The vision of Kigali International Community School (KICS) began in November 2005 as expatriate Christian families came together to seek answers for their children’s educational needs. As these families prayed and planned, a vision was formed around the key principles of an English medium school using an American curriculum with a distinctly Christian philosophy. KICS was primarily established to meet the educational needs of the families of evangelical missionaries and Christian cross-cultural workers. The founders of KICS envisioned it to primarily be a support ministry for these families whose children would be more easily able to eventually transition back into American schools.
By January 2006, these families began several student clusters in a homeschool cooperative. In September 2006, these clusters joined at a four-bedroom home of Food for the Hungry International (FHI) in Kacyiru. The founding board members at KICS were serving with the following organizations: Christ’s Church in Rwanda (CCR), World Relief, Opportunity Bank, Food for the Hungry International (FHI), Compassion International and a USAID funded project.
In November 2006, Rwanda Outreach Community Partners (ROC) was formed as 501(c)3 in the state of Oklahoma to purchase the Caisse Sociale Rwanda (CSR) school and hall located in the Vision 2020 Estate of Gaculiro on behalf of Christ’s Church in Rwanda (CCR). The property was purchased in February 2007. ROC Partners invited KICS to move into the school property in April 2007 as a partner in Christian education with ROC and CCR. In order for KICS to be financially sustainable Food for the Hungry International moved their office to the ROC property and stayed until August 2008. FHI and ROC investments enabled KICS to be sustained through its early days as it transitioned to its new environment with a growing patronage. Teachers initially came as volunteers seconded to KICS from Food for the Hungry, World Relief and Christ’s Church in Rwanda.
As Kigali experienced a rapid growth of expatriate personnel, the need for a quality international school grew and there became conflicting visions for KICS that led to the beginning of a transition in the spring of 2009. These conflicting visions ultimately led to a solidified Christian ethos and re-commitment to serving missionaries and Christian cross-cultural workers while honoring our host country with a substantial portion of enrollment going to national families.
In September 2009, ROC Partners became the owner agency of KICS. This alignment of property and institutional ownership solidified KICS as a legitimate institution to its host nation. The KICS founding vision was also solidified through a renewable Memorandum of Understanding with Africa Inland Mission (AIM), and the merger of the former missionary homeschool co-op, Jungle School, with KICS. AIM’s partnership in providing staff and the Jungle School/KICS merger were a demonstration of the philosophy of unity and partnership among Christians serving in Rwanda. These partnerships and a unified mission for KICS served to help make KICS a highly sought-after education in Kigali, with students having attended KICS from over 35 nationalities.
In February 2010, the accreditation process officially began. In August 2010, KICS began its self-study for ACSI/MSA accreditation that became effective January 1, 2012. As part of that process, KICS completed the construction of a Media Center/Library and Science Laboratory in July 2012. This was Phase II of a three-phase development plan. Phase I was completed in the summers of 2010 and 2011 through modifications of the Primary building including modification of upper classrooms from eight to four and modifying the basement from offices to classrooms. Phase III was the anticipated need for facilities expansion although not defined specifically at the time.
In 2013, KICS built a full-size basketball court, giving it the potential to offer basketball and volleyball in addition to an already popular football (soccer) program.
In 2015, KICS had its midterm accreditation visit with a positive report from accrediting institutions thanks to being ahead of schedule in KICS Continuous School Improvement Plan (CSIP). With its substantial institutional and academic growth, KICS is poised to finish its first 7-year accreditation with high marks as it launches into the future.
In 2016, KICS launched “His Vision Our Future” as part of its 10-Year Anniversary. The first step of this vision was a new classroom building in conjunction with the launch of dual streaming. Over the next several years, KICS will expand to another site that will allow KICS to stand as an institution for generations to come – an institution committed to the vision of preparing servant-leaders to impact the world for Christ. To accelerate KICS towards “His Vision Our Future,” in early 2018, Virginia-based 501(c)3, B2THEWORLD became an owner agency of KICS alongside ROC Partners.
In the spring of 2019, KICS successfully renewed its accreditation with ACSI and MSA. The leadership team is currently developing a new strategic plan that includes learnings from the accreditation team’s visit.