Tien Shan International School (TSIS), legally registered as Tien Shan Educational Center, was founded in February 1995 by a group of volunteer workers. Their aim was to meet the educational needs of their children with an emphasis on educational excellence and affordability. Tien Shan was officially registered in 1999 with the Kazakhstan Ministry of Economics and received an educational license in 2002. TSIS is a member of both the Council of International Schools (CIS) and the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI). In 2006 TSIS was granted accreditation candidacy status with ACSI and is pursuing a similar course with CIS. TSIS offers a high quality English medium education with a Christian worldview to students from kindergarten through 12th grade.
Students in kindergarten through 6th grade receive instruction in the "grammar" of core disciplines with an emphasis on mastery. Students also participate in physical fitness training and study Russian, art, and music.
Tien Shan's secondary school (grades 7-12) provides a challenging college preparatory education. Students are expected to read and write extensively in every academic class as well as participate in class discussions and projects. The seventh and eighth grade programs focus on building a strong base for high school level courses as well as study skills, time management, and proficiency of foundational skills. The high school program offers four years of foreign language, social sciences, math, language arts (literature, grammar, expository writing, vocabulary, and analytical thinking), and science, along with art history, music history, visual art, and the performing arts. TSIS offers an Advanced Academic Diploma and a General Academic Diploma. Students graduating from Tien Shan have been accepted in top universities in the United States of America, South Africa, South Korea, Australia, and Germany.
The Tien Shan Campus is modest and functional with a large English language library of over 20,000 books (both fiction and non-fiction), a computer lab, and a small sports field. Full multi-media equipment including television, video, DVD, video projector, and computers are available for use throughout the school. A relocation and building program is underway with the goal of providing new facilities by the beginning of the 2010 academic year.