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FCPS Leads Effort to Create Family Learning Community

FCPS Leads Effort to Create Family Learning Community

Fayette County Public Schools (FCPS) is taking a big step to address the education and economic challenges facing children and families throughout Lexington. Together with the office of Mayor Linda Gorton, Commonwealth Credit Union, the Urban League of Lexington-Fayette County, and the National Center for Families Learning (NCFL), our district is working to create a Family Learning Community in Fayette County.

In the months ahead, FCPS and its partners will collaborate to develop a system of support that will further the community’s commitment to restoring education and economic opportunities for socially, culturally, and economically diverse children and families. As the work launches, this core team will work with other local partners to amplify and align their existing work, ensuring equitable access to learning opportunities and success for all community members. 

Miranda Scully, director of Family and Community Engagement in FCPS, is excited about the impact of the new Family Learning Community. “Our community will benefit the most from more sustainable collaborations that are inclusive of the communities we strive to serve,” she said. “Becoming a Family Learning Community shows the commitment of our city and school district leadership to work collectively to leverage resources, funds, and human capital for the betterment of all.” 

Tiffany Brown, the chief Equity and Implementation officer for Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government, looks forward to the opportunities for action and service this partnership will bring. “We know how vital it is to the success of families and communities to eliminate barriers in education,” she said. “While there are a lot of organizations doing great work in this space, we are excited to partner with Fayette County schools and NCFL on the opportunity to ensure that there’s an approach where the whole family is engaged.”

This effort, made possible in part with support from the James Graham Brown Foundation and Toyota, builds on NCFL’s legacy work in seeding family literacy, engagement, and leadership programs nationwide while charting an ambitious new course. Moving beyond isolated programmatic endeavors, NCFL aims to establish coordinated and aligned family learning systems in 60 communities by the year 2030. Each system will be built with and for families and will prioritize the voice of children and parenting adults to ensure that those most impacted by inequities are included in the decision-making process. Family learning systems will rely on NCFL’s multigenerational approach, which brings multiple generations of a family together to engage in learning activities. 

Fayette County joins Franklin County (Kentucky), Louisville (Kentucky), Macon-Bibb County (Georgia), Columbus (Georgia), West Michigan (Michigan), and Tucson (Arizona), with more communities expected to be added in the coming months and years. Each community will be part of the larger network, ensuring that all lessons learned are captured and disseminated to shape policy and practices and inform the state and national narrative on the importance of family learning systems as an agent of transformation. 

“Fayette County families – much like families all across the country – are facing urgent and significant challenges that deserve thoughtful solutions,” said NCFL President and CEO Felicia Cumings Smith. “By signing on to NCFL’s family learning community network, these organizations have demonstrated a long-term commitment to improving the lives of children and families. Strong families equal strong communities, and these partners are determined to create the conditions for all Fayette County children and families to thrive.”