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Jun 15, 2021 |

Classrooms across the country faced unique challenges and uncertainties this school year, but still teachers discovered new and meaningful ways to reach their students each and every day. As the pandemic persisted, many played additional roles in their students’ lives, working with families in a greater capacity than ever before. 

The National Center for Families Learning (NCFL) and Toyota recognize and applaud our nation’s teachers for all that they do for our families and our communities. Today we announce the opening of the nomination period for the 2021 Toyota Family Teacher of the Year and invite you to take this time away from school to nominate a deserving educator in your life.

Twenty-five years ago, NCFL and Toyota initiated a partnership to recognize the positive impact of U.S. teachers who engage families in educational programming in extraordinary ways. This year, two more educators will be honored.

NCFL is seeking school- or community-based teachers who are passionate about engaging families and who demonstrate exemplary practices as candidates for the 2021 Toyota Family Teacher of the Year. Strong candidates will be family teachers who engage parents and children using a multigenerational approach to help them learn together in innovative ways. Candidates should have a demonstrated record of success and serve communities and families with high literacy and socioeconomic needs.

Award winners will develop innovative ideas for expanding their programs to benefit families and/or to engage more families. Winning educators will be asked to participate in NCFL’s outreach activities to promote their practices and programs, including, but not limited to, participation in the 2021 Families Learning Conference, held Oct. 25-27 in Dallas.

School- and community-based teachers who are exceptional at engaging families are eligible for nomination. The 2021 Toyota Family Teacher of the Year will receive a $20,000 grant award and the runner-up a $5,000 grant award to implement/expand their respective programs.

Additional nomination requirements can be found here. Nominations must be submitted online no later than 11:59 p.m. PDT on Friday, August 6, 2021. Questions or additional assistance may be directed to Angel Chichester, AChichester@FamiliesLearning.org.

 

Nominate a teacher today!


Leila Kubesch is named the 2020 Toyota Family Teacher of the Year.

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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.

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