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South Hills

Sefcheck leaving West Jefferson Hills for Beth-Center superintendent role

| Friday, April 27, 2018, 11:06 a.m.
Thomas Jefferson High School in the West Jefferson Hills School District.
Thomas Jefferson High School in the West Jefferson Hills School District.
Christopher Sefcheck, Thomas Jefferson High School's new principal
Christopher Sefcheck, Thomas Jefferson High School's new principal

Thomas Jefferson High School Principal Christopher Sefcheck is leaving the West Jefferson Hills School District to become the superintendent of the Bethlehem-Center School District in Washington County.

Sefcheck, 49, of South Park, was hired by the Bethlehem-Center board April 23, at a salary of $115,000.

West Jefferson Hills school board members approved his resignation April 24, effective no later than June 24.

“I'm really excited about the challenge I have in front of me to be the guy that leads the district into the future,” Sefcheck said.

Sefcheck, an Air Force veteran, has worked as principal at Thomas Jefferson High School for four years. Prior to that he was the high school principal in the Frazier School District for three years.

While in college at California University of Pennsylvania, Sefcheck did his first field assignment in the Bethlehem-Center School District.

He maintained connections there and said he plans to bring things he learned while at TJ to Bethlehem-Center — mostly notably the concepts of human-centered design and collaborative work spaces.

Sefcheck talked positively about his time at Thomas Jefferson, where state test scores increased each of his first three years at the school. The school also made the AP Honor Roll for the first time.

“What an amazing district it is, the community is amazing, the kids are amazing, they are just so good,” he said.

Sefcheck's last day in West Jefferson Hills has not been determined. His contract in Bethlehem-Center starts on May 1.

During the interim, assistant superintendent of secondary education Scott Milburn will lead the high school, Superintendent Michael Ghilani said.

West Jefferson Hills will “move as aggressively as possible” to hire a new high school principal, Ghilani said. “We're going to post the position immediately.”

“With the construction project, with everything that we have going on, we want to move aggressively,” he said.

Department chairs, students and the board all will be involved in the search, the superintendent said.

“I just wish him well,” Ghilani said. “In the last year, he and I have become good friends and connected on a personal level, I just wish him well and I'm sure we'll stay in touch.”

Board President Brian Fernandes said he's known Sefcheck for 30 years and has yet to process the move.

“I'll miss him obviously,” he said.

Stephanie Hacke is a Tribune-Review contributing writer.

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