Our History

Explore the timeline


Our founder Sharon Darling and her colleagues develop an award-winning model for comprehensive family literacy. The Parent & Child Education (PACE) program becomes a state law in Kentucky and eventually gets adopted nationally.


NCFL is founded as a 501c3 organization. NCFL’s first donation establishes family literacy in multiple states


NCFL partners with the Bureau of Indian Education (BIE) to implement family literacy in six schools


Toyota partners with NCFL to establish the Toyota Families for Learning (TFFL) initiative, a model literacy and learning program that brings families together to improve their lives.


NCFL and Toyota sponsor National Family Literacy Day and inaugurate the annual Family Literacy Teacher of the Year award.


NCFL is the lead influencer in the establishment of the Adult Education and Family Literacy Act, creating a federal definition of family literacy services


Learning programs for elementary students and their families are established by NCFL in 15 school districts and 45 schools. Toyota’s family literacy program launches, bringing Hispanic-Latino and other immigrant families together to serve educational needs with culturally relevant programming. The initiative ultimately reaches 90 schools in 30 cities.


NCFL and program staff initiate 25 meetings on Capitol Hill for the newly formed Hispanic Family Literacy Institute (HFLI).


NCFL launches Wonderopolis.org, an online platform that reaches 15 million annual users. NFCL also offers its first online course to adult educators.


NCFL co-founds the Aprendiendo Juntos Council, which seeks to identify new ways to improve educational outcomes in Hispanic-Latino families through technology.


NCFL publishes its first book, Stronger Families, Stronger Communities, highlighting the practices and strategies of 20 of the nation’s best teachers.


NCFL is awarded the American Prize for Literacy by the Library of Congress.


The US Department of Education appoints NCFL to lead the establishment of Statewide Family Engagement Centers (SFEC) in multiple states.


NCFL has served over 4.5 million parents and children across 150 communities in 39 states.