China's Communist Party Targets Our Children
As published in Newsmax.
October 9, 2023.
With youngsters back in school, American parents are focused on the new academic year, unaware that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is targeting their children for indoctrination.
Shrewdly utilizing the same Marxist strategy as our own American Left which propagandizes our children to hate America and our constitutional principles, the CCP has established “Confucius Classrooms” in American primary and secondary schools. Under the guise of teaching Chinese language and culture, the CCP attempts to normalize itself by creating positive feelings, sympathy and acceptance.
The CCP funded at least 519 “Confucius Classrooms” across our country, as of 2019. It lures naïve Americans with money, native-born teachers, educational materials and opportunities for American students to study in China, all to produce a next generation of American leaders and voters unable to distinguish the American national interest from the Chinese national interest.
The “Classrooms” are a modern-day equivalent of the Greek Trojan horse strategy.
Our vulnerable children absorb appealing messages about China as a benevolent, moral country, heir of a glorious ancient civilization, that has only goodwill for the rest of the world. Ignored in these classrooms are the realities that China stifles free speech, operates Uyghur concentration camps, pursues ethnic repression in Tibet, quashes Hong Kong, militarizes the South China Sea, threatens democratic Taiwan and facilitates the fentanyl flow into the U.S.
Today, the U.S. is in the midst of a new Cold War with China, with a protracted ideological clash of democratic and communist worldviews. President Xi Jinping has made it clear that China intends to supplant America as the world’s No. 1 economic, military and technological superpower and will, over time, restructure the global order in its image.
Xi has fully embraced as his ruling principle an observation often attributed to Vladimir Lenin: “The capitalists will sell us the rope with which we will hang them.”
We allowed China to take our jobs, steal our technical know-how, control our medical supplies, pharmaceuticals and key raw materials. Now we have laid out a welcome mat for our existential adversary to convert our children in ways that undermine American sovereignty and national security.
In 2004, the CCP’s Ministry of Education established Confucius Institutes in U.S. universities. The ministry extended this sophisticated influence offensive to K-12 in the form of Confucius Classrooms.
Parents Defending Education (PDE), a national, grassroots nonprofit, recently published a report documenting that, since 2009, the CCP has contributed at least $18 million to school programs in 34 states and Washington D.C. This is likely an undercount as it is easy to mask funding sources when programs use third-party funders.
The CCP has easy access to school boards and state education departments. With their support, along with that of the teachers’ unions, it works to integrate Confucius classes into the curriculum of major subjects taught in our K−12 schools.
“China’s authoritarian government works hard to dampen any criticism of the CCP,” Mick Zais and Dan Currell, former Deputy Secretary and Deputy Under Secretary of Education, respectively, wrote in 2021.
CCP-curated teachers are required to “conscientiously safeguard (Chinese Communist) national interests” and report to the Chinese Embassy within one month of arrival in the U.S.
Incredibly, we lack a full grasp of how many of our thousands of elementary, middle, and high schools currently use Confucius Classrooms and/or their instructional material.
The National Association of Scholars (NAS) discovered that Confucius Classrooms are often specifically located in secondary schools that are “feeders” to elite colleges and universities. China wants to ensure that America’s future leaders and opinion-makers have been indoctrinated with a positive version of China.
“China's … looking for places where buying influence will yield results in the long term," says NAS president Peter Wood.
Confucius Classrooms operate in Chicago Public Schools, Maryland’s Garrison Forest School and Oregon’s St. Mary’s School. PDE has also discovered them in Kentucky, Minnesota, New York, Oklahoma, Texas and Washington, to name a few.
Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, one of America’s top STEM schools, received over $1 million from CCP military-linked entities, run through foundations and other pass-throughs.
International Leadership of Texas Global, a third-party non-profit, has provided funding for Confucius Classroom programming to Highland Park Independent School District in Texas. Similarly, Go Global NC funds programs in North Carolina schools including its top STEM high school.
Even the venerable College Board, influential since 1900, is part of this Chinese propaganda campaign.
In 2014, the College Board and the CCP announced the creation of 15 new Confucius Classrooms in Broward County, Florida; Houston, Texas; Davis School District, Utah; Clark County, Nevada; and East Central Ohio.
A 2020 NAS report found that the College Board received $685,000 from the CCP to “partner closely” with them to development a “sanitized, CCP-approved” AP Chinese Language and Culture exam.
The College Board recruits American teachers and administrators for CCP-sponsored trips to China and collaborates with the CCP to provide professional development and teacher training.
We need to thwart this CCP campaign targeting our children.
Congress should educate state and local governments regarding the dangers of CCP partnering and remove education funding if these partnerships aren’t immediately severed.
Schools should partner with Taiwan, a thriving democracy, rather than the CCP, to offer Chinese language and culture classes and international exchange programs.
Parents should report CCP classroom programs to their school boards, state education departments and the federal government.
Confucius Classrooms are a rope with which to hang us.