Early Childhood Programs Accessibility Coordinator

Lisle, IL
Full Time

Inspiring and engaging the future tree champions of all ages is an integral part of The Morton Arboretum's mission and is a focus area for its education department. We are seeking an early childhood programs accessibility coordinator to join the existing team of staff. A successful candidate in this role will have a genuine enthusiasm for making nature programs and spaces inclusive and accessible to all young children and their families, and will be working in and contributing to a creative, collaborative, passionate, and innovative team environment. 

Position Summary: Plan, deliver, and assist with a variety of year-round educational programs and events for young children and families, with a primary focus on accommodating a wide range of participant abilities. Work with community partners and Arboretum staff to ensure the Children’s Garden is an inclusive and accessible family destination.

Essential Functions: 

  • Plan and deliver developmentally appropriate programs for young children and families at the Arboretum and in the Children’s Garden, with a focus on access and inclusion. Programs include, but are not limited to, accompanied programs, drop-off programs, special events, free public programs, and rental events.

  • Work with the Manager of Early Childhood Programs and the Supervisor of Early Childhood  Programs to develop and implement program adaptations and enhancements, including individual accommodations, that allow full participation of all children and families.

  • Act as the primary contact for Children’s Garden visitors who require accommodations, and advise the Children’s Garden staff on working with members and guests who require accommodations.

  • Interact with parents and guardians of visitors and program participants in a professional, courteous, and responsive manner, addressing any special needs or special attention as requested. 

  • Support the Children’s Garden rental program by fielding inquiries, accurately communicating program activities and policies, sending letters of agreement, and serving as host during party rentals as assigned.

  • Build and maintain strong relationships with community partners to identify opportunities for expanding access to nature-based programs for young children.

  • Collaborate with community partners to understand specific needs, assets, and opportunities to co-create, implement, and evaluate experiences that provide young children with accessible, equitable, and culturally-responsive opportunities to engage with nature.

  • Ensure a safe, accessible, and stimulating environment for all Children’s Garden visitors.

  • Act as Children’s Garden Supervisor on Duty as assigned. 

  • Demonstrate alignment with the Arboretum’s employee core values to be inclusive, take ownership, work together, keep learning and make the Arboretum exceptional.

  • Other duties as assigned.


Qualifications: Bachelor’s degree required, preferably in Special Education, Early Childhood Education, or related field. Experience with outdoor programming and 2+ years experience working with children with disabilities in a formal or informal teaching capacity required.  Excellent oral and written communication skills required. Proficiency with Google applications beneficial. Must become certified and maintain certification in First Aid and CPR (classes provided).


Success Factors:

Strong interpersonal skills and genuine enthusiasm for working with children. Ability to work well as part of a team is essential, and a passion for collaborating with others from outside a typical office setting. Stamina and ability to deliver outdoor programs. Organized, audience driven and customer service-oriented individual who is able to relate effectively with people of various backgrounds and ages.


Physical Demands and Work Environment: The physical demands and work environment characteristics described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform these essential functions.

  • Requires some physical activity: limited lifting and carrying (up to 30 lbs.), ability to deliver outdoor programs and to travel around the four-acre garden and Arboretum on paved, wood-chipped, and dirt paths over varied and uneven terrain, or on a tram on Arboretum grounds, in various weather conditions. Ability to climb or interact with various playground features that include tree houses, rope bridges, boardwalks, and stone climbing walls. 

  • Work Environment: Work is performed in a combined indoors and outdoors setting. 

  • Equipment: General office equipment, basic gardening tools, audio-visual equipment, two-way radio, materials to start and manage a fire. 

  • Schedule: Position requires working one weekend day and some holidays.  

The expected hiring range for this nonexempt position is annualized at $50,000-$53,000 based on experience that will be evaluated during the candidate selection process. We believe in the importance of pay equity and consider the internal equity of our current team members as a part of the final offer. This position is also eligible for a competitive benefits package

For consideration, please include a cover letter and resume with your application.

The Morton Arboretum is a champion for diversity, supporting a culture of inclusion that attracts, inspires, and engages people to achieve success. The Arboretum is committed to hire and develop employees based on job-related qualifications irrespective of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, disability, or veteran status. To increase diversity in professions related to the public garden realm, we encourage applications from underrepresented minorities, persons with disabilities, and veterans.  

The Morton Arboretum is dedicated to complying with our obligations as an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. All applicants are guaranteed equal consideration for employment. 

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If you have questions, please contact jobs@mortonarb.org