August 12, 2023

USA: Report By Parents Defending Education Has Uncovered China Communist Party (CCP) Has Funded $17 Million To More Than 143 K-12 Public School Districts In 34 States And Washington, DC.

NewsNation published August 6, 2023: China invests $17M into U.S. public schools, raising red flags. Public schools across the U.S. received more than $17 million in funding from the Chinese Communist Party through culture and language programs, a report by the National Association of Scholars revealed. Correspondent Evyn Moon joins "NewsNation Prime" with the details, saying the money has prompted a GOP probe.
The Daily Mail, UK
written by Kelly Laco, Executive Director of Politics for Daily Mail
Sunday July 30, 2023

China is funding America's public schools to the tune of $17 million dollars, it has been revealed, with Republicans now probing the disturbing donations.

The report by Parents Defending Education states that the close coordination between the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and U.S. schools to establish Confucius Classrooms has historically included 143 school districts in 34 states and Washington, D.C.

In addition, at least seven contracts are still active in Texas, Kentucky, Minnesota, Oklahoma, Oregon and Washington.

The report called 'Little Red Classrooms' reveals that $17 million has been funneled from CCP-connected financial institutions into U.S. K-12 schools, through Confucius Institutes and other cultural and language programs.

It also states that the CCP has 'ties to school districts near 20 U.S. military bases' and three of the nation's top science and technology high schools have been infiltrated.

'While the United States is not officially part of China’s Belt and Road Initiative, Chinese state media has touted the work done by Confucius Institutes and Confucius Classrooms to further the Chinese Communist Party’s global influence,' the report continues.

China has facilitated these relationships through grants and sister school partnerships going back to 2009. Programming and funding has varied between school districts, the report adds.

PDE President Nicki Neily said in a statement that the 'alarming evidence' uncovered by the investigation should 'concern parents, educators, and policymakers alike.'

The report has been given to state and federal lawmakers in the hopes that it will spur action.

Rep. Jim Banks is demanding the Education Department take action with 'urgency' in in order to terminate these 'disturbing' partnerships, he says in a letter to Sec. Miguel Cardona on Wednesday obtained by

'The Chinese Communist Party is not a trustworthy partner. Accepting funding and influence from our greatest adversary is a threat to America’s children and national security,' Banks told

He wrote in the letter that the U.S. must 'take every measure' to strengthen its defenses against China including by 'blocking their ability to propagandize in America's K-12 schools.'

The congressman - who sits on the newly-established House Select Committee on the Strategic Competition Between the United States and the Chinese Communist Party - is asking for immediate action from the Biden administration.

He also noted that under former President Donald Trump, the State Department in designated Confucius Institutes a 'foreign mission,' which helped shut down some of these 'dangerous programs.'

Rep. Mike Waltz, R-Fla., told the report is 'alarming' because 'we truly don't understand the full extent of Communist China's meddling in our education system.'

'Not only is the CCP trying to promote their propaganda through education programs but are using Chinese shell companies to outright buy American private schools around the country.'

He is urging state governments, along with federal assistance, to start 'cracking down on the targeting of our children.'

Waltz has also sounded the alarm on Chinese-owned schools in the U.S. with Junior Reserve Officers' Training Corps (JROTC) programs.

He has asked the Pentagon to survey those schools because he views it as a grave national security threat.

Sen. Roger Marshall told that the Parents Defending Education report should 'alarm' every American parent, especially because the CCP is targeting schools to close to military bases.

The Kansas senator introduced a new bill Tuesday that would prohibit federal agencies from funding research in China or 'any entity' owned by China.

'From buying our farmland to setting up CCP police stations here on U.S. soil, stealing our intellectual property, spying on our military bases, and now buying their way into our children's K-12 schools, it is past time for this administration to wake up and realize what we are up against,' he told

According to the 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), the Pentagon is prohibited from providing money to 'institution[s] of higher education that hosts a Confucius Institute' after October 1, 2023.

As a result, since the 2021 NDAA passage, over 100 U.S. universities shut down their Confucius Institutes.

As of March 2023, the National Association of Scholars counts a total of 13 Confucius Institutes in the U.S. - with over 108 closing or in the process of closing.

House Select Committee on the Chinese Communist Party Chairman Mike Gallagher worked to have Alfred University in New York's Confucius Institute closed in recent weeks.

The university obtained a five-year $13.5 million taxpayer-funded research grant in 2022 to by the Pentagon to conduct hypersonic weapons research.

Gallagher took issue with national security concerns he had about millions in Pentagon funds going to a CCP-linked university.

In a June 13 letter obtained by, university attorney Robert Fisher responded to Gallagher saying Alfred University has decided to close the Confucius Institute 'as of June 30, 2023.'

Gallagher told regarding PDE's report that the CCP cannot be allowed to 'influence the American education system,' adding 'America’s children deserve better.'

There are four additional universities who host a Confucius Institute and have been awarded a DOD grant - University of Toledo, University of Utah, St. Cloud State University and Wesleyan College.

House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Michael McCaul, R-Texas, told that it's 'ridiculous' there aren't measures 'protecting our children from CCP influence.'

'Learning languages and cultures critical to national security, like Chinese, is essential, but it shouldn’t come with Communist propaganda and influence,' he added.

In 2019, the FBI found that 'foreign state adversaries seek to illicitly or illegitimately acquire U.S. academic research and information to advance their scientific, economic, and military development goals.

FBI Director Chris Wray outlined the threat in a 2020 speech, saying China pays scientists at U.S. universities to 'secretly bring our knowledge and innovation back to China—including valuable, federally funded research.'
I took the screenshot above to include with this post.

Army University Press, The Professional Journal of the U.S. Army
Staff Report
September-October 2019

Executive Summary

When China sought to market itself to students around the world, it looked to its past. Confucius, the ancient Chinese philosopher, is synonymous with morality, justice, and honesty. The Chinese government capitalized on this rich legacy and began establishing Confucius Institutes on college campuses around the world in 2004, including the first in the United States at the University of Maryland. Today, there are more than 100 Confucius Institutes in the United States, the most of any country.

The Chinese government funds Confucius Institutes and provides Chinese teachers to teach language classes to students and non-student community members. In addition to Chinese language classes, Confucius Institutes host cultural events, including Chinese New Year celebrations, cooking classes, speakers, and dance and music performances. These selective events depict China as approachable and compassionate; rarely are events critical or controversial. The Chinese government also funds and provides language instructors for Confucius Classrooms, which offer classes for kindergarten through 12th grade students. Confucius Classrooms are currently in 519 elementary, middle, and high schools in the United States. Continued expansion of the program is a priority for China.

Confucius Institute funding comes with strings that can compromise academic freedom. The Chinese government approves all teachers, events, and speakers. Some U.S. schools contractually agree that both Chinese and U.S. laws will apply. The Chinese teachers sign contracts with the Chinese government pledging they will not damage the national interests of China. Such limitations attempt to export China’s censorship of political debate and prevent discussion of potentially politically sensitive topics. Indeed, U.S. school officials told the Subcommittee that Confucius Institutes were not the place to discuss controversial topics like the independence of Taiwan or the Tiananmen Square massacre in 1989. As one U.S. school administrator explained to the Subcommittee, when something is “funded by the Chinese government, you know what you’re getting.”

Confucius Institutes exist as one part of China’s broader, long-term strategy. Through Confucius Institutes, the Chinese government is attempting to change the impression in the United States and around the world that China is an economic and security threat. Confucius Institutes’ soft power encourages complacency toward China’s pervasive, long-term initiatives against both government critics at home and businesses and academic institutions abroad. Those long-term initiatives include its Made in China 2025 plan, a push to lead the world in certain advanced technology manufacturing. The Thousand Talents program is another state-run initiative designed to recruit Chinese researchers in the United States to return to China for significant financial gain—bringing with them the knowledge gained at U.S. universities and companies.

Contracting with the Chinese Government. The Chinese government runs the Confucius Institute program out of the Ministry of Education’s Office of Chinese Language Council International, known as “Hanban.” Each U.S. school signs a contract with Hanban establishing the terms of hosting a Confucius Institute. Contracts reviewed by the Subcommittee generally contain provisions that state both Chinese and U.S. laws apply; limit public disclosure of the contract; and terminate the contract if the U.S. school takes actions that “severely harm the image or reputation” of the Confucius Institute.

The Chinese director and teachers at each Confucius Institute also sign contracts with Hanban. The contract with Hanban makes clear a Chinese director or teacher will be terminated if they “violate Chinese laws;” “engage in activities detrimental to national interests;” or “participate in illegal organizations.” In fact, the contract states the Chinese director and teachers must “conscientiously safeguard national interests” and report to the Chinese Embassy within one month of arrival in the United States.

Resources Provided by Hanban. U.S. schools that contract with Hanban receive substantial funding and resources to establish the Confucius Institute on campus. At the outset, Hanban typically provides a U.S. school between $100,000 and $200,000 in start-up costs, around 3,000 books, and other materials. Hanban also selects and provides a Chinese director and teachers at no cost to the U.S. school. While school officials have the opportunity to interview candidates for these positions, there is little-to-no transparency into how the Chinese government selects the individuals that schools must choose from. Nor did U.S. school officials interviewed by the Subcommittee know if candidates would meet the school’s hiring standards. Hanban requires director and teacher candidates to pass English proficiency tests and undergo a psychological exam to determine adaptability to living and teaching in the United States. Beyond that, U.S. schools’ understanding of the selection process was limited, at best.

Expansion to Kindergarten through 12th Grade. China did not stop at expanding at university and college campuses. The next phase of Confucius Institutes involved funding teachers for Confucius Classrooms in K−12 grade school. There are currently 519 Confucius Classrooms operating in the United States with expansion of this program a top priority for China. In the United States, a Confucius Institute receives funding and instructors directly from Hanban and passes it to the K−12 grade school to support affiliated Confucius Classrooms.

The Cost of Confucius Institutes. The investment by China in U.S. Confucius Institutes is substantial. Since 2006, the Subcommittee determined China directly provided over $158 million in funding to U.S. schools for Confucius Institutes. A number of U.S. schools, however, failed to properly report this funding as required by law. The Department of Education requires all postsecondary schools to report foreign gifts of $250,000 or more from a single source within a calendar year of receiving them. Despite that legal requirement, nearly 70 percent of U.S. schools that received more than $250,000 from Hanban failed to properly report that amount to the Department of Education.

The Department of Education last issued guidance to U.S. schools on foreign gift reporting requirements in 2004, the same year the first Confucius Institute opened in the United States. As China opened over 100 additional Confucius Institutes in the United States over the last 15 years, the Department of Education remained silent.

Visa Failures. The State Department is responsible for issuing visas to any Chinese director or teacher entering the United States to work at a Confucius Institute. Some U.S. schools have struggled to comply with the requirements of the Exchange Visitor Visa (or “J-1”). In 2018, the State Department revoked 32 J-1 Professor and Research Scholar visas for Confucius Institute teachers who were not conducting research, but instead were teaching at K−12 schools. The State Department also found evidence that one Confucius Institute Chinese director improperly coached the teachers to discuss their research during interviews with State Department investigators.

In 2019, the State Department plans to double the number of Confucius Institutes field reviews it completed in 2018 – from two to four.

China’s Lack of Reciprocity. In response to the growing popularity of Confucius Institutes in the United States, the State Department initiated a public diplomacy program in China. Since 2010, the State Department has provided $5.1 million in grant funding for 29 “American Cultural Centers” or ACCs in China. Through the ACC program, a U.S. school partners with a Chinese school, much like a Confucius Institute. The U.S. school then uses the grant funds to create a space on the campus of the Chinese partner school to “enable Chinese audiences to better understand the United States, its culture, society, government, language, law, economic center, and values.” ACCs are notably different from Confucius Institutes, however, as the State Department does not pay or vet instructors or directors; provide books or materials; or veto proposed events. Even so, the Chinese government stifled the establishment of the ACC program from the start.

In all, the State Department provided 29 U.S. schools with grant funds to establish ACCs with a partner Chinese schools. For some U.S. schools, roadblocks to opening their ACCs appeared immediately. For example, after extensive negotiations, one Chinese school refused to open a proposed ACC, stating it didn’t see a need to move forward. An official from the U.S. school seeking to open the ACC, however, believed China’s Ministry of Education told the partner school not to proceed with the contract. This official wrote in an email to his colleagues, “This is a typical Chinese political euphemism. Obviously, [the Chinese University] was instructed by [the Ministry of Education] not to proceed with our proposal.” The U.S. school returned the grant funds to the State Department.

The ACCs that did open found they needed permission from their Chinese host schools to hold most cultural events. One Chinese host school refused to allow its ACC to host a play about the life of Muhammad Ali. Another denied approval for a lecture series on policy issues facing Americans. One U.S. school official who staffed an ACC told the Subcommittee that members of the local Communist Party often participated in the approval process. Another U.S. school official left the ACC after two sessions of extensive questioning by Chinese police officers regarding her involvement with the ACC and the State Department. When the U.S. school official returned to the United States, a colleague told her that Chinese police interrogation of school officials was common and that she was now just “part of the club.”

In all, the State Department documented over 80 instances in the past four years where the Chinese government directly interfered with U.S. diplomacy efforts in China. Interference with State Department officials or events took a number of forms. One example involved a Chinese official telling a U.S. official an ACC no longer existed; the U.S. official easily confirmed the continued existence of the ACC through its U.S. partner school. One U.S. official was told she applied too late to attend the opening of an ACC after submitting the request a month before. In other instances, the Chinese school canceled approved events, sometimes as late as the night before.

In December 2017, the State Department Inspector General found the ACC mission was largely ineffective. In October 2018, the State Department ended all ACC program grant funding in order to conduct an internal assessment of the program. There are currently no plans for future ACC grants.

The Need for Transparency and Reciprocity. Schools in the United States—from kindergarten to college—have provided a level of access to the Chinese government that the Chinese government has refused to provide to the United States. That level of access can stifle academic freedom and provide students and others exposed to Confucius Institute programming with an incomplete picture of Chinese government actions and policies that run counter to U.S. interests at home and abroad. Absent full transparency regarding how Confucius Institutes operate and full reciprocity for U.S. cultural outreach efforts on college campuses in China, Confucius Institutes should not continue in the United States.

For those interested in the entire report, please visit:

or and follow links to Library > February 2019 > Majority and Minority Staff Report–China’s Impact on the U.S. Education System.

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