KDS History

The Kirk of the Hills Presbyterian Church was established in 1968 as a "church plant" of Central Presbyterian Church (PCUS) of Clayton, Missouri. The first worship service was held in the chapel, built on Ladue Road property, by Central. Dr. Vern Trueblood was the organizing pastor. On April 13, 1969 the Kirk was organized as a particular church with 169 charter members, and nine elders and deacons.

In the fall of 1974, The Kirk established a preschool as an outreach ministry to the community. The Kirk Preschool operated as such for 18 years until it was re-organized with new by-laws and re-named The Kirk of the Hills Christian Day School in 1992.


past Senior Pastor, Rev. Mark Kuiper; First Head of School Sue Pitzer; Pastor Emeritus Dr. Wilson Benton

After much prayer and consideration, the Kirk congregation decided in May of 1982 to leave the Presbyterian Church in the United States, which had departed from its conservative heritage. The Kirk of the Hills joined the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA), a young denomination in which the Bible was recognized as God's authoritative Word.

Upon the retirement of Sr. Pastor L. Vern Trueblood in 1985, Dr. W. Wilson Benton, Jr. of Cleveland, Mississippi, became the second Senior Pastor of The Kirk of the Hills Presbyterian Church.

Kirk Day School founded in 1992

The first KDS Board was formed in 1991 with John Hauser as the first president. John was an elder in the church and had a good understanding of Christian Education. His experience on the Westminster Christian Academy (WCA) School board was valuable as KDS began. Also on the Board were Lowell Pitzer, teacher at Missouri Baptist College, and his wife, Sue Pitzer, a teacher at WCA with exceptional understanding of Christian education and several children at WCA. Sue Pitzer would become the first Principal for KDS in 1993. Overseeing the Board from the church was Greg Poole, Minister of Christian Educationt. As an Elder on the Session and a parent of students at WCA, his commitment to and understanding of Christian Education was invaluable.

In August 1992, KDS opened its doors with 80 preschool students and 8 first and second graders under the leadership of Greg Poole. A new Christian Education wing was built, with classes moving into the new rooms midyear.

By August of 1993, KDS hired Sue Pitzer as Principal over an enrollment of 168 students from 3 year-olds through fifth grade. That year, the Board committed to a full range of Co-Curricular instruction, including teachers for music, art, physical education and foreign language, in addition to classroom faculty.

In 1994, we expanded to multiple classes in first and second grade. Building expansion for the gymnasium/family life center and 10 additional classrooms began. This was the year we added a secretary for the office, with many thanks for all the volunteers who had helped out during the previous years.

1995-1996 brought 240 students, with 3 first grade classes, 2 classes each of second and third grade, and one class each of fourth, fifth and sixth grades. The construction work on the gymnasium and additional classrooms was completed, and the student body continued to grow. An Athletic Director and Resource teacher would be added for the 1996-1997 school year.

Students utilizing iPad technology.

1997-1998 brought about another change as the school committed to adding an intensive classroom for students with moderate to severe learning disabilities. B. J. Wiemer, a former Board member and experienced Special Education Teacher, joined the staff to oversee and teach this new class.

1998-1999 completed the expansion of our Special Services Department with a Resource Teacher, a Primary (1st - 3rd) LD classroom, and an Intermediate (4th - 6th) LD classroom. The school also had by that time a full cadre of elementary classrooms, three of each in kindergarten through second grade, and two each in third through sixth grades. By 2000, the school reached capacity enrollment.

For over two decades, God has abundantly blessed the school with board members, administrators and teachers who clearly understand their calling to train covenant children for kingdom service. The Board participates regularly in strategic planning for the future and is committed to continuing the pursuit of excellence in education within a Biblical context.