Are you passionate about teaching and using school gardens as a learning laboratory for students with special needs? The Santa Clara County Office of Education (SCCOE) Special Education Department is looking for two emerging education professionals who share this passion to join our cohort of Climate Corps Fellows. We’re looking for skillful, energetic folks with a resilient mindset and a commitment to equity and social justice. We’re looking for independent problem-solvers who also value collaboration and teamwork. Most of all, we’re looking for dynamic, bright people who are ready to dedicate 9 months towards advancing science and environmental education for students with special needs in Santa Clara County public schools.
As a Special Needs Garden Educator you will:
- Help launch and develop the garden education program for special needs students at 1-2 school sites in San Jose
- Prepare for and teach multiple garden lessons per day to various grade and ability levels of special needs students at 1-2 school sites
- Adapt or modify lessons to meet individual student needs in areas including communication and mobility
- Utilize assistive technology, alternative and augmentative communication tools to support students and staff
- Build, maintain, and grow an effective, inviting, and productive garden classroom at 1-2 school sites
- Coordinate volunteer engagement opportunities at 1-2 school sites
- Create a safe and positive outdoor classroom culture
- Apply equity and anti-racist lenses to all teaching and learning with students
- Coordinate harvesting, cooking, and eating in the garden with students
- Facilitate sustainability projects and learning opportunities on campus and in their community
- Build strong relationships with community members in order to serve the needs of the school and students
- Coordinate with staff at SCCOE Special Education Department and at SEI to launch and develop garden education program
About Climate Corps Education Outside
Climate Corps Education Outside (CCEO) is a 9 month AmeriCorps Fellowship program that offers emerging science and climate protection educators and leaders unparalleled professional development and training as they drive cutting-edge environmental solutions and advance science education in public schools, outdoors. We transform school gardens into lush, living laboratories, and use these laboratories to activate student learning. Climate Corps Education Outside engages our AmeriCorps cohort to bring this service to 13,000 students in the Bay Area.
The Climate Corps Education Outside (CCEO) program serves public elementary schools and garden-based education providers in San Francisco, San Mateo County, Alameda County, and Santa Cruz. As a CCEO Fellow, you will lead garden-based science and environmental literacy education at a school for 9 months and work with students in grades K-5, serving a high percentage of low-income children and many English-language learners. CCEO fellows must be committed to social justice and have cultivated or be willing to cultivate cultural competence and humility. While the field of environmental education has a long way to go, we strive toward an anti-racist future for our program, Fellows, schools, and students.
The position will begin in late September. While this is a one-year commitment, we strive to maintain consistency for our school sites and prioritize applicants who can make a 2-year commitment to their schools. During the school year, Mondays through Thursdays are dedicated to teaching in the outdoor classroom at your school site and guiding science, sustainability, and other efforts with the community. Two Fridays a month are designated for professional development.
As a Climate Corps Education Outside Fellow you will:
-Prepare for and teach multiple lessons per day to various grade levels
-Create a safe and positive outdoor classroom culture
-Apply equity and anti-racist lenses to all teaching and learning with students
-Coordinate harvesting, cooking, and eating in the garden with students
-Facilitate out-of-class opportunities for students to connect to the natural world (e.g. after school programs, recess activities, student green team, field trips, etc.)
-Facilitate sustainability projects and learning opportunities on campus and in their community
-Build strong relationships with community members in order to serve the needs of the school and students
-Collaborate with their school community to maintain and improve the school garden
-Engage in grant writing and fundraising to support garden infrastructure improvements and purchase garden and instructional materials and supplies
Climate Corps Education Outside Fellow Commitment
Participation in one National Day of Service
Active participation in ongoing meetings and professional development with the Climate Corps cohort of emerging education and sustainability professionals
AmeriCorps members must:
-Have ability to work in the US
-Have a high school diploma/GED
-Be 17 years old or older
-Pass state criminal and FBI background checks
-Be negative for tuberculosis
-Be able and willing to commit to the 9-month service term
-A commitment to Climate Corps Education Outside’s mission and vision
-A commitment to social justice
-College degree or equivalent experience
-Experience prioritizing and managing projects
-Experience teaching and working with groups of students (especially ages 5-12) outdoors
-Experience working with children and adults from diverse backgrounds
-Experience with gardening or farming
-The ability to thrive in an environment characterized by significant growth, ambiguity, and constant change
-The ability to self-direct and successfully juggle many tasks at once, shifting from one situation or task to another fluidly
-Strong organizational skills and attention to detail
-Strong interpersonal, written, and verbal communication skills
-Comfort speaking in front of students and working with groups
-Ability to be responsive to email, phone calls, and other means of communication
-Ability to live frugally with the modest AmeriCorps financial stipend.
-Competency in Spanish or Chinese is a plus, but not required
You will receive a living allowance stipend of $2,255 per month and a projected AmeriCorps end of program education award of $4441.50, subject to final budget appropriation. At the end of the 9-month service term, the total stipend received will be approximately $20,295 (depending on official start date). You will also be eligible to enroll in SEIs Kaiser Premium healthcare plan at no cost.
SEI requires all employees to be Vaccinated against COVID-19.
SEI is proud to be an equal opportunity employer and is committed to promoting diversity, inclusion, and equity. We believe that a wide array of perspectives contributes to creative climate solutions where all communities thrive. We strive to reflect diverse communities, especially those most impacted by climate change and other kinds of environmental, social, and economic injustices. Persons of color, persons with disabilities, and members of the LGBTQ community are strongly encouraged to apply. A commitment to work and learn within an anti-oppression framework is required. https://www.seiinc.org/dei.html