School counselors, NDEA, and school desegregation in Alabama: the evolution of a profession
After the Soviet Union launched Sputnik in 1957, Congress funded the National Defense Education Act of 1958 (NDEA) which created school counselor training institutes throughout the country in order to identify highly talented students, especially in the sciences, mathematics, and foreign languages. The National Defense Counseling and Guidance Training Institutes greatly increased the number of school counselors, especially in the Southern states, and also coincided with the desegregation of Southern schools. Along with the involvement of the federal government in funding higher education preparation, was the rise of standardized testing employed in the selection and separation of students. This project investigates the relationship between the NDEA, school counselors and whether or not the NDEA helped shaped an institutional identity of school counseling that interfered with equal educational opportunity (EEO) for African American students in public schools in the South. It is a qualitative study relying on historical documents and interviews of counselors, and counselor educators.