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.
Greendale School District’s mission and vision includes developing students who are well rounded and knowledgeable. Our goal is to educate each student to reach his or her full potential by providing them with a wide variety of academic and co-curricular experiences.
While the state of Wisconsin and the federal government structures school report cards to measure schools and school districts largely based on math and reading scores, we want to do much more. There is no doubt that literacy and mathematics computation skills are important, however experience and research provides evidence that well-rounded students are better equipped for adulthood and the challenges of a career.
Greendale Schools’ strategic plan helps to guide the work of district personnel. Our community’s desire for its schools to cater to the unique needs of each student challenges us to personalize our educational experiences as much as possible to enable each student to fully develop.
Our community also values the arts. So in addition to daily reading and math instruction, Greendale students also receive an education in the fine arts. Arts education includes classes in art, band, chorus, orchestra, theatre and visual arts. Arts education enables students to think creatively and fully exposes them to abstract ways of thinking that strengthen cognitive processing overall.
Opportunities for arts education exist beyond the classroom in our greater community as well. The Greendale Community Theater, Park & Rec Department, Greendale Schools’ music and art educators, and opportunities outside of Greendale exist for our students. Check out my webpage on the district web site for links to additional enrichment offerings available to students as well.