Biola Announces Closure of Biola Youth Academics and Torrey Academy

Dec. 6, 2019 By Biola Staff

Editor's Note: Torrey Honors Institute and Torrey Academy are two separate programs. Torrey Academy is a high school homeschool partner program. Torrey Honors Institute is an undergraduate honors program that continues to grow and remains open for admission. Torrey Academy's closure will not impact Torrey Honors Institute. Learn more about Torrey Honors and how to apply on the Torrey Honors Institute website.

 

Biola University leadership announced today that Biola Youth Academics and Torrey Academy, Biola's high school homeschool partner programs, will close at the end of the Spring 2020 semester.

 

“It is with a heavy heart that I share with you today a Cabinet decision that Biola Youth Academics (BYA), which includes Torrey Academy, Star Academics, Private School Satellite Program (PSP) and Elementary Academics, will be closing at the end of this 2019-20 academic year, June 2020,” shared Deborah Taylor, Biola University Provost and Senior Vice President, in a letter to the Biola community.

 

Biola Youth Academics has been serving children and families in the homeschool community for 25 years, operating several regional centers throughout Southern California. Started in 1996, Biola Youth Academics began as two science classes and later offered tutoring services as a community outreach initiative. Torrey Academy, a unique program to Biola, reflecting our excellence in honors programs, was added in 2000.

 

Throughout the duration of its history, the university has financially supported BYA’s programs and services — an investment the university is no longer able to provide. There has been a rise in competing homeschool and classical programs and charter schools that have resulted in declining enrollment in BYA and TA.

 

Over the last two years, the Biola University Cabinet has poured over many sources of data and internal and external reports, carefully analyzing and discussing options for BYA. It has been a long and thorough process ultimately leading to a decision that the university can no longer financially support these homeschool programs.

 

“This was a difficult Cabinet decision made with a great deal of prayer, spiritual discernment and careful analysis, particularly recognizing the impact this decision will have on BYA and Torrey Academy’s enrolled students, families, staff and instructors,” wrote Taylor. “Some have been part of the Biola community since BYA’s inception. We share in your sadness as we close these programs, knowing that BYA and TA have provided more than academics, but also a Christian community and support in your homeschooling endeavors.”

 

Efforts were made with three Christian organizations to see if they’d be willing to acquire BYA. While the administrators of these Christian organizations were interested, there were details that did not work for these organizations and their leadership decided against the acquisition.

 

“We also want to honor and thank the entire BYA and Torrey Academy teams for their dedication and service to the homeschool students and families that have benefitted from BYA and Torrey Academy over the years,” wrote Taylor.

 

The Spring 2020 semester will be the last semester for all who are enrolled in BYA or TA. Biola will retain the Friday elementary clinicals led by the School of Education. Current staff and instructors will be retained through the end of the 2019-20 academic school year as the students transition out of the program.

 

“We want BYA and Torrey Academy staff and instructors to feel cared for as much as possible through this closure and will do everything we can to demonstrate care, concern and integrity through this transition,” Taylor wrote.

 

For those who have questions, email internal.communications@biola.edu or attend a town hall at 7 p.m. on Dec. 12 in Calvary Chapel.

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