Patch will post profiles on each candidate running for school board in alphabetical order by last name.
JAMES GREENHALGH, 43, a Horsham resident since 2005, holds a Bachelors degree from Mount Saint Mary's University in Emmitsburg, Md. He serves on the parks and recreation board for Horsham Township and is a volunteer coach for the Hatboro-Horsham High School golf team and previously served on the Kohler Park commission.
What best qualifies you for a term on the Hatboro-Horsham School Board?
The next several years will be critical in determining the direction our community takes. With our school district being one of the main contributing factors in the success we have as a community, I want to be involved in ensuring our schools remain competitive and tax dollars are responsibly utilized.
What do you see as the big issues facing the district?
The issue of special needs students and No Child Left Behind. Competitiveness with surrounding districts. Offering opportunities to honor students while challenging students that aren't in advanced classes. And finally is the issue of facilities. With our buildings becoming older, the question will be what to do in the future.
If elected, how would you work to handle those issues?The current school board and administration are doing an excellent job addressing these issues in a fiscally responsible manner in conjunction with the teachers and school community. I would work towards more involvement with the corporations and companies to form mutually beneficial partnerships and help to improve opportunities for all.
The appearance of nepotism seems to have been at play in at least one recent district hiring. How would you work to find and consider the best candidates?
My belief in hiring is to find the most qualified candidates, interview them and hire the best person for the job.
Should the district enact anti-nepotism legislation? Why or why not?
The last thing any community or organization should do is limit the choices for hiring the best candidate.
What’s your vision for the new Hallowell Elementary School?
The new Hallowell school gives the school district a unique opportunity to create a blueprint for future projects. In working with the state and accessing additional funds for a "green facility" the school district successfully partnered in working towards a top notch facility and limiting the financial burden on taxpayers.
Should the district relocate students from under-utilized schools to the new school, or maintain the same number of elementary schools?
One of the strengths of Hatboro-Horsham school district is the diversity in the community and the schools. I would not want to see a reduction in the number of schools and would look to optimize the schools we have.
Anything else you’d like to add?
A question I have been asked is why would I run for school board. Our schools are and will continue to be one of the main factors to Hatboro-Horsham being one of the top places to live. Along with our parks, neighborhoods, our schools make up our community.