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.
With our winter break here, now is a great time to pause and reflect on the first half of the year and all we have to be grateful for in Greendale. I’ve mentioned before how my positive first impressions of the Village of Greendale led me here. Greendale is a community where our youth are valued and education is paramount.
We are fortunate to have stakeholders who understand the importance of raising students to be competent and capable adults. Our schools use instructional resources to ensure our students have the tools they need to grow to responsible adults and critical thinkers. It is not an overstatement to say that Greendale cares about its youth. That caring and commitment makes Greendale a great place to be a kid and a great place to be an educator. I am fortunate to work with people who share the community’s commitment. Administrators, teachers, support staff, food service, and building maintenance all take great pride in the work they do and go above and beyond expectations to ensure their good work benefits the students.
Our students do well. Our staff is committed. Our administrators and teachers understand the need to keep academics at the forefront of every effort we undertake for students. That helps us to succeed.
As we enter 2014, we proceed in our work at each level. While our high school seniors await their final college decisions, our juniors are taking the ACT tests and the rest of our high schoolers continue the coursework required to earn their GHS diplomas. Our middle school teachers are pushing our youth and stretching them cognitively as they continue to grow physically and emotionally as well. And our elementary students are honing their math and literacy skills as teachers work to educate them while balancing the new and consistent push for standardized tests.
Surrounding ourselves with people who understand what and why and how we do the work we do, we can and will achieve. We will make Greendale proud.
Dr. John Tharp