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Donation from Cox Communications keeps field trips going


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PARMA, Ohio - Due to the generosity of Cox Communications, the Leadership for Tomorrow field trip will continue for Parma City School District fourth-graders. The program, which teaches local students about municipal government, had been endangered this year because of cuts to the school district’s transportation budget.

A $3,000 donation from Cox Communications will cover the approximately $2,800 transportation costs for the year, which encompasses 10 visits by eight public schools in the district.

“Cox is proud to once again support the Leadership for Tomorrow program and the city of Parma,” said Robert Brill, market vice president for Cox Communications. “We are big believers in providing students the tools they need to succeed, and Leadership for Tomorrow plays an important role in driving deeper connections between children and their communities.”

Co-founders of the Leadership for Tomorrow program – City Treasurer Tom Mastroianni, Mayor Tim DeGeeter and the late Anthony Zielinski, who preceded Mastroianni as City Treasurer – wanted to help school-age children learn about how local government works.

The program brings local fourth-graders to City Hall, where students hold a mock City Council meeting about an issue the class has chosen to consider, and then to the Justice Center, where the students learn about the court system and sometimes have to “stand trial” for things like not completing homework assignments.

“Who knows, maybe this field trip is what ignites an interest in a kid who could end up being in public service,” Mayor Tim DeGeeter said. “Thanks to Cox, this program can continue despite the funding problems. What’s important is the experience for the kids, and this is a big win for everybody.”

Mastroianni, who acts as emcee and tour guide for the students at City Hall, said, "We are so grateful to have Cox Communications as a sponsor for this program and for their support over the last several years. Cox’s generous donations have helped many Parma-area public- and private-school children learn a live civics lesson. We’re so pleased that the program will continue this year."

Carl Hilling, Superintendent of Parma City School District, also praised the program. “The Leadership for Tomorrow program, in partnership with the City of Parma, has been a long-standing tradition over the years for the Parma Schools,” he said. “It not only serves as a poignant reminder of the late Anthony Zielinski and everything he did for the children in our district, but it also lets our students know how important it is to be involved in your community and what it means to give back. We look forward to continuing this program in cooperation with the City and with Cox Communications.”