• Full Time
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Website Bishop O'Dowd High School

High School Ecological Gardener (Full Time)


Bishop O’Dowd Mission/Charism
Mission: Bishop O’Dowd High School is a Catholic college-preparatory community, guided by the teachings of Jesus Christ, that educates its diverse student body to build a more just, joyful and sustainable world.

Finding God In All Things Calls Us to: Community in Diversity
Strength of Character
Academic Excellence
Kinship With Creation
Social Justice

Job Summary

Reporting: This is a full-time, 12-month, hourly position with benefits that reports to the Lead Gardener. This position has some weekend and after hours responsibilities.

Living Lab Care – 80% of Responsibilities

Under the direction of the Lead Gardener, assist with care-taking of the grounds and infrastructure of the Living Lab, a four-acre (and growing) garden and outdoor classroom. The Living Lab is a dynamic model of environmental restoration, ecological agriculture, and sustainable systems, with the mission to inspire and engage students and community members to become stewards of the natural world and leaders in a sustainable future. Responsibilities of this position include the following:

Collaborate weekly with Creation Care Team to plan and prioritize maintenance that supports the mission and educational and community engagement programming.
Record and manage tasks via the Living Lab Project Procedures: Checklist and Proposals.
Follow safety guidelines, routines, and procedures as outlined by the school to create a safe and efficient work flow.
Maintain the Living Lab, under guidance of Lead Gardener and in consultation with other members of Creation Care Team. This may include some or all of the following critical tasks/processes are critical to maintaining the lab (in the appropriate seasons):
Maintaining the irrigation systems, health of ecosystems (including pond), native planting, and trails
Managing compost and worm bin systems
Assisting the Eco-Agriculturalist periodically with the edible garden, orchard, and domestic animals
Managing/controlling invasive species and fungi using Integrated Pest Management (IPM) techniques within the guidelines of the CA Healthy Schools Act
Managing vegetation for fire safety, removing dead material, etc.
Hardscaping projects (i.e building retaining walls, installing french drains, etc)


Educational & Community Engagement Programs – 15% of Responsibilities

Provide Occasional and Limited  Support as a Living Lab Garden Educator for small groups of students while leading them in an outdoor garden activity.the following curricular and co-curricular educational programs:

Lessons in the Lab: O’Dowd Curriculum (i.e. science and religion classes) and providing gardening/ecological education for small groups of students while leading them in an outdoor garden activity
Green Dragons Program: service opportunities during students “flex” (free) periods
Beyond-the-classroom: after-school service opportunities


Serve as support for the planning and execution related to the following programs and efforts:

Curricular and Co-Curricular Educational Programs:
Community Engagement Programs
Living Lab Volunteer Service Opportunities: Weekend Service Days, some weekday after-school service
Annual Gatherings: Fall Festival


Other Roles and Responsibilities  5% of responsibilities

Attend weekly Living Lab meetings and maintain appropriate documentation as required
Other duties as assigned by the Living Lab Manager or Director of Justice and Kinship
Maintain records of how time is spent to inform future planning
Attend monthly all-staff meetings and other all school gatherings as required for Creation Care Team members


Job Prerequisites:

3+ years experience working in gardening, landscaping,
Experience with some ecosystems based gardening practices (i.e. permaculture, soil conservation, water conservation, habitat and biodiversity improvement, and Integrated Pest Management).
Experience/interest working with high school students
Experience/interest in Sustainability and Ecological practices
Experience working as part of a team
Experience caring for native plants
Able to communicate clearly in written form
Able to use Google docs and spreadsheets
Available to work 5 hours on one Saturday per month
Have a current driver’s license


Physical Requirements

Able to lift 50 lbs
Able to spend all day outside, walking up and down a hill
Experience with multiple valve irrigation systems
Experience with hardscape building, including retaining walls (preferred)
Experience with landscape planning (preferred)
Experience driving a trailer (preferred)


A successful candidate will:

Communicate effectively orally and in writing
Articulate and skillfully promote equity and justice work as well as anti-biased teaching and learning
Be self-aware and able to build on others’ ideas, capitalize on others’ strengths, and effectively share responsibility
Demonstrate a drive to learn and constantly seek ways to improve professional skills and implement best practices
Initiate, fully participate in, and foster strong collegial and student relationships across diverse backgrounds
Support the Catholic mission and charism of the school
Work with pride and enthusiasm as a member of the O’Dowd community


The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by people assigned to this classification.  They are not to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties, and skills required of personnel so classified. Additionally, all personnel may be required to perform duties outside of their normal responsibilities from time to time, as needed.


Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.


Pre-employment background screening is required for all positions.


For more information on Bishop O’Dowd High School, please see our website at http://bishopodowd.org.


Bishop O’Dowd High School is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate in its employment policies and procedures. It follows the Diocese of Oakland’s policies prohibiting illegal harassment, retaliation or discrimination. However, as a Roman Catholic high school with a stated mission, goals and objectives that clearly reflect the teachings and educational philosophy of the Diocese of Oakland, Bishop O’Dowd High School reserves the right to require all current and prospective employees to commit to carry out their duties and responsibilities in a manner that clearly and unconditionally demonstrates support of and respect for the school’s mission and Catholic identity. Persons who in good conscience are unable to agree to this commitment should not seek or accept employment at Bishop O’Dowd High School. As a faith-based institution, we reserve the right to use religion as a criterion in hiring decisions, as permitted by law, as it relates to performing essential job duties.