Elternbrief
Issue: 381                        
August 29, 2019 
In This Issue

Quick Links
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TCGIS Online Calendar

Upcoming Events:
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Happy First Week of School, TCGIS!
Director's Message

Click here to watch a video message about our first week of school from director, Ted Anderson. 
 
Building Information
Construction Update

This week, Veit has trucked off much of the rubble from the upper structure and is currently working on digging out the foundation walls. The chimney has been completely removed and the temporary wall by the front entrance has been insulated and covered with exterior sheeting. This will help shield the interior of our school building as we wil inevitably
experience more rain and cooler temperatures as the school year progresses. 


Many of you have questions or concerns regarding a construction site at school. Every two weeks school officials and construction project contractors meet to discuss progress and both short- and long-term updates. We will share relevant updates for families from these meetings every two weeks in the Elternbrief. 

For a quick overview of our project and more detailed safety information,  check out this FAQ sheet. It will also be shared with D10 and neighbors.

Andy Nesset
TCGIS Building Manager



School Board Announcements
Board Volunteer Recognition

At the board meeting last night, the board recognized and thanked 4 volunteers for their support of TCGIS. 

We thanked  Sara Snater for connecting us to an expert in 3D laser scanning of buildings, and we thanked  Don Myhre for performing the 3D laser scans and creating detailed data files that can be used to make replicas of the former church. Replicas could be made with different materials, such as bronze or glass. Sara Snater provided background on the technique and shared photos of 3D printed replicas of the Aula, as well as 2D images generated from the exterior laser scans. The board also recognized  Michael Anschel for acquiring quality drone footage of the former church. 

The board thanked Becky Deimel for her work organizing multiple PTO summer playdates for new and returning TCGIS families to help build friendships and community. 
Board Decisions 
August 28, 2019 Meeting
  • Approved new hires requested by the executive director.
     
  • Proposed and approved the creation of a construction project manager contract position to manage building project details on behalf of the school and allow the administration to focus on education.
     
  • Approved the appointment of Matt Buress and Sam Walling the the TCGIS affiliated building company board.
Schoolwide Goals

At the end of last school year, the board gathered and analyzed feedback from all stakeholder groups and developed the schoolwide goals in collaboration with administration over the summer. The board finalized the goals at the board retreat last Saturday. Today we share the high-level goals, each of which has specific deliverables that will guide the school over this school year. More details will be coming in the weeks and months ahead. We are excited to share these goals with the school community.

LET'S  BUILDSCHOOL   TOGETHER!
Lasst uns zusammen eine Schule bauen!
  • Move the school from a stage of continuous growth to a stage of stability and strength.
  • Cultivate a schoolwide community of colleagues and families that attracts and retains exceptional talent.
  • Communicate the message of our school through multiple channels.
  • Increase the diversity of students and staff over time.
  • Finalize and maintain K-8 P√§dagogisches Konzept to meet requirements for each grade that supports innovative education of the whole child through German immersion. 
  • Support school fundraising efforts by including time, talent, and treasure of all community members.
Upcoming Community Forum 

The board is working to organize a community forum as an opportunity for the school community to gather and ask questions about a range of topics relating to the uniqueness of the 2019-2020 school year, from school security to construction safety to curricular issues, etc. Please stay tuned for details coming soon.
Cornerstone and Time Capsule News

We thank Veit for skillfully saving the Cornerstone of the former St. Andrew's Church, which also contained what is believed to be a time capsule. The unopened copper box and the Cornerstone were given to the Maternity of Mary Catholic Church. When St. Andrew's was closed in 2011, the two parishes were merged .  
Upcoming Board and Committee Meetings

Board and committee meetings are open for anyone to attend. Please check the  online school calendar for any meeting changes. Board meetings are also viewable on YouTube.
  • Fundraising and Development Committee - Sept. 3, 8:15am, Room 308
  • Governance Committee - Sept. 9, 3:30pm, Room 99 
  • Facilities Committee - Sept. 10, 6:00pm, Room 100
  • Finance Committee - Sept. 17, 6:30pm, Room 99
  • Executive Committee - Sept. 19, 6:30 pm, Room 100
  • Board Meeting - Sept. 26, 6:30 pm, Room 100
You're invited to help the board with its work! Attend a meeting and see how you can contribute. To share thoughts, feedback and ideas in between meetings, the best way to reach the board is via email at  board@tcgis.org
School Information
Meet our Fall Interns!

We are excited to see many new faces on staff here at TCGIS this year! Our 12 Interns arrived about 10-12 days ago and are adapting quickly to life in MN with their host families and here at school.  Read a short bio from each of our interns here, and help us welcome our new interns to the TCGIS community! 
Swiss Flag
PikMyKid Dismissal App

Please remember to update your child's dismissal plan in the PikMyKid app by 2:20pm each day. We rely on this information to help direct your child to the appropriate place at the end of the school day. If you have problems or need your primary mode changed, please email info@tcgis.org

C ar tags: if you need additional green car tags for your family, please email info@tcgis.org to request them. Please specify how many cards you need for each child. 

New this year: The daily  cut-off time to make dismissal changes in PMK is 2:20 p.m. 
instead of 2:30 p.m. We made this change in order to better support middle school teachers and students with dismissal in the last hour of the school day. Thank you for your understanding! 
Bus Updates

TCGIS runs four buses: Red, Yellow, Blue and Green. The Red, Yellow and Blue buses are currently at capacity based on the number of registered riders, and we have a waitlist for each of these 3 buses. If your child(ren) is/are currently registered for bus transportation on the Red, Yellow or Blue bus, but he/she/they will not use it this year after all, please email info@tcgis.org to let us know. Thank you!

school-bus.jpg
Parent Communication via Email 

We rely heavily on email to communicate important information to families accurately and efficiently.  There are two main ways we email you information: 
  • Through a newsletter format like this Elternbrief and the Director's Message
     
  • From a school email account, like info@tcgis.org or teacher email accounts, 
    to a Google email group for each homeroom (e.g. KA Parents, 6B Parents)
The parent emails we use for both types are the email addresses we get from PowerSchool. To edit or verify this information, log into your PowerSchool account, go to the Ecollect Forms tab on the left and edit the T-Student Contacts form. Two pieces of information are required for accuracy: the email addresses  and the Mother or Father designation. The relationship type must be set, it cannot be blank.

If you have already checked the T-Student Contact form, and an email is listed for (each) parent  and the relationships are designated as "Mother" and/or "Father," then your email may simply be missing from the homeroom Google group. 

In that case, please email  info@tcgis.org  with the following information: 
  • Your first and last name
  • Your preferred email address
  • Name of your child(ren) and the name of his/her/their homeroom teacher or class (ie. middle school: 6A, 5B, etc).
  • Which type of emails you have received from us and which emails you have not
Our goal is to have these issues cleared up by mid-September. We appreciate your assistance and your patience with us and this process!
Student Test Scores

This afternoon (Thu. 8/29) the MCA score reports (Individual Score Reports=ISR) for all of last year's 3rd-8th graders who sat for the MCA Assessments will arrive at TCGIS. You may go to the Minnesota Department of Education site to review summary info for our school and also more detailed information by grade level, etc. 

Here is that link to the Minnesota Report Card (if the site is down for data uploads, try again later for publicly released information). 

Next week in the Elternbrief we will provide more detailed information about how and when individual families will receive the MCA Reports (ISRs) for their student(s). 
Summer Art Challenge Concludes

Summer is over, and Frau Lenburg's Summer Art Challenge 2019 is coming to an end. If you completed any artwork for the challenges, you are welcome to bring them to the art room by next Friday, September 6th, to receive a small prize from Frau Lenburg. Students who completed 10 or more challenges will be entered into a drawing for a Blick Art Materials gift card. If your student is feeling creative over the long weekend, the summer art challenges can be found  here.
After-School & Extra-curricular Activities
Seeking After-School Activity Leaders!  

Our fall session for after-school activities will run from September 23rd - December 20th. If you are interested in leading an after-school activity, this link   will take you to the class offering form. If you're looking for ideas, here is a list of last session's activities. Please send Clarissa Herman a hard or digital copy of the form by September 2nd: cherman@tcgis.org.    
Soccer Registration Open: Aug. 22 - 29

Registration for TCGIS Soccer closes today (Aug. 29) Please read this  Soccer Registration document to find all the details about our upcoming season, including the link to register for the team. 
  
Overview:  Soccer season will run Wed. September 11th - Friday, November 8th (weather permitting). Games will start September 11th for grades 5/6 and September 13th for grades 7/8.
soccer_goal.jpg    
TCGIS Track-and-Field & Cross-Country Gear!

This is the ONLY order for this school year. Please, get your orders in for the spring track season, as well!

Take a look at the  TCGIS Track-and-Field & Cross-Country sweatshirts and sweatpants. 
Place your order  here . Write out your check to TCGIS and hand in to Coach Tabisz in room 314.

ORDERS ARE DUE ON FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 6!

Questions? Contact Coach Tabisz ( ctabisz@tcgis.org).
Ways to be involved and support TCGIS
2019-20 Parent Council Nominations: Now Open
 
The TCGIS Parent Council seeks class representatives for the upcoming school year.  Nominations will be accepted starting today. Each grade has a Google Doc  for parents to self-nominate and write a short introduction.  Nominations will be collected until Sept. 16. 

The election will be held September 19-29 via a Google Form-Ballot. There will be one joint meeting in October with the 2018-19 represenatives and the newly elected 2019-20 representatives. 

The Parent Council is scheduled to meet on the first Monday of each month from 6:30 to 8:30 pm. Parent Council members also attend other school committee meetings and attend to other tasks between meetings on an as-needed basis.

Curious about what it's like to serve on the Parent Council? Email your Parent Council Representative.  If you're unsure of who that person is or how to contact them please email 
parent-council@tcgis.org  and we will connect you with your Parent Council representative.
Volunteer as an Elternkontakt (EK) for your child's class
 
Elternkontakte (parent contacts) are volunteers who provide an additional communication channel between the teacher / school and the parents in their homeroom/class. This is a fun volunteer position that can be done remotely in small bits of time since it primarily consists of communicating via email. 

Each homeroom tends to have 1-3 EKs who work together to support the homeroom teacher, or grade-level teachers, by coordinating activities and parent volunteers for seasonal celebrations, field trips and other classroom events. 

If you're interested in volunteering as an Elternkontakt for your child's homeroom this coming year, please sign up on this document, and Katharina Schirg will be in touch with you. Herzlichen Dank!
TCGIS Flea Market and Staff / Intern Wish List 

This month we welcome 27 new staff and 12 interns to the TCGIS community!

Many of our new staff have relocated to the Twin Cities and are seeking household and other items (like cars) as they settle in. Often we have Interns who seek a bike or other sports equipment to borrow while they're here. 

Furthermore, we have heard from TCGIS families who have items they'd happily sell, lend or donate - if only they knew who needed them!

For these reasons, we've created the following two open Google docs for our community: 

TCGIS Community Flea Market - Sell, Donate, Lend, Share! 

TCGIS Staff & Intern - Fresh Start Wunschliste (Wish List)

We hope these tools help our community members connect in mutually beneficial ways! 
Do you have marketing doo-dads to donate?

Do you work for a business that has a marketing closet full of stuff that nobody wants?! We will take your stress balls, earbuds, computer mice, fancy pens and pencils, frisbees, and other fun stuff to use as student rewards for our Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS) program at TCGIS! We also use $5 Target gift cards for our middle school students. Staff choose from $10 Target/Amazon/Caribou gift cards or a prime parking spot in our lot. [Food is never used as a reward per TCGIS school policy.]

You can drop off these items at the PBIS table during our Family Back to School Night on August 22. If you have any questions, please contact Michael White, PBIS Coach.  
PTO Updates
Join us for the PTO Kick-off Meeting: Thu., Sept. 5
  • We'll meet at TCGIS in Room 100
  • Mingle & enjoy a meal catered by Cosetta's
  • Families welcome, childcare provided 
  • IMPORTANT RSVP by Tuesday September 3rd  for meal and childcare!! 

Regional Picnics! Sat., Sept. 7, 5:00-7:00 pm

Come meet other families in your neighborhood and set up play dates, arrange carpools or bus buddies at the regional potluck picnic. Bring a dish to share. 

 

There are four locations to join us on Saturday, September 7th from 5-7pm

  • Central Bus area: Mattocks Park St. Paul
  • North Bus area: Cummings Park in Arden Hills
  • South Bus Area: Longfellow Park in Minneapolis
  • Como Neighborhood: Lexington Park in Roseville**

**We are still in search of Lexington Park families to organize their picnic!** Please email the PTO if you can help organize this: tcgispto@gmail.com   

Staff Appreciation: Breakfast + Lunch Sign-ups

Each month a different grade level will be assigned to "host" the Intern Breakfast or Early Release Day Staff Appreciation Potluck. Staff are SO appreciative of these meals. We ask you to participate when your grade level is assigned. Click on the sign-up link below for more info.

3rd Grade Families: Intern Breakfast on Monday, September 16th Sign-up here 
4th Grade Families: Early Release Potluck on Wednesday, September 18th Sign-up here  
Registration Now Open:
Twin Cities Oktoberfest 5k Fun Run and Walk

Last year, we had over 300 participants and had a wonderful time. There will be live music again this year and an Oktoberfest celebration afterwards at Half Time Rec. 

Sign up here and use the code "Back2School" to save $3 off per person! Invite your friends and family and feel free to share the code with them! 
Follow updates
here .

We are so thankful for the volunteers that helped make the event a success last year! We'd love to have some help again this year at the event. Please visit this link to sign up for a volunteer slot. We greatly appreciate your help.



Volunteer with the PTO at GAI's Oktoberfest

We also have an opportunity for volunteers for our booth at the GAI's Oktoberfest coming up on September 13th & 14th at Schmidt Brewery. This will be a fun event and we'll be handing out info on the race and also having a fun craft or game to help teach attendees some German words. We have spots for both adults and their children to volunteer at the booth. If your child would love to help teach other kids some German words, we'd love your help! You can  sign up here.  
News from the GAI    
Classes at the GAI for Adults, Teens and Children

REGISTRATION NOW OPEN FOR FALL SESSIONWe offer classes for beginners, intermediate and advanced students. Both daytime and evening options are available.
 
Samstagsschule for kids & teens  
Samstagsschule (Saturday School) is a fun way for young kids through pre-teens to begin or continue learning German.
 
NOW OFFERING ADVANCED CLASSES FOR TCGIS ALUMNI: German for Teens c lasses are scheduled Saturday morning / afternoon beginning in September. 
Save the Date: St. Paul Oktoberfest

Mark your calendars for a fun weekend at the GAI's St. Paul Oktoberfest


Schmidt Brewery-Saint Paul, Minnesota
September 13-14, 2019
Friday, 4 PM-10 PM | Saturday, 10 AM-10 PM 
www.stpauloktoberfest.org