SAT Reading - Khan Diagnostic Quiz level 4 - reading 11

Questions 1-11 are based on the following

Passage 1 is excerpted from Noah Webster, “On the Education of Youth in America,” originally published in 1790. Passage 2 is excerpted from Benjamin Rush, “Of the Mode of Education Proper in a Republic,” originally published in 1798.[br]The symbol [1] indicates that the following sentence is referenced in a question.

Passage 1

Another defect in our schools, which, since the revolution,

is become inexcuseable, is the want of proper books. The

collections which are now used consist of essays that respect
foreign and ancient nations. The minds of youth are
5 perpetually led to the history of Greece and Rome or to Great

Britain; boys are constantly repeating the declamations of

Demosthenes and Cicero, or debates upon some political

question in the British Parliament. These are excellent

specimens of good sense, polished stile and perfect oratory;
10 but they are not interesting to children. They cannot be very

useful, except to young gentlemen who want them as models

of reasoning and eloquence, in the pulpit or at the bar.

But every child in America should be acquainted with his

own country. He should read books that furnish him with
15 ideas that will be useful to him in life and practice. As soon

as he opens his lips, he should rehearse the history of his own

country; he should lisp the praise of liberty, and of those

illustrious heroes and statesmen, who have wrought a

revolution in her favor.
20 A selection of essays, respecting the settlement and

geography of America; the history of the late revolution and

of the most remarkable characters and events that

distinguished it, and a compendium of the principles of the

federal and provincial governments, should be the principal
25 school book in the United States. These are interesting

objects to every man; they call home the minds of youth and

fix them upon the interests of their own country, and they

assist in forming attachments to it, as well as in enlarging the

30 "It is observed by the great Montesquieu, that the laws of

education ought to be relative to the principles of the

In despotic governments, the people should have little or

no education, except what tends to inspire them with a servile
35 fear. Information is fatal to despotism. In monarchies,

education should be partial, and adapted to the rank of each

class of citizens. But "in a republican government," says the

same writer, "the whole power of education is required."

Here every class of people should know and love the laws.
40 This knowledge should be diffused by means of schools and

newspapers; and an attachment to the laws may be formed by

early impressions upon the mind. Two regulations are

essential to the continuance of republican governments:
[1] Such a distribution of lands and such principles of
45 descent and alienation, as shall give every citizen a power of

acquiring what his industry merits. [2] Such a system of

education as gives every citizen an opportunity of acquiring

knowledge and fitting himself for places of trust. These are

fundamental articles; the sine qua non of the existence of the
50 American republics.

Passage 2

The business of education has acquired a new complexion

by the independence of our country. The form of government

we have assumed, has created a new class of duties to every

American. It becomes us, therefore, to examine our former
55 habits upon this subject, and in laying the foundations for

nurseries of wise and good men, to adapt our modes of

teaching to the peculiar form of our government.
The first remark that I shall make upon this subject is, that

an education in our own, is to be preferred to an education in
60 a foreign country. The principle of patriotism stands in need

of the reinforcement of prejudice, and it is well known that

our strongest prejudices in favour of our country are formed

in the first one and twenty years of our lives. The policy of

the Lacedemonians is well worthy of our imitation. When
65 Antipater demanded fifty of their children as hostages for the

fulfillment of a distant engagement, those wise republicans

refused to comply with his demand, but readily offered him

double the number of their adult citizens, whose habits and

prejudices could not be shaken by residing in a foreign
70 country. Passing by, in this place, the advantages to the

community from the early attachment of youth to the laws

and constitution of their country, I shall only remark, that

young men who have trodden the paths of science together,

or have joined in the same sports, whether of swimming,
75 skating, fishing, or hunting, generally feel, thro' life, such ties

to each other, as add greatly to the obligations of mutual


I conceive the education of our youth in this country to be

peculiarly necessary in Pennsylvania, while our citizens are
80 composed of the natives of so many different kingdoms in

Europe. Our schools of learning, by producing one general,

and uniform system of education, will render the mass of the

people more homogeneous, and thereby fit them more easily

for uniform and peaceable government.

Question 1 The authors of both passages would agree that education in the United States should