Wednesday, November 27, 2019


EMSB PARENTS COMMITTEE: On October 17 the EMSB Parents Committee members met for the first time this year to elect their executive members and observers to Board Based Committees.  The chair of the EMSBPC for 2019-2020 is Caroline Phaneuf from Edinburgh, the vice chair is Joseph Bondi from Dunrae Gardens and the treasurer is Johnny Leoci from John F. Kennedy High School.  Parent Commissioners are Pietro Mercuri (Elementary), Norm Gharibian (High School), Mubeenah Mughal (ACSES) and Andrew Ross (no designation).  Observers elected were; to Education Committee Sophie Antippa (Westmount Park) and Anne Monereau (Royal West Academy) to Finance Committee Jason Trudeau (General Vanier) and Joseph Paglia (East Hill),  AEVS, Sophie Antippa (Westmount Park) and Katherine Korakakis (Hampstead) and on Transportation Stephanie Passucci (Michelangelo International).  The parent representatives to the English Parents Committee Association (EPCA) are Katherine Korakakis (Hampstead) and Andrew Ross (Marymount).

Caroline Phaneuf
and marketing consultant and former journalist,   says she is honored to have been elected chair in such a crucial and decisive year. She is pleased to have such a strong Executive Committee   Ms. Phaneuf has two girls at Edinburgh Elementary in Montreal West and has been her Governing Board’s representative on the EMSB Parents Committee for the past two years. Last year, she held the position of   vice-chair and co-organized the Parents Committee’s Parents Conference. She was also heavily involved with Edinburgh’s successful push to get modular classrooms added to the school, which was one of the most overcrowded schools in the EMSB. Ms. Phaneuf now runs her own international communications and marketing firm. She spent 10 years of her career as a journalist, notably at CJAD800, Mix96 (now Virgin Radio), 940News, Q92 (now The Beat 92.5), and at CTV Montreal.

Mauro Zampini
Chantal Juhasz
APPOINTMENTS:  Mauro Zampini has been appointed Principal of Royal Vale School. He succeeds Nathalie Lacroix-Maillette, who is now a Regional Director (East).    Chantal Juhasz has been temporarily assigned as principal at Edinburgh Elementary School in Montreal West to replace Mr. Zampini. Andrea Dillon, a teacher at Royal West Academy, will be filling in as interim vice-principal, replacing Ms. Juhasz.

EMSB PODCAST:  The Terry Fox Run is an annual event in Montreal area schools. One of the most prolific fundraisers is a Grade 6 student at Edinburgh Elementary in Montreal West. This year marked Avah Pennefather’s 11th “run."  Her first was in her stroller pushed by her mother, Lauren. Avah is 11 years old and has spent her life raising funds for the Terry Fox Foundation, up to $11,000…so far. Her passion and dedication is inspiring and heartwarming and she’s only 11 years old! Her support has been her family, her school and her community. Why is young Avah so fascinated by Terry Fox? She explains in our podcast  with Suzanne Desautels. You can listen to it here.

Students in class in a modular.
MODULARS AT EDINBURGH:  The brand-new classrooms at Edinburgh Elementary School in Montreal West are in operation! Students started using the school’s new addition on October 22, less than nine months after the idea of “modulars” first started taking shape. Along with other west-end elementary schools, Edinburgh, a French immersion school in Montreal West, needed to find ways to deal with over-enrolment. Three years ago, the school – with a regular capacity of 330 students – housed 409 students, causing a space issue. Since then the school has been experiencing the loss of classrooms, dedicated music and science rooms and unavailable gym time. Some classes had to do their gym time right in their classroom on rainy days when they couldn’t go outside. The library had also been emptied to free up a class space.

Edinburgh and its Governing Board opted for the installation of the modular or mobile units, which are prefabricated building units on wheels, among the other choices presented by the EMSB  in the fall of 2018. Now, gym time can be spent in the gymnasium or the fitness room, the science and music teachers are back using dedicated classrooms, and the resource room is available once again. The EMSB’s plan is to reduce the mobile units by one each year, until the school is brought back down to its capacity and can fit once again within its regular school building. Please see Kristin McNeill’s complete report  here.

LEAD IN WATER: School Boards recently received a directive from the   Ministère de l'Éducation et de l'Enseignement Supérieur (MEES) to proceed with the testing for lead content in the water in our schools. The goal is to ensure that the concentration is compliant with the safety guidelines for acceptable lead levels provided by the MEES.  Water testing and analysis for all elementary schools, beginning with buildings built before 1981, as well as the implementation of the corrective measures, will be completed by June 23 2020. The testing and analysis to identify the corrective measures for all other buildings will be completed by November 2, 2020. The EMSB’s Material Resources (MR) Department will oversee the water testing via accredited laboratories. As requested by the MEES, short-term preventative actions will be implemented by the MR Department. These measures include installing signage at designated drinking water sources (fountains, daycares, kitchens, etc.) and non-drinking water sources (bathroom sinks, etc.) indicating: To run the water at least one minute (for fountains) or five minutes (for sinks) before drinking; the use of water in washrooms and cloakrooms is only for the washing of hands. We remain committed to the safety and well being of our students and staff. Over the last few years, the MR Department has replaced the majority of drinking fountains in our buildings. Some models installed include filtration systems which are certified for the reduction of lead. Nonetheless, rest assured that we will implement any and all corrective measures found to be necessary during the testing and analysis process.

Marlene Jennings
OUR TRUSTEE MARLENE JENNINGS:  Education Minister Jean-Francois Roberge recently announced that the responsibilities of the EMSB Council of Commissioners would largely be suspended for six months and transferred to a trustee, Marlene Jennings - who is a very well-known and respected figure in the English community of Quebec. EMSB Director General Ann Marie Matheson wishes to reassure stakeholders that this temporary change in the board's governance structure will have no noticeable impact on the staff nor the students. Moreover, the excellent day-to-day services provided to our schools and in our schools will not be impacted. The service departments of the board will continue to provide important resources to our school teams. The same knowledgeable and caring principals, teachers and staff will continue to work with the students. And ultimately, the educational success of our students will remain the primary mission of the EMSB. In short, despite some administrative processes that need improvement, the EMSB, with a 92.4 percent student success rate - the highest of all public school boards in Quebec, remains an education leader in the province and we all have much to be proud of! "

Alessandro Ferraro, VP Steven Manstavich, Principal Angela Vaudry, Roxana Barin, Ronit Bathsheba Gelbart and Allison Engo.
PECK AWARDS:  Five students from Royal West Academy in Montreal West and one from LaurenHill Academy in St. Laurent were recently presented with the 2019 Robert Alfred Peck Prizes for Excellence in French. Present day Grade 11 students Roxana Barin, Allison Engo, Alessandro Ferraro, Ronit Bathsheba Gelbart and Jesse Sutherland of Royal West and Siena Blier of LaurenHill each attained the mark of 100 percent. They received medals and   cheques in the amount of $150. 

VP Panorea Limperopoulos, Siena Blier and Principal Donna Manos.
The late Mr. Peck began teaching in the 1930s and served as the superintendent of French for the Ministry of Education and held similar posts with the former Westmount School Board and the former Protestant School Board of Greater Montreal. He was a department head for French at Lachine High School and vice-principal of Riverdale High School on the West Island, having completed his career as a teacher in Africa. Mr. Peck co-authored  Le Français Pratique, the  textbook for the teaching of French as a second language with Elizabeth Buchanan.  It was a mainstay in Quebec Protestant English schools for over 20 years.  This prize was established by the Peck family and the EMSB in 2002.

INSPIRATIONS NEWSPAPER: The Fall 2019 / Winter 2020 edition of Inspirations is hot off the press! This edition has many highlights, with something for everyone. A four-page Assistive Technology (AT) feature examines how students at EMSB schools are using AT in the classroom with great success. Jack Silverstone sits down with Senator Jim Munson to discuss the Accessible Canada Act, and young inspirations Maddie and Anthony share their experiences living with dyslexia and autism respectively. Other features include: Self-contained classrooms at St. Raphael Elementary School; Steven Atme’s experience working with John Grant High School students on their variety show; updates from Wagar and Galileo Adult Education Centres; The Canadian Blind Hockey Association’s visit to Philip E. Layton School; insightful articles from EMSB Student Services department specialists Stephanie Paquette, Despina Vassiliou and Tania Piperni; and much more!
Read this edition here. Visit us on Facebook @inspirationsnews and email to have print copies delivered to you, or if you have a story idea to pitch for the Spring / Summer 2020 edition.

UPSTARTED:    Former EMSB MIND High School teacher Monica Paraghamian  has transplanted her passion for youth entrepreneurship programming to the Montreal-based non-profit organization, UpstartED, which has now opened up applications to their much-awaited upGen Bootcamp, a 2.5 day tech entrepreneurship competition (January 24  to 26).This part of their program is free and is an opportunity for interested students to partake in an incredible weekend event during which they receive coaching and mentorship to launch a social enterprise.  The upGen Bootcamp is for ambitious students who want to solve some of the world’s most pressing problems. In only 2.5 days, students will:  Learn how to solve a challenging problem by identifying a business solution;    Work in teams to build the solution using a digital tool/platform;  Build a viable business model and learn how to get their solution into the hands on users;  Set up an online store using platforms such as Shopify;  and Pitch a Business idea to a panel of external judges (made up of company executives, investors, and entrepreneurs).

Monica Paraghamian   
The first two days will be hosted at College Durocher Saint Lambert, and the final day will be hosted at Shopify Montreal.  Six teams from this competition will be selected to enter UpstartED’s incubator program during which students receive coaching and mentorship in order to help them launch their idea to the Canadian market.  The upGen Bootcamp registrations are application-based. The students selected to compete will have their participation fee fully subsidized by UpstartED and their sponsors. Parents and students can take  a look at the application and explore this opportunity together by December 15!  APPLY HERE.   For more information about the organization, visit

Cosmo Della Rocca addresses the audience.
RETIREES DINNER: One hundred and thirty-seven people attended the annual retirees' dinner, which took place on October 29 at Le Challenger Reception Hall in St. Laurent. The evening honoured 98 retiring employees of the EMSB who worked as educators, administrators, professionals and support staff, and whose combined years of service to the Board added up to 2,220 years.  Each retiree was presented with a special thank-you gift of a crystal decanter with four stemmed glasses. Some of the longest serving employees honoured that evening were James Lyng High School Documentation Technician Kamlesh Jain-Jain, who retired after 45 years of service; AEVS Regional Cosmo Della Rocca, who retired after 43 years of service; Elizabeth Ballantyne School teacher Sharon Friedmann, who retired after 42 years of service; and St. Pius X Career Centre teacher Steve Verbich, who retired after 24 years of service. See our full article, which includes photos.

EMSB CONNECTIONS TO NEW PLAY: Tableau D’Hôte Theatre will be presenting the world premiere of Jesse Stong’s Winter’s Daughter at the Segal Centre for Performing Arts from November 27 to December 8. Based on the secret family history of local celebrity barber Gino Chiarella, Winter’s Daughter takes the audience to Southern Italy in 1921, in the aftermath of World War One where a couple copes with tremendous trauma and loss while wrestling with how to care for a Jewish child suddenly abandoned in their care.

Michaela Di Cesare, Alice Denton and Mathieu Murphy-Perron.
Inspired by K. David Brody’s short story The Peddlers’ Daughter, Winter’s Daughter tells the story of Gino Chiorella’s mother, a first-generation Canadian from St-Leonard. When she died, Gino decided to travel to his mother’s hometown to visit his grandparents. Upon arriving, his grandfather revealed a long-held family secret, gifting him his mother's Star of David necklace, and sharing a story of the death and rebirth of their family.  LaurenHill Academy grad (2001) Mathieu Murphy-Perron is the Artistic and Executive Director of Tableau D’Hôte Theatre  Winter's Daughter features an ensemble cast of some of English Montréal’s hottest talent, including Laurier Macdonald High School grad Michaela Di Cesare.  Also starring as Di Cesare’s on stage daughter is seven year old Bancroft Elementary School student Alice Denton, whose dad Rob is handling sound and composition. Alice says she is looking forward to this  experience. She played a purple seahorse in Banroft’s 2019 production of The Little Mermaid and  hopes to be part of the 2020 musical, Mary Poppins. See the full story.

Nikki Balch
A STORIED MIND: Rosemount High School will host a Coffee House Night entitled “A Storied Mind” on November 26, looking at the ups and downs of life, resiliency, how to find support, and how we can raise awareness regarding mental health. The event will be hosted by Nikki Balch  from The Beat 9.25, a special dance performance from Cindy Mateus from TVA’s REVOLUTION and from members from L’Academie De Danse De Montreal, Inspiring testimonials from English Montreal School Bord alumni Gabriele Iacompo, Eleni Giannakas and Adam Aktas, and heartfelt and captivating performances from Rosemount High School students and staff members. The cost to attend the event is only $2  for students and $5 for adults .The initiative was spearheaded by Spiritual Community Animator Vince LacroceSabrina Pisaturo and Jessica Awaadalla, teachers, along with staff members from the Math, English, French and Drama departments are the school. All proceeds will be benefitting Bell Let’s Talk.

SOX IN A BOX:  Dante, Nesbitt, Gerald McShane, Honore Mercier, Pierre de Coubertin, and Perspectives I and II, along with Rosemount High, will be embarking on the fifth annual "Sox in a Box" Campaign for those less fortunate in the community. Over the past five years, over 30,000 pairs of socks (of all ages) have been donated to local charities in the greater Montreal area. The following organizations will be benefitting from this year’s donations: The West Island Women's Shelter, Dans La Rue, Chez Doris, St. Michael’s Mission and the Mile End Mission.  Due to the popularity of the campaign and to mark this special anniversary, the campaign will now include new gloves, hats, scarves and mittens. On December 10, staff members and students from each school alongside charity representatives will join together in Rosemount High School's Spiritual Community Centre for the annual Wrap Up celebration, whereby students will create personalized holiday gift boxes containing bilingual messages of hope for the holiday season.  The campaign will be spearheaded by administration teams and staff members of each school, alongside Mr. Lacroce.

Lester B. Pearson HS students at the Obama event.
OBAMA ATTENDEES: Thanks to an initiative of the borough of Montreal North, a selection of Lester B. Pearson High School student council members had a wonderful opportunity to attend a Conversation with President Barack Obama at the Bell Centre.  Hosted by the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal on November 14, President Obama had the stage for an hour-long discussion of geopolitics, economy & development and the environment. He spoke to the 2,500 youth leaders in attendance directly when he told them that they were born into the most remarkable but also the most challenging time in human history. 

James Lyng students arrive at the event.
James Lyng High School students were also provided with this “once in a lifetime” kind of opportunity thanks to the generous donation of tickets via Réseau Réussite Montréal. Seven students from James Lyng, accompanied by Vice Principal Marilyn Ramlakhan, Student-Parent Animator Maria Di Salvo and Community Development Agent Sam Karimi, were able to experience a world leader share his perspective on some of today’s most important topics. At the end of the event, President Obama addressed the youth in attendance directly and offered some words of encouragement expressing his faith in their ability to become future leaders. This undoubtedly had a positive impact on the students. Staff were grateful to RRM for allowing them to participate in such a great event.

The Chorale always put on a good performance.
40TH ANNIVERSARY SEASON:  The EMSB Chorale’s is off to a strong start for its 40th anniversary season. The choir welcomed 45 new members and is now 110 strong. The Senior Chorale performed on November 23 with Musica Orbium in a memorial concert for renowned Montreal conductor Patrick Wedd, who passed away last May. On November 30, the Senior Chorale joins forces with the St. Lawrence Choir for a Christmas concert at Saints-Anges-de-Lachine Church. The entire EMSB Chorale presents its own annual Holiday Concert on Saturday, December 7 at 4:30 p.m. at Mountainside United Church, 4000 The Boulevard, Westmount. There are no tickets required for the holiday concert. A collection will be  taken up for the Salvation Army’s Christmas Campaign. Anne-Marie Denoncourt will be at the piano and the choir welcomes special guests cellist Anne-Sarah Ouimet and the Salvation Army Citadel Band.For more information, contact conductor Patricia Abbott at 514-483-7200, ext. 7234 or

REMEMBRANCE DAY:  Schools across the EMSB commemorated Remembrance Day in the early days of this month, leading up to Nov. 11. You can see all of the details here.

Students from General Vanier and Edward Murphy Elementary Schools took part in a special field trip. Here is the Global TV Report.
Participants in the the Row-A-Thon
ROW-A-THON FOR GENERATIONS: Students and staff from Options Alternative High School in Ville Émard joined forces in their gym to give back to the Generations Foundation, an organization that has supported them immensely throughout the years. To show their appreciation for the cause, students and staff took part in a 24-hour stationary Row-A- Thon, which began on October 17 at 12:30 pm and concluded on October 18 at 12:30 pm.  Originally, students and staff were divided into three teams of eight with the expectation of rowing in 22-minute shifts. However, as the event proceeded, participants increased support for the students and their goal of raising $1,000. Options alumni, friends and family of the participants, as well as the Alternative Outreach Network Principal Craig Olenik, took turns on the stationary rowing machines. Together, they were able to reach their goal of ensuring that all three machines did not pause for the entirety of the event and surpassed their goal of $1,000. On October 25, a week following the event, Options   has raised $3,595 via direct donations and their “Go Fund Me” page.  Jason Gannon, a staff member at Options, was the organizer and motivator of the event and instilled the motto “All Go, No Quit” in the minds of the students and staff. His goal was to prove to participants and outsiders that Options is capable of uniting for a cause and to reciprocate the support that has been given to them by the Generations Foundation.  The students and staff at Options would like to thank all of their supporters during the event and hopes the Row-a-Thon will become an annual token of appreciation to the Generations Foundation. They also hope to have motivated the students and staff in surrounding schools to give back to the causes that they believe in.

Attendees at the workshop.
PARENT WORKSHOP: On November 7, John Caboto Academy held a Parent Workshop evening event for the community. Parents were invited to register for workshops on topics such as student resilience, Google Read and Write, parenting with play and preparing healthy snacks. Invited guests offered the presentations and included the EMSB’s very own Despina Vassiliou (Psychologist) and Janet Perlis (Psychologists), Stephanie Paquette (Consultant), Olivia Colallilo (Consultant) and Giuliana Di Quinzio (Consultant). Parents were encourage to bring their children to this community event and while they were attending the workshops, students were treated to dinner, Zumba and sports activities with their teachers. The event was a huge success and everyone left having learned something new.

At the rink.
SKATING DAY: Cycle 2 students from John Caboto Academy, accompanied by Physical Education teacher Joseph Romano and French teacher Martine Brosseau, participated in the first ever GMAA skating play day at Bill Durnan Arena on November 13. The event was open to students who have never skated before and those with plenty of experience on the ice.  Students had the opportunity to meet with and listen to a presentation from Lubov Ilyushechkina of Toronto and Charlie Bilodeau of Trois-Pistoles, Que., who won the bronze medal in pairs at the Finlandia Open Figure Skating competition representing Canada in October. After some off ice warm up activities, students joined a team of competitive skaters on the ice for some fun skating activities and games.

VOLLEYBALL: Cycle 3 John Caboto Academy students joined other EMSB elementary schools at the GMAA Volleyball PlayDay on November 21.  Spearheaded by Mr. Romano, Cycle 3 teachers  and parent volunteers coached the JCA teams in the annual PlayDay. Students had the opportunity to meet others from surrounding EMSB schools and got to spend some time together building on their sportsmanship and leadership skills. The event was held at Laurier Macdonald High School and was a huge success thanks to the LMAC students and staff that coordinated the event with GMAA.

HALLOWEEN SPIRIT: EMSB schools were indeed in the Halloween spirit,

THE CURE IS MUSIC: The Willingdon  Elementary School Kids for Kids Choir will help sick children at The Montreal Children’s hospital by the power of song! According to one pilot study, conducted at the University of Rochester Medical Center, music therapy for patients who have undergone a bone-marrow transplant reduces their reports of pain and nausea and may even play a role in quickening the pace at which the new marrow starts producing blood cells. Combined with a patient’s clinical treatments, music therapy has been proven to help some of the hospital’s sickest children. The Willingdon Kids for Kids Choir will perform at The P.K. Subban Atrium on December  3 from  Noon to 1 pm, under the direction of Music Specialist Nick Batzios.

William Stanback of the Als was at last year's event.

DANCE FOR ALEX: Students and staff at Royal Vale School (5851 Somerled) in N.D.G. will once again honour the late Alex Porter-Rozmovits with their annual Dance for Alex on Friday, December 6 (8:30 am). Alex was a bright, loving and thriving six-year-old kindergarten student who died suddenly on June 22, 2009 of a rare bacterial infection. The school has held a morning dance in his honour every December since 2010.  Joining the students for this year’s dance will be cross-country skier Alexis Turgeon, a nine-time member of the Canadian National Ski Team. To mark the dance’s 10th year, Alex’s parents, Roberta Porter and Peter Rozmovits, are asking the community to join them in raising money for Royal Vale School’s new fitness centre. Proceeds from the dance will be used to purchase training equipment, which will enhance student life for years to come. To donate, please visit this link:
St. Gabriel students contributed nice decorations.
IMAGO THEATRE AT ST.GABES: Students in Grades 1 to 6 at St. Gabriel Elementary School in Pointe St. Charles had the opportunity to participate in a special collaboration with Imago Theatre. The students created stunning recycled plastic sea creatures for Imago’s Eco-Anxiety play reading event. The sea creature sculptures were hung on mobile structures above the stage, serving as an integral part of the environment. The fundraising event, which was held at The National Theatre School of Canada, was a part of Climate Change Theatre Action's initiative to raise global awareness about climate change through the use of art and story. Bravo, to everyone involved!

A scene from one of  last year's Spirit of Giving events.
SPIRIT OF GIVING: In preparation for the holidays, the EMSB will once again be teaming up with CTV Montreal for the annual “Spirit of Giving” campaign, which brings much needed assistance to the less fortunate throughout Montreal.   More than 40 schools and centres will take part in the campaign. Many of the participating EMSB schools will organize a series of events set to encourage donations. Additionally, from December 5 to 13, six schools will be featured live on CTV Montreal’s 12 pm newscast during the campaign: December 5. Dunrae Gardens; December 6,  Elizabeth Ballantyne; December 10, Options High School; December 11, Lester B. Pearson High School

December 12,  LaurenHill Junior Campus and December 13, St. Dorothy Elementary School
For highlights of the 2018 campaign, please watch this video.

The Monteal East Rangers players were designated as Physical Literacy Ambassadors.
JUNIOR AAA RANGERS VISIT: Students at Leonardo Da Vinci Academy in RDP had a nice surprise earlier this week when members of the Montreal East Rangers visited the school. Players Gabriel Bouchard, Émeric Rondeau and Jerome Gignac were joined by front office staff Will Bartucci and Antoine Hudon  for an early afternoon hockey game vs. the school’s vaunted floor hockey squad. Following the game, the players gave away Rangers pucks, hats and tickets to an upcoming game. Furthermore, Bouchard, Rondeau and Gignac were named as EMSB Physical Literacy Ambassadors, continuing the school board’s mission of connecting students with role models in the world of sports.

SHADOW DAY: WCM Job Shadow Day is a free day-long event for senior female high school students with an interest in business. It will feature interactive workshops, networking and mentoring sessions, presentations profiling women with diverse careers in capital markets and an afternoon of job shadowing with a mentor who works in the industry.  This event will give students a first-hand view of the exciting careers in capital markets. WCM Job Shadow Day Montreal will take place on December 5, hosted at PSP Investments (1250 Rene-Levesque Blvd. W), with the participation from the large banks and asset management firms. Students will have the opportunity to tour the major trading floors of these banks and pension funds.   Since its inception in 2004, Job Shadow Day has offered hundreds of senior high school students unique exposure into the world of business and capital markets. With tremendous success in previous years and based on popular demand, WCM will be hosting Job Shadow Day 2019 in both Montreal and Toronto." Students must be chaperoned by a teacher. Ten students can be registered per school, teachers are not required to be included in registration  Click here to register and learn more about Job Shadow Day.  

MAJOR SCHOOL CHANGE:  A Major School Change process has been launched by the EMSB to evaluate how best to organize and consolidate the school populations in the north east end territory. The following schools have been identified in the scenarios: Dante, General Vanier, Honoré Mercier, Pierre de Coubertin, John Paul I and Laurier Macdonald in St. Léonard; Gerald McShane and Lester B. Pearson High School in Montreal North; and Our Lady of Pompei and St. Dorothy in Ahuntsic and  St. Michel. Hearings will be held January 8 and 9. A decision will be made at a meeting by January 30. The documentation is available here.

A warm greeting at Gerald McShane.
K TRANSITION AGENT ON HAND: Open house was a success at Gerald McShane Elementary School. After touring the school, families had an opportunity to meet with several community partners who had kiosks set up in the gym. The school’s community development agent, numerous sports concentration partners, Bibliothèque de la Maison Culturelle et Communautaire, Concertation Petite-Enfance-Famille de Montréal-Nord and the EMSB’s Kindergarten Transition Agent were all on hand to provide families with a variety of information and resources. A parent volunteer was also present to provide refreshments, treats and gift bags to visiting families and children. 

ANNUAL HONOUR ROLL: Montreal Community Cares Foundation is pleased to be collaborating with Youth Leaders of Tomorrow to host a luncheon for students in Grades 5, 6 or 7 who have made the Honour Roll in their respective schools. The event is also open to students whose perseverance and hard work in school demonstrate a notable improvement that should be recognized and encouraged.  The goal is to identify young people who are working hard to pursue their educational paths, to acknowledge their achievements, to encourage them to continue on this path, and to provide them with information and exposure to what awaits them at the secondary and post-secondary levels. Participants will hear about a range of choices and opportunities. The Third Annual Honour Roll Luncheon will be held on Sunday, December 8 in the Loyola High School Atrium (7272 Sherbrooke St. W.,)  will begin at 11:00 and will end at 1:30. A healthy meal will be served to all students who attend. Please note that parents are also invited. Info:  HTTP://BIT.LY/2019_HONOUR_ROLL

CODING AND AI FOR FREE: Kids Code Jeunesse is offering a free, full-day workshop provides educators with the tools to explore and learn computational thinking, basic coding and artificial intelligence, while providing ideas for how to bring these into the classroom. For more information click here.

MARCH OF THE LIVING: Applications are now being accepted for the 2020 March of the Living (MOL), run locally by Federation CJA’s young adult division, GenMTL. This experiential educational program brings grade 11 participants on a life-changing two-week journey through Poland and Israel. MOL is dedicated to strengthening Jewish identity, as well as inspiring participants to fight indifference, racism and injustice. Royal West Academy alumni Emma Rothstein and her twin brother Tyler, both now first-year CEGEP students, participated in the 2019 MOL. Their great-grandparents were Holocaust survivors, which prompted their parents to encourage them to apply for the trip. You can read their full story here.

SPERANZA MTL:   EMSB staffer Sabrina Mendaglio and two of her friends are the founders of  a fundraising campaign called Speranza MTL. Their mission is to seek out Montreal's most underprivileged groups and contribute to the improvement of life for these individuals by creating awareness through different platforms.  For their first venture   The Old Brewery Mission will benefit. They are   collecting for men, women, and children: warm clothing, new and unused underwear and toiletries, and other daily essentials. Their drop off locations are listed on their social media  pages. Speranza MTL aims to support the community by helping the less fortunate and underprivileged.   In 1889, two women by the names Dina Douglas and Eva Findlay, decided to offer warm meals to the city’s poorest citizens. In 1890 , the women find a donor, who provides them with a vacant building that once housed a brewery, where they set up a soup kitchen; creating the birth of the Old Brewery Mission. Proof that with a little Speranza (Hope) and lots of heart, anyone can make a difference. The cold winter months are here, and we decided that it was time to take action and contribute to the aid of the hundreds of homeless men and women seeking warmth and essentials on the streets of Montreal..........and your help is needed  They will also be collecting money to purchase the items mentioned above. The items will be used to make baskets which will be donated directly to the Old Brewery Mission. In addition, the money raised will also go towards gift cards to grocery stores, Tim-Hortons, and other local food and essential stores. Please visit this link  to donate.

GIVING TUESDAY: The Missing Children’s Network is excited to be a part of #GivingTuesday, a global day of giving that is fueled by the power of social media and collaboration. On Dec. 3   they are inviting schools to join the movement and help raise $5,000 for our #KeepMeSafe campaign. These funds will allow the organization to increase the personal safety of 1,000 school-aged children.     The Missing Children’s Network is committed to significantly reducing the number of children that fall victim to abduction, aggression and exploitation.   They propose that schools  host simple and fun activities that can include a  dress-down day,  bake sale or a toonie drive. Info:   514 843-4968   or www.

Westmount High School students at the QPAT registration desk.
QPAT CONVENTION: The EMSB had a strong presence at the Quebec Provincial Association of Teachers (QPAT) Convention at Hotel Bonaventure.  Besides the information table, which was very busy, a number of EMSB personnel facilitated workshops. Students from Westmount High School once again welcomed delegates at the registration desk. Next year's event will be October 15 and 16.

Some participants in the Spotlight on the Arts.
SPOTLIGHT ON THE ARTS:  Education through the arts is an important gateway into developing 21st century skills in all learners. Integrated into QPAT 2019, the Spotlight on the Arts once again offered a series of dynamic workshops, an interactive art-making space for educators and a collaborative art experience for everyone. Each workshop provides arts specialists and generalists alike with creative classroom practices and approaches applicable to developing arts competencies, as well as making clear and tangible connections to other parts of the curriculum.  This year’s program took place on November 15 and featured: An all-day Art making session for students and teachers with LBPSB’s Frank Caracciolo; An Open Creative Space offered by LEARN Quebec; a Movement, Music and the Mind workshop with musician Angélique Desjardins; an Appreciation as Empathy workshop with LEARN’s Sylvia Bielec; a workshop on Developing the Creative Reflex with ETSB’s Véronique Robidas, and; Design Thinking with the EMSB’s Nicolas Doyon.

IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE: EMSB Arts Consultant  Nicolas Doyon will interpret the lead role of George Bailey in a theatrical adaptation of the classic film It's A Wonderful Life. This is part of an annual fundraiser for Geordie Productions’ travelling theatre troupe which takes professional, thought-provoking theatre to children and families in distant areas such as Northern Quebec/Ontario and Nunavut. This year’s fundraiser will take place at Concordia’s DB Clarke Theatre on December 6 and 7. All performers for this event are volunteers who come from all walks of life. Each performance will be followed by a reception with a silent auction, door prizes, open bar, and delicious hors d’oeuvres. For ticket information,  to make a donation, please click on the following link:

STUDY ABROAD: The Study and Go Abroad Fair is a free international university fair aimed at students who are considering their post-secondary options at home and abroad. The expo offers students a great opportunity to meet face-to-face with universities from the UK, USA, Australia, and many other countries, and to learn about admission requirements, available scholarships and program choices. We would encourage students, parents and educators attend the expo and discover a whole range of education options. The fair will also feature a Travel Zone with work abroad, volunteer and language travel programs, and other gap year options.  It takes place on February 29 at the Palais des Congrès from 1 pm to 5 pm.


Galileo students are congratulated by Len Baker, Rick David, Principal Martin  Schiavone and Angie Spagnolo.
GALILEO STUDENTS REWARDED: Each year, March of Dimes Canada gives away customized accessible tablet packages to people with disabilities through their Assistive Mobile Technology Initiative. This year's winners were Galileo Adult Education Centre students Sebu Baghdassarian, Domenico Condello, Nancy Leopardi and Gérard Nardone.  The students were honoured by March of Dimes Canada president Len Baker at the organization's annual Opening Doors seminar in Montreal on November 13. Inspirations Newspaper was one of the sponsors. Galileo Principal Martina Schiavone, AEVS Director Angie Spagnolo and Assistant Director Rick David, and the recipients' parents, were in attendance. Congratulations to the four recipients, and to Galileo Vice Principal Santini Miceli and teachers Lisa Germile, Caroline Jelovcic, Marisa Guerrieri and Michel Masse, who worked so hard to put the applications together and give their students the opportunity to benefit from their new tablets.

SLA staff and students celebrate  their successful endeavor.
BOOKSTORE PROJECT: Victoria Callocchia, a teacher at the Saint-Laurent Adult Education Centre, initiated a learning activity that she transformed into a fundraiser: the Bookstore Project. A used book sale held on October 30in the cafeteria, collected $425.80 and the proceeds were turned over to Sacre-Coeur Hospital Foundation. Here’s how the project took shape: First, the students were divided into groups to learn about various charitable groups and their missions in the local community. Next, students from each group made a presentation to other CCBE classes about the charity their group had chosen. Then, students in all the classes that had received the presentations voted by secret ballot for their favorite charity.The students also reviewed the books that were to be sold so that they could make recommendations to potential buyers. Prizes were also created to recognize the best books.


COMITÉ DE PARENTS DE LA CSEM: Le 17 octobre, les membres du comité de parents de la CSEM se sont réunis pour la première fois cette année afin d'élire leur exécutif ainsi que les observateurs aux divers comités de la Commission. Caroline Phaneuf de l’école Edinburgh assurera la présidence du CPCSEM pour l’année scolaire 2019-2020; Joseph Bondi de l’école Dunrae Gardens occupera le poste de vice-président et Johnny Leoci de l’école secondaire John F. Kennedy agira à titre de trésorier. Les commissaires-parents sont Pietro Mercuri (écoles primaires), Norm Gharibian (écoles secondaires), Mubeenah Mughal (CCSAS) et Andrew Ross (aucune désignation). Les observateurs élus sont : Sophie Antippa (école Westmount Park) et Anne Monereau (Académie Royal West) au comité de l’éducation; Jason Trudeau (école Général Vanier) et Joseph Paglia (école Easthill) au comité financier; Sophie Antippa (école Westmount Park) et Katherine Korakakis (école Hampstead) au comité de l’EAFP; et Stephanie Passucci (école Michelangelo International) au comité de transport. Les représentants des parents auprès de l’Association des comités de parents anglophones (ACPA) sont Katherine Korakakis (école Hampstead) et Andrew Ross (Académie Marymount).

PARCOURS DE LA NOUVELLE PRÉSIDENTE DU COMITÉ DE PARENTS: Conseillère en communication et marketing et ex-journaliste, Madame Phaneuf se dit honorée d'avoir été élue présidente en cette année des plus cruciales et décisives. Elle est heureuse de pouvoir compter sur un comité exécutif aussi solide. Madame Phaneuf a deux filles qui fréquentent l’école primaire Edinburgh à Montréal-Ouest où elle représente le conseil d’établissement au comité de parents de la CSEM depuis deux ans. L’an dernier, elle a occupé le poste de vice-présidente et a coorganisé la conférence des parents du comité de parents. Elle a également joué un rôle important dans l’ajout de salles de classe modulaires à Edinburgh, soit l’une des écoles les plus surpeuplées de la CSEM. Madame Phaneuf dirige sa propre entreprise internationale de communication et marketing, après avoir été journaliste pendant 10 ans, notamment à CJAD800, Mix96 (maintenant Virgin Radio), 940News, Q92 (maintenant The Beat 92.5) et à CTV Montréal.

NOMINATIONS: Mauro Zampini a été nommé directeur de l’école Royal Vale. Il succède à Nathalie Lacroix-Maillette, qui occupe maintenant le poste de directrice régionale à la CSEM. Chantal Juhasz a été nommée provisoirement directrice à l’école primaire Edinburgh de Montréal-Ouest en remplacement de M. Zampini. Andrea Dillon, enseignante à l’Académie Royal West, succédera à Mme Juhasz, à titre de directrice adjointe par intérim.

PRÉSENCE DE PLOMB DANS L’EAU: Les commissions scolaires ont récemment reçu une directive du ministère de l’Éducation et de l’Enseignement supérieur (MEES) afin de mesurer la concentration de plomb dans l’eau des écoles. Cette mesure a pour but de garantir que la concentration de plomb est conforme aux normes en matière de sécurité fournies par le MEES. Les tests et les analyses de l’eau dans toutes les écoles primaires, à commencer par les bâtiments construits avant 1981, de même que la mise en place des correctifs, seront achevés au plus tard le 23 juin 2020. Les autres établissements ont quant à eux jusqu’au 2 novembre 2020 pour procéder à ces tests. Le Service des ressources matérielles de la CSEM supervisera les tests réalisés par des laboratoires agréés. À la demande du MEES, des mesures préventives à court terme seront mises en œuvre par le Service des ressources matérielles, notamment l’installation d’affiches près des points d’eau potable désignés (fontaines, services de garde, cuisines, etc.) et non potable (lavabos dans les toilettes, etc.), qui se lisent comme suit : Faire couler l’eau au moins une minute (dans le cas des fontaines) ou au moins cinq minutes (aux lavabos) avant de la boire; l’eau des lavabos dans les toilettes et vestiaires ne peut être utilisée que pour se laver les mains. Nous avons à cœur la sécurité et le bien-être de nos élèves et employés. Au cours des dernières années, le Service des ressources matérielles a procédé au remplacement de la majorité des fontaines dans nos établissements. Certains modèles installés sont munis de systèmes de filtration certifiés pour la réduction de la teneur en plomb. Soyez assurés que nous mettrons en place toutes les mesures correctives jugées nécessaires à la suite des résultats des tests et analyses.

MARLENE JENNINGS, ADMINISTRATRICE DE LA TUTELLE: Le ministre de l’Éducation, Jean-François Roberge, a récemment annoncé que les pouvoirs et fonctions du conseil des commissaires de la CSEM seraient en grande partie suspendus pour une période de six mois et transférés à une administratrice, soit Marlene Jennings – personnalité très connue et respectée au sein de la communauté anglophone du Québec. La directrice générale de la CSEM, Ann Marie Matheson, tient à rassurer tous les acteurs que ce changement temporaire au niveau de la structure de gouvernance de la Commission n’aura aucune incidence sur le personnel et les élèves. Qui plus est, cette situation n’aura pas de répercussions sur l’excellence des services dispensés au quotidien à nos écoles et au sein de celles-ci. Les diverses entités administratives de la Commission continueront d’offrir à nos équipes-écoles toutes les précieuses ressources dont elles ont besoin. Compétents et attentionnés, les directions d’école, enseignants et membres du personnel poursuivront leur travail remarquable auprès des élèves. Au final, la réussite scolaire de nos élèves demeurera la mission première de la CSEM. Bref, malgré certains processus administratifs à améliorer, la CSEM forte d’un taux de réussite de 92,4 % - le plus élevé parmi toutes les commissions scolaires publiques du Québec - demeure un leader en éducation à l’échelle provinciale et nous pouvons tous, à juste titre, en être fiers!

PRIX PECK : Cinq élèves de l’Académie Royal West à Montréal-Ouest et une élève de l’Académie LaurenHill à Saint-Laurent ont récemment remporté le Prix Robert Alfred Peck 2019 pour l’excellence en français. Les élèves de 4e secondaire Roxana Barin, Allison Engo, Alessandro Ferraro, Ronit Bathsheba Gelbart et Jesse Sutherland de l’Académie Royal West ainsi que Siena Blier de LaurenHill ont tous obtenu une note parfaite de 100 %. Chacun a reçu une médaille et un chèque de 150 $. Le défunt monsieur Peck a amorcé sa carrière d’enseignant dans les années 1930. Il a été surintendant de français au sein du ministère de l’Éducation et a occupé des postes similaires à l’ancienne Commission scolaire Westmount de même qu’à l’ancienne Commission des écoles protestantes du Grand Montréal. Il a été responsable du département de français à l’école secondaire Lachine et directeur adjoint à l’école secondaire Riverdale de l’Ouest de l’île, après avoir enseigné en Afrique. Il est coauteur avec Elizabeth Buchanan du manuel d’enseignement du français langue seconde intitulé « Le français pratique », qui fut la référence par excellence dans les écoles anglophones protestantes du Québec pendant plus de 20 ans. Ce prix a été institué en son honneur par la famille Peck et la CSEM en 2002.

 MAGAZINE INSPIRATIONS : L’édition Automne/Hiver 2019-2020 du magazine Inspirations est arrivée. Cette publication de 44 pages, unique en son genre et dédiée à la communauté ayant des besoins particuliers, regorge d’excellents articles. Vous pouvez en faire la lecture en ligne.  

SALLES DE CLASSE MODULAIRES À EDINBURGH: Les toutes nouvelles salles de classe à l’école primaire Edinburgh de Montréal-Ouest ont ouvert leurs portes! L’annexe est à la disposition des élèves depuis le 22 octobre, soit moins de neuf mois à partir du moment où le projet de « classes modulaires » a commencé à prendre forme. Comme d’autres écoles primaires du secteur ouest, l’école d’immersion française Edinburgh située à Montréal-Ouest se devait de trouver des moyens pour faire face au problème de surinscription. Il y a trois ans, l'école – dont la capacité d’accueil est de 330 élèves – en comptait 409, ce qui a engendré un manque d'espace. L’école avait donc dû sacrifier des salles de classe, ses locaux de musique et des sciences ainsi que du temps de gymnase, si bien que certains groupes étaient contraints de faire leurs cours d’éducation physique dans leur propre classe les jours de pluie lorsqu’il n’était pas possible de sortir à l’extérieur. La bibliothèque avait elle aussi été convertie en salle de classe. Parmi les options que la CSEM avait proposées à l'automne 2018, l’école Edinburgh et son conseil d'établissement ont opté pour des installations modulaires ou mobiles, c’est-à-dire des unités préfabriquées sur roues. Les cours d’éducation physique se déroulent maintenant dans le gymnase ou la salle de conditionnement physique, les enseignants de musique et de sciences se sont réappropriés des salles de classe dédiées, sans compter que le centre de ressources est de nouveau disponible. L’objectif de la CSEM est de réduire le nombre d’unités mobiles à raison d’une par année, jusqu’à ce que l’effectif scolaire de l’école soit ramené dans les limites de sa capacité d’accueil pour ainsi occuper sans débordement son bâtiment scolaire habituel. Nous vous invitons à lire l’intégral de l’article de Kristin McNeill.

SOUPER DES RETRAITÉS : Cent trente-sept personnes ont assisté au souper annuel des retraités le 29 octobre à la salle de réception Le Challenger de Ville Saint-Laurent. Cette soirée se voulait l’occasion de rendre hommage à 98 employés de la CSEM pour qui l’heure de la retraite a sonné et qui, tous ensemble, cumulent 2 220 années de service à l’emploi de la Commission à titre d’enseignants, d’administrateurs, de professionnels et d’employés de soutien. La présidente de la CSEM, Angela Mancini, en compagnie du vice-président, Joe Ortona; du directeur général adjoint (Division de l'administration), Benoît Duhême; de la directrice générale adjointe (Division de l'éducation), Evelyne Alfonsi; de la directrice régionale du secteur ouest, Pela Nickoletopoulos; du directeur régional du secteur est, John Pevec; de la directrice régionale des SEAFP, Angela Spagnolo ainsi que de plusieurs commissaires de la CSEM et des cadres supérieurs des Ressources humaines, des Services financiers et du Bureau régional, secteur est, ont remis à chaque retraité une carafe en cristal assortie de quatre verres à pied en guise de cadeau de remerciement. Au nombre des employés les plus anciens honorés à l’occasion de cette soirée, mentionnons Kamlesh Jain-Jain, technicienne en documentation à l'école secondaire James Lyng (45 années de service); Cosmo Della Rocca, directeur régional des SEAFP (43 années de service); Sharon Friedmann, enseignante à l’école Elizabeth Ballantyne (42 années de service) et Steve Verbich, enseignant au Centre de carrières St. Pius X (24 années de service). Lire ici.

DES BAS EN CADEAU: Les écoles Dante, Nesbitt, Gerald McShane, Honoré Mercier, Pierre de Coubertin, Perspectives I et II, de même que l’école secondaire Rosemont, organiseront pour une cinquième fois la campagne « Des bas en cadeau » (Sox in a Box) pour les plus démunis dans la communauté. Au cours des cinq dernières années, plus de 30 000 paires de bas (pour tous les âges) ont été données à des œuvres de bienfaisance locales du Grand Montréal. Les bas recueillis iront aux organismes suivants cette année : le Refuge pour les femmes de l’Ouest de l’île, Dans la rue, Chez Doris, la mission Saint-Michael et la Mission du Mile-End. Devant la popularité de cette campagne et afin de souligner cet anniversaire spécial, outre des bas nous recueillerons désormais des gants, chapeaux, foulards et mitaines à l’état neuf. Le 10 décembre, les membres du personnel et les élèves de chacune des écoles, ainsi que des représentants d'organismes de bienfaisance, se réuniront au Centre communautaire spirituel de l'école secondaire Rosemont afin d’emballer tous les dons reçus. Les élèves créeront des boîtes-cadeaux personnalisées et rédigeront des messages d'espoir bilingues en cette période des Fêtes. La campagne sera pilotée par les administrateurs et le personnel de chaque école, aux côtés de M. Vince Lacroce, animateur de vie spirituelle et d’engagement communautaire. Nous vous remercions à l’avance de votre engagement.

40E ANNIVERSAIRE : La chorale de la CSEM a entamé sa 40e saison en force. En effet, la chorale compte désormais 45 nouveaux membres, ce qui porte le nombre à 110. La chorale senior s’est produite le 23 novembre avec Musica Orbium, à l’occasion d’un concert à la mémoire du grand chef d’orchestre montréalais Patrick Wedd, décédé en mai dernier. Le 30 novembre, la chorale senior de la CSEM et la chorale Saint-Laurent uniront leurs voix lors d’un concert de Noël à l’église des Saints-Anges-de-Lachine. La grande chorale de la CSEM présentera son propre concert annuel de Noël le samedi 7 décembre à 16 h 30, à l’église Mountainside United située au 4000, The Boulevard à Westmount. Aucun billet n’est requis pour assister au concert de Noël. Une collecte aura lieu sur place au profit de la campagne de Noël de l’Armée du Salut. Accompagnée au piano par Anne-Marie Denoncourt, la chorale accueillera la violoncelliste Anne-Sarah Ouimet et la fanfare de la Citadelle de l’Armée du Salut.Pour plus d’informations, veuillez communiquer avec la chef d’orchestre Patricia Abbott au 514 483 7200, poste 7234 ou

RAM-O-THON AU PROFIT DE LA FONDATION GÉNÉRATIONS : Les élèves et le personnel de l’école innovatrice Options de Ville-Émard ont uni leurs forces dans leur gymnase pour redonner à la Fondation Générations, un organisme qui les a énormément soutenus au fil des ans. En guise de reconnaissance, les élèves et le personnel ont participé à un Ram-O-Thon stationnaire de 24 heures, qui a débuté le 17 octobre à 12 h 30 pour se terminer le 18 octobre à 12 h 30. Au départ, les élèves et le personnel étaient répartis en trois équipes de huit personnes et prévoyaient ramer par blocs de 22 minutes. Or, lors de la tenue de l’activité, les participants ont redoublé de soutien envers les élèves et leur objectif d’amasser 1 000 $. D’anciens élèves de l’école Options, des amis et des membres de la famille des participants, ainsi que le directeur du réseau des écoles innovatrices Craig Olenik, se sont relayés sur les machines à ramer stationnaires. Ensemble, ils ont réussi à faire en sorte que les trois machines ne soient jamais immobilisées tout au long de l'événement et ont même surpassé l’objectif de 1 000 $. Le 25 octobre, soit une semaine après l'événement, Options avait recueilli 3 595 $ par l’entremise de dons directs et de sa campagne de sociofinancement. Membre du personnel d’Options, organisateur et motivateur de l’événement, Jason Gannon a inculqué la devise « All Go, No Quit » dans l'esprit des élèves et du personnel. Il souhaitait ainsi démontrer aux participants et aux personnes de l’extérieur que l’école Options est capable de s’unir pour une cause et de rendre la pareille à la Fondation Générations qui l’a tant soutenue. Les élèves et le personnel d'Options souhaitent remercier tous ceux qui les ont appuyés tout au long de l'événement et espèrent que le Ram-O-Thon deviendra une activité annuelle de reconnaissance à l’endroit de la Fondation Générations. Ils souhaitent également inciter les élèves et le personnel des écoles environnantes à redonner aux causes qui leur tiennent à cœur.Voici le lien vers la page de sociofinancement.

JOURNÉE SHADOW DAY : La Journée Job Shadow Day de WCM est un événement gratuit d'une journée qui s’adresse aux élèves de la gent féminine du deuxième cycle du secondaire ayant un intérêt pour les affaires. Cette activité présentera des ateliers interactifs, des séances de réseautage et de mentorat, des exposés animés par des femmes occupant des carrières diverses dans le domaine financier ainsi qu’un après-midi d'observation en milieu de travail en compagnie d’une mentore qui œuvre dans l'industrie. Cet événement procurera aux élèves un aperçu des carrières passionnantes en finance. À Montréal, la journée Job Shadow Day de WCM aura lieu le 5 décembre dans les locaux de PSP Investments au 1250, boulevard René-Lévesque Ouest, avec la participation de grandes banques et de sociétés de gestion de portefeuille. Les élèves auront l’occasion de faire la tournée des principales salles de marchés de ces grandes banques et sociétés de gestion de retraite. Depuis sa création en 2004, la Journée Job Shadow Day a offert à des centaines d’élèves du deuxième cycle du secondaire une exposition unique au monde des affaires et des marchés financiers. Devant le succès retentissant des dernières années et à la demande générale, le WCM organisera à Montréal et à Toronto la Journée Job Shadow Day 2019. Les élèves devront être accompagnées d’un enseignant. Dix élèves par école pourront s’inscrire; il n’est pas nécessaire pour les enseignants de s’inscrire. Cliquez ici pour vous inscrire et en apprendre davantage sur la Journée Job Shadow Day. ( Pour information: Jennifer Ottywill à

RÉORGANISATION SCOLAIRE MAJEURE : La CSEM a lancé une vaste consultation sur la réorganisation scolaire afin d’évaluer la meilleure façon d’organiser et de consolider les effectifs scolaires dans la partie nord-est de son territoire. Les écoles suivantes font l’objet de cette consultation : Dante, Général Vanier, Honoré Mercier, Pierre de Coubertin, John Paul I et Laurier Macdonald à Saint-Léonard; Gerald McShane et l’école secondaire Lester B. Pearson à Montréal-Nord; de même que Our Lady of Pompei à Ahuntsic et St. Dorothy à Saint-Michel. Les audiences se tiendront les 8 et 9 janvier prochains. Une décision sera prise lors de la réunion qui se tiendra le 30 janvier. Nous vous invitons à consulter les documents pertinents à :

TABLEAU D'HONNEUR ANNUEL: La Fondation communauté Montréal à cœur en collaboration avec les Jeunes leaders de demain sont heureux d’organiser un dîner pour les élèves de 5e, 6e et 7e année qui figurent au tableau d'honneur de leur école respective. Cette activité s’adresse également aux élèves dont la persévérance et le travail acharné à l'école démontrent une amélioration notable digne d’être soulignée et encouragée. L’objectif vise à cibler les jeunes qui travaillent d'arrache-pied pour poursuivre leurs études, à reconnaître leurs réalisations, à les encourager à poursuivre sur cette voie et à les renseigner et les préparer en prévision des études secondaires et postsecondaires. Les participants se verront présenter une foule d’options et de possibilités. La troisième édition du dîner annuel du tableau d'honneur aura lieu le dimanche 8 décembre dans l'atrium de l'école secondaire Loyola (7272, rue Sherbrooke Ouest) de 11 h 00 à 13 h 30. Un repas sain sera servi à tous les élèves présents. Les parents sont également les bienvenus.

SPERANZA MTL: Sabrina Mendaglio de la CSEM et deux copines ont lancé une campagne de financement baptisée Speranza MTL. L’objectif vise à cibler les groupes les plus démunis de Montréal dans le but d’améliorer leur existence en sensibilisant la population par l’entremise de diverses plateformes. Leur première collecte est dédiée à la Mission Old Brewery. Elles recueilleront les articles suivants pour hommes, femmes et enfants : vêtements chauds, sous-vêtements neufs et jamais portés, articles de toilette, de même que d’autres articles essentiels au quotidien. Les points de cueillette figurent sur leurs pages de réseaux sociaux. Speranza MTL a pour mission de soutenir la communauté en venant en aide aux plus démunis et défavorisés. En 1889, Dina Douglas et Eva Findlay décident d’offrir des repas chauds aux citoyens les plus pauvres de la ville. En 1890, elles trouvent un donateur qui leur fournit un bâtiment vacant abritant autrefois une brasserie; elles y établissent une soupe populaire qui donnera naissance à la Mission Old Brewery. C’est la preuve qu’avec un peu de « speranza » (espoir) et un grand cœur, chacun peut faire une différence. Avec l’arrivée de l’hiver, nous avons décidé qu'il était temps d'agir pour venir en aide aux centaines d'hommes et de femmes sans abri en quête d’un peu de chaleur et de produits de première nécessité dans les rues de Montréal… et pour ce faire, nous faisons appel à votre générosité. Elles recueilleront également des fonds pour acheter les articles mentionnés ci-dessus avec lesquels elles prépareront des paniers qui seront ensuite remis directement à la Mission Old Brewery. De plus, l'argent recueilli servira également à acheter des cartes-cadeaux échangeables dans des supermarchés, chez Tim Horton’s et dans d’autres magasins d’alimentation et de produits essentiels.Veuillez utiliser ce lien pour faire un don. 

MARDI JE DONNE: Le Réseau Enfants-Retour est fier de faire partie du mouvement #MardiJeDonne, une journée mondiale de générosité, soutenue par la force des médias sociaux et de la collaboration. Le 3 décembre, les écoles sont invitées à se joindre au mouvement visant à amasser 5 000 $ afin d’accroître la sécurité de 1 000 jeunes d’âge scolaire dans le cadre de sa campagne #protégezmoi. Le Réseau Enfants-Retour s’engage à réduire considérablement le nombre d’enfants victimes d’enlèvement, d’agression et d’exploitation. Il propose aux écoles d’organiser des activités simples et amusantes, notamment une journée décontractée, une vente de pâtisseries maison ou une collecte de pièces de deux dollars. Pour de plus amples renseignements, composez le 514 843 4968 ou visitez le

DANTE: Depuis bientôt 10 ans, l’école Dante de Saint-Léonard fait partie de la grande famille active des Établissements verts Brundtland. Avant l’arrivée de l’hiver, le comité vert de notre école a lancé un appel à sa communauté afin de recueillir des vêtements chauds. Ces derniers ont été remis à un organisme qui vient en aide aux gens dans le besoin. Voilà une autre belle initiative mise de l’avant par notre école. Faire preuve d’empathie, prendre soin des autres, être conscients que nous n’avons pas tous la même chance, que de belles valeurs à partager avec les élèves de l’école. Bravo!

LA VIE EST BELLE (IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE) : Nicolas Doyon, conseiller en arts à la CSEM, interprétera le rôle principal de George Bailey dans une adaptation théâtrale d’un grand classique du cinéma : La Vie est belle (It's A Wonderful Life). Cette production s’inscrit dans le cadre de la collecte annuelle de fonds de la troupe de théâtre ambulant des Productions Geordie qui présentent des pièces de théâtre professionnelles et stimulantes aux enfants et aux familles en régions éloignées telles que le Nord du Québec / de l’Ontario et le Nunavut. Cette année, l’événement se tiendra au théâtre DB Clarke de l’Université Concordia les 6 et 7 décembre. Issus de divers milieux, tous les artistes qui prennent part à cette production le font bénévolement. Chaque représentation sera suivie d’une réception avec vente aux enchères silencieuse, prix de présence, bar ouvert et délicieux hors-d’œuvre. Pour tout renseignement au sujet des billets ou pour faire un don, veuillez cliquer sur le lien suivant.


DES ÉLÈVES DE GALILEO HONORÉS : Chaque année, la Marche des dix sous du Canada remet à des personnes handicapées des tablettes personnalisées et accessibles dans le cadre de son initiative liée aux technologies mobiles d'assistance. Les élèves suivants du Centre d’éducation des adultes Galileo sont les grands gagnants de cette année : Sebu Baghdassarian, Domenico Condello, Nancy Leopardi et Gérard Nardone. Le 13 novembre, le président de la Marche des dix sous du Canada, Len Baker, a rendu hommage aux élèves à l’occasion du séminaire annuel « Opening Doors » qui s’est tenu à Montréal. Le magazine Inspirations figurait parmi les commanditaires. La directrice du centre Galileo, Martina Schiavone; la directrice de l'EAFP, Angie Spagnolo; le directeur adjoint, Rick David et les parents des lauréats étaient présents pour l’occasion. Félicitations à tous les lauréats de même qu’à Santini Miceli, directeur adjoint de Galileo, et aux enseignants Lisa Germile, Caroline Jelovcic, Marisa Guerrieri et Michel Masse, qui ont tous travaillé très fort afin de regrouper les applications pour permettre à leurs élèves de tirer le maximum de leurs nouvelles tablettes.

The next Focus will be on December 19, 2019.  Deadline for submissions is Friday, December 20.

Wednesday, October 30, 2019


BILL 21 CHALLENGE FILED: Power Law, representing the EMSB Council of Commissioners, has officially filed its case to contest the validity of Bill 21 in Quebec Superior Court.  This is based primarily on Section 23 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms that guarantees minority language educational rights to English-speaking minorities in Quebec. Bill 21 - An Act Respecting the Laicity of the State, came into force on July 16 and bars public-school teachers, government lawyers, judges and police officers from wearing religious symbols while at work.  As such, individual citizens and public institutions like the EMSB are subject to all laws and regulations that have been adopted by the Parliaments of Quebec and Canada, Section 23 of the Canadian Charter of Rights of Freedoms has evolved through the years and successive decisions of the Supreme Court of Canada   include an exclusive right of management and control accorded to linguistic minority communities across Canada for the operations of their public school systems.

Here is a copy of the application.

EMSB 2018-2019 FINANCIAL STATEMENTS: The 2018-2019 audited financial statements were deposited at the October 30,  Council meeting. The operating surplus for 2018-2019 is $3.1 million.  This amount is added to the accumulated surplus, which Council can appropriate at the rate of 15 percent in the next fiscal year (2020-2021). Council was pleased to be able to appropriate (use) close to $7.3 million in 2019-2020 from the June 30, 2018 accumulated surplus for continued services to directly benefit students, including the continued investment in various initiatives as well as direct allocations to schools for improvements to schools and centres.

Guest emcees Meghan Kelly from The Beat 92.5 FM (third from the left) and Global TV's Tim Sargeant (second from the right) are shown here with vocational students and Canadian Armed Forces personnel giving testimonials.

CAREER FAIR: More than 2,000 Secondary V students attended the 19th annual EMSB Career Fair on October 16 and 17 at St. Pius X Career Centre in Ahuntsic. Jack Dym of Pipe and Piling Supplies Ltd. and RBC Royal Bank were the event’s title sponsors. Several on air personalities from the media were on hand to talk to students about careers in this field and serve as guest emcees.  
Several on air personalities from the media were on hand to talk to students about careers in this field and serve as guest emcees. They included: Sabrina Marandola of CBC Radio One, Meghan Kelly from The Beat 92.5 FM, Tim Sargeant and David Sedell from Global TV, Christine Long from CTV and Fariha Naqvi-Mohamed from CityNews.

The Laurier Macdonald Career Centre showcases it automechanics courses.
From 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on October 16, the Career Fair was open to the community-at-large. This was an excellent opportunity for parents to attend with their children (Grades 10 and 11) as they look towards post-secondary education options in a one-stop shopping experience. Hundreds of people packed the room, all very appreciative  to make all of these contacts. Mario Argiropoulos and Harriet Cohen from EMSB Adult Education and Vocational Services are the Career Fair co-chairs. The Student Services and AEVS Departments of the EMSB coordinate this program.   The main objective of the Career Fair is to provide students with an in-depth exposure to the various educational opportunities available to them.  All students will take part in a brief general information session in the St. Pius X auditorium. Students will then have the chance to visit the various exhibition/information booths staffed by representatives from English vocational centres, CEGEPS, universities and some private business colleges. Bravo to the students at LINKS High School who did an outstanding job as hosts and assisting the organizers with logistics.

Students and staff at Pierre Elliott Trudeau welcome the candidates.
FEDERAL ELECTION: During the recent federal election campaign, candidates from the different parties visited some schools to talk to students. On October 7 NDP Rosemount incumbent Member of Parliament Alexandre Boulerice, Liberal candidate Genevieve Hinse and Jean Desy from the Green Party were at Pierre Elliott Trudeau Elementary School. On October 10   Liberal Mount-Royal incumbent Member of Parliament Anthony Housefather was at Carlyle Elementary School in TMR. Said Pierre Elliott Trudeau Principal Tanya Alvares: “It was a meaningful event for our students in teaching them about the democratic process.”

Anthony Housefather gets a warm greeting at Carlyle.
LATTANZIO WINS  FEDERAL SEAT:  Congratulations to long-time EMSB commissioner Patricia Lattanzio, who  won the Liberal seat in St. Léonard-St. Michel in the recent federal election. She soon heads to Ottawa as  a Member of Parliament.

Patricia Lattanzio
Ms. Lattanzio will now step down as a school board commissioner after 12 years of service. She attended the October 30 Council meeting. Commissioner Rosario Ortona noted that she becomes the first Italian woman ever elected federally in Quebec.
The Korean delegation is welcomed.

KOREAN DELEGATION: Students and staff from Michelangelo International School in RDP had the pleasure of meeting a Korean delegation made up of 30 teachers and administrators. They came to visit the school and spent time getting to know  their wonderful IB program and the functioning of an IB school. The choir also performed the Canadian national anthem.

GREEN CORRIDOR: The City of Montreal borough of Montreal North  celebrated four years of success with the EMSB and the Commission scolaire de la Pointe-de-l'Île (CSPI)  on the implementation of an innovative Green Corridor project.   This concerns the area between Pascal (north), Renoir (south), Rolland (east) and Laurier (west). This is unique for the fact that in this small half a kilometre space are five schools, two parks, a cultural community centre/library, an arena and a public pool. Over 6,000 school children, parents and teachers pass through this area every day. The five schools are Gerald McShane Elementary and Lester B. Pearson High from the EMSB and École Secondaire Henri Bourassa, École Jules Verne Elementary and École Carignan.   

Angela Mancini speaks at the Corridor event.
Speaking at the event to mark the occasion, EMSB Chair Angela Mancini stated that over the last four years   considerable efforts have been made in this busy area in order to create a pleasant living environment and make it an accessible, active and friendly atmosphere.   See our press release here.

Students get educated about the  risks of driving in a car by someone who has used cannabis.

: Weed Out the Risk presentations at Lester B. Pearson High School
Lester B. Pearson High School secondary IV students recently received a presentation organized by spiritual and community animator Joseph Monachino called Weed Out The Risk.  It is an interactive, classroom - based harm reduction program that educates youth about the risks associated with cannabis use, including the risks of being in a car driven by someone who has used cannabis.  The program also challenges the misconception that some teens have regarding cannabis use.  It was very well received and all Secondary IV students felt that all their questions about cannabis were answered creating a feeling of empowerment so they can make the right choices during life’s challenging situations.

Giving hungar a scare.
WALK TO END HUNGERLester B. Pearson High School students took a stand against hunger in Montreal North during their seventh annual Walk to End Hunger benefitting La Fondation Beaulieu-Blondin. Students spent their first period of classes walking around Montreal North led by an escort provided by the SPVM. The event culminated a month-long We Scare Hunger Campaign., one of the school’s local actions for We Charity. During the entire month of October, they have been collecting non-perishable food items through Halloween events and goodwill donations. The goal is to collect a food item for every staff member and student at Lester B. Pearson. 

Nathalie Lacroix
Julie René de Cotret
ADMINISTRATIVE APPOINTMENTS: Julie René de Cotret has been appointed Director of Student Services, effective December 2. She will succeed Lew Lewis, who has retired. Meanwhile Nathalie Lacroix has been appointed Regional Director for the  East. She will succeed John Pevec, who holds the post on an interim basis. He will become the Principal of Rosemount Technology Centre. Ms. Lacroix is presently the Principal of Royal Vale School.

EMSB students in disguise.
CARNIVAL OF MARVELS AND MONSTERS: On October 23, elementary school students from over 25 schools in the Montreal area were given the star treatment. Transported by limo to the Palace reception Hall in Laval, these young performers entered the venue along a red carpet lined their greatest fans; excited parents, teachers and school administrators. Smiling and waving as the local press and photographers' flashes lit up the lobby, this was their day to shine at a 2,000 seat by invitation only launch party.   The Carnival of Marvels and Monsters is a massive international co-production of Chroma Musika (Montreal) and the renowned Quebec Publisher Planète Rebelle, written by Mihalis Makropoulos illustrated by Katerina Veroutsos and set to music and lyrics written by Giannis Georgantelis. The EMSB was represented by nine elementary schools: Gardenview and Cedarcrest in St. Laurent, Pierre de Coubertin and Honoré Mercier in St. Léonard, Edinburgh in Montreal West, Roslyn in Westmount and Royal Vale, Willingdon and St. Monica in NDG.   Schools will be selling copies of The Carnival of Marvels and Monsters with proceeds benefiting the schools themselves. See our full story and pictorial undertaken by Andrea Di Tomaso and Nur Erdem.

Ann Marie Matheson joins Royal Vale students.
CLIMATE CHANGE RALLY: The  EMSB held classes as usual on Friday, September 27, but parents had the option to choose to allow their children to attend the major climate change rally that day. EMSB Director General Ann Marie Matheson advised parents that should they wish to authorize their child to attend the rally they must notify the school in writing. “The English Montreal School Board   is concerned about climate change, and as an organization, we continuously strive to be environmentally conscious,” said Ms. Matheson. “This rally will take place during our regular school hours and this event is not an activity supervised by the school, thus we cannot release our students.”

Ms. Matheson noted that EMSB schools were encouraged to hold activities on September 27 to promote the importance of climate change issues. “Our leadership students will certainly have ideas and suggestions to highlight this important topic,” she said. A number of schools did just that, including Royal Vale in NDG, Dunrae Gardens in TMR and Vincent Massey Collegiate in Rosemount. 

The LINKS foursome at Molson Stadium.
ALOUETTES EXPERIENCE: Two students from LINKS High School in Ahuntsic won tickets to a Montreal Alouettes football game at McGill's Molson Stadium via an EMSB Express Newspaper contest. Teachers Anna Gualtieri and attendant Madeleine Valerio accompanied students Bianca Hevey and Corrado Nicita to the game. A great time was had by all!

MAJOR SCHOOL CHANGE:  A Major School Change process has been launched by the EMSB to evaluate how best to organize and consolidate the school populations in the north east end territory. The following schools have been identified in the scenarios: Dante, General Vanier, Honoré Mercier, Pierre de Coubertin, John Paul I and Laurier Macdonald in St. Léonard; Gerald McShane and Lester B. Pearson High School in Montreal North; and Our Lady of Pompei and St. Dorothy in Ahuntsic and  St. Michel. Hearings will be held January 8 and 9. A decision will be made at a meeting by January 30. The documentation is available here.

Elias Makos received a warm greeting at his former school.
MEDIA LITERACY WEEK:  Media personality Elias Makos made a special appearance at the LaurenHill Academy Senior Campus in St. Laurent on October 8 to talk to students about media literacy. It was part of the EMSB’s initiatives to explore the topic of fake news during the nation-wide Media Literacy Week, October 7 to 11. A graduate of LaurenHill, Mr. Makos was among the school’s original set of students, when it first opened in the early 1990s. Stating that this was “a special place for him,” Mr. Makos graduated in 1997 and launched his diverse career, which ranged from working for the Expos and Canadiens in communications, to being a host on Breakfast Television Montreal, to hosting his own weekday morning radio program, The Elias Makos Show on CJAD 800, and making regular appearances on CTV. With a keen sense of the ever-evolving digital world, Makos delivered a thought-provoking address to a Secondary IV class. See our full report here. The EMSB, working with Bell Media, will continue to explore this theme at different schools throughout the year.

There was good attendance for the Transition to HS event.
TRANSITION TO HIGH SCHOOL:  The EMSB in collaboration with the CIUSSS Centre-Ouest hosted an evening workshop for parents on the Transition to High School on October 16. The evening highlighted how we can work together to ensure that teens feel supported in their new environment. Discussion ensued   about teenage development, what you need to know at each stage of the process while providing tips and tricks to reduce stress around the start of high school were part of the event as well. 

MARCH OF THE LIVING: Applications are now being accepted for the 2020 March of the Living (MOL), run locally by Federation CJA’s young adult division, GenMTL. This experiential educational program brings grade 11 participants on a life-changing two-week journey through Poland and Israel. MOL is dedicated to strengthening Jewish identity, as well as inspiring participants to fight indifference, racism and injustice. Royal West Academy alumni Emma Rothstein and her twin brother Tyler, both now first-year CEGEP students, participated in the 2019 MOL. Their great-grandparents were Holocaust survivors, which prompted their parents to encourage them to apply for the trip. You can read their full story here.

INSPIRATIONS PODCAST:  The most recent Inspirations Newspaper podcasts, hosted by Mark Bergman, features two great stories:  The Shira Choir and I Can Dream Theatre. Log on to

The Chorale is back in tune.
CHORALE TURNS 40: The EMSB Chorale, celebrating its 40th anniversary this year, is once again holding its annual cheese fundraiser. They are happy to offer a delicious selection of cheeses from l’Abbaye de St-Benoit-du-Lac at the same prices as last year (lower than the retail price in stores). These lactose-free, vacuum-packed cheeses come in attractive boxes perfect for gift-giving or for your own holiday table. Many of you have purchased these products or have expressed an interest in the past few years so I am happy to give you the information for this year’s campaign. The money we raise goes towards buying music scores, concert production, the organization of our music camps, workshops and giving our choristers the opportunity to work with professional musicians. Orders must be received and paid for by November 17. The cheese will arrive Friday, December 13.   For those of you who would like to hear the chorale, the EMSB Senior Chorale is performing in several concerts this fall: November 23 with Musica Orbium at Très Saint Nom de Jésus Church, November 30 with the St. Lawrence Choir at Église des Saints-Anges de Lachine, and at our own annual Holiday Concert on Saturday, December 7 4:30 p.m. at Mountainside United Church. Please contact me if you are interested in attending these events.   Info:

EMSAC in action.
EMSAC MEETS: The first English Montreal Student Advisory Committee (EMSAC) meeting of the school year was held on October 24 at Lester B. Pearson High School (LBPHS) in Montreal North. EMSAC  is made up of two student representatives from each high school in the EMSB,  Regional Directors Pela Nickoletopoulos and John Pevec, Commissioner Bernard Praw, Vice-Principals Gaetano Sifoni and Steve Spetsieris and LBPHS teacher Paul Karpontinis  as its moderator. Every month EMSAC members meet in one of our high schools to debate and discuss issues that are pertinent to teenagers across the network of schools and beyond. As formal student representatives to the EMSB, members voice their opinions and pronounce their decisions on matters sent out for student consultation. They began the year with a team building activity, followed by a workshop on what EMSAC is all about and how parliamentary style meetings are run. EMSAC members chose who will chair committee meetings and who will record our minutes. Initial discussions surrounded recent developments in Bill 21 and the importance of social justice and the impact of the march against climate change.

Patrick Maynard
GERVAIS AWARD: The Association for the Teaching of Science and Technology in Quebec has  announced that Lester B. Pearson High School teacher    Patrick Mayard is the 2019 recipient of the Raymond-Gervais Award. This provincial and honorary award is presented to a teacher for excellence in teaching science and technology in Quebec. 

STUDENT SERVICES RETREAT: On October 3, 104 members of the EMSB’s Student Services Department attended a professional development retreat at Domaine Vert in Mirabel. The day began with a presentation on “connections” by Sandra Reich, Clinical Director of The Montreal Center for Anxiety and Depression. Reich reinforced the importance of self-care, particularly when working with the vulnerable student population that this team services. The professional development continued with outdoor team-building activities, which saw 10 teams competing against one another in rally games like tug of war, frisbee toss, and later, challenging activities like rock climbing and archery. The day closed off with a Laughter Yoga session which had everyone in stitches, and reinforced the message of seeking connection that Reich imparted in her session. 

A team building exercise for staff.
Director of Student Services Lew Lewis, who retired on October 18 after having worked 52 years at the EMSB and Protestant School Board of Greater Montreal, ended the day by delivered a touching toast to his team. See Wendy Singer’s full story here.

INFORMATION ON VAPING:  We are witnessing a rapid rise in adolescents and young adults who are either considering or have actually began vaping using electronic cigarettes.  The McGill Cancer Prevention Centre are very much concerned about the misinformation that youngsters are receiving form their peers and social media, which claims that these products are healthier and safer than cigarettes. Given what we currently know about vaping, these products are not only unsafe, but could result in adolescents and young adults becoming the new nicotine addicts. In order to clear the air about what the science currently says about these products, parents are being informed about the important and deleterious consequences of such products. The McGill Cancer Centre is hosting a free annual public lecture titled "Are E-cigarettes a New Addiction" on Wednesday November 27 at 3625 Avenue du Parc, Salle Prince Arthur A. This lecture targets the harms of vaping. Info: and

Students get educated about Terry Fox.
TERRY FOX RUN: On October 1, John Caboto Academy in Ahuntsic participated in the Terry Fox Run. Spearheaded by Physical Education teacher Joseph Romano, students and parents were assembled in the gymnasium to sing a school song with music teacher, Eugene Negrii, and learn about Terry Fox. Over 30 parents volunteered to coordinate the event and also to run with the students. Students sported Terry Fox temporary tattoos and Canadian flags to show their spirit. The event featured plenty of noise makers, a drumming station, obstacle courses and the involvement of the local Police department to ensure the safety of the students. John Caboto Academy surpassed their goal and raised over $500 for the Terry Fox Foundation. This was the first time the school had participated in the event and hope to continue and make it a tradition in the years to come.

Kelly Serbu gets a warm Royal Vale welcome.
BLIND HOCKEY:  Kelly Serbu from the Canadien National Blind Hockey Team was a special guest for The Terry Fox Walk Run at Royal Vale School.  Over 1,000 parents and students participated on Friday Sept 27.  Four Royal Vale High School students -Lucio Gaetani, Kai Hucal, Ethan Levitt and Jacob Frankel-helped teach blind students from Mackay and Philip Layton at Doug Harvey Arena.  

A scene from the assembly.
THANKSGIVING ASSEMBLY: On Oct. 8 some of the students from St. Raphael and Sinclair Laird Elementary School delivered a tribute to their cultures "honoring and thanking all cultures of Park- Extension" and presented their gratitude towards many of the teachers and staff. It was an outpour of loving words of appreciation, to create a happy atmosphere. The Grade 3 students learned that happiness has much to do with one's level of gratitude. After the students gave some ''real news and facts" with respect to the history of Thanksgiving, they were then graced with a special guest, Nina Segalowitz, a mother of three from the Northwest Territories. She was raised in Outremont, where she was adopted by a Jewish-Filipino family. On her biological side, her father is Dene Tha' First Nations and her mother is Inuit. She exposed the students to “throat singing,” which is an Inuit tradition. They also learned some animal songs that date back thousands of years. Nina has performed across Canada, and in Europe (France and Belgium) as well as with Bobby McFerron (who sings ''Don't Worry, Be Happy"). Seeing that the Thanksgiving assembly became a ritual of continual embracing of all, everyone including families walked away feeling acknowledged and accepted.  "Where there is gratitude, there is peace" said Spiritual and Community Animator Caroline Choy

HALLOWEEN SAFETY: Spritual Community Animator Rocco Speranza and Ms. Cynthia from The Missing Children's Network (MCN)  joined together in order to present to students from K to Grade 4  workshops on How Do I Stay Safe, Halloween Safety Tips and the new  MCN workshop entitled “S-H-I-N-E ”  Self-Esteem, Healthy relationships, Independence, No means no, Empowerment! for cycle 3 students at Edward Murphy School, East Hill School, Pierre Elliott Trudeau School and General Vanier School. The  interactive workshop is structured to provide students  with the necessary tools, understanding, and knowledge  to aid with ways to develop healthy and equal relationships, respect one’s body, setting boundaries, and focus on building positive self-images. "The workshops are very informative, easy to understand, and allow for the students to share their opinions and ideas..  It really empowers them to be confident about themselves and lets their inner light shine through" noted SCA Speranza Working together with the MCN allows us keep our students and youth safe by teaching and empowering them how to be aware of their surroundings, and confident.

Students prepare to enter the Haunted House.

HAUNTED HOUSE: In collaboration with Police Station 10 in Ahuntsic Cartierville, La Maison des Jeunes prepared a Halloween Haunted house. John Caboto Academy classes from Kindergaten to Grade 6 had their turn to get scared by monsters and zombies. Students were be transported by school bus provided by the city. While in the Haunted House, they were escorted by police officers, cadets and their teachers. Students were spoken to about safe “trick or treating” practices and were given a candy treat at the end of the tour.

Pela Nickeletopoulos,  Carmen Nicolas, Ann Marie Matheson, Joe Ortona, Joseph Lalla and two students take part in the ribbon-cutting ceremony.
WILLINGDON SENIOR CAMPUS INAUGURATION:  The mood was festive October 2 when Willingdon senior students, administrators and teachers welcomed special guests and media to its Coronation and Somerled building to officially inaugurate the school’s new senior campus in NDG. The 150 students, which make up Grades 5 and 6, were joined by EMSB officials, several politicians, representatives of the Willingdon’s Home and School Association and its Governing Board, and parents. Penny Fenwick, a volunteer at the school for some 50 years, was also in attendance. Speeches of thanks, the story of how the campus came into being and student displays of poetry and music made up the morning of celebration. A special cake with the Willingdon logo, and cupcakes for the children, were also part of the fun. Vice Principal at the senior campus, Maya Doughan, acting as emcee hoped that the morning program would offer “a glimpse of the vision, hard work, dedication and love that went into making this beautiful addition to Willingdon Elementary School a reality.”  Addressing those in attendance, Principal Carmen Nicolas, who called herself “one proud principal,” said it was “a humbling moment to stand in front of this crowd. As you can see and feel, this is an exciting time for Willingdon.” Recounting that the idea only started to take form in January the same year, the process making the senior annex into reality was rigorous.  See the full report by Kristin McNeill. 

GREEN INITIATIVES: In the spring of 2019, during their Science class, students at Dunrae Gardens Elementary School in TMR were involved in a waste audit. They emptied the garbage cans and separated the waste that is compostable and the materials that were recyclable. They discovered that only 30 percent of what was left behind, actually belongs in the waste basket. A total of 31 percent was compostable and 43 percent was recyclable. According to the waste audit results, the school generated an estimated 736 kg of regular garbage per year - 4 kg per school day. Dividing this by the number of classrooms last year (16), means each class generates an estimated 250 g per day. As such, when the EMSB initiated the Composting bins initiative, Dunrae Gardens embarked! In November, we should be receiving our two exterior large brown bins from the city. Our community, through the Family Association, will fund the smaller bins, which will be in every homeroom. The Green Committee of teachers will educate students on the proper way of separating the items. These young ambassadors will then train others.

Focusing on math.
APPLYING MATH CONCEPTS: The Grade 5 students at Dunrae Gardens  re engaging in a hands-on approach to learning place value. The students work in different centers targeting the concepts taught in class. This allows them to practice the skill and have fun all while learning. Once their unit is completed, they move around from one math activity to another to ensure students are able to transfer their learning. Students not only learn through their teacher but also their peers.

Quite the pumpkin.
PUMPKIN CHALLENGE: While trying to inspire School Spirit, Dunrae Gardens has embarked upon a challenge.  Students are really excited to have all the classes compete against each other for most creative and original pumpkin. Students are encouraged to create book characters. The   challenge has been extended  to John Caboto Academy. This pumpkin was inspired by the book character Elmer by David McKee

ON BOUGE: Thanks to the Active Schools Initiative, Cycle 3 students are leading the movement. As one of the many activities unfolding at Dunrae Gardens, once a week, Grade 6 students, animate On Bouge! They select their music and organize a choreography. On Friday mornings, for around five minutes, music plays through the intercom while the entire school moves. Everyone, from youngest to oldest, is dancing to the beat!

Picking some great apples.
APPLE PICKING: On Friday, October 11, Carlyle Elementary School in TMR participated in their annual school-wide Apple Picking Trip!  It was a fun-filled day enjoyed by both the staff and students.  This year they visited a new orchard, Verger Saab, located in Oka.  Students demonstrated attributes of the IB Learner Profile as they were engaged and worked collaboratively to fill their bags with various types of apples, including McIntosh and Spartan.  They were also able to enjoy a tractor ride as well as visit a mini-farm.  Younger students also had the opportunity to relish the beautiful weather in a playground.  It was a great opportunity to enjoy the beautiful foliage season while having relaxing and memorable moments in the apple orchard.  

SHADOW DAY: WCM Job Shadow Day is a free day-long event for senior female high school students with an interest in business. It will feature interactive workshops, networking and mentoring sessions, presentations profiling women with diverse careers in capital markets and an afternoon of job shadowing with a mentor who works in the industry.  This event will give students a first-hand view of the exciting careers in capital markets. WCM Job Shadow Day Montreal will take place on December 5, hosted at PSP Investments (1250 Rene-Levesque Blvd. W), with the participation from the large banks and asset management firms. Students will have the opportunity to tour the major trading floors of these banks and pension funds.   Since its inception in 2004, Job Shadow Day has offered hundreds of senior high school students unique exposure into the world of business and capital markets. With tremendous success in previous years and based on popular demand, WCM will be hosting Job Shadow Day 2019 in both Montreal and Toronto." Students must be chaperoned by a teacher. Ten students can be registered per school, teachers are not required to be included in registration. Click here to register and learn more about Job Shadow Day.  
Info: Jennifer Ottywill <

Evan Leclaire and  Jennifer LeHuquet with the West Tech Paladins during the First Robotics Competition 2019

ROBOTICS COMPETITION: On November 30, Westmount High School will play host to the 2019 BetaBots - NanoDose competition. As a pre-season warmup for the first Robotics competition taking place in early 2020, the BetaBots competition will see up to 12 teams compete in head-to-head trials. Last year, Westmount High School’s very own rookie team, the West Tech Paladins, improbably finished in third place! This year, they have their eyes set on the main prize! The event is open to families and friends of participating members.

Michael Polak and students prepare to plant.
COMMEMORATIVE TULIPS: On  October 29, students from Westmount High School, alongside  Michael Polak (Honorary Consul to the Netherlands) and his wife  Penny. planted commemorative tulips to acknowledge the involvement of the Canadian Forces in the liberation of the Netherlands during WWII. To honor the 75th anniversary, the Dutch sent 1.1 million tulips to Canadian schools to be planted on their grounds.  With previous graduates, including,  George Findlay Duncan (class of 1934) representing Canada in this very important mission, it is was a great honor for Westmount High School to plant these beautiful flowers in memory of those who fought so bravely in battle. 

Ty Kelly
BASEBALL STAR AT WESTMOUNT HIGH: Israel’s performance at the 2017 World Baseball Classic made headlines around the world and one of the stars of the team, Ty Kelly, will be visiting Westmount High School (4350 Ste. Catherine) on Friday, November 8 (11:40 am ) to talk about their improbable journey, one that will continue at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.Kelly will be in town for the local premiere of the award-winning documentary “Heading Home: The Tale of Team Israel,”  which will make its Montreal debut on November 9 (7:30 pm) at the Shaare Zion Synagogue on Côte St. Luc Road. As the team’s second basemen at the World Baseball Classic in 2017, Kelly was integral in Israel’s upset wins over South Korea, Chinese Taipei and Cuba. In September, Kelly helped Israel become one of six countries to qualify for the baseball tournament at the 2020 Summer Olympics.   To buy tickets for the Montreal premiere of “Heading Home: The Tale of Team Israel,”  visit 

WHOLE HEALTH PROGRAM: November will officially launch Perspectives I and II High Schools long awaited “Whole Health” program. Initiated by Spiritual and Community Animator  Vince Lacroce, it will be spearheaded  by Head Teachers Barbara White and Lorena D'Alessandro, P1 Teachers Melissa Modica, Jessica Ghin  and Salvatore Pileggi, P2 Teachers Amanda Ranallo, Heather Morrision, Gillian Murray, Megan Tremblay, Patrick Stewart-Reid, Entrepreneurship Coordinator Myron Weekes, Special Education Technician Giulia Amato, PI Tutor Marco Vacca, and Laboratory Technician Adolfo Vasquez. This program will be divided into three main segments: Mind, Body, and Spirit.  This holistic approach to health will embrace the importance of finding balance in everyday challenges, improving emotional and physical health, and incorporating healthy life choices. The program will feature guest visits from Bhaskar Goswami and the BODHI Buds organization, EMSB nutritionist, Guilianna Di Quinizio, to examine current eating habits trends and providing students with daily healthy eating strategies in accordance with Canada’s Nutritional food guide. Wellness and mindfulness workshops will run through the physical education classes and meditation, yoga, and stress management techniques that will be overseen by Melissa Modica, Guilia Amato and Vince Lacroce.  Individualized physical fitness programs will be incorporated into the daily weekly schedules by Myron Weekes, Marco Vacca, Salvatore Pileggi and Vince Lacroce Spiritual and Community.

Great memories from MoWest High.
MONTREAL WEST HIGH REUNION:   Nostalgia may not be what it used to be, but try telling that to the 1969 graduating class of Montreal West High School. On Friday, September 20, about fifty grads came together to celebrate a half-century since they left the school, which became Royal West Academy in 1983. The celebration involved a tour of RWA with Vice Principal Steve Manstavich and a dinner at the Montreal West Curling Club afterwards. Entertainment was provided by MWHS alumnus Brian Greenway of "April Wine" and after an incredible blues guitar performance, Brian slipped into pop and rock and the youngsters danced the night away. The next morning, grads gathered for brunch at the site of the old Colosseo Pizzeria, now L'Oeufrier on Westminster Ave.  Andrew Caddell and Diane Elliott-Hill organized the event, which resulted from a dinner in Montreal  in the spring of ten women grads who decided it would be fun to celebrate a half century since graduation. No one regrets that decision, as it was a great night. As Andrew later said, "we may not have been the best teenagers, but we have become much better adults."

Pompei students embrace technology.
NEW TECHONOLOGY AT POMPEI:   The new Technology Concentration featuring the STEAM Initiative at Our Lady of Pompei Elementary School in Ahuntsic will enable students to develop a variety of skills including: critical thinking, problem-solving, etc. through authentic project-based learning. This interdisciplinary and open-ended approach is an opportunity for students to experiment, take risks, explore their interests and spark their curiosity. It is all outlined on their new brochure. Examples of projects include designing an outdoor garden, inventing robot designs and programming them using  mathematical language, digital portfolios, interactive online quizzes, collages or presentations, digital storytelling and multimedia productions.

CONSCIOUS PARENTING: At a workshop scheduled for  Sunday, December 1 (6:30 pm) at the Leonardo Da Vinci Centre (8370 Lacordaire) in St. Léonard, Dr. Shefali Tsabary will share her radically different approach to parenting, that has transformed the lives of so many families. Whether you have a baby or teen she will help you discover a new path to parent without fear or anxiety, learn to end conflict and motivate your children through connection.  You will learn how to: stop struggling as a parent & find more joy; deal with your child’s challenges; stop fighting over screens & devices; and raise Motivated, Empowered, Resilient and Aware Children  For information & tickets please go to

THE FIGHT TO SAVE ELLIE WHITE: Seven-year-old Ellie White, whose battle against leukemia inspired thousands of people to get swabbed as bone marrow donors, is turning to a potentially life-saving treatment in Ohio. The granddaughter of EMSB teacher Barbara White is facing her third bout with the disease. She received a bone marrow transplant on February 6. While the treatment initially looked like a success, White relapsed after six months. The family received the news on her first day of Grade 2. The EMSB family is being asked to join in the fight to save Ellie White at a fundraising event on Sunday, November 17. Click here for details.

MARKETING NEEDS: For all marketing & promotional guidance, Mediatomic Group has many years of experience in radio, TV, billboards and on-line options.  They do all the research and make sure to deliver the best media options available, based on the location and demographics of the school.  For more info and to set up a meeting, reach out to;  OR call; 514-360-6954

SCHOOL TOUR FOR FEBRUARY: Black Theatre Workshop’s February 2020 Black History Month school tour, Simone, Half and Half, was  written by award-winning Montreal playwright Christine Rodriguez and commissioned  with the support of the Cole Foundation, to bring a brand new play to Montreal area schools so they could recognize and partake in Black History Month.  Simone, Half and Half is about a teen caught between cultures: Canadian, Québécois and Trinidadian. She’s also torn between projects: the talent show and the Black History and Culture Committee. As pressure mounts on seeing her projects through, her friendships start to feel the strain and her loyalties are tested. Simone must find the courage and the strength to stand up to her friends for what she believes in and what really matters to her. Will they listen? Will they accept her for who she really is?  This is a touching story about reaching out to the past, uncovering hopes and dreams for a better future and discovering one’s identity, told through theatre, music, dance and poetry.  You can visit to obtain more information.  To book the show, please call (514) 932-1104 or email

BUILDING BRIDGES: The Coalition Inclusion Quebec, Christian Jewish Dialogue of Montreal and The Centre for Civic Religious Literacy announce the launch of the second Building Bridges Youth Contest.  This contest encourages Montreal area youth to showcase their artistic and writing talents by sharing their thoughts/experiences on how our community looks when we are working and living in harmony.  This year’s theme is “All of us can promote and defend human rights”

The contest is in memory of the late Dr. Victor Goldbloom, one of Montreal's finest statesmen, a great leader in intercultural and interfaith dialogue, and a citizen passionate about building bridges.  His autobiography, Building Bridges, lays the foundation for this contest. The contest will reflect Dr. Goldbloom’s message to the next generation which was “une politique de presence – being present wherever and whenever possible.”  In his words, we invited the next generation to “Be present.  Be engaged.  Be constructive.” The Building Bridges contest is open to students from age 9 to 17.  Prizes from $100 to $500 will be awarded to the winners.  Contestants may submit works in the form of creative writing, (poetry, story, prose, essay) or artwork (drawing, painting, music, photography, film, or multimedia). See contest rules for more details.  The contest is open until January 15, 2020.

The top submissions will be selected by a panel of local judges and winners will be honoured at an event to be held in February 2020. The date of this awards ceremony will be announced shortly.

SCHOLARS CUP: Organizers are gearing up to host the fifth Montreal Regional Round of the World Scholar’s Cup at St. George’s School of Montreal’s High School campus and Concordia's DB Clarke Theatre on January 17 and 18, 2020. An invitation has gone out for  EMSB schools to participate in this competition. The World Scholar's Cup is a worldwide academic competition in which w students aged 10 to 18 from across the Montreal area are invited to the Regional Round, where they will compete in teams of three in a variety of academic events: debating, collaborative writing, a team quiz bowl style event, and a multiple-choice exam. While academically challenging, the Cup's enthusiastic, high-energy atmosphere creates a fun and memorable learning experience. The Regional Round typically contains 200-250 students from schools across Montreal.

From the Regional Rounds, teams can qualify to advance to a Global Round competition with teams from around the world. The highest-performing teams from Global Rounds then compete against the world's best in the Tournament of Champions, which has been held at Yale University for the last seven years. Students from last year's Montreal Regional Round qualified for and traveled to The Hague, Netherlands for a Global Round in July, and will compete in the Tournament of Champions next month at Yale. In addition to challenging them with rigorous academics, the international competitions allow students to connect with new friends from all over the world while participating in events like a scavenger hunt, talent show, cultural fair and even a dance party. We would love for students from your school to experience this same life-changing opportunity! If you have any further questions about the competition or any aspect of the World Scholar’s Cup experience, please do not hesitate to contact Aaron Stamboulieh at  

SPOTLIGHT ON THE ARTS:  For those headed to the QPAT Convention please visit the EMSB Information Table and attend  Spotlight on the Arts. These are free creative workshops and networking opportunities for visual and performing arts teachers and STEAM devotees.
It is all day on  Friday November 15 at the  Salon Bonaventure (Bonaventure Hotel)


Galileo and Sainte Marcelline students.
GARLIC PLANTING: With the harvest season upon us, Galileo students were invited to collaborate with College Sainte Marcelline Elementary School to exercise our green thumbs! Being welcomed to plant at Giardino Biraghi,  students were able to have a hands on experience to create an indoor garden, using recycled materials, as well as planting an outdoor garden that will be cultivated next September 2020. Not only was this a great socializing activity for the Social Integration Services (SIS) students and the elementary school garden group, but it also made all those involved more conscientious of the needs of our environment. To further our environmental kindness, we also planted Quebec grown garlic and prunes in College Sainte Marcelline’s outdoor garden.  This partnership that was created between the two schools allowed for our SIS students to embody a mentoring role to the young elementary school children. Like with our garden, we hope that this new found relationship will continue to flourish! 

KEEPING UP WITH TRADITIONSWhat a better way of getting students to collectively come together and experience the harvest season. This October, Galileo’s CCBE, SIS and Academic students spent the day at La Magie de la Pomme in St. Eustache picking apples, riding tractors through the orchard and even tasting delicious treats made on the spot. Students were integrated doing outdoor activities that exposed them not only to nature, but sharing a typical Quebec event while sharing ideas and even apple recipes!  Both our day and evening CCBE classes celebrated Thanksgiving at Galileo joining in  a potluck breakfast and supper this year. All groups were taught the language and traditions that are held in North America during the harvest season. Being grateful is a wonderful lesson to learn in our society while spending time with each other. Discovering new flavours from different cultures is also a welcomed in house activity. Thank you to all teachers and students for participating!  Lately, our SIS learners visited vibrant Chinese and Japanese gardens that gave them at closer look at the beauty of other cultures. It was a gorgeous day to walk around and explore the decorated pumpkins as well as the green houses while learning about various vegetation and practices from other parts of the world. Exploring nature’s grounds as a group was wonderful at Botanical Garden experience.

At the Job Fair.
JOB FAIRLooking for work can sometimes be a job on its own! Many of Galileo students were invited to attend The National Job Fair at Place Bonaventure. This outing gave our students an opportunity to practice their previous lessons on employment, CV writing, as well as, a greater insight on what is required in today’s job market. In turn, they were able to submit their CVs, practice their interview skills, and form a network while meeting new people. True learning and guidance is offered at the centre.  


CONTESTATION DÉPOSÉE CONTRE LA LOI 21: Le cabinet d’avocats Power Law, en sa qualité de représentant du conseil des commissaires de la Commission scolaire English-Montréal (CSEM), a officiellement déposé une requête devant la Cour supérieure du Québec afin de contester la validité de la loi 21. Dans sa requête, la CSEM invoque principalement l'article 23 de la Charte canadienne des droits et libertés qui garantit à la minorité anglophone du Québec le droit à l'éducation dans sa langue. Entrée en vigueur le 16 juillet dernier, la loi 21 – Loi sur la laïcité de l'État interdit aux enseignants du réseau scolaire publique, ainsi qu’aux avocats, juges et policiers de l’État de porter des signes religieux dans le cadre de leur travail. Ainsi, les citoyens et les institutions publiques comme la CSEM sont assujettis à toutes les lois et tous les règlements adoptés par les parlements du Québec et du Canada. L’évolution au fil des ans de l’article 23 de la Charte canadienne des droits et libertés de même que les décisions successives de la Cour suprême du Canada appuient le droit exclusif de gestion et de contrôle reconnu aux minorités linguistiques du Canada pour le fonctionnement de leurs systèmes scolaires publics. Voici une copie de la requête. 

FOIRE DES CARRIÈRES: Plus de 2 000 élèves de la 5e secondaire ont pris part à la 19e édition annuelle de la Foire des carrières de la Commission scolaire English-Montréal les mercredi 16 octobre et jeudi 17 octobre au Centre de carrières St. Pius X à Ahuntsic. Jack Dym de Pipe and Piling Supplies Ltd. et la Banque Royale RBC ont été les commanditaires en titre de cet événement.
Plusieurs personnalités des médias étaient sur place pour renseigner les élèves sur les carrières dans ce domaine et ont agi à titre de maîtres de cérémonie, notamment : Sabrina Marandola de CBC Radio One, Meghan Kelly de The Beat 92.5 FM, Tim Sargeant et David Sedell de Global TV, Christine Long de CTV et Fariha Naqvi-Mohamed de CityNews.
Le grand public a pu visiter la Foire des carrières le 16 octobre, de 18 h à 20 h. Parents et élèves de la 4e et 5e secondaire en ont profité pour se renseigner sur les options postsecondaires qui s’offrent à eux. Des centaines de visiteurs ont visité la foire et se sont dits très reconnaissants d’avoir pu rencontrer tous ces gens. Mario Argiropoulos et Harriet Cohen des Services de l’éducation des adultes et de la formation professionnelle (SEAFP) ont présidé la Foire des carrières. Les Services aux élèves et les SEAFP de la CSEM coordonnent ce programme. L’objectif principal de la Foire des carrières vise à sensibiliser les élèves aux divers programmes d’enseignement qui s’offrent à eux. Tous les élèves ont assisté à une brève séance d’information générale dans l’auditorium du Centre de carrières St. Pius X. Ils ont ensuite eu l’occasion de visiter les divers kiosques d’information/d’exposition et de s’entretenir avec des représentants d’établissements anglophones, à savoir des centres de formation professionnelle, des cégeps, universités et certains collèges privés.

CORRIDOR VERT: L'arrondissement de Montréal-Nord de la Ville de Montréal a célébré quatre années de succès avec la CSEM et la Commission scolaire de la Pointe-de-l'Île (CSPI) dans la réalisation d’un projet novateur de Corridor vert. Il s’agit du territoire délimité par les rues Pascal (nord), Renoir (sud), Laurier (ouest) et le boulevard Rolland (est). Sur seulement un demi-kilomètre carré, on y retrouve cinq écoles, deux parcs, la Maison culturelle et communautaire, une bibliothèque, un aréna et une piscine publique. Chaque jour, plus de 6 000 écoliers, enseignants et parents empruntent ce corridor. Les écoles en question sont l’école primaire Gerald McShane et l’école secondaire Lester B. Pearson de la CSEM, ainsi que l’école secondaire Henri-Bourassa, l’école primaire Jules Verne et l’école primaire Le Carignan. Prenant la parole à cette occasion, la présidente de la CSEM, Angela Mancini, a souligné qu’au cours des quatre dernières années, des efforts considérables ont été déployés dans ce secteur achalandé afin de créer un milieu de vie agréable, accessible, actif et convivial. Info:

JOURNÉE SHADOW DAY : La Journée Job Shadow Day de WCM est un événement gratuit d'une journée qui s’adresse aux élèves de la gent féminine du deuxième cycle du secondaire ayant un intérêt pour les affaires. Cette activité présentera des ateliers interactifs, des séances de réseautage et de mentorat, des exposés animés par des femmes occupant des carrières diverses dans le domaine financier ainsi qu’un après-midi d'observation en milieu de travail en compagnie d’une mentore qui œuvre dans l'industrie. Cet événement procurera aux élèves un aperçu des carrières passionnantes en finance. À Montréal, la journée Job Shadow Day de WCM aura lieu le 5 décembre dans les locaux de PSP Investments au 1250, boulevard René-Lévesque Ouest, avec la participation de grandes banques et de sociétés de gestion de portefeuille. Les élèves auront l’occasion de faire la tournée des principales salles de marchés de ces grandes banques et sociétés de gestion de retraite. Depuis sa création en 2004, la Journée Job Shadow Day a offert à des centaines d’élèves du deuxième cycle du secondaire une exposition unique au monde des affaires et des marchés financiers. Devant le succès retentissant des dernières années et à la demande générale, le WCM organisera à Montréal et à Toronto la Journée Job Shadow Day 2019. Les élèves devront être accompagnées d’un enseignant. Dix élèves par école pourront s’inscrire; il n’est pas nécessaire pour les enseignants de s’inscrire. Cliquez ici pour vous inscrire et en apprendre davantage sur la Journée Job Shadow Day.

RASSEMBLEMENT POUR LE CLIMAT: Les cours ont eu lieu comme à l’habitude à la Commission scolaire English-Montréal le vendredi 27 septembre. Toutefois, les parents qui le désiraient ont pu permettre à leurs enfants de participer au grand rassemblement pour le climat prévu ce jour-là. La directrice générale de la CSEM, Ann Marie Matheson, avait informé les parents de la nécessité d’aviser l’école par écrit s’ils autorisaient leurs enfants à prendre part à la marche.
« La Commission scolaire English-Montréal est préoccupée par les changements climatiques et, en tant qu’organisation, nous nous efforçons sans cesse de faire des choix respectueux de l’environnement », avait déclaré Mme Matheson. « Ce rassemblement aura lieu durant les heures de classe régulières. Puisqu’il ne s’agit pas d’une activité supervisée par l’école, nous ne pouvons libérer nos élèves », avait-elle précisé.
Madame Matheson a indiqué que les écoles de la CSEM avaient été invitées à organiser des activités le 27 septembre afin de promouvoir l’importance des problèmes liés aux changements climatiques.  « Nos élèves en leadership auront assurément une foule d’idées et de suggestions pour souligner cet enjeu important », avait-elle ajouté.
Plusieurs écoles ont répondu à l’appel, notamment les écoles Royal Vale à NDG, l’école Dunrae Gardens à Ville Mont-Royal et le Collège Vincent Massey à Rosemont. Nous vous invitons à lire l’article.

RÉORGANISATION SCOLAIRE MAJEURE: La CSEM a lancé une vaste consultation sur la réorganisation scolaire afin d’évaluer la meilleure façon d’organiser et de consolider les effectifs scolaires dans la partie nord-est de son territoire. Les écoles suivantes font l’objet de cette consultation : Dante, Général Vanier, Honoré Mercier, Pierre de Coubertin, John Paul I et Laurier Macdonald à Saint-Léonard; Gerald McShane et l’école secondaire Lester B. Pearson à Montréal-Nord; de même que Our Lady of Pompei à Ahuntsic et St. Dorothy à Saint-Michel. Les audiences se tiendront les 8 et 9 janvier prochain. Une décision sera prise lors de la réunion qui se tiendra le 30 janvier. Nous vous invitons à consulter les documents pertinents à

SEMAINE ÉDUCATION MÉDIAS : Elias Makos, personnalité médiatique, était présent au campus senior de l’Académie LaurenHill à Saint-Laurent le 8 octobre pour parler aux élèves de culture médiatique. Cette activité s’inscrivait dans le cadre des initiatives de la CSEM visant à aborder la thématique des fausses nouvelles, à l’occasion de la Semaine éducation médias qui avait lieu à l’échelle nationale du 7 au 11 octobre. Diplômé de LaurenHill, M. Makos faisait partie de la toute première cohorte d’élèves lorsque l'école a ouvert ses portes au début des années 1990 et il avoue que cet établissement demeure « un endroit tout spécial pour lui ». Une fois son diplôme en poche en 1997, il a entamé sa carrière qui l’a amené à occuper divers postes dans le domaine des communications, notamment pour les Expos et les Canadiens, à animer l'émission Breakfast Television Montréal et à prendre la barre, en semaine, de sa propre émission matinale radiophonique sur les ondes de CJAD 800 intitulée The Elias Makos Show, en plus d’être un collaborateur assidu sur CTV. Doté d’un sens aigu du monde numérique en constante évolution, M. Makos a livré un discours inspirant devant une classe de 4e secondaire. Il a parlé des différentes façons qui ont marqué la diffusion et la consommation des nouvelles et des informations au fil du temps. Par exemple, il a mentionné qu’il y a 20 ans, les seules sources d’informations se limitaient à un nombre restreint de publications imprimées et de stations de radiodiffusion – toutes fiables. À présent, il existe une pléthore d’informations disponibles, parfois du contenu fabriqué de toutes pièces et de sources qui ne sont pas nécessairement bien intentionnées. De nos jours, « tout le monde peut vous joindre », a-t-il déclaré. M. Makos a exhorté les élèves à prendre du recul et à ralentir lorsqu’il est question d’évaluer des informations dont le contenu est destiné à promouvoir la haine. Il n’y a rien de mal à manifester publiquement son désaccord, à vrai dire il s’agit même d’un comportement souhaitable dans une société démocratique, mais, il a tenu à les prévenir d’être vigilants quant au contenu créé dans le but de « semer un sentiment de haine envers quelqu’un ». Comment parvient-on à déterminer la validité et la source de l'information? « Le pare-feu final, c'est vous », a-t-il dit aux élèves, en les invitant à se renseigner davantage sur leurs sources et les motivations. Dans le cadre de l’émission de radio étudiante « The Voice » à l’Académie LaurenHill, quatre animateurs ont interviewé M. Makos. Il a été question des interférences en ligne, de sujets délicats qu’il a abordés en ondes, de la façon de s’y prendre pour « éviter de se laisser berner par les politiciens » et de la liberté d’expression.
La CSEM, en collaboration avec Bell Média, continuera d’explorer cette thématique dans différentes écoles tout au long de l’année.

TRANSITION À L’ÉCOLE SECONDAIRE: La CSEM, en collaboration avec le CIUSSS Centre-Ouest, a organisé un atelier le 16 octobre en soirée à l’intention des parents qui avait pour thème la transition à l’école secondaire. La soirée a permis de mettre en lumière la manière dont nous pouvons travailler ensemble pour que les adolescents se sentent soutenus dans leur nouvel environnement. Une discussion s’est est suivie sur le développement des adolescents et sur ce qu’il faut savoir sur chacun des stades de l’adolescence. Des conseils et astuces ont également été fournis pour parvenir à atténuer le stress à l’aube de l’entrée au secondaire.

BALADOS: Au nombre des balados réalisés par Suzanne Desautels ce mois-ci, mentionnons la visite à la Foire des carrières de la CSEM et un survol de la course Terry Fox à l’école primaire Edinburgh. Nous vous invitons à écouter les balados à

BALADO INSPIRATIONS : Le plus récent balado du magazine Inspirations animé par Mark Bergman met en vedette la Chorale Shira et le théâtre I Can Dream. Faites-en l’écoute à

LA CHORALE A 40 ANS : La chorale de la CSEM, qui célèbre son 40e anniversaire cette année, organise de nouveau une activité-bénéfice de vente de fromages. Nous sommes heureux de proposer une délicieuse variété de fromages de l’Abbaye de Saint-Benoît-du-Lac, et ce, aux mêmes prix que l’année dernière (inférieurs au prix de détail en magasins). Ces fromages emballés sous vide et sans lactose sont présentés dans des coffrets attrayants. Offrez-les en cadeaux ou servez-les aux Fêtes. Beaucoup d’entre vous ont acheté ces produits ou ont manifesté un intérêt au cours des dernières années. J’ai donc le plaisir de vous annoncer que cette campagne est de retour cette année. Les sommes amassées permettront d’acheter des partitions, de produire des concerts, de mettre sur pied des camps de musique et des ateliers, en plus de donner à nos choristes la possibilité de travailler avec des musiciens professionnels. Les commandes doivent être reçues et réglées au plus tard le 17 novembre. Nous recevrons les fromages le vendredi 13 décembre. Pour ceux qui le désirent, sachez que la chorale senior de la CSEM se produira dans plusieurs concerts cet automne : le 23 novembre avec Musica Orbium à l’église du Très-Saint-Nom-de-Jésus, le 30 novembre en compagnie de la chorale Saint-Laurent à l'église des Saints-Anges de Lachine, ainsi que lors du concert annuel de la CSEM prévu le samedi 7 décembre à 16 h 30 à l'église United Mountainside. Veuillez communiquer avec moi si vous souhaitez assister à ces concerts. Pour informations :

RETRAITE EN PLEINE NATURE POUR LES SERVICES AUX ÉLÈVES : Le 3 octobre, 104 membres du personnel des Services aux élèves de la Commission scolaire English-Montréal ont pris part à une journée de perfectionnement professionnel au Domaine Vert à Mirabel. La journée a débuté par une présentation sous le thème « Connexions » animée par Sandra Reich, directrice clinique du Centre d’anxiété et de dépression de Montréal. Mme Reich a rappelé l’importance de prendre soin de soi, surtout lorsqu’on travaille avec une clientèle vulnérable comme celle que dessert l’équipe des Services aux élèves. Pour enchaîner, des activités de consolidation d’équipe ont été organisées en plein air. Les 10 équipes se sont affrontées dans des jeux tels le tir à la corde, le lancer du disque volant (Frisbee) et, plus tard, des activités plus exigeantes comme l’escalade et le tir à l’arc. La journée s'est terminée par une séance de yoga du rire où tous ont ri aux éclats. Cette présentation a permis de consolider le message axé sur la recherche de connexions véhiculé par Mme Reich. Le directeur des Services aux élèves, Lew Lewis, qui a pris sa retraite le 18 octobre au terme d’une carrière de 52 années à la CSEM et à la Commission des écoles protestantes du Grand Montréal, a clos la journée sur une note émouvante en portant un toast à son équipe. Nous vous invitons à lire l’intégral de l’article à

INFORMATION SUR LE VAPOTAGE : Nous assistons à une augmentation rapide du nombre d'adolescents et de jeunes adultes qui songent à essayer ou font déjà usage de la  cigarette électronique. Le Centre de prévention du cancer de l’Université McGill est très préoccupé par la mésinformation que les jeunes reçoivent de la part de leurs pairs et des médias sociaux, selon laquelle ces produits seraient plus sains et plus sûrs que la cigarette. À la lumière de ce que nous savons actuellement sur le vapotage, ces produits sont non seulement nocifs, mais ils pourraient également entraîner chez les adolescents et les jeunes adultes une dépendance à la nicotine. Afin de tirer au clair ce que rapporte la science à l’heure actuelle à propos de ces produits, les parents sont invités à venir se renseigner sur les conséquences graves et néfastes de ces produits à l’occasion d’une conférence publique annuelle gratuite organisée par le Centre de prévention du cancer de l’Université McGill intitulée Are E-cigarettes a New Addiction? (« Les cigarettes électroniques : une nouvelle dépendance? »), le mercredi 27 novembre au 3625, avenue du Parc, salle Prince Arthur A. Cette conférence portera sur les effets néfastes du vapotage. Pour informations : et

INAUGURATION DU CAMPUS SENIOR DE L’ÉCOLE WILLINGDON : L’ambiance était à la fête le 2 octobre lorsque les élèves du 3e cycle, la direction et les enseignants de l’école Willingdon ont accueilli des invités de marque ainsi que des médias dans les bâtiments de Coronation et Somerled pour l’inauguration officielle du nouveau campus senior à NDG. Des représentants de la Commission scolaire English-Montréal, plusieurs politiciens, des représentants de l’Association foyer-école de Willingdon et de son conseil d’établissement ainsi que des parents se sont joints aux 150 élèves de 5e et 6e année. Penny Fenwick, bénévole à l’école depuis environ 50 ans, était également sur place. Des discours de remerciement, l’histoire de la création du campus et des prestations musicales et poétiques par les élèves ont marqué cette matinée de célébration. Un gâteau spécial décoré du logo Willingdon et des cupcakes pour les enfants ont été servis. La directrice adjointe du campus senior, Maya Doughan, agissant à titre de maîtresse de cérémonie, souhaitait que cet événement offre « un aperçu de la vision, du travail acharné, du dévouement et de l’amour qui ont permis de concrétiser ce bel ajout à l’école primaire Willingdon ». Carmen Nicolas, directrice de l’école, s’est dite profondément fière et a déclaré ressentir un grand sentiment d’humilité en s’adressant à l’auditoire. Comme vous pouvez le constater et le voir, il s’agit d’un grand moment pour Willingdon. » Elle a rappelé que ce n’est qu’en janvier de la même année que l’idée a commencé à prendre forme. Le processus qui a permis de faire de l’annexe senior une réalité fut rigoureux. Nous vous invitons à visionner cette superbe vidéo promotionnelle qui célèbre l’ouverture du nouveau campus: 

INITIATIVES VERTES : Au printemps 2019, dans le cadre de leur cours de sciences, les élèves de l’école Dunrae Gardens ont pris part à un programme de vérification des déchets. Ainsi, ils ont vidé les poubelles et séparé les déchets compostables et les matériaux recyclables. Ils ont découvert que seulement 30 % de ce qui restait représentait des ordures. Au total, 31 % du contenu était compostable et 43 % était recyclable. D’après les résultats de la vérification des déchets, l’école a produit environ 736 kg de déchets ordinaires par année, soit 4 kg par jour de classe. Si on divise ce résultat par le nombre de salles de classe l’année dernière (soit 16), on en arrive à la conclusion que chaque classe génère environ 250 g de déchets par jour. Ainsi, lorsque la CSEM a lancé l’initiative des bacs de compostage, l’école Dunrae Gardens s’est engagée à relever le défi! En novembre, la Ville devrait nous livrer deux gros bacs extérieurs bruns. Notre communauté, par l’entremise de l’Association des familles, financera l’achat de petits bacs qui seront présents dans toutes les classes-foyers. Le comité vert des enseignants enseignera aux élèves la méthode appropriée de séparer les déchets. Ces jeunes ambassadeurs formeront ensuite les autres. Nous sommes très enthousiastes face à cette initiative et avons déjà pris d’autres mesures pour aller de l’avant avec ce projet. D’autres détails sont à venir!

ON BOUGE : Dans le cadre de l’initiative entourant l’école active, les élèves du 3e cycle mènent le bal. Parmi les nombreuses activités qui se déroulent à l’école Dunrae Gardens, mentionnons qu’une fois par semaine des élèves de la 6e année animent l’activité On Bouge! Ils sélectionnent un air musical et préparent une chorégraphie. Le vendredi matin, pendant environ 5 minutes, la musique est diffusée par l’entreprise du système d’intercom pour inciter tout le monde dans l'école, du plus jeune au plus âgé, à danser au rythme de la musique!

ENFANTS-RETOUR : L’une des plus grandes peurs des parents est d’assurer la sécurité de leur enfant en dehors de la maison ou de l’école. C’est pourquoi le Réseau Enfants-Retour fera équipe avec l’école primaire Honoré Mercier (8280, rue Nantes) de Saint-Léonard pour donner aux jeunes les moyens d’adopter des comportements sécuritaires. Cette initiative qui s’échelonnera sur deux mois vise à fournir aux élèves des connaissances et une formation approfondie sur la manière de gérer des situations personnelles ou publiques difficiles. Le programme de prévention destiné aux préadolescents mettra l'accent sur l'estime de soi, les relations saines, l'autonomisation et l'indépendance par l’entremise de jeux de rôle interactifs et de résolution de problèmes.

NOUVELLE TECHONOLOGIE À POMPEI : La nouvelle concentration Technologie fondée sur l’initiative STIAM à l’école primaire Our Lady of Pompei à Ahuntsic permettra aux élèves d’acquérir diverses compétences, dont la pensée critique, la résolution de problèmes, etc., par l’entremise d’un apprentissage par projets authentique. Cette approche interdisciplinaire et évolutive permet aux élèves d’expérimenter, de prendre des risques, d’explorer leurs intérêts et de susciter leur curiosité. Une brochure explicative expose le tout en détails. Au nombre des projets, mentionnons la réalisation d’un jardin extérieur, la conception et la programmation de robots à l'aide d'un langage mathématique, des portfolios numériques, des jeux-questionnaires en ligne interactifs, des collages ou des présentations, des récits numériques et des productions multimédias.

PARENTALITÉ : Lors de cet atelier qui se tiendra le dimanche 1er décembre à 18 h 30 au Centre Leonardo Da Vinci (8370, boul. Lacordaire) à Saint-Léonard, Dre Shefali Tsabary présentera son approche radicalement différente en matière de parentalité qui a transformé vie de tant de familles. Que vous ayez un bébé ou un adolescent, elle vous aidera à découvrir une nouvelle façon d’assumer votre rôle de parent sans peur ni anxiété, de mettre fin aux conflits et de motiver vos enfants en créant des liens. Vous y apprendrez comment : cesser de vous battre en tant que parent et éprouver davantage de plaisir; composer avec les défis auxquels votre enfant est confronté; enrayer les conflits que suscitent les écrans et les appareils électroniques; et élever des enfants motivés, autonomes, résilients et conscients.  Pour plus d'informations et pour acheter des billets, rendez-vous à l'adresse

La Coalition Inclusion Québec, le Dialogue judéo-chrétien de Montréal et le Centre de littératie religieuse civique annoncent le lancement de la 2e édition du concours Les ponts du dialogue. Ce concours encourage les jeunes de la région de Montréal à mettre en valeur leurs talents artistiques et d'écrivains en partageant leurs réflexions et leurs expériences sur le portrait de notre communauté lorsque nous travaillons et vivons en harmonie.  Le thème de cette année est « Nous pouvons tous promouvoir et défendre les droits de la personne ».

Ce concours est à la mémoire de feu Victor Goldbloom, l'un des plus grands hommes d'État de Montréal, un grand leader dans le dialogue interculturel et interreligieux et un citoyen passionné par la construction de ponts.  Son autobiographie, Les Ponts du dialogue, jette les bases de ce concours. Le concours reflètera le message de Dr Goldbloom adressé à la prochaine génération qui était « une politique de présence - être présent partout et chaque fois que possible ». Comme il le dit si bien, nous avons invité la prochaine génération à « Être présente », « S’engager » et « Être constructive ».

Le concours Les ponts du dialogue s’adresse aux élèves de 9 à 17 ans.  Des prix de 100 $ à 500 $ seront remis aux gagnants. Les candidats peuvent soumettre des œuvres sous forme de création littéraire (poésie, histoire, prose, essai) ou artistique (dessin, peinture, musique, photographie, film ou multimédia). Pour plus de détails, veuillez consulter le règlement du concours ci-joint.  Le concours est ouvert jusqu'au 15 janvier 2020.

Les meilleures œuvres seront sélectionnées par un jury local et seront mises à l’honneur lors d’un événement qui aura lieu en février 2020. La date de cette remise de prix sera annoncée sous peu. Les soumissions gagnantes seront également partagées sur les réseaux sociaux.
Pour plus d'informations:

 The next Focus will be on Nobember  27, Deadline for submissions is Friday, November 22.