October 16, 2023

Timor-Leste Adventist International School Celebrates Rapid Expansion

In just over one year, it has opened four branches across that Asian nation.

Edward Rodriguez, Southern Asia-Pacific Division, and Adventist Review
The Timor-Leste Adventist International School celebrated the inauguration of its fourth branch in the town of Viqueque, Timor-Leste, on September 25. [Photo: Timor-Leste Adventist International School]

In a milestone for its education efforts, the Timor-Leste Adventist International School (TAIS) celebrated the inauguration of its fourth branch in the town of Viqueque, Timor-Leste, on September 25. With education playing a pivotal role in this initiative, the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Timor-Leste is sharing an avenue of hope and faith to a challenging territory, regional church leaders said.

Situated on 2,800 square meters (30,000 square feet) of land in the heart of the city of Viqueque, the new TAIS branch embodies the commitment of the Adventist Church to providing high-quality education and spiritual growth. Administrators of the Timor-Leste Mission of the Adventist Church attended the inauguration, including its president, Chris Anderson, secretary Inaciu da Kosta, and treasurer Vic June Francisco. Additionally, administrators and teachers from the TAIS main campus attended.

“We are deeply appreciative of the warm embrace extended by the community of Viqueque towards our school,” Anderson said. “Through this educational institution, we are committed to nurturing our children, equipping them to flourish intellectually, and develop strong character traits that will shape them into the future leaders and pillars of our society.”

The event was further honored by the presence of the town chief Joao Pinto, who expressed his profound appreciation for the selection of Viqueque as the location for the new branch of the international school. His endorsement signifies the positive impact the institution is expected to have on the local community.

“We are honored to welcome the Timor-Leste Adventist International School to our city,” Pinto said. “For years, our town has eagerly awaited the establishment of a school, and now, with the presence of TAIS, that wait has come to a joyful end. This institution holds the promise of equipping and empowering our children, molding them into individuals poised to make a meaningful impact on the future.”

Currently, the TAIS Viqueque branch has 15 students enrolled, with expectations for growth next school year. This expansion is a testament to the demand for high-quality education in the region and the trust parents place in the Adventist educational system, leaders said.

TAIS Viqueque marks the fourth branch inaugurated in a series of expansions this year. In October 2022, the TAIS branch in Los Palos was officially inaugurated, an event that coincided with the visit of General Conference president Ted N. C. Wilson. Subsequently, the TAIS branches in Same and Baucau opened in November 2022 and August 2023, respectively.

What sets TAIS apart and has garnered praise from various corners of the country is its wholistic approach to learning, Adventist educational leaders explained. “While academic excellence is a core focus, the institution equally emphasizes spiritual, moral, and social development among its students. This comprehensive approach aligns with the values and principles cherished by the Adventist Church,” they said.

A notable strength of the school is its provision of English classes, a feature highly sought after by parents keen on enhancing their children’s language skills and career prospects. “This forward-thinking approach to language education demonstrates the school’s commitment to nurturing well-rounded individuals prepared for the challenges of the future,” school leaders said.

They added that as the Timor-Leste Adventist International School continues to expand its footprint in the region, it remains dedicated to its mission of sharing hope and faith through education. “The Viqueque branch … [offers] a bright future to both its students and the community it serves. With faith as their guide, the Adventist Church in Timor-Leste looks forward to many more successful years of shaping minds and hearts at TAIS,” they said.

The original version of this story was posted on the Southern Asia-Pacific Division news site.