Salary: £25,000 - £29,000 per annum dependent on qualifications & experience

Position: Full Time (37.5 hours per week)

Positions available: 1

Closing date: 31st August 2024

Forest School Leader

We are looking for a skilled, experienced, and enthusiastic Level 3 Forest School Practitioner to deliver the Forest School programme alongside the current Forest School team. The practitioner will be self-motivated and a good communicator, able to confidently liaise with our school and engage groups of children ranging in age from 7 to 16. We are now looking for the right person to join our friendly team.

Channels & Choices is an award winning, dynamic company specialising in children’s residential care, Fostering and Education based in Southeast Kent. OFSTED judge our services as ‘Good’ or ‘Outstanding’.

Channels and Choices specialise in working with children who have experienced trauma, most will have attachment difficulties.  We create a secure base for all the children in our care and we focus on achieving seamless transitions so that children can be part of a loving and nurturing family.

The post is Maternity Cover (potential to lead to a permanent position), full time 37.5 hours and is based within our Education team in South East Kent. We offer a competitive salary range of £25,000 – £29,000 per annum. Further benefits include 36 days paid annual leave per year and a loyalty scheme which rewards you with extra annual leave following 2 years of service.

Additional Perks, Rewards and Benefits

  • Private Optical, Dental and Audiological cover
  • Private Medical care
  • Loyalty scheme which rewards you with extra annual leave following 2 years of service, up to 5 extra days.
  • Long service awards for 5-, 10- and 15-years’ service
  • Regular team building days, parties, meals and more!
  • Complimentary health and wellbeing support with our employee’s assistance programme
  • Full Training Package

JOB DESCRIPTION – Forest School Assistant

Areas of Responsibility and Key Tasks 

  • To work under the instruction/guidance of the Forest School manager to undertake work/care/support programmes to enable access to learning for children.
  • Supervise and provide support for pupils, ensuring their safety and access to learning activities.
  • To be aware of children’s risk assessments and management plans and to contribute to their development and to carry them out appropriately.
  • Establish constructive relationships with children, acting as a role model and being aware of and responding/interacting appropriately to individual needs.
  • Promote the inclusion and acceptance of all children.
  • Encourage children to interact with each other and engage in activities led by the Forest School team.
  • Encourage children to act independently as appropriate.
  • Provide feedback to children and parents/carers in relation to progress and achievement under guidance of the Forest School manager and relevant to the targeted learning or behaviour progress desired.
  • Create and maintain a purposeful, orderly, and supportive environment, in accordance with plans.
  • Use strategies, in liaison with the Forest School team to support children manage their own risks.
  • Be aware of children’s problems/progress/achievements and report to the Forest School manager as agreed.
  • Support the Forest School team in managing children’s behaviour, reporting difficulties as appropriate. Promote good behaviour, dealing promptly with conflict and incidents in with established policy and encourage children to take responsibility for their own behaviour.
  • Establish constructive relationships with parents/carers. Gather/report information from/to parents/carers as directed.
  • Undertake structured and agreed learning activities/teaching programmes, adjusting activities according to children’s responses in the moment.
  • Be aware of the content of plans prepared by the Forest School team to support learning within the group. To contribute to the general planning process.
  • Be aware of, support and comply with all policies, guidance, and procedures, having special regard to child protection, health and safety and security, confidentiality and GDPR, reporting all concerns to an appropriate person.
  • Be aware of and support difference and ensure all children have equal access to opportunities to learn and develop.
  • Appreciate and support the role of other professionals.
  • Contributing to the planning and delivery of daily activities within Forest School
  • Ensuring relevant equipment and kit is ready for the beginning of each Forest School session.
  • Monitoring the standard and condition of kit, informing the Forest School manager when items need replacing or repairing.
  • Contributing to the observations and assessments of pupil learning within Forest School.
  • Participating enthusiastically and embrace the Forest School ethos in Forest School sessions.
  • To participate in training and other learning activities/meetings as required.
  • To administer basic first aid as the need arises.
  • To observe confidentiality at all times.
  • To undertake any duties of an appropriate nature as may be reasonably required by the Forest School manager.

Whilst every effort has been made to explain the main duties and responsibilities of the post, each individual task undertaken may not be identified.

Person Specification

Qualifications (Essential)

  • A good general education
  • Level 3 Forest School Leader diploma

Qualifications (Desirable)

  • GCSE English and Maths and good ICT skills. The ability to use other technology as required.
  • Child protection training.
  • Outdoor first aid

Skills & Knowledge (Essential)

  • Effective communication skills: written and verbal skills. Able to communicate effectively with a range of people in a variety of contexts.
  • Possesses the resilience and stamina required to cope with the demands of the post. Able to take part in all school activities and to safely apply restrictive physical interventions when necessary.
  • Punctual and organised

Skills & Knowledge (Desirable) 

  • Experience of participating in Forest School.
  • Experience with SEN/SEMH Children.
  • Experience of working in a school environment
  • Recent appropriate professional development in areas relevant to the post.
  • Have attended relevant training and have experience of successfully applying sound safeguarding policies.

Personal Qualities and Attributes (Essential)

  • Shows initiative and a positive, flexible response to change.
  • Able to accommodate the changing needs of the Forest School and Children.
  • Able to manage own work/development when necessary.
  • High standards of personal presentation and courtesy. Hold positive values and attributes and communicate these through own high standards of behaviour.
  • Enjoy working with children (primary and secondary age) from a range of backgrounds and commitment to supporting their physical, social, and emotional development through forest school activities.
  • Professional credibility & Commitment to equal opportunities and valuing diversity
  • Have a commitment to safeguarding in the context of a school.
  • A well-rounded sense of humour
  • Team player with good interpersonal skills who is willing and able to work collaboratively with others. Friendly and approachable, good listener, confident and positive.

Additional (Essential)

  • Full UK driving licence and own transport

We have a strong commitment to staff development and there will be considerable opportunities for internal and external training and for sharing good practice within the community.

Channels and Choices are committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of the young people in our care.  Staff are all required to adhere to the organisation’s Safeguarding Policies and Procedures.  This post will be subject to a clear Enhanced DBS Disclosure, an employment background check, satisfactory references & verification of a right to work in the UK.  As part of our commitment to Safer Recruitment, CV’s cannot be considered without a completed application form.

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