Der Elternbrief
ISSUE 448 / MARCH 11, 2021
Incident Response Team (IRT) Updates
What is the Incident Reponse Team (IRT)? This team meets regularly to review data and makes decisions about changes to the learning model. IRT Members are: Ted Anderson, Executive Director; Julie Alkatout, TCGIS Board Chair; Ashley Weston Miller, Dir. of HR and Operations; Monika Avery, Health Services Associate.
Vaccine Roll out to TCGIS Staff
97% of staff who want to be vaccinated received at least their first vaccine We are thankful to Governor Walz for supporting the education of our students by prioritizing our teachers and staff in receiving their vaccines.
COVID-19 Testing for Kids and Families
Teachers, school staff, and coaches are already getting tested regularly. We owe it to them to do the same. The new MDH recommendation is for all school-age youth returning to school, youth sports, or extracurricular activities, and their families, to get tested every two weeks through the end of the school year. While it is not a requirement, regular testing complements other safety measures already in place, such as masking and social distancing.

Schools and youth organizations can send messages and resources available on COVID-19 Testing for Kids and Families to families to encourage testing. By getting tested every two weeks from now until the end of the school year, we can help keep schools open and sports operating, and ensure we are limiting the spread of COVID-19.
It has never been easier to get tested. Testing is provided at no cost to you.
As always, please keep your student home when they are sick. If any member of your family tests positive for Covid-19, please contact Monika Avery and/or Ashley Weston Miller to review the MDH Decision Tree and support in contact tracing if necessary.
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!
Re-Enrollment Survey for All Current TCGIS Families
Help us prepare for the 2021-2022 school year by completing our re-enrollment
survey! Please click here to fill out the survey by March 26th. If you have more than one student at TCGIS, please submit one form for every child in your family who is currently in grades K-7.

Filling out this form is not required in order to attend TCGIS next year but it is extremely helpful for the school. We gather information about returning and  withdrawing students to plan our class compositions for the next year. We appreciate your participation; thank you in advance! 
Signing of the Collective Bargaining Agreement
Board chair Julie Alkatout and EA union president Luc Janssen signed the collective bargaining agreement approved by the board at the February meeting.

TCGIS is grateful for the hard work and commitment to our kids shown by our Educational Assistants!
Minnesota Comprehensive Assessments (MCAs) are happening this spring!
We have received guidance from the Minnesota Department of Education to plan for in-person MCAs for all students this year. Please keep an eye open for communication about further details in the upcoming weeks.
TCGIS Virtual Book Fair
Parent Council Update: March Meeting
The Parent Council (PC) met on Monday, 3/8/2021 via Zoom.  To begin, we congratulated Katharina Schirg on her new role as Director of International Programs and Outreach. She has worked closely with the Parent Council in the last few years and we have greatly appreciated all of her help and work with us. We wish her luck! 

We had no special presentations or additional Administration representatives at this meeting so we began our meeting discussing parent concerns, the timing of the parent survey, and how best to solicit feedback from the parent community on the new Strategic Plan. We then discussed the potential for some of the PC subcommittees to merge with board subcommittees to streamline communication and reduce duplicating efforts on tasks. Finally, we discussed the All Council meeting and discussed our new meeting format which is working well.

We hope the warm weather is making you feel hopeful and positive as spring and summer approach. As always, if you have anything you’d like the Parent Council to address, please email your class representative or the PC.
Introducing New Front Office Staff
Please join us in welcoming two new staff to our Front Office Team!
If you've recently called or stopped in at the front office, you may have noticed two new front office team members! Julia Henriksen joins the Front Office team as Administrative Assistant to the Admin Team and the School Board, a role previously held by Nicole Crashell, who is now the Front Office & Student Data Coordinator.
Stefanie Simpson joins the Front Office team in a new role as Administrative Assistant for Business and HR. We are excited they are here!
Learn more about Julia and Stefanie here.
Reminder: We spring forward on Sunday!
Remember to set your clocks one hour ahead when you go to bed Saturday night. Daylight Savings Time begins Sunday, March 14!
2021-22 School Calendar Approved by School Board
On Thursday, February 25th the TCGIS Board approved the school calendar for the 2021-22 school year. The calendar is available on our homepage and here.
Order the 20/21 Yearbook!
TCGIS PTO Presents: A Virtual Variety Night Show!
Your PTO wants you to have an awesome Friday night, so we made you:

THE VARIETY SHOW
March 19 at 6:30 pm

Sign up now for your link to stream this one-time FREE event on March 19 at 6:30pm!

See comedienne Shannan Paul, magician Steven Paul Carlson, opera singer Corissa Bussian, and the Minnesota Synchronettes synchronized swimming team performing for us! 

Our own University of Minnesota Raptor Center dishes out some awesome raptor education, singer Amanda Yang will stun you with her voice, and our own TCGIS band will be performing too. For bonus fun, you'll see over twenty faces from our own school in the show. 

Order a treat swag bag by March 12 to enjoy some locally sourced goodies. Spread the word and we'll see you there!
Spring Plant & Strudel Sale Ends next Friday
Strawberries, Geraniums, and Strudel - oh my! It's all in one easy space now, yay!

Ordering open through March 19th. Shop here! 
TCGIS Sommercamp 2021: Register Now!
Trying to find summer plans for your student? Look no further! This summer's camp themes include Circus, Sports, Art, Math, and more. It's a great way for them to practice their German over the summer!

Booking options are available for Before Care, Camp and Aftercare each week, if you only need 1 or 2 options. If you plan to utilize all 3 options (all day care), please book your Camp and add the full week before and aftercare for a $50 discount. Interested families who qualify for free and reduced lunch: please email Michaela Bromenschenkel for a discount.

For more information and how to sign up please read our TCGIS Sommercamp Family Handbook. All families must use a Popsicle account to book Summer Camps; if you don't have one yet, you can sign up here. For additional questions, please email Michaela Bromenschenkel.
Library Updates
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Have you returned your library books?
Notices regarding overdue library materials have been sent out. All overdue materials from earlier this year that are not returned by April 23 will be marked as lost and the amount will be added to the student's Boonli account.

Would you like to check out library materials? Fill out this form to get new materials for next week! There is now the option for in-school students to have their books delivered to their classrooms on Fridays.

Live Story Time 
Story Time is every Wednesday at 2:45pm. Follow this link to tune in on March 17! (Zoom passcode: 040736). See our full story time schedule here.
Safety Reminders for Dismissal
Please Be Mindful of Street Signs
To respect those living in the Como neighborhood, please be mindful of street signs when parking near the school and when queuing for arrival and dismissal, particularly around the mouths of alleys where there is limited visibility. 
TCGIS Community Updates
Holocaust Remembrance Event
Our school is committed to remembering the Holocaust and honoring the millions who suffered and died as a result of Germany's horrific genocidal policies. We are again invited to join people across Minnesota and the Dakotas in the Yom HaShoah  Commemoration which will take place (virtually) on April 8. 
6:00 PM - Name-reading ceremony led by families of survivors and community members
7:00 PM - Commemorative community service
Register your name here to access the zoom link.
The Yom HaShoah Commemoration is co-sponsored by the Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas, Children of Holocaust Survivors Association of Minnesota (CHAIM), Temple of Aaron, Minneapolis Jewish Federation, St. Paul Jewish Federation, Generations After MN, and the Micki and Mort Naiman Holocaust Education Fund.
St. Paul Charter School Virtual Fair: Sat., March 20
TCGIS participates every year in the St. Paul Charter School Fair. This year's fair will be held virtually, next Saturday, March 20, from 9:00am-12:00pm.

Participating charter schools are profiled on this virtual fair website, where families are able to explore the unique aspects of the 25 participating schools before the fair.

This school fair is a great opportunity for our middle school families to explore what high school options exist within the St. Paul charter school community. It's also an opportunity for prospective families to learn more about our school and speak with teachers and deans. If you know young families exploring school options, please encourage them to visit with us virtually on March 20: www.stpaulcharterschoolfair.org. Vielen Dank!
Seeking Volunteers for Board Subcommittees!
Looking for a way to volunteer and have an impact supporting TCGIS? School board committees and their subcommittees support the strategic plans of the board and have focused and achievable goals. We are seeking volunteers to join these committees and subcommittees to launch and support initiatives throughout the school. 
 
These subcommittees currently need volunteers: Curriculum advisory, Wellness, Zero-waste, TCGIS Alumni, Community building, Eastside Gallery Mural planning, Playground improvement planning, School interior design (German immersion areas), Recruiting, Parents of BIPOC children affinity group, and LGBTQ+ family affinity group.  
 
Volunteers make initiatives happen and build sustainable projects and processes for the long-term benefit of our school. If you are interested in joining a committee or subcommittee or have questions, please contact the chair of the committee. Find who to contact and more details in this summary of board committees.
School Board Announcements
Call for Nominations & Applications for TCGIS School Board
Board Election
Consider running for the TCGIS school board! Applications continue to be open until Friday, April 12th. The Board represents the entire TCGIS community, and individuals from traditionally underrepresented groups such as BIPOC, LGBTQ, and families with neurodiversity are especially encouraged to apply.

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.
Important Dates
April 12: All nominations and applications due by 4:45 pm.
TBD: Meet the Candidates Forum
May 10-14: Board elections, drop off all ballots by 4:45 pm on Friday, May 14.
Executive Director Hiring Committee
Click here to read more about the search.
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!

Diversity & Belonging Cmte: Tuesday Mar. 16, 3:45 PM; diversity@tcgis.org
Committee of the Whole: Thursday Mar. 18, 6:30 PM; board@tcgis.org
Finance Cmte: Tuesday Mar. 23, 6:30 PM; finance-committee@tcgis.org
March Board Meeting: Thursday Mar. 25, 6:30 PM; board@tcgis.org
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.
CALENDAR
Mar. 12: NO SCHOOL, Conferences 8:10am-3:30pm
Mar. 19: PTO's Virtual Variety Night Show
Mar. 25: March School Board Meeting
Apr. 5-9: Spring Break