Fantasia Barrino’s Going Back To School; Will Attend Grammy Awards With Jennifer Hudson

'It's something that I really need to do,' said the 'American Idol' winner.

[artist id="1197713"]Fantasia[/artist] has done a lot of things in the past five years: She’s won “American Idol,” received seven Grammy nominations, appeared on Broadway in “The Color Purple,” released two hit albums and played herself in a Lifetime movie based on her rags-to-riches story.

But there’s one landmark the 24-year-old R&B belter hasn’t reached that nags at her — finishing high school. See, Fantasia dropped out of Andrews High School in High Point, North Carolina, in ninth grade and two years later gave birth to her daughter, Zion Quari Barrino.

But now, according to E! Online, Fantasia is going back to school for the sake of her daughter. “I’ve been talking about it for so long,” Fantasia said. “I have a lot of young people who look up to me, like my 15-year-old brother and 7-year-old daughter. It’s something that I really need to do and that I want to do.”

After months of speculation and rumor, the third-season “Idol” winner also confirmed that she’s gotten her financial affairs back in order after facing the possible foreclosure and auction of one of her homes. “I had to sit back for a while and had to get some things settled,” she explained. “I had been with a lot of people not doing what they said they were going to do. I didn’t have time to sit back and cry. I didn’t have time to go to a mental-health counselor. I had to keep my sh– on straight — excuse my language! — and handle my business, because it’s not just about me. It’s about me and my whole family.”

She’s reached an agreement to keep the home — though did not confirm rumors that “Idol” judge Simon Cowell helped her out of her financial jam — and said she’s focused on keeping off the 20 pounds she recently lost and finishing up her third album, which she hopes to release later this year. Oh, and she’s shopping a reality-TV show about her life.

The other thing she’s psyched about is attending the Grammy Awards this Sunday with her “best friend in the world,” Jennifer Hudson . The pair are nominated for a Grammy for their duet, “I’m His Only Woman,” and, thanks to her weight loss, Fantasia told E! she’s planning on wearing a vintage dress.

“I’m going vintage on the red carpet,” Fantasia said. “I have lost 20 pounds, so now I can get into vintage, because the women back then were petite. They were very small. … 2008 was a crazy year for Fantasia. ’09 is totally different. ’09 is my year.”

Will Lil Wayne grab all the gramophones? Is Katy Perry going to tell her girl rivals to kiss off? Can Coldplay march off with a win? MTV News is all over the 51st Annual Grammy Awards, so stay tuned for interviews, analysis and more before, during and after the big night, Sunday, February 8.

Often guilty, never convicted. Serving 15 years to life at MTV News.