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Career Opportunity

Recreation Specialist – Therapeutic Recreation - Recreation and Park Department (3283) – (119969)

Recruitment: REF16898U

Published: November 04, 2022


Eugenia Paw -

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Department: Recreation & Park Commission
Job class: 3283-Recreation Specialist
Salary range: $68,068.00 - $82,810.00
Role type: Permanent Civil Service What does this mean?
Hours: Full-time
Exam type: Class Based Test
Rule: Rule of 10 What does this mean?
List type: Combined Promotive and Entrance


**Application Deadline is November 13, 2022 at 11:59pm**

Specific information regarding this recruitment process are listed below:

  • Please read Critical Tips for Applying on Smartr before you apply.
  • Application Opening: October 3, 2022; Amended 10/17/22 to reflect changes to the verification information; Amended 11/4/22 to update the filing deadline. 
  • Application Deadline: Receipt of applications may close at anytime, but not before Monday, October 17, 2022 at 5:00 pm
  • Compensation Range: $31.925 - $38.8375 hourly
  • Recruitment ID: 119969 / REF16898U

About Us
Amid a dynamic and ever-evolving urban landscape, the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department stewards one of the premier urban park systems in America.  San Francisco recently became the first city in the United States for which 100% of its residents live within a ten-minute walk of a park.  Considered by San Franciscans to be one of the City’s most popular and effective public agencies, our Department manages and maintains more than 225 parks, playgrounds, and open spaces in San Francisco, including two outside of city limits: Sharp Park in Pacifica and Camp Mather in the High Sierras. Our 4,100- acre system includes 25 recreation centers, 9 swimming pools, 5 golf courses and numerous athletic facilities, including sports courts, ball diamonds, soccer fields and gymnasiums. Included in the department’s responsibilities are Golden Gate Park, Coit Tower, the Marina Yacht Harbor, the Palace of Fine Arts, and TPC Harding Park golf course.

More than 2,000 talented individuals are part of our team, from gardeners, foresters, and recreation leaders to park rangers, custodians, electricians, painters and more. Our core mission, as it has been throughout our history, is to provide opportunities for San Francisco residents and visitors alike to gather, play, learn, relax, and enjoy nature in the city.

Race and Social Equity Statement
We believe that parks and open space in San Francisco provides the opportunity to model equitable access for all.  With this belief, San Francisco became the first city in the United States for which 100% of its residents live within a ten-minute walk of a park. The Recreation and Park Department’s goal is to close the gaps and improve equity and access to quality parks and open space, and recreation activities for historically marginalized communities.  

We envision a department that proactively infuses racial and social equity in its internal operations.  With a multi-disciplinary team of talented individuals - gardeners, recreation leaders, park rangers, custodians, craft shop personnel, park and recreation managers and more, the department is committed to doing its part to provide equitable access to parks and programs for all the communities we serve to enjoy, as well as foster a work environment where our differences are celebrated, and everyone has what they need to thrive regardless of their race, age, ability, gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, or country of origin.

Role description

Under direction, the Recreation Specialist – Therapeutic Recreation coordinates and presents specialized recreation programs and activities at an assigned recreation facility.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  1. Plans, implements, and evaluates specialized recreation programs and activities at an assigned recreation facility.
  2. Assists in developing goals and objectives for specialized recreation programs.
  3. Selects and purchases materials and supplies for specialized recreation programs.
  4. Promotes and publicizes programs; prepares marketing material including flyers, schedules of events, brochures and activity guides.
  5. Supervises, trains and evaluates assigned staff.
  6. Conducts program administration and registration functions.
  7. Interacts with community groups and members of the public to keep program elements responsive to community need; builds community support and loyalty for specialized recreation programs.
  8. Performs related duties as assigned.

Working Conditions: Incumbents may be required to work evenings, weekends, and/or holidays. Full time and part time positions may be available.

How to qualify

Minimum Qualifications

Possession of an associate degree from an accredited college or university AND

1000 hours of experience in planning and implementing educational, enrichment, and/or recreation programs for people with disabilities.

Additional experience leading recreational activities may be substituted for the required degree on a year for year basis. Thirty (30) semester units or forty-five (45) quarter units equal to 2000 hours.

Note: The above listed minimum qualifications reflect special conditions associated with the position(s) to be filled. They may differ from the standard minimum qualifications associated with this class code.

Desirable Qualifications:
The stated desirable qualifications may be considered at the end of the selection process when candidates are referred for hiring.

  • Completion of therapeutic recreation content coursework from an accredited institution program that meets the National Council for Therapeutic Recreation Certification (NCTRC) standards as defined by the current NCTRC Job Analysis ( OR
  • Possession of a current Therapeutic Recreation Certification from the NCTRC or the California Board of Recreation and Park (Recreation Therapist) Certification (CBRPC) OR  
  • Be eligible to take the NCTRC or CBRPC (Recreation Therapist) exam at the time of hire 
  • Strong leadership skills and the ability to guide the work of others
  • Knowledge of cognitive and physical disabilities, including an ability to demonstrate and perform appropriate techniques for proper adaptations and interventions
  • Strong experience working with children with autism and other developmental disabilities in a recreation setting, including after school and day camps
  • Strong leisure education and assessment skills
  • Knowledge of the theory of inclusion and its role in community recreation
  • Experience coordinating adaptive recreation programming and inclusion services
  • Experience planning and administering day camps for children with disabilities
  • Fluency in Spanish, Chinese, and/or American Sign Language


Applicants may be required to submit verification of qualifying education and experience at any point during the recruitment and selection process.

Information on how to verify education requirements, including verifying foreign education credits or degree equivalency, can be found at

Verification of qualifying experience must be on the employer’s letterhead, show the applicant’s name, dates of employment, HOURS WORKED, JOB TITLE(S), DUTIES PERFORMED for EACH POSITION, and must be signed by the employer. Qualifying experience may be verified by performance evaluations showing duties performed. City and County employees will receive credit for the duties of the class to which appointed. Credit for experience obtained outside of the employee's class will only be allowed if recorded in accordance with the provisions of Civil Service Commission Rules.

Note: Falsifying one’s education, training, or work experience or attempted deception on the application may result in disqualification for this and future job opportunities with the City and County of San Francisco.

All work experience, education, training and other information substantiating how you meet the minimum qualifications must be included on your application by the filing deadline. Information submitted after the filing deadline will not be considered in determining whether you meet the minimum qualifications.

Resumes will not be accepted in lieu of a completed City and County of San Francisco application.

Applications completed improperly may be cause for ineligibility, disqualification or may lead to lower scores.

Selection Procedures:
After application submission, candidates deemed qualified must complete all subsequent steps to advance in this selection process, which includes the following:

Minimum Qualification Supplemental Questionnaire (MQSQ): Candidates will be required to complete a MQSQ as part of the employment application. This MQSQ is designed to obtain specific information regarding an applicant's experience in relation to the Minimum Qualifications (MQ) for this position. The MQSQ will be used to evaluate if the applicant possesses the required minimum qualifications.

Supplemental Questionnaire Evaluation (Weight: 100%): Candidates who meet the Minimum Qualifications for this position will be emailed a Supplemental Questionnaire. Qualifying candidates will be required to respond to the essay type questions on the Supplemental Questionnaire in the time frame indicated, and submit their answers as directed. The Supplemental Questionnaire Evaluation is designed to measure knowledge, skills and/or abilities in job-related areas which may include but not be limited to: knowledge of specialized recreation program requirements for a specific program area; methods and principles in conducting program for the target program audience and age cohort; pertinent federal, state, and local laws and regulations pertaining to the assigned specialized recreation delivery; ability to design creative and stimulating activities and program elements to meet the specialized recreation program requirements; use database systems (e.g., online database system) for program administration; work effectively and positively with the target population for specialized recreation program; communicate clearly and appropriately orally and in writing; and work independently with minimal supervision.

A passing score must be achieved on the Supplemental Questionnaire Evaluation in order to be ranked on the eligible list.

Note: Applicants who meet the minimum qualifications are not guaranteed to advance through all of the steps in the selection process.

What else should I know?

The certification rule for the eligible list resulting from this examination will be Rule of Ten Scores. The hiring department may conduct additional selection processes to make final hiring decisions.

Eligible List/Score Report: 
A confidential eligible list of applicant names that have passed the civil service examination process will be created, and used for certification purposes only. An examination score report will be established, so applicants can view the ranks, final scores and number of eligible candidates. Applicant information, including names of applicants on the eligible list, shall not be made public unless required by law. However, an eligible list shall be made available for public inspection, upon request, once the eligible list is exhausted or expired and referrals resolved. The eligible list/score report resulting from this civil service examination process is subject to change after adoption (e.g., as a result of appeals), as directed by the Human Resources Director or the Civil Service Commission.

The duration of the eligible list resulting from this examination process will be of 12 months, and may be extended with the approval of the Human Resources Director.

Terms of Announcement and Appeal Rights:
Applicants must be guided solely by the provisions of this announcement, including requirements, time periods and other particulars, except when superseded by federal, state or local laws, rules or regulations. [Note: The correction of clerical errors in an announcement may be posted on the Department of Human Resources website at] The terms of this announcement may be appealed under Civil Service Rule 110.4. Such appeals must be submitted in writing to the Department of Human Resources, 1 S Van Ness Avenue, 4th Floor, San Francisco, CA 94103-5413 by close of business on the 5th business day following the issuance date of this examination announcement. Information concerning other Civil Service Commission Rules involving announcements, applications and examination policies, including applicant appeal rights, can be found on the Civil Service Commission website at

Additional Information Regarding Employment with the City and County of San Francisco:


Applications for City and County of San Francisco jobs are only accepted through an online process. Visit and begin the application process. 

  • Select the “I’m Interested” or “Apply Now” button and follow instructions on the screen

Applicants may be contacted by email about this recruitment and, therefore, it is their responsibility to ensure that their registered email address is accurate and kept up-to-date. Also, applicants must ensure that email from CCSF is not blocked on their computer by a spam filter. To prevent blocking, applicants should set up their email to accept CCSF mail from the following addresses (,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, and

Applicants will receive a confirmation email that their online application has been received in response to every announcement for which they file. Applicants should retain this confirmation email for their records. Failure to receive this email means that the online application was not submitted or received.

Exam Analyst Information: If you have any questions regarding this recruitment or application process, please contact the exam analyst, Eugenia Paw at

CONDITION OF EMPLOYMENT:  All City and County of San Francisco employees are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as a condition of employment. Someone is fully vaccinated when 14 days have passed since they received the final dose of a two-shot vaccine or a dose of a one-shot vaccine. Any new hire must present proof of full vaccination status to be appointed. Any new hire who will be routinely assigned or occasionally enter High-Risk Settings, must provide proof of having received a COVID-19 booster vaccine by March 1, 2022, or once eligible.

The City and County of San Francisco encourages women, minorities and persons with disabilities to apply. Applicants will be considered regardless of their sex, race, age, religion, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition (associated with cancer, a history of cancer, or genetic characteristics), HIV/AIDS status, genetic information, marital status, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, military and veteran status, or other protected category under the law.