RALEIGH, N.C.—Without a strong early foundation in reading, students face an uphill struggle to succeed in school. Students who finish third grade behind in reading already are at a significantly higher risk of dropping out of high school.

That’s why Womble Bond Dickinson and the Wake County Bar Association are working with WakeEd and the Wake County Public School System to help ensure that local first- and second-graders get off to a good start in reading.

The Partners Read bprogram (formerly Lawyers Read) pairs local lawyers and other professionals with first- and second-graders who need extra help with reading for 10 weeks of supplemental one-on-one reading each semester. The lawyers come to the school every Friday before work to spend some time reading with their buddies.

This year, Womble Bond Dickinson’s Jon Boljesic, Sarah Cibik, Sarah Core, Peter Duffley, Kristina Schwartz  and Katie Zimmerman are volunteering at Lacy Elementary School through the Partners Read program. The attorney volunteers attended a training session in September to prepare to serve as reading helpers.

Team members hope to make this volunteer effort a Womble Bond Dickinson tradition.

Click here to watch a short video on the Partners Read program.

(L-R): Kristina Schwartz, Peter Duffley, Sarah Cibik, Katie Zimmerman, Sarah Core, Ashleigh Black (Ragsdale Liggett PLLC), and Nancy Proctor (Instructional Resource Teacher/Literacy Coach at Lacy Elementary School).
Not in the picture but also volunteers: Jon Boljesic.