By Jan Bates Wheeler
In 1960, the school front exam Board grew to become an unforeseen player within the flow to desegregate schooling within the South. operating with its associate, academic checking out providers, the school Board quietly built-in its Scholastic flair attempt (SAT) facilities in the course of the Deep South. touring from kingdom to kingdom, taking one tuition district or even one university at a time, university Board employees contributors, either local southerners, waged a crusade of quiet persuasion and succeeded, developing a roster of desegregated try out facilities inside segregated tuition districts whereas the historical conflict for civil rights raged round them. within the context of the bigger fight for equivalent possibilities for southern black scholars, their paintings addressed a small yet severe barrier to raised education.
Shedding gentle in this awesome tale for the 1st time, Jan Bates Wheeler tells how the school Board employees contributors Ben Cameron and Ben Gibson succeeded. Their candid and thoughtfully written documents of conversations and confrontations, untouched for almost fifty years, exhibit the endurance required to arrive a objective many inspiration unachievable or even foolhardy. certainly, their activity put them within the strange place of advocating for faculty desegregation on a day by day foundation as a part of their jobs. This situated Cameron and Gibson squarely towards winning legislation, customs, and attitudes an ill-advised stance for any nascent enterprise enterprise, relatively one experiencing pageant from a brand new, rival trying out association imagined to accommodate overtly those self same legislation, customs, and attitudes.
Cameron and Gibson additionally accredited the private possibility occupied with confrontations with racist university officers. The officers who cooperated with the pair assumed even larger hazard, and in an effort to reduce that possibility, Cameron and Gibson pledged to not publicize their efforts. Even years after their paintings had ended, the 2 males refused to write down approximately their crusade for worry of compromising the folk who had helped them. Their issues, in line with Wheeler, stored this extraordinary tale mostly untold formerly.
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Additional info for A Campaign of Quiet Persuasion: How the College Board Desegregated SAT Test Centers in the Deep South, 1960-1965
10 Access for blacks to white law schools in the South finally began to improve in the late 1930s due to e≠orts on the part of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund under the leadership of Thurgood Marshall. Marshall, who in 1967 would become the first black Supreme Court justice, had himself been denied admission to the University of Maryland Law School. Instead, Marshall attended Howard Law School, graduating in 1933 and taking a position with the NAACP shortly afterward. 11 In the 1940s, Marshall and other NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund attorneys established the goal of desegregating public law schools within their broader cause of improving the education of blacks generally.
The university’s center supervisor, Rollin Godfrey, who was “Southern by birth and inclination,” had graduated from Teachers College of Columbia University and was well acquainted with ETS and some of its sta≠ members. Godfrey favored testing all candidates together; however, if there were complaints from whites he would test black candidates in his o∞ce. Day felt Godfrey was doing his best to accommodate black candidates. He had moved the test center from the Navy ROTC Armory, located at the very hub of the all-white campus, to a building that was on university property but situated o≠-campus several blocks away.
The Centenary College representative responded that all races would be tested under unconditionally desegregated conditions. Restrooms were desegregated, but black students would have to go o≠ campus to find a place to have lunch. Wolfram sent his report on these two institutions to Winterbottom, asking if he, Wolfram, could be of further help. 76 Throughout their dealings with center o∞cials and test candidates and in communications with each other, ETS and College Board sta≠ members maintained the highest level of professionalism, exhibiting courtesy to and respect for all.