The highest-ranking high school in the nation, Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology in Alexandria, Virginia, received more than $1 million from groups linked to the Chinese government, according to documents obtained by the conservative group Parents Defending Education.
The elite high school recently came under fire for withholding students’ academic awards in the name of “equity.” Students who received National Merit awards, which could have provided them with scholarship and college admission opportunities, were not informed by the high school that they had been awarded them.
Parents and Republican Governor Glenn Youngkin blasted school officials for adopting a strategy of “equal outcomes for every student, without exception.”
According to Fairfax County Public Schools, counselors attempted to rectify the situation by sending emails and making follow-up calls to the colleges where the students had applied.
On Tuesday, Parents Defending Education revealed additional bombshell information regarding the elite FCPS high school. According to documents obtained by the organization, the school’s nonprofit, Thomas Jefferson Partnership Fund, has received over $1,000,000 in donations since 2014 from groups tied to the Chinese state.
In 2013, the TJPF launched a fundraising campaign for a renovation project.
The Ameson Education and Cultural Exchange Foundation, a nonprofit “dedicated to promoting cultural exchange and education cooperation between China and the rest of the world,” donated $250,000 between 2015 and 2016 and another $100,000 to $500,000 in the fiscal year 2018.
The nonprofit’s founder and executive vice chairman, Sean Zhang, has ties to the United Front Work Department, which works to “co-opt and neutralize” Chinese Communist Party opposition, according to the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission.
In the fiscal year 2018, the TJPF received $500,000 from Shirble HK, a Chinese department store. The Examiner reported that the store’s chairman, Yang Xiangbo, also has ties to the United Front.
From 2013 to 2014, TJ partnered with Tsinghua University High School in Beijing, which has been linked to the CCP military, according to the Pentagon.
The TJPF received at least $250,000 in fiscal years 2015 and 2016 from the Chinese institution to fund a high school in China modeled after TJ.
Donations received by TJPF were used to make school renovations and fund faculty and student exchange trips between the U.S. and China.
Parents Defending Education Executive Director Nicki Neily told the New York Post, “Americans deserve answers as to what information was gleaned by CCP-linked entities through Thomas Jefferson High School — and where else this might be taking place, as many other schools across the country currently receive foreign funding.”
“He who pays the piper calls the tune — and at the nation’s top high school, the implications of this are frightening, given the fact that TJ students regularly engage in mentorship programs with federal agencies,” she added.
Fairfax County Public Schools did not reply to a request for comment, the Post reported.
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