(Daily Caller) – Students at an Illinois high school were directed by their teacher to write gushing letters to China’s dictator, Chinese state media reported Wednesday.
In 2019, students studying Chinese language at Niles North High School were asked by their instructor, Limin Dove, to write Lunar New Year letters to General Secretary Xi Jinping, according to state-run Global Times. “We think you are a good person, and handsome, too,” read the letter to Xi, who is responsible for perpetrating the ongoing genocide against Uyghurs and other ethnic minorities in China, the Department of State determined in 2021.
“I didn’t know prior that they were in the middle of writing the letter to the president, but I had no idea that we would have this wonderful outcome as a result of that letter writing,” Niles North High School Principal James Edwards said in an interview reported by Global Times. “I’m very proud of our students for writing the letter.”
Several months later, Xi reportedly replied to the students of Niles North, praising their handwriting and encouraging them to continue studying Chinese, according to Global Times.
“My job is to serve the people,” Xi wrote in his reply, according to Chinese state media. “It is very tiring, but also very fulfilling.”
Xi also reportedly encouraged students to promote “friendship” between Chinese and American peoples and welcomed students to visit China.
As a result of Xi’s letter and Niles North Chinese language instructor Limin Dove’s “push,” the Illinois high school has since reportedly established a sister school relationship with Fuzhou No. 1 High School in China’s Fujian province, according to Global Times.
Dove reportedly said she hoped her students’ friendship with Chinese students would sow the “seeds for their future role as cultural and language bridges,” according to Global Times.
The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has previously come under scrutiny for its efforts to influence U.S. students studying Chinese through its Confucius Institute program, which the State Department designated as a “foreign mission” used for propaganda purposes in 2020.
Following the State Department’s 2020 designation, the CCP has reportedly switched its tactics and has since begun encouraging U.S. schools to form sister school relationships with Chinese counterparts, according to a 2022 report by the National Association of Scholars.
In 2020, 4th grade students at Cascade Elementary School in Orem, Utah, were also reportedly instructed to write gushing Lunar New Year greetings to Xi, according to a recent report by the Associated Press. Cascade Elementary School students who wrote to Xi reportedly addressed the communist dictator as “Grandpa Xi” in their letters, AP reported.
And, as with Niles North High School, Xi also allegedly took the time to reply to Cascade Elementary’s 4th grade students, AP found, encouraging the grammar school students to “become young ‘ambassadors’ for Sino-American friendship.”
Niles North High School, Dove and Edwards did not respond immediately to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.