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About our District

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Fort Thomas Independent Schools, a recognized leader in the Greater Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky area and in the Commonwealth of Kentucky, is the top-ranked district in Kentucky under the state’s assessment program. Additionally, the district is rated as a “District of Distinction” by the Kentucky Department of Education for the third consecutive year, and four of its five schools have been named as a National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence. The district includes Robert D. Johnson Elementary School, Ruth Moyer Elementary School, Samuel Woodfill Elementary School, Highlands Middle School and Highlands High School. Fort Thomas Independent Schools value rigorous curriculum standards, exceptional parental involvement and community support plus excellence in extracurricular activities.

Fort Thomas Independent Schools Education Facts
    (2018-19 data unless otherwise denoted)

Number of schools in the district: 5 (1 high; 1 middle; 3 elementary)

Enrollment: 3,057

Number of teachers:  185

Percentage of teachers with master’s degree:  93.1%

Student to Teacher Ratio:  16:1

Ethnicity of public school students: White – 91.4% Other - 8.6%

District's per Pupil Spending:  $9,081 (2014-15 data)

Length of school year:  177 instructional days

Attendance rate:  96.9% 

Graduation rate:  98.4%

Number of Merit Finalists:  

Number of Advanced Placement classes offered:  26

Advanced Placement Pass Rate: 73%

Percentage of Graduates Earning college credit: 60%

Number of gifted/talented children grades 4-12:  416 

Number of primary talent pool grades K-3: 118 

Number of Special Education students ages 6-21: 230

Number of Tuition Students:  168

Tuition Costs for 2020-21

  • Grades 1-12: ADA Contract - $2,700; No ADA Contract - $5,400
  • Kindergarten Half Day: ADA Contract - $1,400; No ADA Contract - $2,750
  • Kindergarten Full Day: ADA Contract - $4,100; No ADA Contract - $5,450


Percentage of classrooms with Internet access:  100%

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District Highlights

• Niche.com named Fort Thomas Independent Schools as the “Best Public School District in Kentucky.” The district was rated with an A+ overall grade. Additionally, Niche.com rated FTIS as the #165 best school district in America (out of 10,782).

• Cincy Magazine named Highlands High School the #1 school in Northern Kentucky, based on state rankings, ACT scores and extracurricular accolades.

Highlands High School was named one of “America’s Best High Schools” by the U.S. News & World Report “America’s Best High Schools” report, receiving a Gold Medal designation, ranking 2nd in Kentucky and 308th nationally. 

• Forbes.com named Fort Thomas Independent Schools as one of the top 25 public school districts in the country.

• The Fort Thomas Independent Schools achieves high test scores and annually ranks as one of Kentucky’s highest performing kindergarten through twelfth grade public school districts. FTIS scores at or above the highest-scoring nations on the OECD (PISA) assessment.

• The average combined Junior ACT score is 23.5, as compared to the state average of 19.0.

• Seventy-three percent of all Advanced Placement (AP) examinations taken by students in the Fort Thomas Independent Schools results in a passing score of 3 or higher.

• Four of the five schools in the district have been named a National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence.

• Highlands High School has been a High Schools that Work Gold Achievement School.

• The FTIS earned highest level performance on AdvancEd accreditation.

• Nearly 90% of all high school students in the 11th grade performed at the Proficient/Distinguished level in writing.

• All schools earned the highest 4-star or 5-star rating and indicator performance levels on the 2019 Kentucky State Accountability System.

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