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China funneled $17M into ‘Little Red Classrooms’ in US schools

China funneled $17M into ‘Little Red Classrooms’ in US schools

American schools have long been a beacon of diverse thought and ideas. However, recent findings suggest China is attempting to spread communist propaganda to school children

A new report revealed that over $17 million has been funneled into American public schools from the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). The funding, spread out over 14 years, has come through programs branded as “Confucius Institutes” that claim to teach Chinese language and culture. These classrooms, often called “Little Red Classrooms,” are seen by some as a medium for China to exert its influence on the next generation of Americans.

Parents Defending Education, a watchdog group, has raised concerns over these investments, suggesting that their actual intent might be to extend the global influence of the CCP. The apprehension is shared by former intelligence officer Matt Shoemaker, who said, “Xi Jinping believes that China will not be stopped from imposing its will and ideology onto American citizens.” He also raised the concern about identifying students who might be sympathetic to their cause.

But what exactly are these Confucius Institutes?

The National Association of Scholars describes them as centers focusing on teaching the Chinese language and culture. They create partnerships between American K-12 schools or universities and a Chinese government entity. Interestingly, a handful of these programs are operational in schools near U.S. military bases, including Seattle Public Schools in Washington and Highland Park Independent School District in Texas, raising concerns on national security.

The CCP’s involvement with these programs isn’t limited to mere investments. They have also fostered relationships through sister school partnerships and various programming since 2009. Financial exchanges between these schools and the Chinese government can range from a few thousand dollars to amounts as large as over a million dollars in cases like Thomas Jefferson High School.

This entire operation isn’t just an isolated effort. It’s a small part of the CCP’s broader strategy to exert “soft power” influence on nations worldwide. They use their Ministry of Education to build these ties, with the expansion of these classrooms in the U.S. being a top priority, as found by the United States Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations.

The U.S. State Department even designated these Confucius Institutes as a “foreign mission” of the CCP in 2020. They warned that these programs, partially funded by the Chinese government, operate under the guidance of the Chinese Communist Party’s United Front Work Department. This department is specifically responsible for overseas propaganda and influence.

While the presence of these institutes is alarming, their actions have also raised eyebrows. For instance, Hanban, which operated these programs until 2021, has previously tried to remove references to Taiwanese institutions, directly echoing the Chinese Communist Party line.

However, not everything is as transparent as it seems. While the U.S. isn’t officially involved in China’s Belt and Road Initiative, which is a global campaign by the CCP to advance its policy initiatives, Confucius Institutes are indirectly supporting it. Reports have found that these institutes are considered a “vital force” for international cooperation under this initiative.

These discoveries suggest that American schools may have unintentionally become grounds for foreign influence and propaganda. This revelation warrants an immediate investigation by state and federal officials into China’s involvement in our K-12 schools. Only with transparency can parents make informed decisions about their children’s involvement in these programs.

Moreover, at the national level, it is imperative for Congress to hold hearings to evaluate any potential security risks posed by these programs. As the investigation continues, we urge everyone to stay informed and vigilant.

And, of course, ask this question: What would happen if we set up schools that taught the American Constitution in China?

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  1. Lee Davis

    I was taught by Confucius Institute teachers at Georgia State University for 3 years….3 different teachers. Not once did I encounter any propaganda. I hung out with the 6 interns that were over here for a year. We went hiking, camping, ziplining, partying, etc. Not one time did I hear an attempt to “brainwash” me. If anything I was brainwashing them on the American principles of freedom and choice…..and how to have fun!!! Not only that I got a full 4 week StudyAbroad scholarship in China…3 weeks in Beijing and a week in Shanghai…..all expenses paid and $1000 in beer money. Best time I’ve ever had…..and not yet brainwashed. They were amazed at the freedoms Americans have….like the freedom to burn down cities and riot after the George Floyd thing. So i think you should hear the other side of the Confucius Institute thing.
    And how happy do you think these young Chinese kids are with 23% unemployment and a deflationary economy?

  2. David Andrews

    Wow: We have the freedom to burn down cities, loot stores with abandon, and kill the in unborn. The current administration grants freedom to destroy and dismantle everything this country stands for. Concerned parents and Christians are arrested and targeted as “ domestic terrorists” while criminals are set free unleash havoc in our communities.

    I don’t think you need brainwashing from the CCP, I think they are satisfied that you are sufficiently brainwashed already. Please remember this
    May, 2023
    How Communist Concepts Have Led To Suppression Of Christian Views
    “Evil preaches tolerance until it is dominant”
    Decision Magazine May, 2023

    Dave Andrews

    • Dan tyree

      The American people have became immune to the fear of communism. That’s why California and other liberal shit hole states and cities no longer fit for decent people

  3. frank stetson

    To be clear, the Chinese regime is repressive, inhumane at times, but at the same time, we do a lot of business with China, have done it for years, will continue to do it, so IMO, we need to communicate, share, persuade the Chinese to be less repressive, more humane, but I am not in a place where I want to cut them off. Are we?

    I do not know much about the in’s and out’s of this so-called possible threat, but it’s good to see LD’s positive anecdote. I guess folks could wonder about many of our touches too even as seemingly humanitarian like the Peace Corp, where we both as aid and spread democracy whether they want it or not. We have a vast array of government, quasi government, and private organizations spreading “our word” in many types and flavors, some building infrastructure, others with Christian overtones, whatever. The point is: are they propaganda, brainwashing, or just introduction and sharing? It’s China, it’s worthy to question, but I for one, would like to open channels of communication instead of building walls to increase the FUD.

    Since the beginning in 2004, and across the globe where these folks operate, there are big concerns from numerous critics in numerous countries where these folks operate. They have either left or been tossed from a number of countries. On the surface, Chinese culture and language sounds good, the critiques are usually around what else are these folks teaching. Plus the conflicts of interest in operating out of US educational institutions and not free standing. IMO, plenty of smoke but I would hate to throw the baby out with the bathwater losing an opportunity to learn Chinese language and culture. Investigation certainly called for.

    As a researcher, and businessman, one thing I learned is that when the numbers look easy, and it’s a 30,000-foot view, then the devil is in the details. This one is most certainly biased, certainly spin, it’s intended to excite by leveraging our recent fears of the evil empire, you know the commies who created covid who want to take Taiwan and then, the world…… I mean they are google mapping military bases because they fear Chinese language teachers, many who might be US citizens…. Chances are the truth is not quite that simple as those favoring bias and FUD would have us believe.

    I, personally, feel the need to get to the facts versus the sound bite for consumption in the court of public opinion where we have determined all Chinese bad, they are an evil empire. For example, on this one, US critics have popped some big numbers: $17.9 million in Chinese funding over 14 years of operation in the US covering 34 states and DC including 134 schools, school districts.
    Wow, bad juju. That’s some scary shit. Katy bar the door. Except that money averages $1.3m per year. At the very low rate of a $40K salary per year, that’s 32 teachers. Holy shit batman, think of the harm 32 teachers can do. Really, how much harm can that do? Just saying.

    Oh yeah, then it’s 34 states plus DC so $36k per state, per year. Across 134 locations, that’s $272 a location which obviously cannot be true. Obviously, the big numbers don’t tell the story, so, if there’s fear in the air, then investigation is needed to understand the program, the process, and the rollout to better understand how this money is being deployed to what purpose. Worthy of investigation, not sure the guilty verdict is in, much less actual proof of a crime. The numbers alone don’t tell that story. Yet.
    Also interesting is the current programs which are at a mixture of Republican and Commiecrat locations. For all these years, has any conservative or liberal that’s actually in the courses, complained? The anecdote that LD shares is one datapoint. Here’s where they are:
    Cloverport Independent School District, KY 2:1 Republican
    Minnetonka Public Schools, MN Swing State, slight Democratic tilt
    St. Cloud Area School District, MN
    Tulsa Public Schools, OK 2:1 Republican
    Sisters School District, OR 3:2 Democrat
    Highland Park Independent School District, TX 5:4 Republican
    Seattle Public Schools, WA 3:2 Democratic

    So, again, worthy of investigation, but this could easily NOT BE propaganda, or at least, harmful propaganda and might just be a great, free, way to learn Chinese and Chinese culture, and apparently used in both red and blue states.