Name of Organisation: Heath Mount School

Position being advertised: Forest School Practitioner

Closing date for applications: 03/11/2017

Location: Hertfordshire

Explain how applicants should apply: Application forms can be downloaded from https://www.heathmount.org/school-careers/ or call 01920 830230

Application forms should be returned to hr@heathmount.org

Job description:  Forest School Practitioner

Job Outline: A full or part-time Forest School Practitioner (term time only plus inset days) to lead the delivery of inspirational Forest School sessions and outdoor learning to EYFS, KS1 and lower KS2 in our Forest School and woodland setting. Our Forest School has been an established part of the School for 4 years.  The successful candidate will also be required to develop our Forest School offering further, working with staff across the school to ensure our beautiful woodland space is utilised as fully as possible.

Accountable: Reporting to the Head of Pre-Prep.

Main responsibilities  

  • Plan, prepare and deliver varied and innovative Forest School and outdoor education sessions from EYFS to lower KS2, working with class teachers to align with and enhance the delivery of the curriculum where possible.
  • Select and use a wide range of different resources and teaching styles, appropriate to the Forest School experience.
  • Supervise, observe, mentor and support children when out in Forest School.
  • To be responsible for high standards of care and education within the Forest School environment in accordance with Forest School procedures, best practice and any legislative requirements.
  • Produce half-termly overviews and daily plans to evidence themes, aims and objectives of the Forest School and outdoor learning sessions.
  • Record observations on development and progress of children, to be included in Learning Journals where appropriate.
  • Plan resources, both for the longer term and on a daily basis for each Forest School session, ordering and maintaining equipment and resources.
  • Work with parent volunteers to plan and run the RHS Gardening in Schools Level 3 School Gardening Club for Years 1 and 2. This runs on 3 lunchtimes a week from the early spring to early winter.
  • Promote the Forest School and outdoor learning ethos both within the School and explore opportunities to promote it to prospective parents and the wider community.
  • Provide advice and assistance to the Senior Management Team with the preparation and implementation of strategies to expand the benefit of the Forest School resource to the wider school community and to coordinate with the overall outdoor learning strategy. This could include: (1) exploring how the space can be used for the Year 7 and 8 Leadership Programme and peer mentoring opportunities; (2) considering how the Forest School resource could be utilised by others in relation to delivering the curriculum, extra-curricular activities, promoting sustainability and supporting the wellbeing of the children.
  • Assist with strategic planning and communications. The successful candidate will be expected to contribute to any longer term plans and proposals to use and develop the Forest School resource and explore opportunities for accreditation, awards and schemes. They will also be required to assist in the promotion of our Forest School, for example, via our newsletter and website.
  • Adhere to all relevant school policies and procedures.
  • Prepare, maintain and make staff aware of the relevant Risk Assessments in-line with the School’s Health and Safety policies and procedures.
  • Advise and support the School in maintaining the Forest School area, liaising with our grounds team.
  • Continue with professional development qualifications and courses, disseminating knowledge to the team as appropriate.
  • Administer first aid where appropriate.

Qualifications

  • Level 3 Forest School qualification.
  • ITC First Aid qualification (outdoor first aid certificate).
  • NVQ level 3 childcare qualification, desirable.

Skills and Experience 

  • A highly skilled Forest School Practitioner with a passion for working outdoors and desire to share that passion with others.
  • A secure understanding of the Forest School ethos coupled with an ability to apply this throughout all working practices, both with children and staff.
  • Knowledge, understanding and practical experience of Forest School provision for young children.
  • Knowledge, understanding and experience of sustainable woodland management and education within the outdoor environment.
  • Excellent interpersonal and organisational skills. The successful candidate will possess an ability to communicate with staff at all levels and enthuse and motivate the children.
  • A flexible and proactive work ethic and positive attitude.
  • An ability to work independently and manage own time efficiently along with a commitment to working as part of a team.
  • An ability to create and implement systems for recording the development and progress of children.

Working Hours: Full or part time considered, term time only plus inset and open days.

Other Duties: The duties and responsibilities in this job description are not restrictive and the post holder may be required to undertake any other duties which may be required from time to time.  However, any such duties should not substantially change the general character of the job.

Salary and Conditions: Salary dependent on qualifications and experience.

Heath Mount School is committed to protecting the well-being of its pupils through safe recruiting practices. As a result, the successful candidate will be required to undertake an enhanced DBS disclosure check and appropriate child protection screening, including checks with past employers on the candidate’s suitability to work with children. They must also be medically fit to undertake the post.

All posts are subject to the terms and conditions as laid out in the contract of employment issued by Heath Mount School Trust.

Equal Opportunities: The post holder must carry out his or her duties with full regard to the School’s Equal Opportunities Policy.

Health and Safety: The successful candidate must carry out his / her duties with full regard to the School’s Health and Safety policy and procedures.

Safeguarding:   The post holder’s responsibility for promoting and safeguarding the welfare of children and young persons for whom s/he is responsible, or with whom s/he comes into contact will be to adhere to and ensure compliance with the School’s Child Protection and Safeguarding policy at all times.  If in the course of carrying out the duties of the post, the post holder becomes aware of any actual or potential risks to the safety or welfare of children in the school s/he must report any concerns to the School’s Designated Safeguarding Lead or in his absence, one of the Deputy Designated Safeguarding Leads.

Person specification : Level 3 Forest School qualification.

  • ITC First Aid qualification (outdoor first aid certificate).
  • NVQ level 3 childcare qualification, desirable.
  • A highly skilled Forest School Practitioner with a passion for working outdoors and desire to share that passion with others.
  • A secure understanding of the Forest School ethos coupled with an ability to apply this throughout all working practices, both with children and staff.
  • Knowledge, understanding and practical experience of Forest School provision for young children.
  • Knowledge, understanding and experience of sustainable woodland management and education within the outdoor environment.
  • Excellent interpersonal and organisational skills. The successful candidate will possess an ability to communicate with staff at all levels and enthuse and motivate the children.
  • A flexible and proactive work ethic and positive attitude.
  • An ability to work independently and manage own time efficiently along with a commitment to working as part of a team.
  • An ability to create and implement systems for recording the development and progress of children.
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