On May 7, 2011, a delegation of 20 education officials and representatives of the U.S. Department of Education held a forum at East China Normal University, host campus for the CIEE Study Center in Shanghai, to learn about the experience of Americans studying abroad in China. The delegation met with CIEE students from University of Minnesota—Twin Cities, The College of New Jersey, and The Pennsylvania State University, as well as the CIEE Chinese Language Coordinator, and other ECNU international students and language teachers for a round table discussion about the challenges and benefits of learning and teaching Chinese in Shanghai. Ms. Vivien Stewart, Senior Advisor for Education at the Asia Society, and Chair of Asia Society’s Confucius Classrooms Initiative and leader of the delegation, commented that she was very impressed with the CIEE program and its students.
The delegation also included State Superintendents for the Board of Education of Arizona, Illinois, Iowa, Massachusetts, Missouri, Kentucky, Ohio, and Washington D.C.; President of the National School Boards Association; Vice President of the Carnegie Corporation; Vice President of Pearson, Inc.; President and CEO of the Education Development Center (EDC), and representatives of the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO). The delegation was received by ECNU officials and the Director of the Chinese National Office for Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language (Hanban), which is affiliated with the Chinese Ministry of Education.