Director, District Middle-Grades Reform Project
Room 019 Peabody Hall, CB#3500
UNC-Chapel Hill Chapel Hill NC 27599
(919) 962-3471, fax (919) 962-1533

Holly Hatch completed her Bachelor's degree in environmental science at Antioch College, and graduated from Antioch New England in 1975 with a Master of Science Teaching degree. For the past twenty years Hatch worked as a teacher, program developer, curriculum specialist, and advocate to improve the social and academic success of urban youth in at risk situations. Her first teaching assignment was at South Boston High School during the school desegregation. She helped design and became the teacher for an interdisciplinary semester course in marine science for South Boston High students, designed to ease racial tensions. The course culminated with a community service project and combined team building activities with core academics.

In 1980, at the request of a community task force to respond to racial tensions at Cambridge Rindge and Latin High School, Hatch developed, raised funds for, and directed a program for 10-to 14 year-olds from racially isolated schools. With a summer and school year component, the program brought together 370 students, parents, and teachers each year for classroom curriculum and field experiences to learn about each other's heritage and communities. The program was awarded the State Department of Education's Excellence in Multicultural Education Award.

Hatch next served as director of Education at Thompson Island Outward Bound Education Center in Boston, MA, serving over 15,000 adults and young people yearly. She directed programs in science education, leadership development, multicultural education, and a three-year residential summer program for at-risk middle school students, Island School.

For the past six years Hatch directed the Urban Youth Initiative and District Middle-Grades Education Reform Project at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She assisted seven urban school districts and twelve pilot schools engaged in improving student achievement at the middle-grades. In this position Hatch planned and delivered conferences, provided on-site consultation and training, and wrote a newsletter. Hatch developed an audit and self-study protocol of a district's leadership, support, and accountability mechanisms for middle-grades education.

Hatch consults nationally to improve middle-grades education. She serves on the Board of the National Middle School Association and chairs the Urban Issues Committee. As part of the National Staff Development Council task force, Hatch cowrote the Staff Development Standards for Middle Grades Education. For the past year she provided staff support and leadership for the North Carolina Middle-Grades Advocacy Council.

In addition to her professional activities, Hatch is an active community volunteer. She helped found Centro Presente, a service center for immigrants from Latin America. She worked with Legal Action for Abused Women and volunteered at Transition House, a shelter for battered women. She has worked as a precinct, city, and congressional district coordinator for local and national elections. Hatch is currently an active member of the Piedmont Appalachian Trail Hikers trail maintenance committee. She is active in the NC-CH Graduate Student Association, and serves on the research committee to the Professional Development Schools Initiative.

Through her doctoral studies in Educational Leadership, Hatch plans to reexamine her mid-career direction and further her leadership skills. She hopes to increase the effectiveness of her work to improve the educational opportunity and achievement for children in need in North Carolina and nationally. She is particularly interested in collaborative models of leadership, and the district and state policy context that supports school improvement for children in poverty.