PSD School Ministries
June 24, 2020
“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” 2 Chronicles 7:14
Lord, the fabric of our society has been unraveling for some time. Through our disappointments, trials, and adversities we humbly ask that You would heal the social problems in our land. Provide for those in poverty. Heal hatred and prejudice. Intervene and destroy the strongholds of hatred, pornography and drug abuse that ravage so many families and communities. May healing begin as those who believe in You call upon Your name, seek Your face, and turn from our own wicked ways—so You would hear from heaven, forgive our sins, and heal our land. Help us to speak truth, but speak in love. Revive us, O Lord! We pray for a great awakening of hope, healing, peace and salvation for America. Forgive us our personal sins and the sins of our people. We ask in the mighty name of Jesus, our Savior. Amen.
PSD Schools Video
2020 Administrators Leadership Conference
The information and registration information for our July Administrators Leadership Conference is now on our School Ministries website! The dates are July 8-10. Click here  to be directed to the page. We are excited to welcome Dr. Ryan Bredow and Dr. Jack Preus to speak with us on "Mission-Driven Leadership in Challenging Times" (as selected by the Early Childhood leaders) & " Building More Robust Online Academic Systems and Processes" (as selected by the K12 leaders). In each of these sessions, Ryan and Jack will be framing and hosting a discussion, gleaning insights from other selected respected leaders in these areas. The goal is for leaders to leave feeling encouraged and HOPE-filled, with tangible takeaways and practical tools that can be considered for each school's respective context.  While these sessions were selected by leaders from those sub-groups, we are envisioning that the sessions would be appropriate for and open to any leaders who would like to attend.

We will also welcome Michael Blacher and Ron van Blarcom to speak with us on the legal issues surrounding the reopening of our schools. In addition, we are very excited to launch a new Rigor and Relevance framework initiative. We are thrilled to have Dr. Bill Daggett for a one hour discussion on this Rigor and Relevance Framework initiative. Dr. Daggett is the Founding Partner and Chairman for ICLE (International Center in Leadership and Education) and his system for effective instruction in Rigor and Relevance are the cornerstone of school improvement for many schools across the United States. We are excited to welcome this world-renowned expert to speak with us as part of the Administrators Leadership Conference on Wednesday, July 8, at 1:00 p.m. 

The webpage will continue to be updated as final plans are made, but registration is open! We look forward to your joining us for this live, virtual event!
New EC Pilot Program Available Now
Our PSD early childhood centers have the opportunity to participate in a pilot program for LEARNING STORIES , an assessment and communication tool designed to increase observation skills and family involvement. You can find out more about the program here The deadline to enroll is this Friday, June 26.
2020 PSD All Workers Conference
Pacific Southwest District
Sunday, November 22 - Tuesday, November 24
Combining our Lutheran Educators Conference and Pastors Conference into one event for all PSD church and school workers, we'll join together at the JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort and Spa in Palm Desert, CA, in unity for wonderful worship, great speakers, and new insights.
Hearts for Jesus Update
Our Hearts for Jesus goal is to provide the funds for 1,500 children to attend Children’s Bible Clubs. To date, we will be able to support 901 children with the contributions received. Thank you to all who have supported this mission! It’s not too late to participate in the HEARTS FOR JESUS: Mission India project. We will be receiving funds for our 2019-20 Hearts for Jesus project until July 15.

Through the work of Mission India, children in India will get to hear the Gospel and share what they learn with their families. There's still time to help us reach these children with the Gospel. The cost for a student to attend the Children’s Bible Clubs is $24 for an entire year!

Click here for the website. If you have any questions, please contact Rachel Klitzing at or Ellen Pratt at . Thank you for your support!
New Resources from LCMS School Ministry

Chapel Talks and the National Lutheran Schools Week materials for the 2020-2021 school year are ready to go! Download them today on LuthEd !
Two Learning Opportunities
I f you are looking for a unique professional development event, Concordia University Chicago is hosting what they are calling "The Un-Conference" to address topics related to teaching and leading during a pandemic. Click here for more information .

From Dr. Tim Elmore and Growing Leaders:
Strategies for Leading the Pandemic Population: Guiding Faculty and Students Through the Aftermath of COVID-19
A Virtual Forum
June 30th from 3:00pm to 5:00pm EST
What will I gain from this 2-hour virtual forum?
  • Perspective on the larger “new normal” educators face
  • Understanding of the effects of the COVID-19 Pandemic on students
  • Ideas schools can leverage to raise morale and hope
  • Resources for parents and schools to respond wisely
Click here for more information.
Grant Opportunities
The Gravely & Paige Grants : These grants provide funding to elementary and middle schools in the United States to promote STEM innovation in the classrooms with an emphasis on academic programs. Grants of up to $1,000 are awarded. This is a joint effort between AFCEA chapters and the AFCEA Education Foundation to help augment the cost to students for activities or tools inside or outside of the classroom, such as robotics clubs, cyber clubs and other STEM related activities to promote STEM to students. Applications available May 1. Deadline: July 30. More Information
Kids Run the Nation Grant Fund : A running program should be more than just a one-time event. It should be a structured running program that ideally utilizes the Road Runners Club of Americas Kids Run the Nation youth running curriculum. The goal of your program should be to have kids running regularly, more than once each week for multiple weeks, as opposed to participating in a single event. Deadline: August 1. More Information
Firehouse Subs Foundation : The Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation allocates public safety grant funding in 5 distinct areas:
• Life-Saving Equipment • Prevention Education • Scholarships and Continued Education • Support for Members of the Military• Disaster Preparedness and Disaster Relief.
Deadline: August 19 and November 11. More Information
TLC Grant - Apply Today!
The July TLC Grant application window is open.  The TLC Grant is an educational grant on behalf of the Trinity Lutheran Church Educational Endowment Fund (Reseda, CA). This grant has been established as a gift to the Church for the continuation of excellent Lutheran education in the Pacific Southwest District. This is a competitive grant based on the strength of the application and is open to all schools, K-12. More information on the purpose of the grant money is in the grant application packet. Since the inception of this grant in January 2016, $227,942 has been granted to 44 different schools in the district. I encourage you to take advantage of this opportunity to enhance the education you share with your students.
Please click here to be directed to the application form.  The deadline to submit your application is July 31 . Recipients will be notified in mid-August.
A Note on Racism
Dear Friends in Christ,
Our Lutheran schools in the PSD are places of excellence where Christ’s love and grace are shared daily . This is the phrase that I have used for almost as many years as I have been the Executive Director of School Ministries for the district…and that is a lot of years! We are Connected in Christ as the Body of Christ: Christ equipped the saints (teachers, as mentioned in this passage)  “ for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God…   Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the whole body grow so that it builds itself up in love.” Eph. 4:13-15. This is the culture with which I believe our schools operate in the Pacific Southwest District – sinful, yes, but also always striving for unity as the Body of Christ with our students, their families, and with each other. Our schools are about showing hospitality, about welcoming anyone and everyone, regardless of race, or any other factor. While some of our schools cannot educate those students with severe disabilities, that is probably the only factor that would preclude a child from becoming enrolled in one of our schools.

Going forward, in light of recent events in our nation, and recognizing our role to “Go and make disciples of all nations ” (Matthew 28:19), we will be committed to continuing to “love our neighbor as ourselves” (Matthew 22:37-39 – The Great Commandment). We will continue to love and respect and care for ALL of our students, and love and care for the communities in which we serve. I highly encourage you and your staff to spend some time reading and utilizing the resources that are available in the links below and on the PSD website . Have discussions with your entire staff and boards. Be committed, as leaders of our schools, to pray, listen, and act.
~Rachel Klitzing

A message from the LCMS School Ministry office:

In light of the recent events impacting our country, we know that individuals and schools are looking for resources to encourage congregations and schools to pray, listen, and act as it concerns racial realities within the church, our neighborhoods, and society. On we have pulled together a list of resources from the LCMS and other sources that may be of a benefit as we all work to confront this challenging topic. If there are additional resources that you are aware of that would be beneficial to our schools, please send them our way and we will evaluate their addition to the current list.
We pray for you and your schools as we all navigate this challenging topic from a Christ-filled perspective.

Matthew Bergholt
Manager, Online Support and Services
The Lutheran Church­—Missouri Synod
Office of National Mission, School Ministry
1333 S. Kirkwood Road
St. Louis, MO 63122
800.248.1930 Ext. 1285
Updated Early Childhood Resources Available
The Early Childhood Cabinet is pleased to provide two newly updated and reformatted ECE resources for our EC community. The PSD Guiding Principles for Early Childhood Ministry is designed to assist church leaders as well as early childhood directors and staff in understanding the mission of our EC centers. The document includes position statements addressing philosophy, faith development, professional growth, developmentally appropriate practice and ethics. The PSD Early Childhood Curriculum Guide is now in a PowerPoint format and includes the foundational components of EC curriculum. Each of the curricular areas are addressed – spiritual, social-emotional, language and literacy, math, science, social studies and the arts – based on industry-wide best practices. These resources can be accessed on our School Ministries website – If you would like to use the PowerPoint as a presentation for your staff, please contact Kim Violette at and she can send it to you.
TEC21 News
From TEC21:

WE’VE EXTENDED OUR REGISTRATION! We know this is a busy time, so we’ve extended our registration leaving the opportunity to prepare for the upcoming school year. The experience of rolling out emergency remote learning plans this spring reminded TEC21 facilitators of two very important things very quickly.

1. Our teachers need to be competent and confident in using technology to enrich their instruction.
2. Our teachers need a network of others to learn and grow from that is outside of their own buildings.

TEC21 is a wonderful program that pairs these necessary elements together perfectly. As a TEC21 educator your teachers are given opportunities to enhance their technology skills as well as build a network of Lutheran school teachers that are able to work together to enhance their own classroom instruction. We're forming our cohorts now throughout many of the LCMS districts to prepare for these unprecedented times as we look to the 2020/2021 school year. 
Register your teachers here: ! Many schools use Title money to pay for some or all of the registration fee. Click here to download a cover letter and a non-religious description of the program to submit to your Title officer:
Click here to download the TEC21 flyer.
Prayer Requests
Each week, prayers of thanksgiving and prayers for teachers, administrators, support staff, pastors, students, and families of the Lutheran schools, early childhood centers, and churches of the Pacific Southwest District are listed. To include names on the list, please send information to by noon on Wednesday of each week. This week we pray for:

  • Scott Browne, husband of Lori Browne, Admissions Director at Red Hill Lutheran in Tustin, CA. Scott recently had knee replacement surgery. We pray for a complete and speedy recovery.
  • Deena Knudson's mother. Deena is the Admissions Director at Hephatha Lutheran in Anaheim Hills, CA, and her mom recently had a stroke. We pray for a full recovery for Deena’s mom and also for Deena, as she is the caregiver for her mother.
  • Aaron Partch, co-director at Concordia, Chula Vista, CA. Doctors discovered a brain tumor in Aaron and he recently had surgery. We ask for urgent prayers for Aaron's full recovery as well as prayers for the ministry at Concordia, Chula Vista.
  • the Lord to grant us His grace and peace. We pray for Him to give us new eyes to see. We pray that the power of the Spirit will root out the seen and unseen sins of ignorance, intolerance, hatred, and racism in our world and in the Church. We pray that we will celebrate God’s unique creation in each person, race, and culture, knowing that we are more complete as people when we stand together. Lord, bring hope and healing to our cities, states, nation, and world. 
  • COVID-19 -- for infection rates to slow and cease; that those who have been infected will heal quickly; that healthcare staff and first responders will be sustained as they carry this very heavy burden; that our churches, schools and preschools would be sustained and reliant on our loving God and His guidance; for courage and peace for our pastors, lay leaders, church and school administrators, faculties, and all church and school workers who are making difficult decisions and creating innovative solutions for continuing to reach people for the sake of the Gospel; for our federal, state and local leaders to seek God's will as they make important decisions and take actions against this disease; for God to bring many, many people to faith through this situation, and that His Church would be more effective than ever in sharing the Gospel with the lost and loving our neighbors.
School Ministries, Pacific Southwest District-LCMS
1540 Concordia Drive East, Irvine, CA 92612
Phone 949-854-3232 | Fax 949-854-8140

Rachel Klitzing, Executive Director of School Ministries