March 3, 2016
An Important Message from Principal Morris-Sherer
Dear Thomas Jefferson High School Community,
It is with mixed emotions that I write this letter announcing that I will be leaving the principal position at Thomas Jefferson High School. Although this is a difficult decision for me to make, I confidently leave our school knowing that the work we have done and the growth we have realized together will continue for years to come. With TJ trending in the right direction, this is the right time for me to pursue new opportunities and challenges within Denver Public Schools. I will be fully available for the rest of this year and into next year to train and support the new leader at TJ. I am honored to have earned your trust and been afforded the opportunity to serve the students and families of Southeast Denver and the Thomas Jefferson community.

When we began our journey together, we set a clear vision and lofty goals designed to impact culture, academics and the community at large. We set out to collaboratively and purposefully prepare all students for post-secondary options, while ensuring each student is college and career ready when they graduate from TJ . As I reflect over the last three years, we have not only accomplished our main goals, we have exceeded them! In just three years, we have:
Year 1
  • Improved TCAP scores by 1% to 6% in every grade and in every content area
  • Showed 1 to 7 point gains in Median Growth Percentile on every test administered
  • Improved our ACT score by 1.3 points
  • Grown in every ACT content area
  • Increased Advance Placement (AP) pass rate by 8%, the highest in DPS that year
  • Earned a 10% overall increase in College Readiness in rising seniors
  • Reduced the number of referrals, suspensions and tardies, and increased overall attendance
  • Increased the positive perception of TJ in the Southeast neighborhood
  • Earned a Green rating on the School Performance Framework in one year - TJ's greatest accomplishment!
Year 2
  • Remained a high-performing high school
  • Increased the number of concurrent enrollment classes offered
  • Increased the concurrent enrollment pass rate from 83% to 93%
Year 3
  • Recognized as a "Top Performing" and "High Growth" school
  • Instituted College Level Examination Program testing, which helps students receive college credit for what they already know. We had all 12 seniors and 1 junior take the test in either Spanish or French. All passed earning 6 to 9 college transferrable credits.
Over the next few weeks, the district will begin the process of asking the community for input on the desired characteristics for the next leader for TJ and forming a principal selection advisory committee. Instructional Superintendents Scott Mendelsberg and Sean Precious will be developing a timeline for the full community engagement and selection process and will send that out to you as soon as possible.
Thank you for all we were able to accomplish together. I am forever grateful to the Denver Board of Education and the entire TJ family who made my tenure here such a pleasure.
Suzanne Morris-Sherer
Thomas Jefferson High School
Admin Corner
Administrator's Corner

Attention students (especially seniors!): Now is the time to make sure you're staying on top of your attendance and making every effort to end the year on a strong note! All teachers are available for Office Hours every Wednesday from 2:14-2:55 p.m. - please take advantage of this extra time and extra help!
Get your work done! Tutoring is available! 
Math: Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays in the Library, 3-4 p.m.
Science: Tuesdays in the Library, 3-4 p.m.
Language Arts: Thursdays in the Library, 3-4 p.m.
Social Studies:
Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays in the Library, 3-4 p.m.

Tutoring is designed to help ALL STUDENTS! Feel free to come use us for daily homework support, or if you just need a quiet area to complete homework. 
¡Atención estudiantes (¡especialmente los "seniors"!):  Ahora es el momento para asegurarte que tu asistencia no este decayendo y hacer todo lo posible para terminar el año en una nota fuerte! ¡Todos los maestros están disponibles para Horas de Oficina los miércoles de 2:14-2:55 pm - por favor toma ventaja de este tiempo y ayuda adicional!
¡Completa tus tareas! ¡La tutoría está disponible!
Matemáticas: los lunes, martes, y jueves en la biblioteca, 3-4 pm
Ciencia: los martes en la biblioteca, 3-4 pm
Literatura: los jueves en la biblioteca, 3-4 p.m.
Estudios Sociales: los lunes, martes , y jueves en la biblioteca, 3-4 p.m.
¡La tutoría está diseñada para ayudar a TODOS LOS ESTUDIANTES! Toma la libertad de venir a utilizarla para ayuda diaria de tarea, o si sólo necesitas una area tranquila para completar la tarea.
Mike Christoff 
Assistant Principal   
Quick Links
Saturday school will be on the 12th of March from 8am-11am. All seniors trying to make up attendance are encouraged to attend and work on class work/APEX as well.
FAFSA Fridays!
For seniors who have not yet completed their FAFSA, Ms. Maez is available to help! She has reserved the following Fridays for drop in FAFSA/financial aid support: 3/11 and 3/18 from 8-2:45 p.m.   
Students and families can make appointments with her if those dates/times do not work. Click here for more information!
Kudos Korner
  • Kudos to the DECA state competitors! Once again the TJ DECA students were professional and showed top notch character at the 66th Annual DECA State Leadership Development Conference held this past weekend at the Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs. 14 students from Thomas Jefferson competed along with 2,800 other DECA students from around the state in their respective events, all trying to advance to the International Career Development Conference (ICDC) in Nashville, Tennessee April 23-26, 2016. Jonny Sundeen took 4th Place in Principles of Business Management and Administration, and Brandon Pietrs was Honorable Mention in Business Services Marketing. Thank you to all that have supported our program and please congratulate all the members that attended the state conference, they demonstrated a highly professional attitude and were excellent representatives of our district and school. Danny Showers and I are extremely proud of our young men and women for continuing our credo, "The standard by which others are measured."
List of Competitors and Events:
Last Name
First Name
DECA Event
Principles of Marketing
BLAW & Ethics Team
Quick Serve Restaurant Management
BLAW & Ethics Team
Restaurant and Food Service Management
Innovation Plan Manual
Principles of Hospitality & Tourism
Business Services Management
Advertising Campaign Manual
Principles of Bus. Mgmt. & Administration
Hospitality Services Team
Retail Service Management
Sports and Entertainment Promotion Manual
Hospitality Services Team
Geared Up to Win
Ten teams from TJ's robotics program showcased their hard work through different competitions this month.
On February 6th and February 13th, teams from TJ's robotics program took part in two Regional qualifier competition held at Highlands Ranch High School and the Lotus School for Excellence. Students from the Introductory, Advanced, and Pathways classes were able to compete, creating a unique range of skills and experience amongst the teams. Conclusively, two of TJ's teams will advance to compete in a state-level competition and represent the school again on February 27th in Westminster, CO. Read more 
Robotics Results
Congratulations to Chloe Richter, Jacob Hermelink, and Tegan Suzuki. Their team placed 3rd in the FIRST Tech Challenge state competition, which means they're an alternate team for the Super Regional competition in Oakland, CA, at the end of March! Great job, team....way to make us proud!

"FIRST Robotics is more than robots. The robots are a vehicle for students to learn important life skills. They leave, even after the first season, with a vision, with confidence, and with a sense that they can create their own future."
                                        -FIRST founder Dean Kamen

Slam Poetry Performance - March 4th
Slam Poetry will be performing during lunch on Friday, March 4th
Please join us in the student lounge area. All students, staff and community members are encouraged to come and show your support of our own Spartan Poets! The performance is free and open to anyone.  The poets will be performing a team poem about culture. Any students interested in joining slam poetry should contact Ms. Stephenson (R. 221) after the performance, or one of our members, Reche Mouwembe or Micaiah Swaim. Read more 
Support TJ Football on Friday, March 4th
It's PTO Time Again
Please join us for the March TJ Partners PTO meeting on Tuesday, March 8th at 6pm in Room 111. 
City Councilwoman Kendra Black will attending to discuss ideas on how TJ and her office can work together to benefit the TJ community.  Principal Suzanne Morris-Sherer will be attending with an update on TJ as well as the projected enrollment for 2016-2017.  Also on the agenda will be planning for the remainder of the year's events, the teacher grant request process and open discussion.  Please get involved and join us to support our efforts to continue TJ's path to greatness.
Parent Support Needed for March 11th Teacher Appreciation Event
It's that time again to say THANKS A LATTE to the fabulous TJ staff and teachers. 
With your help, TJ Partners PTO will be hosting the 3 rd Annual Coffee Cart on Friday, March 11 th and we need your help to provide  scrumptious breakfast treats to go along with their coffee.  Please sign up here to help out. 
Silent Auction to Benefit August Wilson NYC Trip
Drama III will be hosting a silent auction fundraiser to support our trip to Broadway in New York City.  We invite you to come, enjoy, and bid on any of our items.  We will have food, raffles (including raffles for $200 sunglasses), and games.  Thanks.

Date:  Friday, March 11
Time:  3:30 - 7:30 p.m.
Cost :  $3.00 (includes food and entry into all raffles.)
Community Resource Fair - Invitation to Attend
  Oprime aqui para leer en Espa nol.

Tickets on Sale Now: Hello, Dolly!
    Left to right: Milan Bartelt, Juan Schonewise, Evan Domagala (Cornelius Hackle),
    Beck Moore (Horace Vandergelder), James Oss (Barnaby Tucker), Kieran Cecil,
    Sam Mattei, (Chorus), Sean McNearney, (Chorus)
HELLO, DOLLY! is one of Broadway's most enduring hits, having been performed all over the world since its premier over 50 years ago.

The musical is based on Thornton Wilder's 1955 play "The Matchmaker" and features music and lyrics by Jerry Herman and a book by Michael Stewart. The production was hailed as "One of the biggest, brightest musicals of this century!" by The New York Times; "Good-hearted fun!" by Variety; "Infectious enthusiasm!" by Los Angeles Times; and "A triumph!" by The Washington Post. The musical phenomenon, which ran for nearly 3,000 performances on Broadway, won 10 Tony Awards in 1964 including "Best Musical."
"DOLLY" tells the story of Dolly Levi, played by TJ's Anja Oss. Dolly, who is widowed, and still fabulous, has made a life for herself as a matchmaker extraordinaire. As she meddles, devises, and pushes people into their perfect relationship, she finds herself falling love as well. This story will delight and thrill audiences of all ages. HELLO, DOLLY! is a magical piece of musical theatre filled with memorable songs such as "Put On Your Sunday Clothes," "Before the Parade Passes By," and "It Only Takes A Moment."
Tambyr Reed, TJ Choir Teacher and Theater Director, said, "Our cast and crew have been hard at work since auditions in November, working after school into the evening and on weekends."
"Creating HELLO DOLLY! Has been such an exciting experience and I can't wait to share it with the world!" said Junior, Molly O'Neil, who plays Dolly's friend, Mrs. Rose.
TJ Freshman Maddi Abram, who shares the role of Ermengarde with Annabel Weizenbeck, said the show can be summed up in three words: " Entertaining, Funny, and Unexpected!"
Tickets are $5/Students and $10/Adults in advance - $15 at the door. Tickets may be purchased through the TJ website

Sponsorship opportunities are available to interested individuals and businesses. Click here for more information. 
Pizza Anyone? Support the Class of 2017!
PARCC Testing is on the Horizon
Please note: participation rates for 2016 testing may impact SPF scores. All students are expected to attend school during these testing periods.
The PARCC online testing will begin at TJ in April.  Our 9th graders will take the PARCC ELA/Math test. The purpose of the state test is to formally assess how students can perform in regards to grade level Common Core Standards. This is also an accountability measure to ensure that schools are adequately preparing students. We will receive the results in much more timely fashion this year. This will allow us to adjust school-wide instructional strategies at the beginning of the year. I am glad to say this is a much better set up than last year.
9th graders will begin testing on April 6th.  We will work on an adjusted schedule so students will still attend all classes during our a djusted schedule.   See the modified schedule below.  All students are expected to attend school during this testing period
Please contact Julie Thibodeau at 720-423-7149 or  with any questions.

PSAT 10 and ACT
Thomas Jefferson is excited to announce that we will be administering the PSAT 10 along with the ACT this year on April 19th starting at 7:30 am.  Sophomores will take the PSAT 10 and Juniors will take the ACT.  Due to testing, there will be no school for 9th and 12th graders that day. Be sure your students are well rested and come prepared.  Students should bring with them: pencils, approved calculators(TI84 or similar is acceptable) and their school id's.  Please contact Julie Thibodeau at 720-423-7149 or with any questions.

Class News You Can Use
All Classes 
Class of 2016 - Seniors
  • Graduation Information: The Commencement Ceremony will be held at the Auraria Campus (Event Center, 1255 10th St., Denver, CO 80204) from 5-7 p.m. On May 25th. Each student will get 5 free tickets and additional tickets will be for sale for $5/each. P arking is at the Tivoli, parents do pay for parking, staff is free. 
  • Yearbook - Purchase here and personalize a page : Yearbook Link 
  • Get your class T_shirt! at:
  • THIS FRI, Skate Party, 3/4 - Fundraiser for prom . All Spartan students are invited!! Be ready to roll on March 4th from 10:00 p.m.-12:00 a.m.!!! $5 admission fee and $2.50 skate rental if you don't have your own.  Skate City 15100 E Girard Ave, 303.690.1444 .  The class of 2016 will receive 50% of the admission for Prom
  • Prom Dress Search Opportunities Coming up on 3/12, 3/17 and 3/18. - Ladies, it's not too early to start the search for that perfect prom dress! Here are a couple of cost effective options to start that search for the perfect prom dress.
  • Prom Attire for the Gents! Watch for information on discounts and TUX options from Al's Formalwear and Men's Wearhouse coming soon.  Reserve early to get the best cost and selection.
  • Mr. TJ, Fri. 4/15 -  . Nine  of the esteemed class of 2016 young men will be joined by their escorts and emcees to compete for the title of Mr TJ by showcasing their style, grace and talents.   It's going to be "Raining Men" and you won't want to miss it.
  • Prom, 4/23, 8-11pm at the Curtis Room in Landmark (DTC). I t's sure to be a grand time!  We will be looking for parent volunteers to help with various aspects of prom in the coming weeks, stay tuned to the newsletter for updates. The class of 2016 will also be providing corsages and boutineers for Prom. Details to come.
  • After Prom Event - A fter much discussion with the students, it has been decided that there will be no official after prom event held this year. The After Prom committee will be working with the prom committee to support prom efforts and host other special events for the seniors in the coming months to support the Class of 2016 as they look toward their futures!!  Watch the newsletter for more updates coming soon.  
Class of 2017 - Juniors
  • March 14-18   - all week - Beau Jo's . The next Neighborhood Eats in support of 2017! Diners must bring flyer for TJ 2017 to get credit. (Flyers are coming soon!)
  • Get in touch with questions, ideas &

  • Class of 2017 t-shirts - get yours now at 
  •  ACT test - register at - next test in Denver is 4/9
Class of 2018 - Sophomores
  • April 8th, 7-9 PM - Class of 2018 Parent Social at the home of Jim and Kary Cramer, 3103 S Milwaukee street. Break out of the smaller circles you know at TJ and meet the rest of the 2018 families! Look for an Evite in your email soon or contact Kary Cramer,  for more information.
Class of 2019 - Freshmen
  • Parent Meeting 3/15 - RSVP by 3/7 - The Parent Class Liaisons invite you join in on a fun, relaxed time of getting to know each other at Esters Neighborhood Pub (1950 South Holly Street, Denver) on Tuesday, March 15 at 6 pm. Please RSVP here by March 7 so Esters can plan for us. Questions? Email Debi at
Graduation for All Campaign
Some students don't walk across the graduation stage... and not for the reason you think.

They have the grades.
They have the credits.
They may have even been accepted to college already.

Then they get the order form for the cap, gown and graduation announcements, and that's where it stops.

The basic graduation expenses at one Denver high school start at $46 for just the cap and gown. For many of us $46 is what we spend on coffee for the week. Add in announcements and senior pictures, and the cost is a real burden or even impossible for some families.

The Graduation for All Fund helps those for whom the graduation ceremony is out of reach.

Click here to donate

Thanks to your donations, we can make sure that these kids have the same experience as everyone else in their class. Imagine the pride their families will feel when their senior marches across the stage, gets a diploma and a handshake, and takes the next step in their adult life. 
Prom Prep
Important Summer Opportunities from the GT Office
March 11 - Application Deadline for NCAR Data Analytics Bootcamp (current Sophomores and Juniors). Click here for more information!
March 14 - Postmarked Application Deadline for Children's Hospital Denver Health Internship (current Sophomores). Click here for more information!
Creative Industries Summer Internship
Accepting Applications Now!

This summer the Center for Visual Art (CVA) at MSU Denver will host a high school internship program in collaboration with Goodwill Industries. Building on the success of previous years, interns will contribute to OhHeckYeah!
We partner with OhHeckYeah!, an organization whose mission is to create community through play:   .

This project-based internship exposes young creatives to the local professional sector and engages the next generation in the Denver arts community.
Interns will:
Engage in challenging, though provoking, collaborative art projects;
Learn from leading art and technology industry professionals;
Explore future careers in the arts;
Meet amazing friends and have a blast!
Application Deadline March 18 . Please encourage young artists ages 16-20 who might be working towards a career in the creative industries to apply here.
News from the Future Center
For upcoming events, college visits, financial aid workshops, scholarships, and much more, visit the Future Center wikipage!
Rena Maez 
College Advisor, Thomas Jefferson High School 
Denver Scholarship Foundation | a 501(c)(3) Public Charity  
3950 S. Holly Street  |  Denver, CO 80237 
O 720.423.7134   F 720.423.7098 |