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Superintendent's Message

Profile image for Gene Kirchner

Gene Kirchner

The Smarter Way

We’ve always believed that the success of Fort Thomas Independent Schools is interconnected with the success of our city. When a city invests in its community through its libraries, its parks and its social service offerings, the schools thrive. The best educators move to the district and stay. Families are committed to their community and jobs abound. Likewise, when students receive a first-rate education, schools become a magnet, and the city benefits. Schools invest in the community and equip its future citizens for the global workplace.


In short, great communities need great schools in order to be – and stay – great.


FTIS benefits from the “greatness” of our city every day. And we work diligently and intentionally to serve as an economic engine for our community by providing students with a world-class education. Communication, critical thinking and problem-solving skills are at the center of our pedagogy, and we ensure our students are technologically proficient, globally minded and service-oriented.


Over the past semester, our leadership team has read through and discussed Smart Cities that Work for Everyone: 7 Keys to Education & Employment, by Tom Vander Ark. Its research confirms our experience and affirms our mission. Vander Ark asserts that education drives a city’s economic development. A school system’s ability to build new capacities, utilize new innovative tools and sustain strong leadership is necessary for the city’s success.


This is why our mission is focused on providing engaging and challenging learning experiences which foster creativity, curiosity and innovation in students and inspire them to be productive members of the global community. It’s why our curriculum and educational experiences are focused on:


  • Developing 21st-century skills
  • Leveraging technology
  • Promoting the arts
  • Engaging in cross-cultural experiences
  • Growing servant-minded leaders


    FTIS students benefit from our “smart community” because our city understands and values the critical role education plays in its future. In this issue of Traditions, you’ll read stories about the numerous ways our students, teachers and learning experiences are geared towards building a smarter community.



When our students succeed, our community succeeds. It’s the smarter way.

Gene Kirchner, Superintendent, Fort Thomas Independent Schools


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