Der Elternbrief
ISSUE 450 / MARCH 25, 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.
Stay persistent, TCGIS!
We closely monitor COVID case rates in the 5 counties from which TCGIS draws students. While cases rates are decreasing in Ramsey and Washington counties, they are increasing in Hennepin, Anoka and Dakota counties. Continue to take steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19 even if you are fully vaccinated: wear a mask, stay distanced from others, avoid gatherings, wash your hands often, stay home if you feel sick or have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19, and delay domestic or international travel. Your persistence will help keep our TCGIS community safe.
MDH & CDC strongly recommend against traveling; returning to school after spring break
Given the high level of COVID-19 spread in many parts of our nation, any unnecessary travel is highly discouraged by MDH and the CDC.  If you choose to travel, your family will be expected to follow the CDC recommendations of testing both before and 3-5 days after travel. In addition, your family is expected to quarantine for 7 days upon return, even with negative test results.  If a family member’s test comes back positive, you will be expected to follow the isolation guidelines in the decision tree. For more tips and things to consider when traveling, see CDC: Travel during the COVID-19 Pandemic.

No School-initiated Quarantine Week Following Spring Break 
Unlike after school breaks in October and November, TCGIS does not have a 'quarantine' week planned following spring break. If your student will be home in self-imposed post-travel quarantine the week after break, please email info@tcgis.org to report your student(s)' absence per regular TCGIS attendance policy. Your students absence will be considered excused. Please note: our teachers will not be expected to provide additional work or asynchronous work during your recommended quarantine period. 
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 April 2. 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! 
Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment (MCA) are in progress
The Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment (MCA) season is in full-swing for 3rd-8th graders. You can find more information about MCAs in previous Elternbriefs or on MDE's website. The TCGIS MCA calendar is available here.  

On the day students take their MCAs, they should bring: 
Their fully charged school Chromebook (if they have one)
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.
Order the 20/21 Yearbook!
A Thank You from your PTO!
The PTO wants to thank everyone who tuned in for the Variety Show last Friday night. It means so much to us that people loved this show as much as we do!

While we're on that topic, Eddi Hueneke is doing a virtual show on April 10 and has offered a discount code for TCGIS families! This looks like so much fun. Go here and click "Gutscheincode vorhanden". The discount code is TCGISPTO.
TCGIS VISION 2025 Strategic Plan Survey
Dear TCGIS Families - we need your feedback! The Parent Council has created a survey to help gather parent community feedback on the TCGIS VISION 2025 Strategic Plan. Before taking the survey, please either view the plan by clicking on the following link: TCGIS 2025 Strategic Plan or view the recorded presentation about the strategic plan here: TCGIS strategic plan presentation.

Once you’ve seen the plan, please complete the Strategic Plan Parent Survey. The survey will take about 25 minutes to complete and will be open for two weeks, until April 11th. Thanks for taking the time to do this and ensuring that our parent voices are heard!
Parent Council: Family Support Night Info
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!
Library Updates
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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 31! (Zoom passcode: 040736). See our full story time schedule here.
Summer Activities
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!

For more information and how to sign up please read our TCGIS Sommercamp Family Handbook. For additional questions, please email Michaela Bromenschenkel.
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.
Summer Music Lessons with Vienna Arts
Vienna Community Arts will continue to provide music lessons throughout the summer for new and continuing students.  Please contact us at infoviennarts@gmail.com for more information.
TCGIS Community Updates
Holocaust Remembrance Event: April 8
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.
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
Board Meeting Tonight!
Tonight at 6:30pm the Board of Directors will give special recognition to parent volunteers serving as Eltern Kontakte and TCGIS staff working on special projects and championing diversity & belonging. The board will hear a presentation on the Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS) by the Alternative Delivery of Student Interventions and Supports (ADSIS) team. The full meeting agenda can be viewed here. The zoom link for the 6:30 pm meeting tonight is here.
Special Board Meeting April 13th: Executive Director Search
The board will convene for a special meeting at 6:30 pm on Tuesday, April 13th. The recruiting consultants from School Exec Connect will present the candidate profiles of the top 5-6 applicants for the Executive Director position. The board will confirm which candidates will be interviewed by the hiring committee. The hiring committee narrows the selection before further interviews. See the timeline and process on the ED search webpage.
Accepting Nominations and Applications 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.
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!

March Board Meeting: Thursday Mar. 25, 6:30 PM; board@tcgis.org
Governance & Leadership Dev. Cmte: Mon., Apr. 12, 4:30 PM; governance@tcgis.org
Communication & Outreach Cmte: Tues., Apr. 13, 8:30 AM; communication@tcgis.org
Special Board Meeting: Tuesday, April 13, 6:30 pm; board@tcgis.org
Mission & School Culture Cmte: Wed., Apr. 14, 3:45 PM; mission@tcgis.org
Diversity & Belonging Cmte: Tues., Apr. 20, 3:45 PM; diversity@tcgis.org
Finance Cmte: Tues., Apr. 20, 6:30 PM; finance-committee@tcgis.org
Cmte of the Whole: Wed., Apr. 21, 6:30 PM; board@tcgis.org
April Board Meeting: Thurs., Apr. 29, 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. 22-29: MCAs Grades 3-8
April 2: Student Re-enrollment Survey is Due
April 8: Holocaust Remembrance Event
Apr. 5-9: Spring Break
April 12: Board nominations and applications due
April 13: Special Board Meeting: Executive Director Search