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 Strength in Diversity
Varied experiences provide a powerful combination for the Board
When I think about what is special about working on the FIS Board of Trustees I have to say it is the diversity of our group: the professional expertise of our members, our international backgrounds and values, and our personal experiences connected to raising children who attend FIS as students in the Primary School all the way through Grade 12 and beyond. But what really unites us is the passion each of us has for our school’s success, and our willingness as volunteers to put in the hard work and long hours necessary for FIS to achieve its ambitious Strategic Plan.
Although we are only a group of 12, there are six nationalities represented among us. This brings a wealth of experiences and perspectives that enables us to answer the call of the FIS Mission to be “internationally minded.” Our backgrounds across three continents keeps us mindful that FIS is made up of more than 60 nationalities, all of which are equally valued.
Our diversity is not only defined by our nationalities, but also in the unique perspectives each of us brings to our discussions. For those who attend our open Board meetings, it may appear that we are all of one mind when it comes to educational issues. The truth is that we spend many hours in our committee meetings engaging in healthy debates on a host of issues that range from curriculum to facilities to finance.
Lastly, I think our diversity also produces an authentic empathy for the many different backgrounds and needs within our community. Some of our members have relatively young children making them particularly sensitive to
the needs of early learners, while others already have had students who have graduated from FIS and know the doors that can be opened with an IB Diploma. Some of us have been at FIS for many years, and others are relatively new. Some Board members have the FIS tuition paid by an employer while others pay privately. Taken together, these varying perspectives allow us to recognize our responsibility to the many different constituencies that make up the FIS community.
Our diversity produces an authentic empathy for the many different backgrounds and needs within our community.
I understand that many of you who are reading this may be new to FIS this year. In fact, in these first few months, you may still be finding your feet if this is your first international assignment and you are far from home. However, I want you to know that your Board is doing everything we can to make FIS a home for your family, and that the diversity you may bring to our community is not only welcome here, but greatly valued.
Julia Heraeus-Rinnert Chair, Board of Trustees
Members of the 2022/2023 FIS Board of Trustees with Dr. Paul Fochtman (back row left)
  November 2022 FIS World 3

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