Der Elternbrief
ISSUE 449 / MARCH 18, 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.
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! 
April Order Window: Lunches/Milk and Take-Home Meal Kits Closes Sunday, March 21
Remember to place your order for April 2021 (including Take Home Meal kits for Distance Learning days, asynchronous Wednesdays)! If your student rides the bus, please consider donating in the April Bussing menu. Please log on to our online store website  Boonli  to place your child's School Lunch, Milk and bussing order. Please make sure to check out your cart to successfully place an order.  All orders must be submitted by midnight on Sunday, 03/21/2021. Orders received after 3/21 will have a delayed start date.

Please contact us if you have any questions.
Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment (MCA) Season is Beginning
The Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment (MCA) season is coming up for 3rd-8th graders. MCAs are tests that measure students progress toward benchmarks in Reading and Math 3-8th grade, and Science 5th and 8th grade. MCA testing is important to measure your child’s progress academically, and to provide us with data about how we are doing as a school. You can find more information on MDE's website. MDE has given schools guidance to plan for in-person MCA testing this spring for all students. 

The TCGIS MCA calendar is available here. 5-8th A and B cohorts begin testing the week of March 22nd, 3-4th the week of March 29th.

  • On the day students take their MCAs, they should bring: 
  • A snack and water bottle
  • Comfortable headphones
  • 1-2 sharpened pencils
  • A book or drawing/coloring materials in case they finish early (note that it must be a paper book, not a Kindle or other device)

Parents and guardians have the right to refuse participation in MCA testing by filling out this form, which can be submitted in hard copy or email. Please submit this form at least 24 hours before your child’s first assessment so we have time to process it. 
Support our TCGIS Virtual Book Fair!
The TCGIS Virtual Variety Show is this Friday!
You seriously don't want to miss this. It's great for all ages with music, magic, trapeze, and so much more. Plus there are plenty of familiar TCGIS faces that make an appearance!

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!
Last Call for Spring Plant and Strudel Sale!
Winter may still have visited this week, but Spring is coming! Make sure you get your garden planned and some delicious food in your freezer.

Order by tomorrow, March 19th! 
Order the 20/21 Yearbook!
Parent Council: Family Support Night Info
Recap from March 4: 
We had a great conversation about social and emotional family- and self-care earlier this month. Many thanks to Diana Erwin, TCGIS Behavior Interventionist, who gave an informative presentation on how we can support our kids and ourselves during this time of many transitions and unknowns. Click here to listen to Diana’s presentation (11 min.).

Save the Date: 
Thursday, April 1st, 7:30-8:30pm. Zoom link to be shared at a later date.
Topic: Diversity and Belonging at TCGIS
Members of the Diversity and Belonging Committee will join us to share work that is underway on several DEI (Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion) projects. This will be followed by an open discussion about this topic. We hope to see you on April 1!
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! Click here for camp dates and descriptions.

Registration age is based on this school year. (i.e., If your child is currently in second grade, please register in the K-2 camps). Registration is also open to 2021-22 Kindergartners!

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 overdue library books?
Notices regarding overdue library materials have been sent out. All overdue materials from earlier this year that are not returned by the end of the year 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 24! (Zoom passcode: 040736). See our full story time schedule here.
TCGIS Community Updates
Virtual Charter School Fair: this Saturday!
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!
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.
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.
News from the GAI
Summer Teen Intensiv for ages 14-18
This advanced full-day camp experience is for teens with level B1 German skills or graduates of TCGIS. We will dive into two important current topics in these week-long camps: Multiculturalism—what does racism looks like in Germany and how do young people deal with this topic, and Living the Sustainable Life—how does "Nachhaltigkeit" relate to nutrition, housing, education, and the digital world.
June 21–25: Multikulti? Multiculturalism and Racism in Germany 
August 23–27: Living the Sustainable Life (#FridaysForFuture)
Register here.
Learning from the Germans: Discussion with author Susan Neiman
Sunday, April 18 | 12:30–1:30 PM
Start reading now to prepare for this virtual event with author Susan Neiman! In her book, she asks what we can learn from the Germans about confronting past evils, the concept of "working off the past" (Vergangenheitsaufarbeitung) and how communities can come together to remember and move forward. Free, but registration is required.
Register here.
School Board Announcements
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!

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. 19: PTO's Virtual Variety Night Show
Mar. 22-29: MCAs Grades 3-8
Mar. 24: Last day of Virtual Book Fair
Mar. 25: March School Board Meeting
Apr. 5-9: Spring Break