Currently there are no news items.

Extended Leadership Team

Head of School, Petra Palenzatis,OStD

A short biography will be published here soon.

Email of the Executive Assistant to the Head of School:
Email of the Executive Assistant to the Head of School: 301.767.3808

Deputy Head of School, Juergen Sarpe, StD

Jürgen Sarpe was born in Gelsenkirchen in 1957 and grew up in Dülmen, Münsterland (Western region of Germany) where he graduated from High School. Following his military service, he studied History and Mathematics at the Wilhelms University in Münster.

After the traineeship period as a teacher, he started out teaching part-time at the Leibniz High School in Dortmund while simultaneously teaching foreign high school students at Universities in Münster and Coesfeld. In 1988 he was given the status of civil servant and fulfilled a variety of teaching and managing functions in the following years, mainly at the Joseph-König High School in Haltern.

From 2005 – 2008, he taught at the German School Corcovado in Rio de Janeiro, where he also assumed the responsibilities of the Middle School Coordinator.

Before joining the DSW in August 2013 as the Deputy Head of School, Mr. Sarpe was holding this office for two years at the Theodor-Heuss High School in Waltrop.

Phone: 301.767.3804

Principal of the Elementary School, Monika Rodrigues

Mrs. Rodrigues is the principal of the Elementary School since 2011/12 and has been the Deputy Principal of the Elementary School from 2007 until 2011. From 2003 until 2007 she was responsible for the coordination between the Elementary School and the Orientation Level.

Since 1997 she is a full-time teacher at the Elementary School of the German School Washington, D.C. She is a graduate from the Pedagogical College in Vienna, Austria, with specialization in Elementary Schools Education and an advanced degree in Pedagogy.

Phone: 301.767.3827

Deputy Principal of the Elementary School, Britta Scholl

Mrs. Britta Scholl started teaching in 1998. She worked as a teacher and Deputy Principal in Lower Saxony and Bremen, Germany, before continuing her work at the German School Washington D.C.  Over the past years she was Head of the German Language Department  and the Sports Department of the Elementary School, she coordinated the cooperation between the Elementary School and Grade 5 and organized the fundraiser “Sponsorenlauf”.

Mrs. Scholl received her Masters of Arts in Education from the Carl-von-Ossietzky University in Oldenburg and the teacher training college in Verden, Germany.

Phone: 301.767.3849

Principal of the Preschool, Mojdeh Khojasteh

Since 2008 Ms. Khojasteh is the principal of the preschool at the German School Washington, D.C. She has graduated in psychology and education and is currently pursuing her Ph.D in business. Ms. Khojasteh opened a preschool in Germany and has worked in several private and public schools all over Europe and in the US. She is a volunteer for a variety of child- and youth organizations.

Phone: 301.767.3838

Principal of the German Language School Washington D.C., Kerstin Hopkins

Kerstin Hopkins has been the principal of the German Language School (DSSW) since 1995. 500 students are learning the German language on Saturdays and Wednesdays. The DSSW is the testing center for the exam for the German language diploma issued by the Ministry of Education (KMK). The language school offers classes for all ages and levels.

phone: 301.767.3824

High School Coordinator (grades 10/11/12), Rainer Tack, OStR

Since August 2016, Rainer Tack teaches the subjects Music and Physical Education at the German School Washington D.C.. He is also the Coordinator for grades 10 through 12.

After graduating from the Ostendorfgymnasium Lippstadt, he studied the subjects Music and Physical Education from 1994 until 2002 at Dortmund University. After his studies, he completed his teacher training at the Landrat-Lucas Gymnasium in Leverkusen. The following 12 years, he worked at a comprehensive school in Bergheim, where he was teaching Physical Education and was instrumental in shaping and coordinating the Department for Arts, Music and Theater.  During that time he paid particular attention to creating a more open school through cooperating with non-scholastic partners.

Mr. Tack completed a number of professional development courses that also certify him to teach drama.    

Phone: 301.767.3803

Coordinator of grades 7/8/9, Marc Aurel Löckmann

Marc Aurel Löckmann is teaching Mathematics and Latin at the German School in Washington D.C. since August 2015. Further, he is the Coordinator for all academic matters concerning grades 7 through 9.

Having completed his school career with the Abitur, Latinum, Graecum and Hebraicum at the Schiller-Gymnasium in Münster in 1993, he began to study Mathematics, Latin and Greek at the University in Münster. In 1999, he graduated with a teaching degree and started his teacher’s traineeship at the Helmholtz-Gymnasium in Bonn where he continued to work for the following 13 years. During this time period, he exercised a variety special functions, such as guidance teacher, member of the Teachers’ Council, Head of the Mathematics and Latin departments, supervisor for teachers in training and Coordinator for grades 5 and 6. From January through August 2015, Mr. Löckmann was the Coordinator for grades 5 and 6 at the Freiherr-vom-Stein-Gymnasium in Rösrath.

In addition to his commitment in K through 12, he officiated as an examiner for qualifications in Latin (university students) at the District Council Cologne and a juror for the Federal Foreign Languages Competition in Latin and ancient Greek.


Coordinator of grades 5/6, Antje Linnenbrink

Mrs. Linnenbrink teaches protestant Religion and Music at the German School Washington. In 2003, after studying in  Nordrhein-Westfalia and teaching in Bavaria she moved to Washington D.C. and started working at the German School. In addition to teaching, she is also the coordinator for grades 5 through 9 and for the Realschüler through tenth grade.


Coordinator of the School Entry Level, Dörte Hardage

Dörte Hardage has been teaching at the German School since the school year 2007/08. She is the coordinator of the School Entry Level, the representative of the SEL within the cooperation between Preschool, SEL and 1./2. Grades and she is a SEL classroom teacher.

After studying English and Social Sciences at the University of Bonn to teach grades 11,12, and 13 in the German school system, Ms.Hardage worked as a Program Director for German and American Civic Education Foundations until 1998. Ms. Hardage moved to Washington D.C. in 1990. After additional studies in Early Childhood Education, Ms. Hardage has been primarily teaching SEL- age children. She lives in Arlington, Virginia with her husband and her three children.


Counselor, Klara A. Fabina, M.Ed.

Klara Fabina has been working at the German School Washington since the year 2000. She had graduated from the German School Washington and received her Bachelor and Master of Education in School Counseling from the University of Maryland, College Park. The main goal of the counseling program is, to create an environment, which will foster and support the students’ psychological and physical needs. Klara Fabina is at the school Mondays to Fridays from 8:00 am to 3:00 pm. Appointments can be arranged by email or phone.

phone: 301.767.3805


The German School Washington stays in touch with its alumni around the globe and is very proud of their achievements.

Are you an alum?


Founded in 1969 and run solely by parent volunteers, this group raises funds to benefit the German School Washington.

Learn more about the Friends