Dr. John Tharp is superintendent of Greendale Schools. Dr. Tharp joined the district in August of 2012 and has 20 years of experience in public education. He previously served as an assistant superintendent in a large suburban district in Tennessee for two years. Prior to that, he was a high school principal, assistant principal, teacher, and coach. Dr. Tharp received his doctorate in educational leadership from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and was a James Madison Memorial Foundation Fellowship Award winner. He is the author of one book on school reform.
There are many points of pride for Greendale Schools that were identified in the data released with the recent Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (DPI) school report cards. Greendale School District received an Exceeds Expectations rating and ranked 28th in the state for overall student achievement, which puts us in the top 10 percent of school districts in the state.
The Greendale School District (GSD) ranked first in the state among Wisconsin school districts with 25 percent or more of students coming from families in poverty. This means that GSD does an excellent job of educating all of its students, making each student well qualified for college or a career when they graduate.
The report card takes into account a variety of factors, including achievement, student achievement growth from year to year, student attendance rates, test participation rates and sub-group academic performance. GSD ranked 70th overall in the state using those measures, out of 422 school districts. Links to the report cards are available on the District website at http://www.greendale.k12.wi.us/12-13/state-report-cards.html
This is year two of the school report card statewide accountability system and the first year for district report cards. The system was designed to comply with federal Race to the Top requirements and to inform the public about school district academic achievement as well as student academic growth. The accountability system is part of a package of educational reforms that also includes development of a new achievement test and new teacher and principal evaluation systems.
With so many changes on the horizon, Greendale Schools’ administration and staff are continuously working to review data that evaluates student growth, plan for future student needs, meet parent and community expectations, and manage state and federal requirements and standards. A tall order – YES! But there is really nothing more important than educating our youth and developing their potential as productive members of our global society!