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Mar 31, 2014 |
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FACE results inspire new culturally-sensitive approach to pre-K curriculum 

NCFL Image The FACE (Family and Child Education) program is based on the family literacy and family engagement model developed by NCFL for use with the Native American/American Indian population. Focusing on American Indian families is significant since students from this group have the highest dropout rate among ethnic minority groups. Initiated by the Bureau of Indian Education (BIE) in 44 BIE-funded schools, FACE has served over 40,000 American Indians, including adults and children in approximately 16,000 families. The FACE program has yielded statistically significant results during its 25-year history. Most recently, independent evaluations conducted by Research & Training Associates, Inc., revealed these results:
  • Two-thirds of FACE preschoolers who attended the program for a full year exited preschool on a level playing field with children nationally (moving from 30th to 55th percentile after one year)
  • FACE preschool children’s vocabulary and language comprehension have increased as much as from the 7th to the 45th percentile
  • Children in grades K-3 who participated in FACE as preschoolers scored significantly higher on standardized reading and math tests than children who did not participate in FACE
  • Children in FACE are screened for delays and are provided the appropriate special education services. Through early intervention, FACE preschool children are half as likely to require services for special education at kindergarten
  • After a year of FACE, preschool children with special needs scored near the national average, lowering the need for costly, long-term special education
  • Eighty percent of parents indicated that FACE participation had a large impact on increasing their child’s interest in learning
  • Gender-based differences are eradicated by children’s FACE preschool attendance
Based on these findings, NCFL recognized a need and an opportunity to design a culturally-sensitive early childhood approach that is specifically geared toward pre-K students in the American Indian population. We build successful futures by strengthening a child’s confidence, increasing their ability, and broadening their outlook. NCFL’s exciting new approach will focus on giving children and families the tools they need to thrive. Please contact us at to learn more.


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NCFL Partners

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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