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Welcome to the Cuyahoga Falls City School District.

Cuyahoga Falls City School District

The hub of our community, committed to a culture of caring! We innovate. We create. We personalize education for all!

Special Education

Department Overview

We strive to ensure all learners receive equitable access to every opportunity, so they can live their success. 

Evaluation for Special Education Services

Prior to an evaluation for special education, students may participate in a Multi-tiered Systems of Supports (MTSS) model, where they are given the opportunity to develop skills and close learning gaps through research-based interventions. Students who struggle to respond to these intensive interventions may be referred for an evaluation to determine if the student is eligible for special education services.
Cuyahoga Falls City Schools follows an evaluation model set forth by the Ohio Department of Education, Office of Exceptional Children. Evaluations are coordinated by the child’s building team, which may consist of all or some of the following team members: principal, classroom teacher, school psychologist, speech and language pathologist, guidance counselor, intervention specialist and parent.
In accordance with rule 3301-51-06 of the Ohio Administrative Code, students may be defined as having a disability in one of the following areas:
  • Intellectual Disability
  • Hearing Impairment
  • Deafness
  • Speech or language impairment
  • Visual Impairment
  • Autism
  • Traumatic Brain Injury
  • Other Health Impairment (minor/major)
  • Specific Learning Disability
  • Deaf-Blindness
  • Multiple disabilities
  • Emotional Disturbance
  • Orthopedic Impairment
The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) 2004 requires that, “to the maximum extent appropriate,” children with disabilities are educated with children who are not disabled.

A full continuum of special education service delivery exists in meeting the individual needs of students with disabilities.

Preschool Services

Beginning on their third birthday, children already identified with documented disabilities are served through a consortium with the Summit County Educational Service Center.

If you suspect a child of at least three years of age and not yet six years of age may meet the definition of a preschool child with a disability (a child experiencing developmental delays in one of more of the following: physical development, cognitive development, communication development, social-emotional development, or adaptive development), please contact the Summit County Educational Service Center to schedule a screening. The phone number is 330-945-5600.
**Child Find is the process of identifying, locating, and evaluating children with disabilities, who may need special education and related services. Please contact the Office of Special Education for further information: 330-926-3800 ext. 502042

Section 504

The Cuyahoga Falls City School District (“District”) is deeply committed to providing personalized, innovative educational opportunities for students of all ages. This commitment forms the basis for the District’s Mission Statement: Every student; Every day; Every opportunity! The District strives to provide programs and learning environments that will effectively meet the educational needs of its students and assist students with achieving educational goals that are significant, durable, and transferable. 

The Cuyahoga Falls City School District Board of Education does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, disability, religion, sex (including sexual orientation or transgender identity), ancestry, national origin, English language proficiency, or social or economic background. All aspects of a student’s education and development under the control of the Board of Education, including but not limited to: tests, materials, athletics, activities, facilities, curriculum, textbooks and other educational materials and supplies are developed and implemented to achieve equal educational opportunity. Educational programs are designed to meet the varying needs of all students.


Heather Zeman
Director of Special Education
330-926-3800 ext. 502041

Cameron Lazar
Coordinator of Special Education
330-926-3800 ext. 502044

Jessica Michalec
Special Education Instructional Specialist
330-926-3800 ext. 502169
[email protected]

Sarah Cottrill
Administrative Assistant to the Director of Special Education
330 926-3800 ext. 502031
[email protected]

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