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  • Writer's pictureDr. J

Holly Walsh is incoming Head of School!

We’d like to welcome Holly Walsh as the incoming Head of School at Wildwood Academy for the 2021/22 school year!

A little bit about Holly:

For the past 17 years, Holly has enjoyed teaching 8th grade English at Catlin Gabel School in Portland. She is currently serving as their “Teacher Leader” for grades 6-12 English and has co-led global learning trips to Costa Rica. Holly also worked to design interdisciplinary curriculum for the school and has brought visiting authors and artists as part of their Distinguished Arts and Lecture series.

In addition to teaching in a classroom setting, Holly has co-led outdoor trips with Catlin Gabel, was a lead instructor at Austin Nature and Science Center, and led backpacking trips for students with Adventures Cross Country, located in the Bay Area. Holly also taught middle school English, US civics, and art at an inner-city school in Chicago; she has taught English, US history, and drama to elementary and middle school students at The International School of the Peninsula in Palo Alto; and she taught high school English near Burlington, Vermont.

As well as the role of Head of School, Holly will design and teach our English program and continue to build the Wildwood writing program into one of the best.

She shares our original vision for Wildwood Academy, which is an emphasis on outdoor place-based curriculum. To help achieve this, for 2021/22, we will be purchasing two additional 15 passenger vans, so the school can be truly “mobile” with the goal of spending half of each week in a mix of nature and cultural activities that are outside of the classroom. The expansive beauty of the Gorge is our campus and we plan to get out in it as much as possible to explore, discover, hike, climb, build, paint, draw, ponder, be curious, invent, write, read, dream, sail, snowshoe, sled, make snow caves, and, most importantly, play, as much as possible.

I think we can all agree that after the last 12 months of a global pandemic, our kids will thrive with more time OUTSIDE, off screens, and in nature. Let’s lean into that, and see what is possible.

We completely understand there will be a lot of interest and curiosity regarding the changes for the 2021/22 school year. We will be reaching out over the coming weeks and months with announcements to answer your questions pertaining to staff, curriculum, school schedule, class size, enrollment, and exciting partnerships that are in the discussion phase right now.

In the meantime, Holly put together a welcome video you can view by clicking HERE!

Please contact me with any questions at You can also

contact Holly directly at

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