Kanye West, who has legally changed his name to Ye, is being sued by two former teachers at his Donda Academy, a school in Simi Valley, California, which he opened in 2022. The teacher, Cecilia Hailey, and her daughter, Checkrey Byers, allege the conditions at the private Christian school violate state regulations.
In the lawsuit, obtained by Entertainment Tonight, Byers and Haley say they were the only black women teaching at the school and allege they were discriminated against by having their wages withheld or improperly paid. The school and other staff members are also listed as defendants in the suit.
The women also complained that the school did not have a janitor or medical staff or that they did not follow nutritional guidelines and served sushi for lunch every day. They say West spends $10,000 a week on sushi and students can’t bring outside food except water onto campus.
They also alleged that the school “lacked educational services, additional testing or personalized learning plans.”
A state meal mandate requires all kindergarten through 12th-grade schools – including public and charter schools – to provide free breakfast and lunch each day. “Any student may request meals regardless of their eligibility for free or reduced-price meals,” the order said.
Meals must be “nutritionally adequate,” which falls under federal Child Nutrition Program rules, and the list of state meal requirements for schools provides specifications for things like calories, saturated fat and vegetables.
The state of California requires regular standardized testing for all students in all grades, and students are tested in a variety of subjects, including math, Spanish, science, and language arts.
West allegedly has a list of other off-hand rules, such as not allowing utensils and requiring all cups and bowls to be gray. Art was not allowed on classroom walls and teachers could not give students crossword puzzles or coloring sheets. The plaintiffs allege that no one was allowed to wear jewelry, because West “reportedly does not like jewelry,” and that the class could not be on the second floor because West was “scared of stairs.”
They also claimed that children were locked inside during the day, could only wear black designer clothes and that cleaning products with chemicals were not allowed, so teachers had to use “acid water and microfiber cloths”. On top of all these rules, they also complained that no chairs or tables were provided.
Hailey and Byers allege they were told in the school parking lot in March that they were being fired and not given a reason. They believe they were fired in retaliation for their complaints about the school.
“We’re standing up because it’s the right thing to do,” Haley said in a statement. “It’s not about trying to insult a celebrity. It’s about doing the right thing for these kids.”
CBS News has reached out to attorneys for Hailey and Byers, as well as a representative for the school, and is awaiting a response.
West named the academy after his late mother and runs a sports management company called Donda Sports. West has often attracted controversy but last year he was widely criticized for a series of anti-Semitic comments. He lost brand deals, including a $1.5 billion deal with Adidas, and temporarily closed the Donda Academy. According to CBS Los Angeles.
at least Two athletes have left Donda Sports In the wake of West’s offensive comments and other high-profile figures including high-profile talent agent Ari Emanuel denouncing him, Those who call for businesses to sever ties with the West. The rapper and fashion designer was also fired from the social media platform and He lost a large part of his net worth due to the fall.