny his talent, but while his vision of school sounds good on paper, it’s just chaos and rebellion.
‘Like a mental hospital run by patients.’
The scandal-plagued rapper has faced several issues with his private Christian school since opening the institution in 2021.
After the rapper’s antisemitic outbursts grabbed headlines and led to the collapse of his music, fashion and real estate empire, Jewish staff at the Tonda Academy walked out in droves.
Poet Malik Youssef, who previously identified himself as an ‘administrator’ at the school, told the New York Post in November how ‘the staff of the Jewish faith was lost’ in the weeks after the artist flew into several discriminatory furors.
At that time, reports said that there were not enough teachers to run the school.