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Thomas Jeffersons Views on Education Thomas Jefferson believed that universal education would have to precede universal suffrage The ignorant he argued were incapable of self-government But he had profound faith in the reasonableness and teachableness of the masses and in their collective wisdom when taught He believed that the schools should teach reading writing and arithmetic Also the children should learn about Grecian roman English and American History Jefferson believed the nation needed public schools scattered around for all male citizens to receive free education By 1789 the first law was passed in Massachusetts to reaffirm the colonial laws by which towns were obligated to support a school This law was ignored Private schools were opened only to those who could afford to pay them In the middle states religious groups opened most schools Not many schools or institutions were opened to the nonwealthy people The women blacks and Indians were not able to go to school It was not until the early 1900s that the Nation began making academies for females because government thought that they needed to be educated mothers to educate their children Jefferson believed in the Republican Mother Later many 19th century reformers believed in the power of education to reform and redeem- to release a blame or debt to buy back- backward people As a result they generated a growing interest in Indian Education Jefferson and his followers believed that the Native Americans were noble savages they hoped that schooling the Indians in white culture would uplift- to improve the spiritual social or intellect condition- the tribes But the states and local government did little to support education Unlike the women and Indians blacks had no support at all There were no efforts to educate enslaved African Americans mostly because their owner preferred that they remain ignorant and this presumably less likely to rebel By 1815 there were 30 secondary private schools in Massachusetts 37 in New
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