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Join us for the 2022 Families Learning Conference

#NCFL22 will be held virtually Oct. 25-26 with Regional Meetups Nov. 4 in Nashville and Dec. 2 in Phoenix.

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Arizona partners collaborate to support families in learning together

Two new videos to highlight collaboration as well as the story of a family literacy participant.

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A message from NCFL

NCFL supports families in Kentucky and surrounding states impacted by devastating floods

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Free resources for educators

Check out free resources from NCFL including guides for learning outside of school and recruitment and retention.

Browse resources
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NCFL's 2021 Annual Report published

Read about the ways in which we worked towards accomplishing our mission in 2021.

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NCFL’s new project engages students and families in wonder, immersive learning, and service

The Carnegie Corporation of New York has selected NCFL as one of only ten organizations to receive a Family Engagement to Improve Student Learning grant.

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NCFL brings families and practitioners together for early childhood advocacy

This program follows the Dual Capacity-Building Framework for Family-School Partnerships to develop inclusive and equitable early childhood programs.

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At the Heart of Family Learning with Dr. Smith

In this monthly blog series, Dr. Felicia Cumings Smith explores ways in which NCFL is working alongside families and practitioners to provide quality, rich, and meaningful learning experiences that focus on the needs of adults and their children.

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NCFL works to eradicate poverty through education solutions for families.

Over our 32-year history, we have worked with families and communities to provide literacy strategies, programming, and resources. Engaging multiple generations in learning together is a fundamental and distinguishing aspect of our work, because we know this holistic approach creates a stronger impact and greater success for families.

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Join Our Cause

Our Reach

150 communities • 39 States + Washington DC • 4.5 million+ parents and children

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Huntsville, AL (2015)

Shelby County, AL (2003)

Little Rock, AR (1991)

Springdale, AR (2003)

Kayenta, AZ (2008)

Teec Nos Pos, AZ (1994)

Pinon, AZ (2001)

Many Farms, AZ (1993)

Chinle, AZ (1993)

Ganado, AZ (2010)

Winslow, AZ (1992)

Laveen, AZ (2001)

White River, AZ (2005)

Coolidge, AZ (1993)

Scottsdale, AZ (2001)

Mesa, AZ (2003)

Bapchule, AZ (2007)

Tucson, AZ (1991)

Fremont, CA (2003)

Oakland, CA (2003)

San Mateo, CA (2014)

Santa Clara, CA (2006)

Patterson, CA (2003)

Santa Paula, CA (2003)

Ontario, CA (1991)

Long Beach, CA (1991)

Los Angeles, CA (1991)

San Pedro, CA (2013)

Chula Vista, CA (2003)

Denver, CO (1991)

Aurora, CO (1998)

Pueblo, CO (2003)

Washington, DC (1991)

Orlando, FL (2000)

Ft. Lauderdale, FL (1991)

Miami, FL (2003)

Atlanta, GA (1991)

Tama, IA (1993)

Chicago, IL (1991)

Evansville, IN (1998)

Wichita, KS (2003)

Louisville, KY (1998)

Lexington, KY (1991)

New Orleans, LA (1991)

Chelsea, MA (2003)

Detroit, MI (2003)

Flint, MI (2015)

Wilson, MI (1992)

Cloquet, MN (1990)

St. Louis, MO (1991)

Conehatta, MS (1990)

Tupelo, MS (2016)

Choctaw, MS (2004)

Winston-Salem, NC (2003)

Greensboro, NC (2016)

Dunseith, ND (2001)

Bismarck, ND (2007)

Fort Totten, ND (2005)

Lincoln, NE (2013)

Gallup, NM (2010)

Alamo, NM (1993)

Bloomfield, NM (2006)

Corrales, NM (2001)

Crownpoint, NM (1993)

Cuba, NM (1990)

Espanola, NM

Fruitland, NM (2001)

Ft. Wingate, NM (1992)

Laguna, NM (1990)

Las Cruces, NM (2003)

Mescalero, NM (2003)

Newcomb, NM (1993)

Pine Hill, NM (1994)

Prewitt, NM (2008)

Pueblo of Acoma, NM (2017)

Shiprock, NM (1993)

Tohatchi, NM (1992)

Vanderwagen, NM (1992)

Las Vegas, NV (2003)

New York, NY (2003)

Bronx, NY (2013)

Rochester, NY (1991)

Cinncinati, OH (1991)

Portland, OR (2016)

Pittsburgh, PA (1991)

Providence, RI (2003)

Waubay, SD (2001)

Sisseton, SD (2003)

Howes, SD (1990)

Kyle, SD (2001)

Allen, SD (2008)

Pine Ridge, SD (2009)

St. Francis, SD (2003)

Nashville, TN (1991)

Memphis, TN (2003)

Houston, TX (1998)

San Antonio, TX (2003)

Dallas, TX (1991)

Plano, TX (2015)

Salt Lake City, UT (2003)

Montezuma Creek, UT (2013)

Viola, WI (1993)

Oneida, WI (2003)

Hayward, WI (1993)

Milwaukee, WI (2014)

Charleston, WV (1998)

Richmond, VA (1991)

The year listed represents the beginning of NCFL’s partnership in the community.

Our Impact

Our History


Blog & News

Blog Jul 28, 2022
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NCFL begins recruiting the next cohort of the Activate! National Network

Recruitment has begun for the next cohort of the Activate! National Early Childhood Advocacy Network, an initiative of NCFL focused on improving equity in areas most affecting families furthest ... Read more»

Blog Jul 25, 2022
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Save on #NCFL22 registration during our summer flash sale

Summer is sizzling, and so are the savings for the 2022 Families Learning Conference! From July 26 through 29, registrants can save $40 off one virtual conference registration by entering the ... Read more»

Blog Jul 18, 2022
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NCFL seeking input on upcoming professional learning opportunities

With the new school year starting in just a few weeks, now's a great time to brush up on family learning best practices and learn new strategies and resources! Throughout our 2021-22 webinar ... Read more»

Blog Jul 12, 2022
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Deadline approaching for NCFL's call for "Big Ideas"

Time’s almost up to submit your presentation proposal for #NCFL22 “Big Idea” sessions! NCFL is seeking fast-paced, thought-provoking presentations for the 2022 Families Learning ... Read more»

Blog Jun 20, 2022
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NCFL is seeking “Big Ideas” for the 2022 Families Learning Conference

Have you implemented a new program or idea that inspired change in your organization or community? How have you worked to affect or lead change in new ways? The National Center for Families Learning ... Read more»

Blog Jun 17, 2022
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At the Heart of Family Learning: Building the conditions to support transformational change

Since January, I have shared NCFL’s 60x30 vision for building equitable and thriving communities across the country; that is, by 2030, we will have established aligned and coordinated Family ... Read more»

News Jun 1, 2022

MAKING A DIFFERENCE: OPPORTUNITY THROUGH EDUCATION

For more than 25 years, Dr. Felicia Cumings Smith has helped Kentuckians harness the power of education to improve their and their families’ lives. It’s a calling she’s pursued in a variety of roles: from her early days as a Louisville elementary school teacher, to her leadership within the Kentucky Department of Education and the Jefferson County School District, and more recently as the president of the non-profit organization, National Center for Families Learning. Read more»

News Mar 31, 2022

Dollar General Literacy Foundation Identifies Key Areas to Prioritize

In partnership with the Barbara Bush Foundation, The National Center for Families Learning and Reading Is Fundamental, the Dollar General Literacy Foundation has been investing in literacy and education programs for nearly three decades with the goal of serving others in a way that uplifts and empowers. And while the foundation is proud of the work they have done so far, Denine Torr, executive director of DGLF and vice president of corporate social responsibility at Dollar General, said they recognize there is much more to do. Read more»

News Mar 8, 2022

Carnegie Corporation of New York Names 10 Grant Recipients to Support Family Engagement Programs Philanthropic funding

New York, NY — Building on its longstanding support for family engagement and home-school partnerships, Carnegie Corporation of New York today announced 10 grants to nonprofit organizations serving communities in nine states. Each will receive $100,000 over a period of 12 months, with the opportunity to renew the grant for a second year. Read more»

News Mar 2, 2022

We all agree literacy is critical. But little attention is paid to literacy in adults

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Reading is the key. Reading is fundamental. Take a look – it’s in a book. This is what we drill into children’s minds: that learning to read is extremely important to their future success. But we don’t put that same urgency on adults, even though fewer than half in America can read above a 6th-grade level. Read more»

News Apr 26, 2021

National Center for Families Learning launches search for new President as Founder announces plans to retire

A national search launched today to select a new president for the National Center for Families Learning (NCFL). The organization’s founder and current president, Sharon Darling, will retire later this year.

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News Oct 26, 2020

Cincinnati educator named national Family Teacher of the Year

Once a child raised in poverty in North Africa, Leila Kubesch arrived in America seeking solutions for families in need. She has fulfilled this mission and more, demonstrating an extraordinary capacity to impact the lives of families through her work.

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News Oct 26, 2020

St. Louis educator named national Family Teacher of the Year runner-up

As a certified adult educator, licensed clinical social worker, public policy advocate, and certified doula, Aminah Williams positively impacts families throughout the spectrum of life.

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News Sep 22, 2020

U.S. Senate promotes family service initiative in wake of COVID-19

WASHINGTON, DC (September 22, 2020) – Innovative family-centric programming designed to enable communities to fight COVID-19 challenges has once again received support from the United States Senate.

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NCFL Partners

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Toyota

Toyota, one of the nation's most successful corporations, began a partnership with NCFL in 1991. In addition to a commitment of more than $50 million, Toyota has also contributed a wealth of in-kind support — including advertising, planning and management expertise — to form one of the most progressive corporate/nonprofit partnerships in the nation.

Three major programs have been developed through the Toyota partnership based on the family literacy model of parents and children learning together. These models have influenced federal and state legislation, leveraged local dollars to support family literacy and led to successful programs being replicated across the country.

Read more about Toyota's commitment to communities

William R. Kenan, Jr. Charitable Trust

NCFL received its very first donation in 1989 from the William R. Kenan, Jr. Charitable Trust to promote and implement family literacy programming, first in Kentucky and North Carolina and later nationwide. The Kenan Family Literacy Model in part laid the groundwork for 30 years of subsequent family literacy and family learning programming developed by NCFL.

Kenan has continued to support NCFL’s place-based family literacy programs since our inception. Most recently, it has invested in our organization’s Sharon Darling Innovation Fund, which will launch emerging ideas and programmatic evolutions in the multigenerational learning space.

Learn more about the William R. Kenan, Jr. Charitable Trust

Dollar General Literacy Foundation

The Dollar General Literacy Foundation began partnering with NCFL in 2006. A signature effort of this partnership is the National Literacy Directory, a resource that launched in 2010 and strives to guide potential students and volunteers to literacy services, community education programs, and testing centers in their communities.

The National Literacy Directory contains over 10,000 educational agencies located across the United States and has a dedicated toll-free number to help support those wanting to pursue educational opportunities in their communities.

Dollar General also provides support for development of NCFL’s innovative family learning resources centered on financial literacy and Parent and Child Together (PACT) Time®.

Learn more about the Dollar General Literacy Foundation

PNC Grow Up Great

PNC Grow Up Great believes deeply in the power of high-quality early childhood education and provides innovative opportunities that assist families, educators and community organizations to enhance children's learning and development.

PNC Grow Up Great has partnered with NCFL since 1994, most recently in Louisville, Kentucky, to support Say & Play with Words, our pre-Kindergarten vocabulary-building initiative.

NCFL's work is also featured on the PNC Grow Up Great Lesson Center website. The Lesson Center includes over 100 free, high-quality preschool lesson plans and research-based instructional techniques and strategies. All lesson plans contain Home/School Connections printouts, in English and Spanish, to help families extend and reinforce the learning at home.

Learn more about PNC Grow Up Great

U.S. Department of Education

Initiated through the U.S. Department of Education in 2018, the Statewide Family Engagement Centers (SFEC) program provides 12 grantees and 13 states with five-year, $5 million grants to promote and implement systemic evidenced-based family engagement strategies. NCFL was selected to lead SFECs in two states, Arizona and Nebraska, and is a primary partner for two other SFECs in Kentucky and Maryland/Pennsylvania. 

The SFECs work to support family engagement through state- and local-level agencies while providing both professional development to school districts and direct services to families related to children’s academic outcomes and overall well-being.

Learn more about the U.S. Department of Education

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

NCFL was named a recipient of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s "Voices for Economic Opportunity Grand Challenge," which seeks to elevate diverse voices in order to broaden the conversation about the issues inhibiting economic mobility and generate deeper awareness along with actionable understanding. NCFL will develop and launch a podcast series that will highlight the remarkable stories of low-income, diverse families across the U.S. who have improved their communities through Family Service Learning.

Foundation Website