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New member named to school board

1/23/2014 - West Side Leader
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By Ariel Hakim

Paul Cevasco
COPLEY — Copley resident Paul Cevasco was sworn in Jan. 16 to the Copley-Fairlawn City Schools Board of Education to fill a vacancy created by the resignation of longtime member Julie Schafer.

According to district Treasurer John Wheadon, the board received 10 applications for the vacancy and voted unanimously to appoint Cevasco.

Cevasco will fill the remainder of Schafer’s term, which runs through December 2015, according to district officials. Schafer resigned due to being elected judge in the Akron Municipal Court this past November.

Cevasco, 63, brings to the board extensive experience in education, according to district officials. He and his wife, Christine, have lived in Copley for 21 years and have three children who graduated from Copley High School.

A native of Tallmadge, Cevasco and his wife lived in West Akron prior to settling in Copley, he said. He is active in the community as a member of the Copley-Fairlawn Kiwanis and Guardian Angels Church, according to district officials.

Last fall, when three of the board’s existing members ran for and won re-election, Cevasco was fulfilling his contract as an education business consultant for Beachwood City Schools, he said, a position he had with that district since 2010. During his time working for Beachwood schools, among other services provided, he represented the district on a $35 million renovation for its high school, he said.

Prior to starting his own consulting business in 2010, he most recently was director of business services for Brecksville-Broadview Heights City Schools from 1999 to 2010, capping off a 24-year career with that district, which also included several years as director of pupil services, he said.

Before that, Cevasco worked in Cuyahoga Falls City Schools as a school psychologist and director of special education, he said.

He has a master’s degree in educational psychology from The University of Akron and a bachelor’s degree from Case Western Reserve University, where he had a combined major in biology, psychology and prelaw, he said.

Cevasco said he didn’t consider pursuing a seat on the board until after the General Election last fall, when he became aware there would be a vacancy with Schafer being elected judge.

Since his contract with Beachwood schools was ending, he had some time on his hands, he said. The school board opening came across as a good fit, he said.

“I needed to see what the board really wanted,” he added.

He is not stepping into this new role with any specific agenda and expects to bring a balanced approach to issues that come before the board, he said.

He said he loves Copley-Fairlawn schools and is pleased with the education his three children received in the district. They have all gone on to become successful adults, he added.

He also is impressed with the way district finances are managed, he said.

“They’re fiscally responsible, cost-efficient in what they do — probably the most fiscally responsible [school district] I’ve seen,” he said.

Cevasco said he looks forward to serving on the board.

“There will be challenges,” he said. “It’ll be an adventure.”

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