Der Elternbrief
ISSUE 441 / JANUARY 21, 2021
Preparing for In-Person Learning
Congratulations! Together, we made it to the second semester in this unprecedented school year that has required so much flexibility and patience, with each other and with ourselves. Vielen Dank for all you are doing.
TCGIS teachers and staff are preparing to welcome students back to in-person learning in February and March. In today's Elternbrief you will find information about busing registration, Kinderclub After Care, lunch orders, and medications for the health office. For easy reference, here is the schedule for our staggered return to in-person learning:
TCGIS closed the opportunity for families to request a change in model at our Semester change. We are pleased to share we were able to accommodate all requested transfers. Any requests at a later date will be considered on a case by case basis and will be considered for extreme circumstances.
TCGIS is working to closely follow the new required mitigations from the Safe Learning Plan for the 2020-21 School Year, updated after Governor Walz's Dec. 16th announcement. In addition, as we transition learning plans, we are required to:
  • Use at least two transition days for our teachers to prepare for the changing models; these are the "No Instruction-Teacher Workdays" in the schedule. 
  • Provide a rolling start allowing no more than three additional grade bands into the building in a two-week time period when implementing an in-person or hybrid learning model for the entire school building. This is why grade levels are split and re-entering every two weeks. 

Please be aware there may be changes to the plan based on Covid-#s, scheduling and staffing; we'll communicate any changes as soon as they are confirmed.
On January 18th, 2021, Governor Walz announced a pilot program with 9 vaccine pilot sites around Minnesota to distribute vaccines to new groups. This includes two sites in the Metro area in Brooklyn Center and Anoka. These sites will focus on the following groups of Minnesotans:
  • Minnesotans aged 65 and over
  • Pre-k through grade 12 educators 
  • Child care workers

In order to get these vaccines to all schools, Governor Walz has opted to partner with school districts. The Minnesota Department of Health provided guidance of who should receive these vaccines and gave each school a vaccine allocation. 

TCGIS received 3 vaccines and those slots were distributed to our staff. We are thankful to start getting vaccines to our teachers and we look forward to Minnesota providing more as they roll out vaccines to group 1B.
Advocate for Vaccinating Educators
Raise your voices for TCGIS educators! The Minnesota Department of Health is currently making a schedule for the next round of COVID-19 vaccinations. “Frontline essential workers and persons over 75” is group 1b, the next in line for vaccination. Teachers need to be prioritized in this group and receive vaccinations as soon possible.

Politicians LOVE letters from kids! Kids get their points across in unique and memorable ways. Help your kids write a letter or email to Governor Walz in support of teacher vaccinations. You can use the email contact form (linked below) or his regular mail address:

Office of Governor Tim Walz & Lt. Governor Peggy Flanagan
130 State Capitol
75 Rev Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
St. Paul, MN 55155
Thank you to everyone that has written to Governor Walz in support of TCGIS educators. Let’s continue to make ourselves heard.
We thank you for your continued support by working to keep our school community and state safe! Please continue to uphold our school's Community Pledge and stay safe. If you have any questions or concerns concerning Covid-19 policies and procedures at TCGIS, please contact Ashley Weston Miller (
School News & Updates
Note: If you don't see the calendar at the end of your Elternbrief, the message has been clipped and you must click "View entire message" to see the full Elternbrief. Danke!
PowerSchool Report Card Instructions
We are now officially in the second semester of the 2020-21 school year! To see the written progress of your student, please click on this link to find information on how to view/print your child's report card. Kindergarten report cards will be emailed out to parents. 
February Order Window for Lunches/Milk and Take-Home Meal Kits Closes this Sunday, January 24.
Remember to place your order for February 2021 (including Take Home Meal kits for Distance Learning days, asynchronous Wednesdays)! Please log on to our online store website  Boonli  to place your child's School Lunch and Milk order. 

Please make sure to check out your cart to successfully place an order. All orders must be submitted by midnight on Sunday, 01/24/2021. Any orders entered after 1/24 will have a delayed start date.
Questions? Please contact us at
Health Office: Medications for in-person students
If your child(ren) will be attending in-person learning, and will need medication during the school day, please be sure to:
  • Review the Medication information on page 22 of the 2020-21 Family Handbook and Policy 516 - Student.
  • In order to administer medication to a student during the school day, we require the Medical Authorization Form signed by both the health care provider and the parent/guardian. Forms dropped off at the beginning of the school year are valid till the end of this school year.,
  • All medication must be in its original package with a valid expiration date and labeled with the student's name.
  • Medication drop off: Our Health Office Associate, Monika Avery, will be available to receive your child(ren)'s medication together with the completed authorization form during school hour
  • Please wear a mouth and nose covering and in case of a line please keep a safe distance of 6 feet.
If you have questions or need to make alternate arrangements to drop off completed forms and/or medication, please contact our Health Service Associate, Monika Avery at  
Busing Registration
With the return of in-person instruction, we are updating our busing registration to reflect all families who would like to use busing for the remainder of the school year. 
  • Busing for K-2 will begin Feb 1.
  • Busing for 3-5 will begin Feb 15.
  • Busing for 6-8 will begin Mar 1.

To determine which community bus stop will work best for your family, please view the Busing Handbook.

The deadline for registering for busing is midnight, this Sunday, Jan. 24th.

Current Busing Families
Please complete the online Busing Registration for the remainder of the 20-21 school year so that we have a complete and current picture of bus ridership. You do not need to re-submit the forms listed below if you have done so already.

New Busing Families To register your student(s) to ride the bus for the remainder of the 20-21 school year, please:
  1. complete the online Busing Registration, and
  2. submit the following forms to if you have not already done so for this school year.
Register for Kinderclub After Care
Kinderclub has availability for After Care (3:15pm-6:00pm)! Please email Michaela Bromenschenkel: if you would like to register. Thank you!
Order the 20/21 Yearbook!
Tonight: Follow-up to the Summer Listening Sessions
Thursday, Jan. 21, 7:30-8:30 p.m.
Members of the Diversity & Belonging Committee, along with Rebecca Slaby of AMAZEworks, will present themes and recommendations from the listening sessions that were held with TCGIS families with students of color in the summer, followed by questions and discussion.

Documents for reference:

Join with this Zoom Link (Meeting ID: 852 1758 8795 | Passcode: 029846)
Call for Nominations & Applications for the 
TCGIS School Board
Board Election
By serving on the School Board, YOU can help our school, strengthen connections within our community, and make important decisions that affect the future. The work of the Board ensures that TCGIS provides a meaningful education and experience for all students.

This year, the community will elect FOUR board members to each serve a three year term. We seek any interested persons (parents, teachers, and community members), especially those with experience in financial compliance, education, board governance, legal matters, management and leadership, and marketing and development. 

Click here to learn more about the timeline, the nominating and application process, how to connect with a current board member, and to access the forms.
Winter Screening Update
Given our unconventional learning environment this year, now more than ever it is important for us to understand how students are progressing. Universal screening is an important part of our multi-tiered systems of support (MTSS) framework at TCGIS. We use screeners to identify those students who are on-track to meet grade-level standards in reading and math and those students who may need some additional support to keep them on-track to meet grade-level goals by the end of the school year.

If your child has a screening time on January 27th, it is important that they stay in the zoom waiting room until they are “admitted” to their screening session.

Note: Due to a technical glitch in the mail merge, families received a REVISED email 1/15. We realize this is inconvenient and apologize. 

Please do not hesitate to reach out to Jessie Kember ( with any questions or concerns. We appreciate your flexibility and patience as we work together to systematically support our students to reach their full potential. 
TCGIS Sommercamp 2021: Registration opens Feb. 1
TCGIS will once again offer summer camps in collaboration with the GAI. Click here to preview the tentative schedule for 7 weeks of camp; grade levels are based on the grade your child completes this year (20/21). Registration will open 1 February!
Hosting an Intern in 2021/22: Interest Survey
Normally at this time of year we recruit families to host our fall and full-year interns. At this time we are still evaluating the possibility of having interns in the fall. In addition to the uncertain timeframe for vaccines, the traditionally long time-frame for the visa process also complicates plans for the fall. However we are optimistic about hosting interns in Spring 2022.

Host families are vital to the program so we are gauging interest in hosting interns now and will update interested host families as we learn more! If you are interested in learning more about hosting an intern next school year, please take this brief interest survey.
We're 75% of the way to our Annual Fund Goal!
Fundraising Thermometer
Thanks to the generosity of more than 180 donors, TCGIS has received $79,312 for the Annual Fund so far. Herzlichen Dank to our generous community!

If you donated to TCGIS in 2020, watch your email for an Annual Giving receipt by the end ofJanuary.
Library Updates
Would you like to check out library materials? Fill out this form to get new materials for next week!

Along with Friday materials pick-ups, you can now pick up/drop off books anytime during school hours at our materials pick-up table and book drop-off bin, located at the top of the stairs by the playground entrance!

LIVE story time:  Our next live story time takes place on Thursday, January 28 at 2:45 pm. Follow this link to tune in! (Zoom passcode: ic2pSG)
Did you know TCGIS is on Instagram & Facebook?
We are! Follow the fun and learning from our school community.
Instagram: @tcgis

Please note: we always reference our Media Release permission list, determined by parents during annual registration in PowerSchool, before posting images of our students on social media.
Register for Outdoor Track-and-Field
Registration for the TCGIS Outdoor Track-and-Field Team (info sheet / calendar) on Popsicle OPENS February 1 at 8 AM, and the spring season is planned to begin on Monday, March 22.
Due to COVID-19, we will need to remain flexible with our spring season plans. As soon as TCGIS has connection weeks for the middle school, we will offer in-person practices again. Here are our plans for in-person and virtual practices this spring. If in-person practices aren't possible during the season, we will offer refunds for the registration fee. See our team website for more details. Questions? Contact Coach Tabisz.
Summer Running, Jumping, Throwing at TCGIS
We are offering summer practices and meets (info sheet / calendar) open to current 4th through 8th graders. It’s a great opportunity for current 4th graders to get to know other middle schoolers, for 8th graders to prep for high school cross-country, and for everyone to get some great exercise and have fun with friends over break. We will participate in the USATF Summer Track Meets and in the University of Minnesota Cross-Country and Track-and-Field Camp. Exact dates and times for practices and meets are yet to be determined.
Registration will open on February 1. It costs $100 to participate in all of the practices and meets, including USATF 2021 membership. The University of Minnesota XC and T&F Camp is NOT included in this, and registration must be done separately through the camp. More details about the camp are forthcoming. With questions, please contact Coach Tabisz.
School Board Announcements
Mark your calendar: Thu., Jan. 21st, 7:00-8:30pm (Tonight!)
Members of the Diversity & Belonging Committee, along with Rebecca Slaby of AMAZEworks, will present themes and recommendations from the listening sessions that were held with TCGIS families with students of color in the summer, followed by discussion. Zoom Link
(Meeting ID: 852 1758 8795 / Passcode: 029846)

Accepting Applications and Nominations for TCGIS School Board
Click here to learn more and access nomination and application form
Important Dates
April 12: All nominations and applications due by 4:45 pm. Send via email to Emily Albers ( and/or or drop off in the school office. 
TBD: Meet the Candidates Forum
May 10-14: Board elections, drop off all ballots by 4:45 pm on Friday, May 14. 

Upcoming Meetings
Please email the committee email addresses listed below for each meeting’s login details. You can find links to the new committee charters here. All are welcome to join committee meetings!

January Board Meeting: Thurs. Jan. 28, 6:30 PM;
Governance & Leadership Dev. Cmte: Mon. Feb. 1, 4:30 PM;
Fundraising Cmte: Tues. Feb. 2, 8:30 AM;
Mission & School Culture Cmte: Wed. Feb. 3, 3:45 PM;
Comm. & Outreach Cmte: Tues. Feb. 9, 8:30 AM;
Diversity & Belonging Cmte: Tues. Feb. 16, 3:45 PM;
Cmte of the Whole: Wed. Feb. 17, 6:30 PM;
Finance Cmte: Tues. Feb. 23, 6:30 PM;
News from the GAI
Fun and language learning for kids and teens
Online Samstagsschule—Saturday School begins February 6, 2021
GAI's creative and experienced language instructors make Samstagsschule a fun and interactive way to learn German. Online classes for ages 4 through 18 will return in February. Beginning to advanced levels are offered for all ages.
More information and registration at
Is your Kindergartner joining us next year?
If you will have a Kindergartner or a NEW student joining us next year, click here to fill out the 21/22 application for them or mail a paper application. The enrollment window is open now until the deadline on February 22, 2021. Siblings of currently-attending TCGIS students receive sibling preference for enrollment; for more information about TCGIS' enrollment process, please visit our enrollment webpage. Please direct any questions to Clarissa Herman at
Technology assistance available to all families
Did you know about the TCGIS Technical Assistance Form? It's in every student's TCGIS Bookmarks folder in Chrome, and also on our homepage under Fall Learning Plan, and can be used to get help with any technical issues you might be experiencing with anything from websites to devices. Don't hesitate to reach out!
Student Enrichment
German Tutors for TCGIS Students
TCGIS has built a list of local university/college students interested in virtual private tutoring in German for TCGIS students. We update this Google spreadsheet of tutors regularly. Learn more here.
Enrich your family life with more German at home
Check out the updated German Enrichment Page for excellent resources for kids of all ages. There really is something for everyone, so please take some time to visit the enrichment site with your kids!
Jan. 4 - 29: All grades in Distance Learning
Jan. 21: Diversity and Belonging, AmazeWorks evening
Jan. 24: Deadeline: Lunch orders, Bus Registration
Jan. 28: January Board Meeting
Feb. 1: First day in-person grades K-2
Feb. 1: Registration Opens for Track, Summer Camp