MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Students at the Tennessee Academy of Cosmetology are scrambling to find a new place to go to school after showing up for class, only to find the doors locked. Other schools, like Paul Mitchell, are trying to help.
Louis Evans, owner of Family Shoe Repair, opened his Bartlett shop a month ago right next door to the Tennessee Academy of Cosmetology. Evans remembered what he saw Sunday when he went to work Monday morning.
“When I got here Monday morning to open up, the students were all out crying and hugging each other. I’m like ‘what happened?’ ‘We can’t get in. The school is closed,’” Evans said.
On the school’s website is a letter that says students “will not be able to complete their training with us.” The school has operated for more than three decades.
Inside there is only furniture stacked up. The place was wiped clean with a red light flashing on a phone, which no one answered.
It seems no one really knows what happened. The state said the school had complaints, mostly from customers.
Students will have transfer options with one being the Paul Mitchell School in East Memphis.
Caroline Salman, director of Paul Mitchell, said she has been contacted by more than 20 Tennessee Academy of Cosmetology students. She said the school will take the students, but they have to be assessed to find out where they are in their education.
“We have already talked with the state as well as the accrediting body and they are aware of the situation and they want us to direct the students there first and then and then they need to come here,” Melissa Rogers, with Paul Mitchell, said.
At this point, it appears the state is not exactly sure what happened, but there will be an investigation. Most of the students at Tennessee Academy of Cosmetology had loans.
It is not clear how many students are affected, but other cosmetology schools likely will also accept the students.
No one from the school returned Janice Broach’s calls.