Profile of The Month: Thomas R. Bendel of NJIS Jakarta

Thomas Bendel NJIS Kelapa Gading

Thomas Bendel, the new head of School of NJIS Kelapa Gading, is no stranger to the world of education. Mr. Bendel has been committed to educating children for most of his adult life, and prior to his arrival in Jakarta he spent over a decade of his career leading private schools both in USA and Europe. Starting June last year, Thomas Bendel is lending his expertise to one of renowned international schools in Jakarta: NJIS Kelapa Gading.

Nestled in the heart of Kelapa Gading, NJIS was the first international school in Kelapa Gading, and has been attracting students with different nationalities for more than 25 years. The school is also popular for its superb facilities and stellar achievements. We recently reached out to Mr. Bendel to shoot some questions about NJIS.

Welcome to Jakarta! what its like to be a part of the NJIS family?

It’s great!  The people here are welcoming and friendly, and are committed to the same things I am with regard to education, and they are a big part of what makes NJIS  a special place.

Tell our readers more about the NJIS ?

NJIS established in 1990 by Larry Bally and it was the first International school in Kelapa Gading. In 2010, NJIS was amalgamated by Agung Podomoro Group and at that time it started with only 48 students. Currently, NJIS is the only WASC (Western Association of Schools and Colleges) accredited school in North Jakarta. WASC is one of six official academic bodies responsible for the accreditation of public and private universities, colleges, secondary and elementary schools in the United States.

NJIS provide facilities that are needed to support our wide student learning outcomes, such as the best performing art theater in Kelapa Gading, an extensive library, a semi Olympic swimming pool, a spacious indoor basketball court, an imaginative playground, private music rooms and an interesting maker space.

NJIS offers various AP (College Board Advanced Placement) courses to prepare high school students for a successful transition to US colleges which may grant course credit to students who obtain high scores on the examinations. For students earning these credits studying time will be much shorter, and the cost of education will be relatively more affordable.

What’s the ratio of NJIS’ nationality?
74% of our students are Indonesian. Coming second is Korean (14%) and the rest is a mix of Singapore, American, Australian, and Taiwanese.  Our teachers, in the other hand, are even more diverse: we have teachers from America, South Africa, Australia, Indonesia, Germany, Bhutan, and Russia.

What can parents expect, when they enroll their kids to NJIS?
We emphasize that our students embody good citizenship at local, national, and international level and understand globalization and its impact on self and environment.

Our goal is to deliver an innovative educational program that instills in our students integrity, a commitment to learning, and the confidence to excel and lead. Our mission is to provide a challenging and enriched international education with an American curriculum that prepares our students for success in higher education and excellence in all aspects of life.

We develop their intellectual, creative, emotional, and physical potentials andencourage them to pursue learning and reflect on personal and collective goals. We also apply creativity and persistence in problem solving both independently and through collaboration.

How seamless could it be for children from different schools, to transfer to NJIS? 

One of the best things about NJIS is the individualized attention that all of our students receive. Our excellent teachers, small class sizes, experience with diverse student populations, and c personalized care means that we can meet our students wherever they are educationally, and work with them as individuals to help take them as far as they can go.

NJIS is adding preschool this year.  What made the school decide to start with the program?

We want to cater demands that came to us for kids under 4 years old  and we want to have more comprehensive classes, because with this addition, we can now serve kids from 2 years old until 18 years old.

What can you advise our readers what are the most important things they need to consider when browsing for school for their children?

Great teachers, facilities, USA Standards, WASC Accreditation, small class sizes (more attention to each students), and location.

We thank Mr. Thomas Bendel for his time. If you would like to know more about the school, visit

NJIS | North Jakarta International School
Address: Jl. Boulevard Bukit Gading Raya, Kelapa Gading, Jakarta Utara 14240
Phone (021) 4586 5222 | Fax (021) 4586 5232 |

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