Prime Prep Academy, a charter school located in Texas, co-founded by Deion Sanders, is set to close after only two years, according to a report from Tawnell D. Hobbs the Dallas Morning News on Tuesday evening.
Prime Prep, in its short existence, has featured some of the nation’s top basketball players, most notably former SMU-signee Emmanuel Mudiay, who announced on Monday that he would play overseas instead of honoring his commitment.
The Texas Education Agency issued a letter to the school on Tuesday, stating it plans to revoke Prime Prep’s charter due to fiscal mismanagement, and failure to comply with state education code.
“Unfortunately, these things happened in 2012, prior to my arrival of January 2014,” Prime Prep Superintendent Ron Price told the Morning News. “We will keep the focus on educating the students of Prime Prep.”
Deion Sanders responded to the news via Twitter on Tuesday night, promising to appeal this decision.
“My former Co-Founder DL Wallace was a crook and heartless, and we are still suffering from his devilish ways. TEA informed Prime Prep they would revoke the charter pending appeal for the food program that Wallace hustled the state out of $45,000. We will appeal immediately. I feel bad for this nonsense of yesterday affecting today and the potential of tomorrow for our students and new administration,” he said in a string of tweets.
“We will fight this like we have all the other battles that we’ve faced. 100 percent graduation rate two years straight and 15 scholarships awarded In only two years of existence. In no form or fashion has me or my administration done any wrong regarding feeding or educating our students. I will pay the $45,000 myself to right DL Wallace wrong to the state if they will accept it. Don’t punish our kids for this fool.”
Prime Prep has had its academic concerns from the start. Last year, top 100 recruits Jordan Mickey and Karviar Shepard were both initially ruled as non-qualifiers. One of the main issues surrounding their eligibility was a portion of Prime Prep’s curriculum; the use of a digital program called VSchoolz. Both Mickey and Shepard were eventually ruled eligible.
Mudiay’s decision to play professionally had nothing to do with academics of Prime Prep, according to multiple reports on Monday. Terrance Ferguson, the No. 10 overall recruit in 2016, told CityofBasketballLove.com, “I started here and I will finish here,” on Monday after the Mudiay news became public.
Uplift Fort Worth, the sponsoring entity of Prime Prep, has until July 30 to appeal and request a hearing.