April 5, 2021

Administrator's Corner

SAT/PSAT is coming soon, we will be sending a survey after Spring Break so we know who is coming for the test and who is not. Look for more info soon!

Reminder: starting tomorrow, all students currently participating in in-person learning may attend up to 4 days of in-person learning per week (Tuesday-Friday). 

SAT/PSAT llegará pronto, enviaremos una encuesta después de las vacaciones de primavera para saber quién viene a la prueba y quién no. ¡Busca más información pronto!

Recordatorio: a partir de mañana, todos los estudiantes que actualmente participan en el aprendizaje en persona pueden asistir hasta 4 días de aprendizaje en persona por semana (de martes a viernes).

Anne Rice
Athletic Director
  • Our very own freshman Charlie Koupal has a song he produced - he signed with a record label and they released it last week! Click here to hear it! Way to go, Charlie! You're a star!

  • Kudos to Denver citizens for putting safety as a priority! Responsible mask wearing and decreased numbers mean that Seniors get to have an in-person Prom (and hopefully Graduation as well)! (details below in the senior section)

  • A huge shout out to Deqa Muse and Mariah Williams who competed at the CHSAA State tournament before break. Mariah was ranked 3rd in her round and her judges said she handled herself very professionally throughout, while Deqa was praised by her judges for the strength of her arguments and for bringing in a global perspective (including citing Nelson Mandela in one of her speeches). While they did not make it to the semi-finals, they still were great representatives for our school. They held their own against some of the top competitors across the state, which is especially impressive considering this is Mariah's first year as a competitor and Deqa's second year as a competitor and first year as a captain and mentor. (Thanks to Lauren Palek for being their amazing coach!
Hello Spartan Families,

During this unprecedented year, TJ's administration and teachers have eagerly sought how to best support student learning, including making adjustments to grading policies that better reflect the reality of remote and hybrid scenarios. I’ve had conversations and exchanged emails with kids and parents across the Spartan Family spectrum that have expressed how this year has impacted their students. In some examples of the conversations I’ve had, folks have shared that their students are taking care of younger siblings while trying to do remote learning, students are sharing hotspots with other siblings, and parents are expressing a noticed change in their student’s affect and how much of a struggle it has been to push through and “do school.” 

We’ve seen an unprecedented need in our Spartan community this year which has led to our amazing PTO, DECA, and SkillsUSA students to help feed families and provide gifts during the holiday season. Typically we have around 10-20 families that reach out for assistance during the holidays, this year we were able to help almost 80 families! The same has gone for our monthly food drive. We typically help around 7-10 families and this year it’s closer to 40-50 families each month. 

It is with this in mind that we have collectively adopted a no late work penalty policy during a current unit of study and the 50% grading floor, which we call "minimum grading." Minimum grading makes our grading more mathematically accurate, equitable, and motivational for students. This policy is mathematically accurate as the letter scale becomes proportionate: 10 points separate each letter grade. Additionally, it is more equitable in representing students' content knowledge: "It is extremely rare [that a] student knows absolutely nothing about a concept that was taught, so assigning a zero almost never accurately represents a student's content knowledge. The zero disproportionately punishes students when used on a 0-100 scale" (Feldman, 90). Lastly, it is more motivational for students because it keeps us from "allowing students to dig different sized holes, most of which they can never get out of" (Feldman, 87). We want to be proactive in our policies, including no late work penalties and the 50% minimum grading instead of reactive about failing grades at the end of the semester.

This way, when students earn their end of semester grades we can be confident that their grades accurately reflect their content knowledge and we have done everything we could have to support them. For students in Concurrent Enrollment courses we will honor the grading guidelines set by our partner Colleges. Other school districts around the metro area have already started using this policy (Douglas County) or are considering it (Jefferson County) moving forward. This policy will be in place for the second semester of the 20-21 school year and will be retroactive to the start of the semester. We will have more conversations as a school regarding a possible implementation in the 21-22 school year. If you'd like an in-depth rationale for minimum grading, please see this excerpt from Grading for Equity (2019) by Joe Feldman. 

As always, I thank you so much for your continued support as we all navigate this year and put the needs of our kids first. 

Here’s to a brighter tomorrow!

Mike Christoff
Principal | Thomas Jefferson High School
Register to bid here:
https://tjhs.ptapal.com. It’s easy to get
started and even easier to bid! 

Questions about the auction or have an item you’d like to donate before the auction begins? Please contact Megan Perkins (megandperkins@gmail.com or Becca Mahoney (beccaandjoemahoney@gmail.com).
PTO Meeting is next Tuesday, April 13th at 7:00 pm.  
At this meeting, we will approve Classroom Grants and prepare for Teacher Appreciation Week which is the first week of May.

Support the TJ Auction Next Week! 
Every year, more and more families participate in the TJ Auction by bidding on items. The majority of the TJ PTO budget comes from our auction, so plan to Bid Early & Bid Often! All auction proceeds support TJ students and teachers.

Step Up as a TJ PTO Officer Next Year
The PTO is a dedicated group of parents who do so much to support the TJ community, but we need leadership to stay on course. Please consider how you can use your skills to help TJ staff and students be the best they can be. We can’t be Spartan Strong without YOU! 

We need parents to serve in the following ways…

  • Vice President 2020-21: ideally this person will take on the role of President for in 2021-22 school year
  • Vice President 2021-22
  • Hospitality/Teacher Appreciation Committee Chair 

Questions? Want to get involved? Email TJHSPTO@gmail.com
***Please note: all classes for the week of April 12th will be asynchronous***

(no computers needed)
April 13th--Juniors for the SAT and ICAP work
April 14th--Sophomores for the PSAT10 and ICAP work
April 15th--Freshmen for the PSAT9 and ICAP work

(Must bring a DPS computer)
April 19th--CMAS Remote cohort student testing
April 20th & 21st--CMAS in-person cohort student testing
April 26th--Accuplacer testing for Juniors
We will be working on a new collection of items for an online sale. Please watch the newsletter and School Deets for information. Reach out to TJHS.STORE@GMAIL.COM with any questions!
The TJHS 2021 Auction Letter provides additional information on the Auction and has the TJ Tax ID #, as donations to TJ are tax-deductible. This can be given to businesses when requesting a donation. Donation information can be submitted directly into the Auction system here: https://tjhs.ptapal.com.    

If you have any questions or would like to be on the Auction Committee, please reach out to Megan Perkins (megandperkins@gmail.com) or Becca Mahoney (beccaandjoemahoney@gmail.com)
The TreePlenish Event through Sustainability Club where students are selling saplings to plant to offset paper usage is on Saturday May 1st and you can order a tree until April 1st. Saplings are $5 and you can pick the option to have the volunteers plant it in your yard or to pick it up at TJ that day! We have about 30 more trees to sell to get to our goal. 

In addition, we are looking for groups of volunteers (2-3 per group!) if you would like to sign up with a buddy! It will be CO-VID friendly as no more than two households can be combined. 

The link to order trees or to sign up to volunteer is here: https://www.tree-plenishevents.org/tj
Hey Spartans,

This is an important reminder that Advisement is a required class for all students. We have noticed a real decrease in attendance the last few weeks which means that students have missed information about graduation requirements, choice of studies, career exploration opportunities, and great stress management and coping skills. Additionally, in order to get credit for the class and be on track for graduating, students have to complete their ICAP (Individual Career and Academic Plans) which takes place during Advisement. Thank you parents/guardians in advance for helping remind your students about getting up early and go to Advisement 1 day a week!

Advisement meets virtually from 7:30-7:55am. 
Monday - 9th grade
Tuesday - 10th grade
Wednesday - 11th grade
Thursday - 12th grade
Students, parents, and counselors can sign up to attend any of the panels and College Roundtable sessions. The panels will cover pertinent information juniors and their families will need heading into their college search process, such as: visiting campus (in-person or virtually), basics on the college admissions and financial aid processes, and the various testing options institutions offer.

The College Roundtable sessions will be short introductions to 5 universities per session. These do not overlap so students can sign up for as many as they wish without having to choose between schools. There is one registration form for the Roundtables and students will select their desired session(s) during registration.

You can find more information, and register, on ROAR’s Upcoming Events website.

Our ROAR Events would not be as successful without you and your help in promoting our events. Thank you, in advance, for sharing this information and always being such a great advocate for ROAR.
If you have any questions, please reach out to Kylie Rigdon at krigdon@utk.edu or 865.630.0620.
Our next webinar is on April 21, at 12 pm and the topic is: Preparing Your Teen for College: A Expert Panel Presents Key Conversations To Have With Your Child. During the webinar a panel of experts will address strategies for talking with your teen about the health and safety risks of marijuana and alcohol and provide insight on how to help your child find mental health support on campus. Hear from a panel of experts, Chris Lord of CU Boulder, Lynann Butler of Metro State and Dana Kobold of Red Rocks Community College will provide support and strategies to empower parents. Sign up here. (Tambien estamos ofreciendo interpretación en Español.)
We are having an 18-21 info session night for all TJ grades.

APRIL 14 @5:30pm
This event will be virtual (meet invite to come)
Hi Spartans, 

If you purchased a yearbook last year and didn't pick it up please email Carla_allen@dpsk12.org and let her know if you are in the building and would like to stop by her office (Treasurer Office down the hall from the Main Office) or if you are Virtual she can leave it at the front door with the receptionist.  

Thank you and Stay Safe!
Register Now using this Google Form!
Register Now using this Google Form!
Our goal is that all students graduate college and career ready. One of the ways we achieve this goal is to support students' career and college exploration through programs that provide opportunities for students to discover how their interests and passions might someday fit into the world of work. There are many resources to help you learn more about career and college programs in DPS, visit collegeandcareer.dpsk12.org to learn more! Handouts:  English  / Spanish
Matthew Mason (He/Him/His) 
Navigator at Thomas Jefferson High School
DPS Career and College Success

Cell: 720-466-1617 | Email: matt_mason@dpsk12.org | Website

The Annual All For One Golf Tournament will be held at Wellshire Golf Course on June 12th. Net proceeds from the tournament are awarded equally to TJ High School and three other neighborhood schools each year, totally $20,000 since 2014. You can participate as a golfer or get lots of exposure for your business as an advertiser. All the details can be found at www.allforonegolf.org or call John at 720 232-4554.
Dear Spartan Families, 

TJHS will continue to offer pick up opportunities for Chromebooks and class materials distribution by appointment only. 

  • To make a request please fill out the form here https://forms.gle/h381kzTdGeEnXTa46
  • We will contact you using the email address provided in the form to arrange a time for pickup.
  • If you are returning damaged technology please make sure the power cord is returned with the unit
  • We are out of Wifi Hotspots and we don't know when additional units will be made available.

Denver Health School Based Clinic Staff is excited to welcome back students returning for in-person learning! Whether you are staying remote or coming back to school, we are here for you. Give us a call at 720-423-7190 to set up an appointment! #werehereforyou #covid19 #denverpublicschools

SBHC@dhha.org or call us at (303) 602-8958

Thomas Jefferson School Based Clinic: 720-423-7190

Consent for Thomas Jefferson School Based Clinic:


In an effort to provide GT students and their families with the resources and supports needed to begin/complete their Advanced Learning Plan (ALP), the TJHS GT Site Team has created a Google Classroom for each GT grade level. The title and code for each grade level is listed below:
TJHS Gifted and Talented 2024 Cohort - doyqstu
TJHS Gifted and Talented 2023 Cohort - b7vpvfn
TJHS Gifted and Talented 2022 Cohort - orzg7to
TJHS Gifted and Talented 2021 Cohort - by7mjwi
The TJHS GT Site Team, working alongside our District GT Partners, has included resources, websites and documents to help you complete your ALP goals. Keep in mind that there are affective as well as academic goals. At this time, students should only focus on the Goals / Advanced Learning Plan section and not worry about the badges right now. We don't want you to get in there and feel overwhelmed.
If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to Ms. Tate, our Dean Instruction and GT Point of Contact at adria_tate@dpsk12.org

Our District GT Partner is Brian Beard, brian_beard@dpsk12.org, and you may receive GT newsletters from his office with internship and university opportunities. 
Did You Know?
We are hosting our next TJ Talks on April 15th!
Caring for Grieving Kids: A free workshop for parents, guardians and adult family members. 
We invite all adults caring for grieving youth to join us for a presentation from Judi’s House Grief Counselors on: 
- Common grief reactions 
- Children’s understanding of death
- Coping with grief 
- Parenting skills

When: THURSDAY APRIL 15, 2021- 6:00pm-7:00pm
Where: Google Meeting ID meet.google.com/jnd-nhng-ksk; Phone Numbers: ‪+1 641-954-4897‬; PIN: ‪477 679 937#‬
Why: Because you can make a difference in the life of a grieving child

We hope you can join us!

If you have any questions, please contact: Natalie Koncz, School Psychologist (Natalie_Koncz@dpsk12.org) or Samanda Davis, Social Worker (Samanda_Davis@dpsk12.org

Mental Health and Social Emotional “Did You Know”: Compiled by Samanda Davis, LCSW, MSW and Natalie Koncz, Ed.S., NCSP. Resources: www.judishouse.org 

¡Celebraremos nuestras próximas TJ Talks el 15 de abril! Cuidando a los niños en duelo: un taller gratuito para padres, tutores y miembros adultos de la familia.
Invitamos a todos los adultos que cuidan a jóvenes en duelo a unirse a nosotros para una presentación de los Consejeros de duelo de Judi's House sobre:
- Reacciones comunes de duelo
- La comprensión de la muerte por parte de los niños
- Sobrellevar el dolor
- Habilidades de los padres

Cuando: JUEVES 15 DE ABRIL DE 2021 - 6:00pm-7:00pm
Donde: ID de reunión de Google meet.google.com/ymh-fyqe-eya; Números de teléfono + 1 240-775-0067; PIN: 148241092 # (esta presentación será en español)
Por qué: Porque puedes hacer una diferencia en la vida de una niña afligida

Esperamos que puedas unirte a nosotras!

Si tiene alguna pregunta, comuníquese con: Natalie Koncz, psicóloga escolar (Natalie_Koncz@dpsk12.org) o Samanda Davis, trabajadora social (Samanda_Davis@dpsk12.org).  

Mental Health and Social Emotional “Did You Know”: Compiled by Samanda Davis, LCSW, MSW and Natalie Koncz, Ed.S., NCSP. Resources: www.judishouse.org 
Class of 2021 and Parents, 
Please review the Spring Timeline Grid with your family to stay on track for college enrollment. Check your college emails several times a week in case you’ve been selected for financial aid verification. Be sure to complete those tasks as soon as possible to ensure FULL access to funding for college! 
As always, you’ll find Weekly Scholarship Highlights and many other resources by accessing the TJ Future Center 2021 schoology course and calendar. Schedule a time for us to meet and review your next steps! 
Class of 2022 and Parents, 
Please visit your TJ Future Center Schoology course for an assignment regarding your college search and Junior Survey completion. At this time, you can find Summer College Prep Program info, start your scholarship search, review essay tips and view Virtual College Tours. Stay tuned for Virtual Rep Visits, Career Panels and other opportunities throughout the remainder of the year! 
Upcoming Deadlines and Events:         
Friday, April 9th: Women’s Energy Network of CO Scholarship DUE
Tuesday, April 13th: Sally Shuler Scholarship DUE, EGTC Enrollment Office Hours
Thursday, April 15th: DSF Scholarship REQUIRED Session, CCD Scholarship Applications DUE, Sims Fayola Scholarships for Young Men of Color DUE 
Friday, April 16th: CCD DPS Concurrent Enrollment Orientation Day

Emily Webster
College Advisor | Thomas Jefferson High School
Denver Scholarship Foundation | a 501(c)(3) Public Charity
789 Sherman Street, Suite 610 | Denver, CO 80203
Class of 2021 - Seniors
Senior Information 20-21
PROM date is set – Apr 24 outdoors. Details after spring break! Get your party wear started!
Senior Awards:
Date: May 4, 2021 @ 5:00 pm Location: TBD
Senior Check-Out:
Graduation Rehearsal Cap & Gown Pick-up
Date: May 14, 2021
Breakfast Time: 7:00 am
Rehearsal Time: 8:00 am - 10:00 am Cap & Gown Pick-up
Graduation Information:
Date: May 18, 2021
Rehearsal Time: 12:00 pm
Ceremony Time: 1:00 pm
Place: DU Magness Arena
Possible Graduation Scenarios
Interim Superintendent Jones and his Senior Leadership Team will make a district-wide decision regarding commencement ceremonies by Spring Break.
The scenarios we are considering for this year's graduation season are below:
Scenario 1:
In Person/Indoors (normal)
Schools manage event coordination with the venue and vendors as normal
Scenario 2:
In person/Indoors (limited guests to 0 or 2 depending on regulations) Schools manage event coordination and logistics with the venue as normal
Scenario 3:
In person/Outdoors (limited guests to 0 or 2 depending on regulations) Liloni is managing venue coordination with the various venues at a district level
Schools will be responsible for school coordination and communication with both Liloni and students
Centrally supported live streaming option will be available
Dick's Sporting Goods Park
Empower Field at Mile High
University of Denver Barton Lacrosse Stadium All-City Field
Scenario 4:
Alternative Celebrations (similar to 2020)
Schools responsible for coordination
Centrally supported live streaming option will be available
Jostens (Cap and Gown Announcement) information - this link will take you to the ordering page
Karla Henke karladhenke@gmail.com, Jen Abram jenabram18@gmail.com, Lisa Allen allenlisa85@yahoo.com, Colley Moe colley_moe@comcast.net, Teri Hertzel thetzel@comcast.net, John Trujillo trujillopotter@icloud.com  
Class of 2022 - Juniors
Class of 2022 - Juniors
Class of 2024 - Freshmen