Our Story

Founded as the International Reading Association (IRA), the International Literacy Association (ILA) has worked to enhance literacy instruction through research and professional development for more than 60 years.

We're proud of the advances we've made for literacy in that time, like:

  • Honing the skills of thousands of literacy educators through our practical research journals, publications, professional development, conferences, and advocacy efforts
  • Publishing over 900 books on issues in literacy education
  • Developing and managing dozens of global literacy projects across the developing world
  • Building a community of educators through our network of councils and affiliate groups
  • Advocating before legislative and regulatory bodies for resources to enhance students' skills
  • Setting standards for educators and assessment that are now used throughout the field
  • Co-producing ReadWriteThink—a widely used website resource for peer-reviewed lesson plans

We transformed from IRA to ILA to reflect our strong belief that literacy is the primary foundation of all learning. We are dedicated to building on our 60-year legacy as advocates in advancing literacy and learning in classrooms around the world.

As the champion of a vibrant literacy community, we recognize the importance of working together to drive sustainable change and have great expectations for the next 60 years—and beyond.

Learn more about how ILA is advancing literacy in the Leaders for Literacy Newsletter, which features updates and insights from ILA's Executive Director and Board.

Together, we are the future of literacy, and the future is now.