The Educational Directorate (Erziehungsdirektorium / ED)
The ED plays a strategic role in school matters. It is a guarantor of the school’s profile and mission. The ED is a unique committee within the Berlin public school system. Its duties and composition are stipulated in paragraphs 5 and 6 of the JFK School Law (in German).

Whereas the School Conference mostly deals with internal school issues, the central responsibility of the ED is to guarantee the particular binational and bicultural character of the JFKS as a German-American school which incorporates both school systems within its structures.

Members of the Educational Directorate (ED) in 2018-19:
Sandra Scheeres, Senator of Schools (Senatorin f. BJW)
Grit Orgis, Alternate SenBJW – StV Direktor Senatsverw. f. BJW
Heike Waldschütz, Oberschulrätin SenBWF – StV
Frank Mückisch, Bezirksstadtrat
Jörg Weese, Fachbereichsleiter StV Zehlendorf

Scott Robinson, US Embassy Representative (Alternate Chair)
David Fabrycky, US Embassy Representative

Racso Cortinas, American ES Principal
N.N., German ES Principal
Brian Salzer, Managing Director – American HS Principal
Rasco Cortinas, American ES Principal (Alternate)
Steffen Schulz, Acting German HS Principal
Jenny Hoenicke, Acting German ES Principal (Alternate)

Sonja Fietz, German Parent Rep (Chair)
Julia Wachs German Parent Rep (Alternate)
Susan Brown, American Parent Rep
Sarah Gross, American Parent Rep (Alternate)
Chad Felt, American Teacher Rep (HS)
Helge Martens, German Teacher Rep (HS) (Alternate)
Dagmar Opitz, German Teacher Rep (ES)
Karen Wingo, American Teacher Rep (ES) (Alternate)

Alex Eastman, American Student Rep
Henri Jackson, German Student Rep

The School Conference (Schulkonferenz/SK):
This committee is composed of democratically elected representatives from the faculty, student and parent councils, as well as two principals. The SK is mandated by Berlin School Law to serve as a round table for these key school groups – to develop collaborative strategies for old problems or new projects on campus, including strategic planning and practical implementation. The SK meets at school every six to eight weeks.

Members of the School Conference (SK) in 2018-19:
Brian Salzer, Managing Director – American HS Principal
Racso Cortinas, American ES Principal (Alternate)
Jenny Hoenicke, German ES Principal
Steffen Schulz, Acting German HS Principal (Alternate)

Lars Bespolka, American Parent Rep
Kristen Winkler, American Parent Rep
Nelly Heidbrink, American Parent Rep (Alternate)
Kristina Pedersen, American Parent Rep (Alternate)
Stefan Berger, German Parent Rep
Marion Patt, German Parent Rep
Anja Hollmann, German Parent Rep (Alternate)
Kathrin Völkner, German Parent Rep (Alternate)

Elizabeth Hoedt (ES), American Teacher Rep
Liz Geary-Mueller (ES), American Teacher Rep (Alternate)
Anne de Tarr (HS), American Teacher Rep
Phil Blessman (HS), American Rep (Alternate)
Timm Jones (ES), German Teacher Rep
Malte Schröder (ES), German Teacher Rep (Alternate)
Gabi Jendretzki (HS), German Teacher Rep
Christian Neumann (HS), German Teacher Rep (Alternate)

Christine Cook, American Student Rep
Lars Brown-Heidenreich, American Student Rep
Emily Gschwind, American Student Rep (Alternate)
Emma Nathenson, American Student Rep (Alternate)
Isabel Tscherniak, German Student Rep
Johannes von Kleist, German Student Rep
Johanna Fietz, German Student Rep (Alternate)
Susanne Heidbrink, German Student Rep (Alternate)

Svetlana Ostojic, Hort Rep (permanent guest)

The John F. Kennedy Schule Trust Fund e.V.
The John F. Kennedy Schule Trust Fund e.V. is a non-profit organization founded in 1996 by an agreement between the Berlin Senat and the United States Embassy regarding the John F. Kennedy School. It is listed under VR 17709 B in the Registry of Associations (Vereinsregister) of the Berlin-Charlottenburg court. The Trust Fund supports the American program offered at JFKS by providing students and faculty with appropriate learning materials and support services similarly found in U.S. public schools but not otherwise provided by the Berlin Senate. Its sole income comes annually from U.S. Embassy contributions based on the number of U.S. Embassy students attending the JFKS.

The Trust Fund’s 2018/2019 General Membership consists of – and is limited to – the following nine members and meets annually in the fall:

  1. The United States of America (Represented by a member of the U.S. Embassy)  -Donna Edmonds
  1. The Land Berlin (Represented by a member of the Berlin Senate Department for Education) -Grit Orgis
  1. Three U.S. Embassy Representatives -Eric Flohr -Thomas FitzPatrick -Genevieve Libonati
  1. Two Principals of the JFKS -Brian L. Salzer -Racso Cortinas
  1. One U.S. and one German legal consultant -Thomas Jürgens (German) -NN (U.S.)

The Trust Fund’s Board of Directors consists of the following six general members and meets semiannually in the spring and fall:

  1. The United States of America (Represented by a member of the U.S. Embassy) -Donna Edmonds
  1. The Land Berlin (Represented by a member of the Berlin Senate Department for Education) -Grit Orgis
  1. Two U.S. Embassy Representatives -Eric Flohr -Thomas FitzPatrick
  1. Two Principals of the JFKS -Brian L. Salzer -Racso Cortinas

The Trust Fund has fiduciary responsibility for financial resources solely provided by the U.S. Embassy based on the number of U.S. Embassy students attending the JFKS in a given year. The amount of the contribution per student, paid by the U.S. Embassy, is based on comparable Berlin private school tuition expenses. All students enrolled at the JFKS benefit directly and/or indirectly from Trust Fund expenditures.

The Trust Fund expends the contributions, for the most part, throughout the designated school year, with any remaining funds rolling to the next year. All transactions are required to be reviewed and approved by two board members (a Principal and U.S. Embassy Board member).

The Trust Fund Budget is broken down into the following categories:

  1. Personnel – Both mini-job and part-time positions
  2. Elementary School materials, equipment, and supplies
  3. High School materials, equipment, and supplies
  4. Technology services, software, and equipment
  5. Extra-Curricular Programs – For example, the Trust Fund supports BERMUN, THIMUN, Odyssey of the Mind, as well as travel for teachers related to these programs and for the Texas Exchange, Ft. Collins Exchange, ISTA, and AMIS music festivals.
  6. School Publications/Advertisements
  7. Institutional Memberships- ECIS and NEASC
  8. Professional Development
  9. Recruitment of new U.S. teachers/administrators
  10. Administration – This includes expenses related to bookkeeping, annual audit, bank fees, translations and legal/consulting fees for the Trust Fund.

Per the original agreement, the Trust Fund is prohibited from using its resources for the purpose of capital improvements or facility repairs to the JFKS.

In addition, the John F. Kennedy School also receives funds from the U.S. Department of State’s Office of Overseas Schools (OOS) in Washington, which are deposited into the Trust Fund account. In the past, these funds have provided additional support for U.S. educational materials, professional development, recruitment, and students with special needs; however, the Trust Fund does not have fiduciary or budgetary responsibility for the OOS funds.

The Trust Fund is audited every year by a tax consulting firm located in Berlin. This firm prepares the annual financial statements and submits them to the Finanzamt in order for the Trust Fund to maintain its non-profit status.


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John F. Kennedy School

Teltower Damm 87-93
14167 Berlin, Germany

Elementary School (EC-6)

Phone: + 49 30 90299 5711
Fax: + 49 30 90299 6377

High School (7-12)

American Secretary:
+ 49 30 90299 5758
German Secretary:
+ 49 30 90299 5710
Fax: +49 30 90299 6868