The sudden closure of Makki International Academy, a school that taught animal care, fashion, dancing and sports, is sparking turmoil nationwide for thousands of students who were unaware of the school’s imminent demise.Makki International Academy, which was based in Tokyo with 21 schools across the country and 3,700 students, filed for bankruptcy with the Tokyo District Court on Tuesday. Total liabilities for the school were put at 4.5 billion yen.At the Aoyama school in Tokyo’s Shibuya Ward, many students turned up for class only to find nothing to do.Suhara Akio, 20, who was enrolled in a dance and sports program, said he learned of the closure Wednesday when he saw the announcement posted on the door. “I wasn’t convinced and came here again. I am really sad because I really want to learn dancing. What happens now to the students?” he asked.Several students also went to branch in Yokohama’s Naka Ward, only to find it shut down too. An 18-year-old student of dance and fashion said she had just paid 350,000 yen in tuition for the second term that was to begin Thursday.In Osaka’s Chuo Ward, about 100 students came to the school’s Osaka branch to seek confirmation of the bankruptcy Thursday morning, which would have been the first day of the school’s second term. The students were only told the school had been shut down.A note dated Wednesday that was posted on a door said, “This school has become insolvent and has filed for bankruptcy with the Tokyo District Court. After an administrator is appointed, please follow that person’s procedure.”Looking at the note, one student asked: “What is happening? What can we do with this instruction?” Another said: “Without some kind of explanation from the school, we cannot go home. I heard that the school office was open as usual Tuesday. Such a sudden closure put us in total darkness.”Kazunao Takemoto, 20, who was taking a two-year animal care course, said he would have finished in six months. “I only learned of the closure from friends. I have spent 2.45 million yen over the last two years. Now I have to look for a job without finishing the course.”
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