Food Education Specialist Thaden School
- Date Posted January 10, 2019
- Location Bentonville, AR
- Category Culinary / Education
- Job Type Full-Time
A new independent school in downtown Bentonville, Arkansas, Thaden opened in August 2017 and will grow incrementally over the next four years to serve students in grades 6 through 12. By the fall of 2019, the school’s enrollment is expected to reach 220-240 students (grades 6-11), and construction of the buildings housing the core of its culinary infrastructure will be complete. At full scale, the school’s 30-acre campus will support approximately 600 students and 100 faculty and staff.
The non-sectarian, co-educational school offers a challenging and balanced educational program that ignites in its students a passion for discovery and learning, prepares them to succeed in college, and inspires them to lead lives of integrity, purpose, and responsible global citizenship. Please visit the Thaden website (thadenschool.org) for detailed information regarding its mission, leadership and faculty, educational programs, indexed tuition program, and campus plan as well as recent news releases.
Thaden School offers an integrative educational program that provides students with a broad foundation in the sciences and humanities, enabling them to move across disciplines and explore their dynamic connections, inside and outside of the classroom. In addition to our core curriculum, we offer three signature programs — Wheels, Reels, and Meals — that allow students to combine multiple fields of study and engage with our community in ways that foster a sense of civic and global responsibility.
Our Meals program connects students to the myriad roles that food plays in our lives, as well as the ecological, scientific, economic and cultural dimensions of the plate. The school’s communal daily meals are foundational to the curriculum. At lunchtime, students are provided a full hour to nourish their bodies and their minds with meals that illustrate and amplify our educational mission. As the construction of our campus advances, students will grow and harvest increasing quantities of food for school meals and will help with food preparation in our teaching kitchens.
To support the continuing development of our Meals program, we invite applications for an additional Food Education Specialist position. Reporting to the Director of Campus Life, Food Education Specialists work closely with the school’s leadership team and faculty to develop the vision, infrastructure, partnerships, and resources needed to advance the goals of the Meals program.
About the School and the Region
A non-sectarian independent school under the direction of its own board, Thaden School offers a challenging and innovative educational program that ignites in its students a passion for discovery and learning, prepares them to succeed in college, and inspires them to lead lives of integrity, purpose and responsible global citizenship. At the core of the school’s mission is a commitment to balance that takes many forms: a curriculum that integrates the sciences and the humanities; indoor and outdoor teaching spaces where sustainability is a tangible part of the lesson; hands-on programs for civic engagement; athletics and physical education programs that build confidence and character through competition and meaningful participation; and a diverse faculty and staff who empower students to think deeply and expansively about their potential and place in the world. The school’s indexed tuition program further supports the creation of a balanced learning community where many perspectives, talents, and interests come together.
• Work collaboratively with faculty members, including other Food Education specialists, specialists for the other signature programs (Wheels and Reels), and the Director of Culinary Services to develop and implement garden- and kitchen- and plate-based curriculum for students in grades 6 through 12
• Devise and lead trips for students that connect them to conservation of natural systems, food systems throughout the region, global food ways of its residents and their community
• Manage the teaching kitchens as interdisciplinary learning laboratories, and in partnership with the Director of Culinary Services, present the daily school meals as subjects of study as well
• Coordinate and/or teach a steady stream of academically connected classes in the teaching kitchens using produce from our teaching gardens and from other local sources, routinely connecting to Thaden’s production kitchens
• Work with other Food Education Specialists, Director of Campus Life, and Director of Culinary Services to create and implement a diversified crop/harvest/preservation plan for Thaden’s edible schoolyard and locally procured produce in season
• With other Food Education Specialists, manage the greenhouse and edible school gardens as learning laboratories and production spaces
• Devise and implement a summer calendar that allows student/family harvest in exchange for weeding and watering
• Engage the NWA community and the public school community with workshops, classes, and tastings in the evenings, on weekends and during harvest season
• With the Director of Culinary Services, implement procedures to ensure the safe handling of food grown on campus
• Working with students, help to develop and manage a system that follows the EPA Food Recovery Hierarchy, then composts any wasted food from the dining facilities, engaging participation from the public school district and other interested parties, with the aim of zero waste
• Assist in coordinating student care for the Thaden school flock of hens, acting as backup with other Food Education Specialists when needed
this position is PAID: salaried, 50k to 100k
How to apply
Experience and Qualifications
• Conversant on myriad roles of food in our bodies, in our communities and in the world around us. Familiarity with possible curricular connections to Sustainable Development Goals, environmental footprint of food systems and solutions, Dietary Guidelines for Americans and food and public health in NWA and beyond
• Expertise in and passion for plants-rich* meals, seasonal cooking, and environmentally sensitive sourcing
• Ability and desire to share knowledge and skills with students of all ages
• Enthusiasm for leading classes, workshops, and volunteer workdays
• Knowledge of regulations and proper techniques for post-production handling of produce (GAPS certification)
• Formal culinary training
• Formal nutrition training