Who We Are

Read Write Spell Advances the Science of Reading.

All of our work is based in the science of reading– how the brain learns to read. Our approach, rooted in brain research, has been proven to be more effective for more children than traditional approaches to reading.

We believe that, with proper instruction, all children can learn to read.

Watch our Video

Our Programs

We leverage the power of community volunteers to provide free, long-term, one-to-one reading instruction to Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools (WS/FCS) students who struggle with literacy skills. 

The K-1 Foundations program provides instruction in phonological and phonemic awareness, listening comprehension, and letter formation to kindergarten and first-grade students in order to prevent literacy struggles in later grades.

Our Staff

Esharan Monroe-Johnson, Executive Director, (336)779-1304, esharan@readws.org
Alice Day Clark, Assistant Director, (336)309-5149, aliceday@readws.org
Paula Bennett, Marketing and Development Manager, (336)779-1303, paula@readws.org
Margaret Dickinson,
Program Director, (336)779-1301, margaret@readws.org
Debbie Kelley, ALP Coordinator and Trainer, (336)779-1305 , debbie@readws.org
Jeanie Wilson, Reading Foundations Coordinator/Asst. Trainer, (336)779-1300, ext 2200, jeanie@readws.org
Jessica Course,
Reading Foundations Program Asst., (336)779-1302, jessica@readws.org
Melissa Lester,
Financial Secretary, (336)723-4391, ext1206, melissa@readws.org
Susan Tague, Office Manager, (336)779-1300, susan@readws.org

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Our Advisory Board

Executive Commitee

Sara Fox, Chair
Ann Beery, Vice-Chair
Pete Hellebush, Past Chair
Kathleen Tatter, Secretary
Holley Winikoff, Treasurer
Jordan Daniel, Assistant Treasurer


Alex Bohannon
Anna Brewer
Austin Byrne
Andrew Darcy
Brent Hilleary
Ashby Hopkins
Micha James
Jonathan Kelly
Tony Leonardi
Mona Lovett
Ann Parke Muller
Esharan Monroe-Johnson,
Anne Parke Muller
Parker Tegeler
Liz Williams
Chris Lyon, Vestry Liaison

Founding Mothers

Becky Clingman, Voting
Susan Uphoff, Ex-Officio
Trudy Winstead, Ex-Officio

Our Commitment to Equity

Equity Defined

Equity is the state, quality, or ideal of being just, impartial and fair. Equity is not only a desired state of affairs but it also must be achieved and sustained structurally and systemically. Equity is achieved when race no longer predicts educational outcomes.

Our Commitment

Literacy is the currency of the 21st century and is inextricably linked to equity and justice. 

The opportunity gap in Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools (WS/FCS) is astounding. According to WS/FCS data from 2012-2017, African-American and Latinx children tested close to 33% proficient in reading compared to 73% for their white counterparts—a 40% gap. Race is the number one predictor of an individual’s outcomes in our community. Throughout history, literacy has long been used as a tool of oppression and the opportunity gap serves as a reminder of the work that still needs to be done. 

While the primary focus of our work is to provide students with research-based reading instruction, we acknowledge that systemic change is necessary to create a community in which all children have access to the opportunities that literacy and education make possible. In an effort to create a more just and equitable community, Read Write Spell commits to creating policies, programs, and practices that are anti-racist; embed diversity, equity, and inclusion throughout; and partner with organizations that are engaged in anti-racist systemic change. 

In addition, we commit to: 

  • Establishing a more diverse board of directors that includes people from the communities that we serve. 

  • Use strengths-based communication when speaking about our work and the people that we serve. 

  • Recruit volunteers that reflect the diversity of the population that we serve.

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