This video accompanied a previous article on the closure of the American Hebrew Academy.
GREENSBORO, N.C. — The American Hebrew Academy in Greensboro took the community by surprise with an unexpected announcement that the school would close its doors after nearly 20 years.
Now, however, the school plans to reopen for the 2020-2021 school year.
On June 11, the Jewish boarding school, located at 4334 Hobbs Road in Greensboro, announced the closure on the school’s website with one clear sentence: “The American Hebrew Academy is closed.”
As of Sept. 13, the website now says, “Exciting News! The Academy will be reopening for the 2020-2021 school year.”
The boarding and day students of all backgrounds are expected to be invited to apply for admission for 9th, 10th and 11th grade online.
The prestigious boarding school closed after nearly 20 years, hitting students first with confusion and then with heartbreak.
“All of the sudden, this one girl, she just screamed and started crying. She was like, ‘Oh my god,'” Alex Frame said.
Frame was on the rising junior’s class trip to Israel.
That scream set off a chain reaction of emotions for students on the trip, when they saw the email saying their school was closing.
“It was a domino effect from there of everyone just calling and crying to their parents,” Frame says.
In June, Frame spoke with FOX8 from Israel to share how the American Hebrew Academy changed his life.
“Those were the best two years of my life and I was expecting two more. This was just sort of out of the blue,” he said.
But some students knew the school struggled financially and with enrollment.
“We knew it was unstable, but we didn’t think it would close this year. We thought if anything, it would close in the next 10 years, next 15 years,” said Charlie Kapustin, a rising senior at the academy.
According to the school’s 2016 tax filing, expenses topped $18 million but the revenue was just shy of $5 million.
Donations that year dropped from nearly $3 million to less than half a million.
The school tried to stay afloat by accepting international students from Asia.
Kapustin tells FOX8, when that happened, some students suddenly withdrew.
“The reason that some kids dis-enrolled is because of the non-Jewish kids coming to the academy,” he explains. “Their parents are paying a lot of money for their kids to be at a Jewish school exclusively.”