Can Higher Ed be trusted?

That’s a question Congress is asking in light of recent developments involving China. SEE will leave the espionage to the government. But what we would like to know is what part of our taxpayer dollars are involved in what may be a sinister plot against America?

There has been a spate of people arrested in their dealings with China…

For example, in January of this year, a Harvard University department chair and two Chinese nationals who were researchers at Boston University and a Boston hospital were charged with lying about their alleged links to the Chinese government.

And what of the electrical engineering professor The University of Arkansas suspended without pay after he was arrested on an allegation that he failed to disclose that he had close ties with the Chinese government and Chinese businesses?

And now we see colleges and universities attempting to block access to their records.

According to The College Fix,

Attorneys for universities under investigation by the U.S. Department of Education are trying to block Congress from obtaining records that detail the schools’ ties with China, according to a May 19 letter exclusively obtained by The College Fix.

The letter, written by the Education Department’s General Counsel Reed Rubinstein, tells lawmakers who requested the documents that the universities’ lawyers “claimed Freedom of Information Act exemptions and legal privileges to block record production to Congress.”

Rubinstein wrote that some schools may be overly aggressive in marking some documents “confidential” or “privileged.”

Nevertheless, he added, staff will contact each school under investigation and let them know which records will be provided to Congress. To block a document being handed over, an objecting school “must provide written specification of the records designated for withholding and specific supporting legal grounds,” the letter states.

What could a college or university possibly offer as a reason to block a FOIA request? Particularly if the school in question is funded in part by American citizens?

We understand how research institutions may want to protect intellectual property. But not from a potential criminal investigation into China.

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