Dr. DeWalt recently partnered with a  school district comprised of 33,000 students in southwest Georgia that was facing systemic literacy failure. She designed and supported an implementation plan using the DeWalt Model that attracted more than $20 million in grant-funding. As a result, the school district has better evidence-based interventions, improved Response-to-Intervention protocols, data management systems for both general education and special education students, and eight district-based professional learning centers.

Thanks to Dr. DeWalt’s mitigations, the district has received state recognition for marked student growth in literacy as well as a reduction in the percentage of students identified as learning-disabled. A pilot secondary curriculum and framework Dr. DeWalt developed has also resulted in marked student growth in the district.

About Our Founder and Director

Kendra N. DeWalt

Ph.D., Curriculum & Instruction/Reading Education, University of Virginia
M.Ed., Curriculum & Instruction/Literacy, University of Missouri-Columbia
B.A., Psychology, Hampton University

Dr. Kendra DeWalt founded The Reading Center in 2007 in West Columbia, South Carolina.

For more than 17 years, she has designed and implemented individualized literacy plans for students and adults who have reading disabilities and other characteristics associated with reading, writing, speaking, and listening difficulties. She has also facilitated literacy solutions in private, public, and alternative school settings for more than a decade. To date, her work has impacted thousands of teachers and leaders and approximately 100,000 students situated across the East Coast.

Her interests include designing interventions and remediation protocols for complex literacy and language profiles, as well as studying factors that influence systemic literacy failure in K-12 settings. She remains committed to building literacy knowledge among teachers, leaders, and community-based organizations to ensure they are using sustainable, evidence-based literacy practices.

Dr. DeWalt resides in South Carolina with her husband, Allen DeWalt.

Clinical Residency

  • McGuffey Reading Center, Curry School of Education, University of Virginia
  • University of Florida Initiative Clinic (Special Education), Curry School of Education, University of Virginia

Professional Affiliations

  • International Dyslexia Association
  • International Literacy Association
  • Society of the Scientific Study of Reading
  • American Education Research Association

Professional Highlights

  • Board Member, International Dyslexia Association, SC Branch
  • Special Committee Member, Standards and Revision for Preparation of Literacy Professionals, International Literacy Association.
  • Task Force Member, Response-to-Intervention Task Force, Delaware State Department of Education
  • Expert Witness, Education Neglect, Chattanooga, TN