2019-20 ESY Site Gardener (part time)

Location: FirstLine K-8th Grade Schools


About FirstLine Schools

In 1998, FirstLine Schools started the first charter school in New Orleans. FirstLine now operates five PreK-8th grade schools.  Our mission is to create and inspire great open admissions public schools in New Orleans.

Our faculty is a diverse and talented group dedicated to our students’ success and to their own growth as teachers.  Our schools are led by leaders who hold themselves accountable for student achievement and teacher development.



Founded in 2006, Edible Schoolyard New Orleans (ESYNOLA) envisions generations of New Orleans children who have healthy relationships with food, the natural world, themselves, and their community.  ESYNOLA's mission is to teach children to make healthy connections through food.  Our goal is to improve the long-term well being of our students, families, and school community, by integrating hands-on organic gardening and seasonal cooking into the school curriculum, culture, and cafeteria programs.


We believe that:

  • Food education should be taught in conjunction with core academics
  • Children learn by doing
  • Health and wellness contribute to the success of the whole child
  • Beauty is the language of caring
  • Local farms and sustainable farming practices are vital
  • School food reform is an integral part of the education we offer our students
  • Families and communities are integral to our success


Position Summary

The role of the Site Gardener is to support the Garden Teaching Team at a FirstLine school with physical gardening tasks.  While this work is often conducted within an outdoor teaching environment the Site Gardener role strictly concerns the maintenance of the garden and storage spaces.  The Site Gardener is a part-time role.  On occasion, Saturday mornings are occasionally required a few times annually to support community volunteer days. This position is designed for those planning to develop a career in urban agriculture, landscape design, or landscape maintenance.


Position Responsibilities:

  • Works alongside the Network Garden Manager and Lead Garden Educator to maintain all functions of the gardens
  • Directly assists in the planning, planting, harvest, and maintenance of the gardens
  • Maintains outdoor garden and storage spaces
  • Carries out daily gardening tasks independently
  • Prepares the garden for daily visitors as well as special events, ensuring that the garden and surrounding are well maintained, that the plants and collections are healthy, and that the garden is safe and attractive for the public
  • Performs and supports horticultural practices that encourage overall plant health and soil nutrition, to include sustainable gardening and integrated pest management practices
  • Maintains horticultural tools and equipment
  • Maintains records of work, garden maintenance, and plant health as required
  • Alerts Network Garden Manager to garden problems, and handles pest outbreaks, wasps, etc.
  • Removes dead plant material and weeds from the garden to compost/dump
  • Weeds all garden areas and removes debris from garden
  • Manages weekly garden volunteers and co-manages volunteer groups
  • Attends seasonal team trainings and professional development workshops
  • Works occasional Open Garden Days on Saturdays and the annual An Edible Evening Fundraising Event


Education & Experience:

  • High school diploma
  • Prior farming and/or gardening experience required
  • Experience with irrigation is a plus, but not required
  • Good sense of humor and positive rapport with kids
  • Belief in FirstLine’s mission and vision
  • Passionate interest in urban gardening and agriculture
  • Dedicated to working hard and receiving feedback
  • Excitement to learn through direct experience
  • Great attitude in the heat and cold weather


Desired Qualities & Characteristics:

  • Believe in every student’s ability to achieve in a rigorous college or career prep curriculum
  • Achieve results based on agreed-upon expectations
  • Take personal responsibility
  • Highly detail-oriented
  • Collaborate effectively with a range of stakeholders
  • Share a commitment to creating great schools in New Orleans
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills
  • Model the FirstLine values of Service, Learning, Collaboration and Results


Physical Requirements:


  • Ability to lift, push and/or pull objects, which may be approximately 50 pounds.
  • While performing the duties of this job, the employee may be required to sit, walk, stand, talk, and hear.


How to Apply : Please apply online via: http://www.firstlineschools.org/careers


FirstLine Schools provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability, genetic information, marital status, amnesty, or status as a covered veteran in accordance with applicable federal, state and local laws.


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