MANILA – Nas Academy said on Sunday that it will be pausing its operations in the Philippines amid the controversy involving its contract with Kalinga traditional tattoo artist Whang-Od.
In a Facebook post, the online learning platform said it started Nas Academy thinking everybody should become a teacher.
“We wanted everyone inside and outside the Philippines to become a teacher, because knowledge is the only thing that increases when you give it away,” it said.
“Sadly, some of our intentions have been misunderstood, as we can see with Whang-Od Academy. But our goal has always been to help people become teachers, with their input and consent,” the statement added.
Nonetheless, Nas Academy said it remains committed to working with National Commission on Indigenous People (NCIP) to ensure that all proper processes are followed.
As it pauses its operations in the Philippines, it aims “to focus on strengthening our processes around how we collaborate with our partners.”
“We have full respect and belief in both the Filipino people and culture, which is why we chose the Philippines as one of the first places to build Nas Academy,” the statement said.
Despite the current controversy, Nas Academy said it will “come back more energized and ready to help more inspiring people become teachers in the Philippines because education changes lives.”
At around the same time Nas Academy made the statement, Cornerstone Entertainment also announced that the Catriona Gray Academy will stop accepting new applications until the issue of Whang-Od has been fully resolved.