This goal is about enabling everyone to study, learn, and fulfil their full potential

Why does SDG4 matter to Timor-Leste?

Relevant Target for

4.1 by 2030, ensure that all girls and boys complete free, equitable and quality PRIMARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION leading to relevant and effective learning outcomes

4.2 by 2030 ensure that all girls and boys have access to quality EARLY CHILDHOOD DEVELOPMENT, CARE AND PRE- PRIMARY EDUCATION so that they are ready for primary education

4.3 by 2030 ensure EQUAL ACCESS FOR ALL WOMEN AND MEN to affordable quality technical, vocational and tertiary education, including university

4.4 by 2030, increase by x% the number of youth and adults who have relevant skills, including TECHNICAL AND VOCATIONAL SKILLS, for employment, decent jobs and entrepreneurship

4.5 by 2030, eliminate gender disparities in education and ensure EQUAL ACCESS TO ALL LEVELS OF EDUCATION and vocational training for the vulnerable, including persons with disabilities, indigenous peoples, and children in vulnerable situations

4.6 by 2030 ensure that all youth and at least x% of adults, both men and women, achieve literacy and numeracy

4.7 by 2030 ensure all learners acquire knowledge and skills needed to promote sustainable development, including among others through EDUCATION FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT and sustainable lifestyles, human rights, gender equality, promotion of a culture of peace and non- violence, global citizenship, and appreciation of cultural diversity and of culture’s contribution to sustainable development

4.a A BUILD AND UPGRADE EDUCATION FACILITIES that are child, disability and gender sensitive and provide safe, non-violent, inclusive and effective learning environments for all

4.b By 2020, substantially expand globally the number of scholarships available to developing countries, in particular least developed countries, small island developing States and African countries, for enrolment in higher education, including vocational training and information and communications technology, technical, engineering and scientific programmes, in developed countries and other developing countries

4.c By 2030, substantially increase the supply of qualified teachers, including through international cooperation for teacher training in developing countries, especially least developed countries and small island developing States

Timor-Leste has made significant gains in expanding access to education. The net enrolment rate for primary education (Grades 1-6) stood at 91.2 per cent  in 2017, with more girls in school than boys.

There has been a steady increase in pre-secondary schooling (Grades 7-9) with enrollment reaching 50.4 per cent in 2017. However, more efforts are needed to expand access to secondary and tertiary education. 

About 14 per cent of young people aged 15-17 are not in school. According to the 2015 Census, only 8.9 per cent of the population have higher education as their highest level of education attained. There are 11 higher education institutions in the country.  Municipal-level disparities in access to education persist.

The location where children and young people reside also influences access, survival and completion of education at all levels. About 55 per cent of children and young people with disabilities, between 3 and 24 years, are not in school.  

A reverse gender gap trend, with more boys repeating and dropping out, is becoming evident. Quality of education remains a challenge with less than 40 per cent of teachers in basic education (Grades 1-9) having completed 3 or 4 years of higher education.


  • Financing for Development
  • Beijing +20
  • Habitat III