Chris Holmes


Chris Holmes, M.Ed., Educator, Researcher

Opening Presentation:  “Backtracking Apathy: A Road Map to Understanding Academic Disengagement Among Teens”
Breakout Presentation
:  “The Relevance of Introspection, Perception, Motivation and Self-Conception to Learning and Well-Being”


Trained as a journalism teacher, Chris Holmes helped establish a dropout prevention program at a large, suburban high school  and the state’s first private, non-denominational high school for students with learning disabilities. After nearly two decades teaching a variety of adolescents—those at risk of dropping out, kids struggling with social and learning challenges, and scholars gifted with exceptional intellect—Chris Holmes realized they all had one thing in common: an element of apathy preventing them from fully engaging in the learning process. In 2018, he launched a project to identify the roots of student apathy and to learn what schools could do to minimize it. His phenomenological research study, in-depth interviews with dozens of teenagers throughout the country, is shedding light on how to maximize student engagement, learning, and well-being. Every June, Holmes moves to the University of Missouri campus to teach at a residential academy for gifted high school students. Chris is a two time former Teacher-of-the-Year in the state of Missouri.                                              

Video: See Chris Holmes in action    

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