May 5, 2016
Administrator's Corner

Hello Spartans!

I am thrilled to be named your new principal! As many of you know, I have been an assistant principal at TJ for the past six years. Thank you to the students, parents, teachers, administration, PTO (TJ Partners), City Councilwoman Kendra Black and Instructional Superintendents Scott Mendelsberg and Sean Precious. You all took time to answer my questions and gave me the insight I needed to create a plan for TJ that I believe will allow us to continue to build on our recent success. I especially want to thank my wife Ashley and two daughters Jocelyn and Sasha for their endless enthusiasm and encouragement.

I can't wait to get started in my new role and look forward to a great close to the 2015-2016 school year and an amazing 2016-2017 school year!

Just a few reminders: 
  • Seniors only have 8 days of school before checkout! Make arrangements with Ms. Spivey for APEX completion.
  • Seniors must have 92% attendance in order to walk at graduation.
  • AP Testing began this week, and will continue through May 13 (see schedule below).
Go Spartans!
Mike Christoff

¡Hola Spartans!
¡Estoy muy contento de ser nombrado su nuevo director! Como muchos de ustedes saben, he sido un director asistente en TJ durante los últimos seis años. Gracias a los estudiantes, padres, maestros, administración, PTO(TJ Partners), la concejal, Kendra Black y Superintendentes de Instrucción, Scott Mendelsberg y Sean Precious. Todos ustedes tomaron el tiempo para responder a mis preguntas y me dieron la idea de que se necesitaba para crear un plan para TJ que creo que nos va a permitir a seguir construyendo sobre los muchos éxitos que hemos tenido recientemente. En especial, quiero agradecer a mi esposa Ashley y dos hijas Jocelyn y Sasha por su entusiasmo sin fin y aliento.
¡No puedo esperar para empezar en mi nueva posición y tener un gran cierre para este año escolar 2015-2016 y un increíble año venidero 2016-2017!

Sólo unos pocos recordatorios:
  • Seniors (estudiantes del grado 12) sólo tienen 8 días de escuela! Hagan arreglos con la Sra. Spivey para completar APEX.
  • Los estudiantes deben tener 92% de asistencia para poder caminar en la graduación.
  • Prueba de AP comenzó esta semana, y continuará hasta el 13 de mayo (véan el horario abajo).
¡Vamos Spartans!
Mike Christoff
Quick Links
ACT Books Available
We have 15 book sets for sale for $10. The set includes: Course Workbook for the ACT, Early Edge for the ACT, and 1,460 ACT Practice questions. The set is brand new and over a $100 value. Interested students can bring money to Ms. Cummins in room 134. Thanks!
Parent/Student Portal
If you haven't signed up for the Parent/Student Portal, please do so ASAP!
1. visit
2. Click the "getting started" tab on the top
3. Fill out the form on the left with your name, e-mail address, phone number, student name, school ID number (lunch number) and student's 8 digit date of birth. Click "submit."
4. Create your username and password. Click "submit."
5. You will receive an e-mail immediately from the DPS Portal Team with a link to activate your account.
Kudos Korner
  • On April 24, 2016,  Leora Busse was honored by the National Center for Women & Information Technology with the Aspirations in Computing award.  The award honors high school women who excel in computing and technology and encourages them to pursue their passions. 
  • The "High School Project of the Year" competition is sponsored by the Project Management Institute and recognizes outstanding technology projects that are planned, designed, and built by high school students.  This year's competition was March 9, 2016 and Thomas Jefferson had two winners.  Nick Capra was recognized for his project developing the Flaming Fish media channel and Madeline Jacobsen was recognized for the 5280 Challenge website that she created as part of her work with TJ's leadership class. 
  • Congratulations to the JROTC Drill Team and Honor Platoon. They had a very successful drill competition on Saturday, Taking 1ST place over all in both categories (Armed and Unarmed). This is our version of State Championship. This is the second year for the Armed Drill Team.  Combined, they brought a total of 13 trophies back to TJ!
  • Congratulations to Mr. Jackson and his students on the strong showing in levels 1, 2 and 4 of the annual Japan Cup Competition.  Level 4 is actually a college-level of competition so we students are especially commended for their great effort - finishing in 3rd place!  Our students are obviously hard working, dedicated, future leaders in the very important U.S.-Japan bilateral alliance. 
  • Four of our Video Production students were selected by a judging panel to have their work displayed in Arapahoe Community College's Graphic Design Portfolio Show. Entries for this show included other high school concurrent enrollment students as well as all of ACC's graphic design students. We submitted five videos, and four were selected! When and if you see them, please congratulate: Henry Allen, Michelle Brown, Evan Domagala, and Eric Stolz!
Principal Selection Process Announcement
AP Testing Schedule
Robotics Team Headed to Nationals!
On May 19th, 2016, TJ students Leo Busse, Jacob Hermelink, Tegan Suzuki, Beck Moore, and Roger Nakagawa will be traveling to Baton Rogue, Louisiana, to attend the SeaPerch national competition. If you're interested in assisting these students in covering the expenses for this trip, please click here. Thanks to the PTO/TJ Partners and the DTC Rotary Club for making significant contributions already!
DPD Museum Fund Drive
TJ Spartans are participating in a community service project to help organize and develop the first Denver Police Department Museum. The museum will exhibit the history of the Denver Police department, as well as some of the past and current tools and technologies utilized by officers and law enforcement staff. The museum also wants to include interactive exhibits, especially for young visitors to the museum and older students wanting to explore the workings of law enforcement and the study of criminal science. The museum also hopes to create a bridge between the Denver Police Department and the community, attract Denver visitors and especially engage with the younger citizens of Denver and the Metro area. 

One main focus of the museum is a memorial section that serves as a tribute to officers killed in the line of duty. Starting Monday April 25, student volunteers will be working to raise money to purchase two flags that will be placed at the incident locations of fallen officers. The flags will serve as a landmark and a memorial to those officers throughout the city of Denver. Volunteer students will be collecting "Coins for Cops"  over the next two weeks, 
collecting donations before school and during the lunch hour. 

If you would like to donate to the project, please see volunteers Vasi Reiva (10), Gwen McClennan (10) or Tyler Moffat(10), or you can see Ms. Starbuck in room 125.  Our goal is to raise $300, with $200 going towards the memorial flags and $100 going to the "Coffee & Donuts with the Cops" event on May 13 here at TJ. Student volunteers and staff are invited to participate in that event and meet other volunteers working toward the development of the Denver Police Department Museum, neighborhood police officers and city council supporters. 

After our fist day of collection, we have already raised over $20, so we are on our way! If you have any questions or know of any students that would like to participate and earn community service hours and experience, or if you would like to donate, please see Ms. Starbuck in room 125! Thank you for supporting our men and women in BLUE!
Riding to Further Education
The new CTE bus allows for career shadowing for CCT students.
TJ's new Career and Technical Education (CTE) bus is shaking up the Center for Communication Technology (CCT) Magnet program, as students are now able to go on field trips for various classes. This allows students to gain new and positive experiences which might not have been possible before. Read more
5th Annual DCIS Pow-wow: May 6th
Student Services Resource Fair  - May 7
Final TJ Partners PTO Meeting for the Year - May 10th
It's hard to believe but the final TJ Partners PTO meeting for the school year is fast approaching.  Please join us on Tuesday, May 10th  from 6-7:30 p.m. in Room 111 to wrap up the school year.  We will be discussing the following items:
  • planning for end of year teacher appreciation luncheon
  • elect the new board positions to take effect 7-1-2016
  • teacher grant discussion
  • begin planning for next year
We look forward to seeing you next week.
Microsoft Denver is excited to announce DigiGirlz 2016!
Spring Concert - May 10
This will be the spring concert for the bands and orchestras, and also the last concert for my seniors - some of the strongest players I've had the privilege of working with -  Scott Brandon (flute),  Jabril Jeylani & Cassidy Cobb (clarinet),  Brandon Griffith (tuba),   Sam Trout & Kham-Shem Touré (percussion), and  Alex Rico (any instrument I need - but for this performance saxophone & cello).  

T he orchestra will be playing the 1st movement of the Mozart Clarinet Concerto, which Jabril will play the solo.  The theme of the concert is music from around the world.  Sam Trout & Kham-Shem Touré have each arranged music, for the percussion ensemble.

Bring the family - a free evening of culture.  I used to take my kids even as infants and toddlers to high school and college concerts, sit in the back, and when they got wiggly, we'd quietly leave.  I was often surprised at how long they would stay interested, sometimes making it through entire concerts.   We'd love the company, so please consider setting aside the evening.

Thanks! Sincerely, Robin Johnson
Yearbook Signing P arty
We will have a yearbook signing party on May 13th during the Backyard Bash. Pre-ordered yearbooks will also be distributed at this time. Students will need their IDs in order to claim their book. If you haven't already purchased a yearbook, and you would like it to arrive before the signing party, you should order online or see Mr. Forrester. He has a limited amount of books for sale. To purchase a book online, go to the TreeRing website at any time from this point forward. Please click the 'Aristocrat Yearbook' link on the tjjournal for directions on how to purchase online. It can be found under the 'News and Events' menu.
Night Out - Rescheduled for Friday, May 13th
Challenge Denver's "Be the Change" Annual Dinner Event - May 18

We're excited to share that tickets are now available for our biggest event of the year, and we hope to see you there! This interactive dinner event will bring together our Challenge Denver community - teachers, students, parents, and community members - to  engage in pieces of our innovative Challenge Day  program 
facilitated by the incredible co-founders of the program, Rich & Yvonne Dutra-St. John!

The event will also provide a platform to discuss the increasingly critical need for effective social emotional programing for students in Denver, and highlight Challenge Denver's unique role in addressing that need. We're thrilled to be featuring the stories of students and staff who have been touched by our work, and look forward to a powerful evening with you.
We have 15 schools on our waiting list eager to receive our programs, resources and partnership support.  100% of event proceeds go directly to supporting new school partnerships to ensure all in-need students have access to our life-changing social emotional programs. Thank you in advance for your generous support and advocacy on behalf of our students! We look forward to seeing you at the event!
Individual Ticket:
" Pay It Forward" Table Sponsorship: $1500 and includes:
  • 10 seats at the dinner, 8 seats reserved for your company / network, and 2 seats "sponsored" for students, teachers, or parents at partner schools who may not otherwise be able to attend
  • Logo and direct link on our website: 
  • Sponsor Listing and Logo on Program
  • Recognition as Event Sponsor on pre and post event email communication
  • Sponsorship and name recognition in media releases
  • Logo on Event Signage
  • Verbal Acknowledgement at Event
  • Recognition on Social Media
A huge thank you to our current event sponsors:
Liberty Global, Delta Dental and Colorado Frontgate Properties
Please consider joining them!

Share this event on  Facebook and  Twitter

We hope you can make it!

Layne Palmer and the Challenge Denver Team: 
Betsy Leighton, Tracey Brummett, Cynthia Frandsen, Samanda Davis, Roxanne Jensen, David Strong, Jim Dissett, Eugene Ebner, Paulette Walters, Sally Seiffer, Micah Gurard-Levin
Summer Science Scholars Program 
Click here for the SSS application in Word format
Click here for the SSS application in PDF format

All for One Community Golf Tournament - May 21

$95.00 per player (includes green fees, cart, great lunch, prizes) 
4 Person Teams - Modified Scramble - 7:30am Shotgun Start
Lots of Team and Individual Men/Women Prizes! 

Attention All Parents: Get Social!
Have you or someone close to you experienced the FOMO blues?
If your fear of missing out (FOMO) on the opportunities, people and goings on at TJ keeps you up at night (or even if it doesn't), know that there is help for people like you. TJ's web site and social media spaces are loaded with information, resources, announcements, updates, and great photos that will dial you into the incredible school culture that is TJ. There IS hope in even the most extreme FOMO cases. We invite you to review the website regularly, and connect with us on  TwitterFacebook and  Instagram. And know that in your FOMO you are not alone. We don't want to miss the opportunity for you to share your team or event photos, celebrations and milestones, interesting resources and opportunities. So please include @TJSpartans on Twitter and Instagram. Use a hashtag or two such as #SpartanPride #BrownAndGold #GoForTheGold and #TJSpartans to make these social shares searchable and tie them into TJ's social cloud. Warning: social engagement with TJ may lead to bouts of spontaneous pride and uncontrollable laughter. TJ may be held liable for these and other positive side effects including those that lead to closer friendships, indelible memories, greater performance and higher test scores. 
Class News You Can Use
All Classes 
Class of 2016 - Seniors

The countdown is ON -
 school days  until the Class of 2016 will no longer be DPS students.  You may be having a plethora of emotions as we get closer and closer to graduation; happiness, sadness, confusion, anxiety, and excitement just to name a few.  We thought it would be helpful to lay out a few dates that you will want to have on your calendar over the next few weeks.
If your student had Cap and Gown pictures taken, the order form proofs are available in the main office. 
5/17 - Last Full day of classes for Seniors - Senior Checkout!
5/18 - 8-10 a.m. -  MANDATORY Mini-Graduation Rehearsal in TJ Auditorium
· Seniors must attend t o participate in graduation ceremonies. 
5/18 - FINAL CHECKOUT with Counselors
5/18 - Flippin' Flapjacks Event:  Pa ncake and sausage breakfast will be provided for all seniors after mini-rehearsal and check-out 
5/24 - 8-11AM Graduation Rehearsal
· Auraria Campus Physical Education/Event Center (PE), 1255 10th St, Denver, CO 80204
· Seniors must attend to participate in graduation ceremonies
5/25 - 5-7PM - GRADUATION
·   Auraria Campus Physical Education/Event Center (PE), 1255 10th St, Denver, CO 80204 (more info on when to arrive will be provided at rehearsal)
· Seniors will get their 5 free tickets the day they check out. Additional tickets can be purchased from the treasurer for $5 each. Parking is at the Tivoli, parents do pay for parking. 

Class of 2017 - Juniors
  • How to stay in the loop and share your ideas for the Class of 2017:
  • Class of 2017 t-shirts - at online store for Class of 2017
  •  Follow 2017 Class on Twitter - @2017TJHS
  • Monday, May 16th 

    Mon, May 16th - Ester's Neighborhood Pub Class of 2017 Fundraiser - 1950 S Holly St, Denver, CO 80222 will donate 20% of all sales, including carry out, on Monday, May 16th.  If you haven't visited this hot new spot in Virginia Village this is your chance to try it out and benefit the students of TJ HS Class of '17. The pub is located at 1950 South Holly St, just north of Evan's...  Ester's offers quality interpretations of artisanal pizza, classic dishes and daring new ventures in American pub food. As well as offering over 22 craft beers on tap, they serve a diverse wine and cocktail selection. Come out and enjoy the sunshine on the deck, the main dining room or Sully's Back Room or get an order to go from their made-from-scratch menu of delicious pizzas and fresh food. All are welcome! 

Class of 2018 - Sophomores
  • To Donate to the class of 2018 fund for after prom and other events, go online to the TJ Spartan Store , and see the button in the sectioncalled "All Fundraisers."

Class of 2019 - Freshmen
  • Parent Social before the end of the school year. Details coming soon! To get involved as a parent with Class of 2019, please contact Debi Kelley at
Aviation Science, Engineering and Aerospace Academy Summer Program
Click here for more information!
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 |