Wednesday, October 28, 2020

OCTOBER 28 2020 EDITION / VOLUME 23 NUMBER 3/ THE OFFICIAL BULLETIN OF THE EMSB (MIKE COHEN, EDITOR/MANON BOURASSA, TRANSLATION)

The EMSB Success Rate leads the way.

HIGHEST SUCCESS RATE: The EMSB has surpassed its record, set last year, for the highest Success Rate in graduation and qualification among public school boards in the entire province of Quebec, based on a seven year cohort at 92.5 percent.  These figures were released by the Ministère de l’Education   de Québec (MEQ). While the majority of students graduated after five years, the Ministry allows each cohort to be followed for an additional two years to ensure that students have every opportunity to graduate or obtain a first qualification. In addition to having the highest Success Rate in the province, the EMSB is also number one in the public network and among English boards.  The province-wide Success Rate, which includes both public and private school results, remained stable for 2019 at 81.8 percent. Please see the complete press release.

Joe Ortona
EMSB COUNCIL: The Quebec government issued a decree, indefinitely postponing school board elections in red zones scheduled for November 1 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. At the EMSB, incoming Chair Joe Ortona and nine of the 10 commissioners have already been acclaimed. As part of the administrative decree 1039-2020 and Section 79 of the Act Respecting School Elections, they will automatically assume office on November 6.  The election for commissioner in Ward 3 (Westmount-Sud Ouest) has been suspended. As a result, the work of the electoral revision office will halt activities and resume when a new date is chosen.  Those who were permitted to vote by mail will also be contacted when the election process resumes. In keeping with Section 160 of the   Act Respecting School Elections, those persons holding these positions at the time of the notice of election (September 18) remain in office until an election is held. For the EMSB that means incumbent commissioner Julien Feldman will continue to serve Ward 3. Their first Council meeting will be on Wednesday, November 11. The acclaimed commissioners are: Ellie Israel, Ward 1; Joseph Lalla, Ward 2; Jamie Fabian, Ward 4; James Kromida, Ward 5; Agostino Cannavino, Ward 6; Sophie De Vito, Ward 7; Mario Pietrangelo, Ward 8; Mario Bentrovato, Ward 9; and Pietro Mercuri, Ward 10.

See this Montreal Gazette story on 20 year old Commissioner Jamie Fabian. 

PARENT REPRESENTATIVES: The EMSB Parents Committee held their Annual General Assembly (AGA) on October 22.  Caleigh Saucier from Marymount Academy International in NDG was elected chair; Serena Capplette from LaurenHill Academy in St. Laurent, vice-chair; and Franco Mazzariello from Lester B. Pearson High School in Montreal North, treasurer. The four parent commissioners are: Mubeenah Mughal, ACSES; Maria Corsi, Elementary; Tony Speranza, Secondary; and Daniel Tatone, No Designation.

TRUSTEESHIP DRAWS TO A CLOSE: EMSB Trustee Marlene Jennings will conclude her mandate on November 6. Here is an opinion piece she published in The Montreal Gazette

Christy Tannous

ADMINISTRATIVE APPOINTMENTS: Christy Tannous has been named principal of the EMSB Virtual School and Real Heppelle vice-principal.  Jody Cayer is now an interim vp at Royal West.

VIRTUAL SCHOOL UPDATE: In a message to parents, Ms. Tannous and Mr. Heppelle stated: “We are confident that our experience in varied EMSB schools, combined with our knowledge of innovative technology integration, will help your children navigate through these challenging times.  Our shared vision for the Virtual School is to create a community of learners focused on engagement and connection.”  In an effort to help stay connected and up to date on the current events of the Virtual School, social media platforms on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram have been launched.

EDUCATION FAIR: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 20th annual EMSB Education Fair (formerly the Career Fair) is taking  place virtually this year. Jack Dym of Pipe and Piling Supplies Ltd. and RBC Royal Bank are once again the event’s title sponsors. The Education Fair represents a good opportunity for students and their parents to look towards post-secondary education options. This program is coordinated by the EMSB Adult Education and Vocational Services and the Student Services Departments. 

The main objective is to provide students with an in-depth exposure to the various educational opportunities available to them. Please take advantage of the information and videos provided on this dedicated site.

VIRTUAL OPEN HOUSES: Here are links to the EMSB Bell Media radio campaign ads for our virtual open houses.

Virgin Radio Traffic Tag

Virgin Radio Flash

TSN 690 Traffic Tag 

TSN 690 Sports Update Tag

CJAD News Tag

Please take a tour of our virtual open houses here.

Borough Mayor Sue Montgomery and Jon Gurman from the M4SK Army hand out masks at Marymount Academy International.

MANDATORY MASKS IN HIGH SCHOOL:  Masks are now mandatory inside and out of the classroom for high school students. Media visited Marymount Academy International on the first day:

CTV Report

CityNews  

Global TV

CBC TV

Vincent Massey Collegiate Secondary  II student Alessandra Mercuri was interviewed here on the Andrew Carter CJAD morning show.

Carlyle students make their point for human rights.

HONORING THE RIGHTS OF SENIORS:   At Carlyle Elementary School in TMR, Ms. Jessica's Grade 5C class   recently took their IB human rights program activity outside. After learning about the vulnerability of seniors with COVID-19 and about the conditions of some of the residential care centers that the seniors were living in, the students were shocked. They created mini banners advocating for respect and for the rights of seniors. Spiritual and Community Animator Puynung Choy said, "they understood that the situation described indicated a violation of some basic human rights and they saw the need to ensure that all seniors were given proper care.” As a prelude to International Seniors Day, the students made a declaration that every person rightfully deserves the same quality of life as another, including our seniors.

A John Caboto Academy student takes part.

TERRY FOX RUN: This year marks the 40th anniversary of Terry Fox’s Marathon of Hope, and many EMSB schools are creating innovative, fun and safe ways to continue the legacy of the great Canadian. Fundraising takes place online, but the actual physical event is being played out in different and interesting ways among the participating schools. The official date for the Terry Fox Foundation school run across Canada is September 30, but EMSB schools are having their events at different times during the fall. “We fully understand how busy educators are during these challenging times - in the same way Terry Fox inspired people by running the Marathon of Hope, educators are inspiring us by finding the time to raise funds for cancer research,” said Peter Sheremeta, provincial director of the Quebec branch of The Terry Fox Foundation. “This has been such a strong tradition at EMSB schools – in the past 40 years, they have raised $2,142,965 for Terry’s dream of a world without cancer.” Please see the complete story, with a roundup of what schools have been up to.

40 FOR 40: In honour of the 40th anniversary of the iconic Terry Fox run, the students of Rosemount High School, Honore Mercier Elementary, Nesbitt Elementary, and Perspectives I&II participated in a unique community program during the last month. Students were placed in clusters of a minimum of four students and had to complete 40 kilometers as a team between September 28 to October 28 by walking, jogging, or running. They were encouraged to work together with their families to reach their goal. Students and parents were asked to monitor their progress using a digital device and tracking app. 

A young Batman.

In the classroom, staff were able to obtain free educational programs and audio visual resources from the Terry Fox foundation, and received a video message from Fred Fox, Terry Fox’s brother about Terry’s life and what The Marathon of Hope has accomplished over the past 40 years. The ultimate goal was to reach the symbolic 5,373 kilometres (3,339 miles), where Terry was forced to stop running outside of Thunder Bay, Ontario because cancer had appeared in his lungs. The schools collectively ran over 6,578 kilometres throughout the campaign surpassing their goal.    

Several schools planned to hold a (socially-distanced) closing ceremony at the end of the month, where certificates would be provided to students and the total amount raised and total number of kilometres walked during the campaign will be announced. In addition on the 29th of October, Nesbitt and Honore Mercier will have the students dress up as their favourite Canadian Hero or Superhero in honour of Terry Fox. 


PEACE, HONOUR AND COMMEMORATION:  September 13, 2020, marked six months since the school system temporarily closed. A committee of SCAs (Vince Lacroce, Rocco Speranza and  Paolo Ruscito), have started a program entitled Peace, Honour, and Commemoration. It focuses on this challenging time in our history, and aims to unite the EMSB family and communities by starting the process of healing, while honouring those who passed, served, and continue to serve on the front lines. Lessons on heroes, peace, self-care, wellbeing, and visits by first responders have started. Lessons and visits provide an opportunity for education, acknowledgement, and expression of gratitude to those who are serving and keeping our community safe and healthy. Students will have a chance to hear first-hand stories and present thank you cards. Two awards have also been created to be presented to students and staff at participating schools who display kindness, promote peace, and persevere in the face of difficulty. Nominations will be made by teachers and students.  

A student attends to her art.
A BRUSH OF INSPIRATION: Rosemount High School, Perspectives I & II High Schools, and Nesbitt Elementary are embarking upon a new program called “A Brush of Inspiration.” This first ever initiative will be coordinated by the Art, English, French, and Resource Departments of each school alongside Spiritual Community Animator Vince Lacroce. Students will be creating beautiful paintings inspired by their favourite artists that will be donated to local Montreal senior centers (CHSLD Dante, CHSLD St. Michel Almage Senior Citizen Center) and local hospitals (The Jewish General Hospital, The Montreal Children’s Hospital, and St. Mary’s Hospital). The artwork will include personalized letters of thanks to all frontline workers and well wishes of support to seniors, many of whom may be living in isolation. “During these very difficult times of isolation and quarantine, it is important for us to provide opportunities that cultivate human interaction and connectedness,” says Lacroce. “We all know that comforting feeling when we are being physically embraced by another human being. Human connection is so important in maintaining our overall emotional and physical health, and now more than ever we need to find the means to develop opportunities for us to stay connected with our extended community when we can’t be physically connected. We are all in this together!” The students’ artwork will be displayed in prominent areas of the hospital and in senior centers (individual rooms and hallways) during the month of  November. Staff and students will also have an opportunity to have a virtual meet and greet with the recipients of the schools’ donations in mid-November.

STRONG TOGETHER: Students at Honore Mercier, Nesbitt and Rosemount High School will be launching a series of motivational short films called “Strong Together” that will be sent out to frontline workers and CHSLDs in the community. The videos will be produced and edited by Spiritual Community Animator Vince Lacroce. Honore Mercier Elementary, under the guidance of Music Specialist Veronica Graniero will be paying tribute to the animation smash hit Sing   and Nesbitt Elementary will be coming together with the support of Music Specialist Caroline Derome to perform the music of DreamWorks Animation film Trolls 2. Rosemount High School will be the first to launch their “Strong Together” film with the incredible and talented Daniela Dos Santos, Secondary IV student, as she performs her rendition of “Control,” by Zoe Wees. A special thank you to DJ Gary Crash who helped edit the music. Watch the full video by clicking on this link.  “We wanted to use the voices of our students to show our support to the courageous and dedicated team of professionals who do what they do every day to keep us safe," said Mr. Lacroce. "No words can express our gratitude for their continued commitment to your craft and our community." The videos will be sent out soon in line with the SCA monthly virtue of Gratitude. 

The Gratitude Tree

GRATITUDE GROWS AT BANCROFT: A new tree has started to grow in Bancroft Elementary School's main entrance and they call it the Bancroft Family Tree. This  will change with and according to the seasons, displaying the various monthly themes being covered by the Spiritual and Community Animation Service. For the month of October, as it is autumn, the leaves changed color, and illuminated the virtue of Gratitude. Following a school-wide lesson on the virtue of gratitude (what it is, the benefits of gratitude, and how to practice it on a daily basis) students chose what they were grateful for and either wrote or drew their expression of gratitude on their leaf. Responses ranged from hugs, love, and family to sanitation workers and farmers, and from their individual strengths, abilities, and values, to COVID-19 masks.  

THE POWER OF ONE: At LINKS High School, the inspirational Steven Atme (right) recently teamed up with SCA Rocco Speranza to embark upon a series of classroom and school visits as part of their The Power of One Mystery Machine Tour. The aim is to inspire students and youth on how their “power of one” can change their lives and the lives of those around them. The presentations talk about the healing power and potential of music in connection with Steven’s new song, “Like a Rising Phoenix.”  The presentation also encourages students to follow their dreams and engages students in a discussion about some of the “Mysteries of the Universe” (the title of another one of Mr. Atme’s songs). Students have a great time singing along as Steven plays for them. If interested in ordering a copy of the DVD, “The Power of One,” the new movie Mr. Atme helped produce in which he and five friends, also living with autism and Asperger’s, share their accomplishments and encourage everybody to never give up and follow their dreams, please contact Mr. Speranza at rpseranza@emsb.qc.ca.

ORANGE SHIRT DAY: September 30 was Orange Shirt Day, an annual event that was created in 2013 to increase awareness about the history of the Indian Residential School System in Canada, honor the Indigenous children who were sent away, and open space for discussion about the lasting impacts of this system on Indigenous families and communities. In collaboration with Indigenous community members and EMSB colleagues, the SCA Service is working to provide more robust programming in our schools in connection with Orange Shirt Day and to increase awareness of Indigenous history and culture more broadly. 


While larger activities have been put on hold due to public safety concerns and the counsel of Indigenous community members to start with the education of teachers and school staff first, some initial steps are being taken in the schools. At Willingdon Elementary School, SCA Linda Luca offered classroom presentations about Orange Shirt Day and the history of residential schools. The presentations were well received by students, teachers, and staff, who were grateful to learn about this under acknowledged and important subject. We note that this is only a small and initial step in a long process of reconciliation in our schools. However, as Ms. Luca notes, “when we know better, we do better.”  In an effort to expand access to resources to educate our community about Orange Shirt Day and the residential school experience, EMSB librarians also added an “Orange Shirt Day” eBook collection to our EMSB Virtual Library, accessible to all students and teachers with their EMSB account, which accompanies the K-6 Curriculum from the Orange Shirt Day Society. You can find some information here

LIFTING SPIRITS: Students from the Competency-Based Approach to Social Participation (CASP) class at L.I.N.K.S High School in Ahuntsic started an initiative to help lift spirits up during this time through the power of art. The focus of the CASP program is to help students with special needs develop skillsets for social participation and self-determined behaviours through competency-based teaching. Inspired by the interactive wing murals found in street art, CASP homeroom teacher Loredana Scotto, decided to lead her students in recreating that style of art within the school. Classroom attendants Evan Lichty and Aude Rioland also helped guide students throughout the activity. Students followed a rainbow colour theme through colouring mandala stencils as well as ripping and crumpling coloured paper to create the shape of butterfly wings onto the bulletin board outside of their classroom. The project was part of the students’ art class as well as life skills class, as the focus around the installation was to encourage positive self-image and determination. Every day, the CASP class reads and analyzes an inspirational quote to start their day on a positive note. Through the interactive art installation, they were able to create their own set of inspirational words. The students brainstormed together and came up with the hashtags #FlyStrong and #Don’tbeafraid as a way to not only promote bravery, but also encourage others to “fly” towards their goals. The hashtags were also created to help spread the message outwards into the community through social media. Students and staff of L.I.N.K.S High School enjoyed posing in front of the mural with raised arms, displaying their own strength and freedom. The CASP class was happy to see their initiative brighten the students’ and staff members’ day and hope that it will continue to help others not be afraid to “spread their wings”!  Featured in the photos are the CASP students along with Ms. Loredana, Mr. Evan and Ms. Aude posing in front of the #FLYSTRONG initiative mural.

The lecture had proper social distancing.

RIDE WITH CONFIDENCE: STM Inspectors, L.I.N.K.S. High School staff, Principal. Maria Caldarella and Spiritual Care, Guidance and Community Involvement Animator Rocco Speranza teamed up to present The Ride with Confidence program. The interactive presentation covers How to have and don’ts while taking public transportation. The program aims to make students knowledgeable  and independent public transportation users by teaching them how to read the STM maps, bus schedule and more.   

A student gets ready to enjoy his pancakes.

THANKSGIVING DAY PANCAKES: With the hard work from Mr. Speranza and the local McDonald’s on Sauve and Papineau, L.I.N.K.S. staff and students were treated to breakfast pancakes, all in the in the spirit of Thanksgiving.  In return, to show their gratitude, students and staff took time to make and write personalized thank you cards treating them to pancakes was the least Mr. Speranza could to do. They have welcomed him into their school community since August.  Sharing a meal during this challenging times created a sense of connection and community.

SPORTS-ÉTUDES AT PEARSON:  Lester B. Pearson High School in Montreal North has offered its high-level Sport-études program since 2003, in conjunction with various provincial sports federations. Student-athletes train five days a week for a minimum of 15 combined hours under the program, as per federation guidelines. It is recognized by the ministère de l’Éducation du Québec (MEQ) and is the only school within the EMSB to offer such a program. It affords student-athletes the opportunity to combine academics with their passion for one of a long list of athletic disciplines, including baseball, boxing, cheerleading, dance, figure skating, hockey, judo, kickboxing, soccer, speed skating, swimming, taekwondo, & track and field.

Prior to being accepted into the Sport-études program, student-athletes must be recognized by one of the school’s sport partners and meet provincial standards. In the case of soccer and hockey players, they must try out to make their respective sports. From there, an application to Lester B. Pearson’s Sport-études program is submitted, where academics are then taken into account. There were changes in the school’s open house this year. A virtual open house was held in late September, as opposed to a traditional in-person showcase of the building. Nevertheless, Coordinator Casey  Gagné says prospective student-athletes “got a good sense of the program and the people here” via the Virtual Tour online. He also says many local elementary school children, in both grades five and six, were visited last year by students and members of the administration to discuss the program. Online registration for the 2021-2022 Sport-études program is ongoing. The deadline for incoming Grade 7 student-athlete applications was October 15, 2020. Applications for those entering Grades 8 to 11 are due by January 31, 2021. For additional information, contact Casey Gagné at (514) 328-4442 extension 6 or via email at cgagne@emsb.qc.ca. See our full story

LDVA GETS RECOGNITION: Last February’s Leonardo Da Vinci Academy Fashion Show, benefiting the Montreal Neurological Institute, was featured in: Philanthropy Changes Lives Impact of Giving report.  They raised $10,700. Associate Director of Annual Giving Ross Aitken stated: “On behalf of all those whose lives will be bettered through your generosity, thank you for believing in The Neuro and for playing an essential role in transforming brain research and patient care.” You can see the latest Impact of Giving report by visiting: http://apps.mni.mcgill.ca/Impact-of-Giving-2020/. 

MISS TEENAGE QUEBEC:  Clara Chemtov, a graduate of Willingdon Elementary School and Royal West Academy,  was crowned Miss Teenage Quebec last fall. She recently returned from Toronto where she competed in the Miss Teenage Canada event. After an intense week of photo and video shoots, interviews, rehearsals, preliminary judging, and activities, she came in first place in the category of social media.  The  18-year-old successfully recovered from an eating disorder. She authored a number of  education  awareness articles,  blogs and aired live-streams. In addition she  placed first in talent for her dance performance. “As an aspiring professional dancer, this is incredibly meaningful to me,” she said.   She presently attends CEGEP St. Laurent.   See her COVID-19 safety message.  

ALOUETTES GM: Each week the EMSB introduces you to a new  COVID-19 Safety Ambassador. Most recently we had  this message  from Montreal Alouettes General Manager Danny Macioca.


Matthew  Ross from B'nai Brith, Liem Yip, Principal Angela Vaudry and teacher Gloria Koyounian.

DIVERSE MINDS WINNERS: Two students at Royal West Academy in Montreal West were big winners in B’nai Brith Canada’s 2020 Diverse Minds Creative Writing Competition in Montreal. The English first-place co-winners were Grade 10 Royal West students Liem Yip and Gabriel Morin.  They co-authored The Eggnapper, a book about the need to be kind and understanding to people and refrain from making assumptions about others. The winning books, selected by a panel of celebrity judges, have been professionally published and are slated to be distributed free of charge to elementary schools and public libraries in Montreal. 

You can view the book here.

"Every student who participated in this contest is a winner in my book,” said Adriana Glikman, National Program Coordinator of B’nai Brith Canada. “We were thrilled to see so much talent in the Greater Montreal Area and we are excited about what the future holds in store for this very important writing competition.”

The students received cheques of $500 each as did the school and teacher Gloria Koyounian. Last month there was a virtual presentation of the winners. You can see it here

For more details click here.    

GRATITUDE AND  APPRECIATION: In the Spirit of Thanksgiving and the Season of Attitude of Gratitude, the John F. Kennedy High School administration took time to thank its shining Knights (staff and students) for their hard work and dedication during the first wave of the pandemic. Their service, perseverance, and commitment were highlighted. From their teachers, to caretaking staff, and cafeteria services, many working or volunteering during the school closures of 2020 In brief Vice Principal Vito Guerriero worked in school emergency daycares, ensuring all ran smoothly as possible. Ms. Jennifer from Cafeteria Services volunteered her time at a local food kitchen preparing thousands of meals Science teacher  Natalie Cloutier volunteered her time at a local CHSLD, keeping seniors in good company. Caretaking staff worked in school and emergency daycares.  Finally, two students; Massimo Trocchia  and Julian Jose Nunez continued working at their local grocery store in St Laurent, stocking shelves while keeping up with their online academics. Principal Otis Delaney will be presenting monthly, certificates to students and staff who display service, perseverance and commitment to their school and community.

Making the poppies
THE POPPY CAMPAIGN: John F. Kennedy High School Principal Otis Delaney, administration, staff, and students have aimed high and partner up with the Royal Canadian Legion (RCL) in order to aid them with the annual Poppy Campaign.  Code red restraints have closed legion branches across the Montreal and Quebec regions threatening to limit much needed funds for deserving veterans.  Students will be counting, sorting, packing, and mailing hundreds of poppies and poppy stickers to various organizations schools, and community groups. If you would like to support the RCL Legion and our veterans, you can contact SCA Speranza  at rsperanza@emsb.qc.ca 

HOPE THROUGH ART: Grade 4 students at Royal Vale School in NDG's have been spreading hope through art. This time they drew pictures of dandelions spreading symbols and messages of hope. Their artwork is entitled “Les Pissenlits d'espoir.”  

With time, more hopeful days will return. “For now, we are reflecting on how we can stay strong, kind and positive,” said teacher Nathalie Malhamé.

Devon Parker
YOUNG PIANIST: Royal Vale’s Devon Parker, 14, (presently part of the Virtual School), won  a top 10 spot in a prestigious international music composition award: The Commonwealth Composition Challenge 2020. Three awards will be presented and you can vote for the composer you feel should win the CICA Audience.  See this video.

DANTE TEACHER FEATURED ON TV: Nahal Derayeh, better known to parents and children as Madame Nahal, is a French kindergarten teacher at Dante Elementary School in St. Léonard, who has been teaching at the EMSB for 18 years. Over the past four years she has been innovatively integrating technology into her teaching.  By using YouTube videos she records of herself in the classroom and a private Facebook group called  “Mme Nahal et Ses Amies,” she manages to stay connected to parents and children in and out of the classroom. She was interviewed here by Global TV on World Teachers Day and here by CityNews.

WILLINGDON KIDS TALK HALLOWEEN: Two Grade 6 students, Quinn Abou-Fadel and Quincy Philippas, from Willingdon Elementary School in NDG were on CBC Radio Noon with Shawn Apel to talk about whether kids will be going trick or treating for Halloween. You can fast forward to the 9:35 minute mark to hear them.

DIGITAL 2PLAY: Geordie Theatre's Digital 2Play Tour is LIVE! Geordie Theatre is equipped to broadcast live shows for students across Canada and beyond! All you need is an internet connection to bring theatre back to your classroom. The most important thing for us is ensuring that we can bring joy back to your students in every way we can. Contact: schools@geordie.ca. Geordie provides an easy way to give students the joy of live performance again, from anywhere. Students are able to interact directly with the cast live after every performance. Access to detailed lesson plans covering topics ranging from self-identity and body image to tradition and storytelling is included! Geordie can broadcast to individual classrooms, preserving student safety.

YOUTHEATRE: Youtheatre is launching a groundbreaking online portal that will offer some of its most exciting productions for young audiences, reimagined in a digital format and accessible online. For the past 10 years, Youtheatre has pushed the limits of theatre for young audiences by exploring new technologies both on and off the stage. I speak with General Manager Simon A. Abou-Fadel and Co-Artistic Director Jeremy Segal. Moving beyond static archival recordings, YouDigital brings the magic of live performance to the screen in an innovative new hybrid form that dynamically incorporates the camera into the staging. Filmed with a mobile camera in a single take, these digital adaptations provide a fascinating new point of view through the eyes of the characters while preserving the liveliness of the theatrical experience. They come with an insightful teaching toolkit, roundtable discussion with the artists, backstage tour of the set, Youtheatre’s signature study guide and an opportunity for live-streamed talk backs with creative team. For both distance learners as well as schools outside of urban centres, the flexible access of YouDigital is an opportunity to bring young audiences in on the magic of theatre. Contact Hanna Nes at Outreach@Youtheatre.ca or join Youtheatre’s newsletter for more information!

Listen to this podcast for more about their new show, Pandora

TEEN SONGWRITING COMPETITION: After 2019’s successful Teen Songwriting Competition, Overture with the Arts (OWTA) is pleased to announce their second annual  program. Open to youth aged 13 to 18 who write original songs, the competition will give aspiring young songwriters a platform to showcase their original music to a live audience. This year, OWTA is doing a live stream of the full showcase to ensure the safety of all participants and viewers. Interested applicants must live in Montreal or its surrounding boroughs and are invited to submit a YouTube video of themselves or their duo performing one original song. To be eligible, applicants must be between at least 13 and under 19 by the November 13  submission deadline. There is no charge to submit an application.  Leading up to the November 28 live stream competition participants will have the opportunity to take part in several songwriting workshops. These free workshops will be held over six Saturdays in a row starting October 17 to November 21 using Zoom.   Visit the OWTA website to apply and to learn more about the Teen Songwriting Competition. You can also watch a video of last year's winner, 15-year-old Billie Du Page from TMR:  Info: http://owta.org/teen-songwriting-competition.

OCTOBER CRISIS: Je Me Souviens (JMS), a Canada company educational program created in collaboration with the Royal Montreal Regiment (RMR) Foundation and le Royal 22ieme Régiment (R22eR), has launched “The October Crisis 1970,” a virtual exhibition marking the 50th anniversary of a controversial period in Canadian history. The October Crisis refers to events that took place in Quebec in the autumn of 1970. It was the culmination of terrorist attacks by the Front de libération du Québec (FLQ), a militant Québec independence movement, that started in 1963. In October 1970, FLQ members kidnapped British trade commissioner James Cross, and kidnapped and killed Québec Minister of Immigration and Minister of Labour Pierre Laporte. In response, the federal government invoked the War Measures Act and mobilized the Canadian Armed Forces. It was the only peacetime use of the War Measures Act in Canadian history. Based on the Quebec Ministry of Education curriculum,      “The October Crisis 1970” is an interactive exhibition intended primarily as a resource for high school teachers and students. It is being used at Westmount High School by history  teacher Chantal Clabrough. Info:https://jemesouviens.org/en/students/octobercrisis   

CONNECTING THE DOTS: From acclaimed and award-winning filmmaker Noemi Weis comes CONNECTING THE DOTS, the first feature documentary of its kind where youth take on the subject of mental health, globally, in their own words. Audiences will have the chance to see the film for the first time during a Virtual Global Community Screening followed by a youth-led panel discussion on November 19, 2020 at 3 pm to 5 pm EST. To register, visit here. You can view the trailer here.    

“Connecting the Dots comes to the world at a time when mental health universally has reached a boiling point,” said director Weis. “Under the present situation of COVID-19, atop of growing unrest surrounding systemic racism, sexual orientation and gender discrimination, just to mention a few, makes this film not only timely, but also urgent.” 

In this raw and intimate film, youth talk openly about their experiences living with mental health. You will hear heart-felt poignant stories of lived experiences in a way you have never seen or heard before. And through all the darkness there lies hope that is truly inspiring. 

A MUSIC EXPERINCE: A new  online learning platform connects Canada's  "SuperStars" with students in their homes' safe space. At the touch of a button, youth aged 10 to 24 can access live celebrities from the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Canadian Opera Company, Canada's Master Chefs, and some of Canada’s top artists to engage, excite and empower them. The program includes learning music live alongside Jonathan Crow, Concertmaster of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra as well as  Art, Drama, Finance 101, Culinary adventures with Master Chef Didier Leroy  and more. Along with their child, parents, go on our website and choose an arts-based program to participate in. For $30a session based on eight or twelve sessions, children become part of a fantastic, engaging community of like-minded friends. Info: https://www.eprograms.ca.

ADULT EDUCATION AND VOCATIONAL SERVICES


Galileo students in the kitchen.

GALILEO FOLLOWING THE RULES:
The return to school amidst a global pandemic is riddled with unanswered questions, uncertainties and anxiety. At Galileo Adult Education Centre in Montreal North, special needs learners were pulled from the classroom mid-March and quickly adapted to learning in a virtual classroom setting. Adaptation was certainly at the forefront for Galileo staff and students.  As teachers Lisa Trotto and Felicia Nardolillo note in an article published on the Inspirations Newspaper website, close to 150 Social Integration Services (SIS) students are back at school doing what they love – learning and growing together. Only a small group of students with underlying health issues have not returned to the classroom just yet. Luckily, they can join us virtually and while they are not physically present in the classroom, they still feel a sense of belonging through the online platforms that keep us connected. The Sociovocational Integration Services (SVIS) program has welcomed back 42 students who are eager to get back into the workforce. SIS and SVIS students have been doing an incredible job following the new school rules. Mask and visor-wearing along with daily temperature checks, regular hand washing, and sanitizing have become part of our routine. Classes have been modified and the SIS students remain in their classroom “bubbles.”  See the full article.

Shadd students in training.

GRADUATING ORDERLIES: On the road to becoming orderlies, 160 Shadd students met the incredible challenge of completing a condensed 375-hour course in patient support this past summer at Shadd Health and Business Centre. The students were enrolled in a training program for the Health Care Facility Patient Service Support Skills Training Certificate (STC in English; AEP in French), a precursor to training towards becoming an orderly in the Quebec medical system. Shadd students were divided into eight groups, made up of 20 students each. The first six groups did three weeks of in-school training at the centre starting in mid-June. The second started in early July. Each set then continued on to complete their hands-on training for six weeks at their affiliated CIUSSS, where they would stay on for a minimum of one year, and allows them to work in the CHSLDs under a bursary from the Quebec government. About 95 percent graduated from the Shadd summer program, said Principal Joe Cacchione. The Quebec government launched the Skills Training Certificate in the early summer of 2020 to pump up the numbers of orderly positions in its medical workforce. Please  see this story.

TEACHER INTERVIEWED:  Anna Panunto is a teacher at the High School of Montreal Adult Education Centre of the EMSB. She was recently interviewed by a Syrian journalist. It will   be translated in Arabic and published in the near future in an Arabic press. The purpose of this article is to shed light on newcomers - to help them understand a little bit about the North American mentality here and what to expect in a way, from their learning process. It will prove to be useful information. In her passionate world filled with  talent and determination, she has brightened her star to illuminate others by teaching and writing. Please see the full story here

ÉDITION DU 29 OCTOBRE 2020 / BULLETIN DE LA CSEM

CONSEIL DE LA CSE:  Le gouvernement du Québec a émis un décret qui reporte indéfiniment la tenue des élections scolaires en zones rouges prévues le 1er novembre en raison de la pandémie de COVID-19. À la CSEM, le nouveau président Joe Ortona et neuf des dix commissaires ont déjà été élus par acclamation. En vertu du décret administratif 1039-2020 et de l'article 79 de la Loi sur les élections scolaires, ils entreront automatiquement en fonction le 6 novembre prochain. L'élection d’un commissaire dans la circonscription 3 (Westmount – Sud Ouest) a donc été suspendue. Par ailleurs, les activités du bureau de révision sont interrompues et reprendront lorsqu'une nouvelle date sera annoncée. Les personnes qui avaient été autorisées à voter par correspondance seront contactées lorsque le processus électoral reprendra. Conformément à l'article 160 de la Loi sur les élections scolaires, les personnes qui occupaient ces fonctions au moment de l'avis d'élection (le 18 septembre) demeureront en fonction jusqu'à la tenue d'une élection. Ainsi, le commissaire Julien Feldman continuera à représenter la circonscription 3. La première réunion du conseil se tiendra le mercredi 11 novembre.

LA MISE SOUS TUTELLE TIRE À SA FIN : Le mandat de Marlene Jennings, administratrice de la tutelle à la CSEM, se terminera le 6 novembre. Voici un article publié dans le quotidien The Gazette : https://montrealgazette.com/opinion/opinion-after-a-year-my-job-as-emsb-trustee-is-almost-complete.

NOMINATIONS ADMINISTRATIVES: Christy Tannous a été nommée directrice de l’école virtuelle de la CSEM et Réal Heppelle, directeur adjoint. Jody Cayer est désormais directrice adjointe par intérim à Royal West.

LE POINT SUR L'ÉCOLE VIRTUELLE: Dans une communication adressée aux parents, Mme Tannous et M. Heppelle se sont dit confiants que leur expérience acquise dans diverses écoles de la CSEM, conjuguée à leur savoir-faire en matière d'intégration des technologies innovatrices, aidera les enfants à traverser cette période difficile. Leur vision commune pour l'école virtuelle consiste à créer une communauté d'apprenants axés sur l'engagement et la connexion ».  Pour rester au fait de tout ce qui se passe à l'école virtuelle, des plates-formes de médias sociaux ont été lancées sur Facebook, Twitter et Instagram.

TAUX DE RÉUSSITE : La CSEM a surpassé son propre niveau record de l’an dernier, affichant un taux de diplomation et de qualification de 92,5 %, soit le plus élevé parmi les commissions scolaires publiques à la grandeur du Québec, basé sur une cohorte de sept ans. Ces chiffres ont été publiés par le ministère de l'Éducation du Québec (MEQ). Bien que la majorité des élèves aient obtenu leur diplôme au bout de cinq ans, le Ministère autorise le suivi de chaque cohorte pendant deux années supplémentaires afin de s’assurer que les élèves ont toutes les chances d'obtenir un diplôme ou une première qualification. En plus d’afficher le plus haut taux de réussite de la province, la CSEM arrive également au premier rang dans le réseau public et parmi toutes les commissions scolaires anglophones. Le taux de réussite à l’échelle provinciale, qui tient compte des résultats des écoles publiques et privées, est demeuré stable en 2019, s’établissant à 81,8 %. 

MASQUE OBLIGATOIRE AU SECONDAIRE : Le port du masque est désormais obligatoire pour les élèves du secondaire, et ce, tant à l’intérieur qu’à l’extérieur de la classe.

RESPECT DES DROITS DES AÎNÉS : À l'école primaire Carlyle de Ville Mont-Royal, la classe de 5C de Madame Jessica a récemment tenu une activité sur les droits de la personne dans le cadre du programme BI. Devant la vulnérabilité des personnes âgées face à la COVID-19 et les conditions de vie dans certaines résidences de soins, les élèves ont été choqués. Ils ont donc créé des mini-banderoles afin de prôner le respect et les droits des aînés. Puynung Choy, animateur de vie spirituelle et d’engagement communautaire, a déclaré que les élèves ont compris que la situation décrite constitue une violation de certains droits fondamentaux de la personne et ils ont vu la nécessité de veiller à ce que toutes les personnes âgées reçoivent des soins adéquats. En guise de prélude à la Journée internationale des aînés, les élèves y sont allés d’une déclaration selon laquelle toute personne mérite à juste titre la même qualité de vie que les autres, y compris nos aînés.

CAMPAGNE DU COQUELICOT : Le directeur de l’école secondaire John F. Kennedy, Otis Delaney, la direction, le personnel et les élèves ont visé haut et ont conclu un partenariat avec la Légion royale canadienne (LRC) afin de lui venir en aide à l’occasion de la campagne annuelle du coquelicot. Les restrictions imposées dans le contexte du niveau d’alerte rouge ont entraîné la fermeture des filiales de la Légion à Montréal et à Québec, ce qui risque d’avoir un impact sur la collecte de fonds dont ont grandement besoin nos vétérans méritants. Les élèves procéderont au décompte, au tri, à l’emballage et à l’envoi de centaines de coquelicots et d'autocollants à divers organisations, écoles et groupes communautaires. Si vous souhaitez appuyer la LRC et nos vétérans, contactez M. Speranza, animateur de vie spirituelle et d’engagement communautaire, à rsperanza@emsb.qc.ca.

COURSE TERRY FOX : Cette année marque le 40e anniversaire du Marathon de l'espoir de Terry Fox et, pour l’occasion, plusieurs écoles de la CSEM mettent de l’avant des façons innovantes, amusantes et sécuritaires de perpétuer l'héritage de ce Canadien légendaire. La collecte de fonds a lieu en ligne, tandis que l'activité physique proprement dite se déroule de multiples façons, toutes plus intéressantes les unes que les autres, dans les écoles participantes. La date officielle de la course de la Fondation Terry Fox à l’échelle du pays est le 30 septembre, mais les écoles de la CSEM organisent leurs propres activités à divers moments cet automne. « Nous sommes parfaitement conscients à quel point les éducateurs sont fort occupés en ces temps difficiles. Tout comme Terry Fox a inspiré les gens en courant le Marathon de l'espoir, les éducateurs nous inspirent à leur façon en trouvant le temps d’amasser des fonds pour la recherche sur le cancer », de dire Peter Sheremeta, directeur provincial de la filiale québécoise de la Fondation Terry Fox. « Cette tradition est bien ancrée au sein des écoles de la CSEM qui, au cours des 40 dernières années, ont recueilli 2 142 965 $ pour le rêve de Terry d'un monde sans cancer ». Pour lire l’intégral de l’article et un résumé de ce que les écoles ont réalisé, visitez le https://www.emsb.qc.ca/emsb/articles/terry-fox-run-tradition-continues-despite-pandemic.

SPORT-ÉTUDES À L’ÉCOLE PEARSON : L'école secondaire Lester B. Pearson de Montréal-Nord offre un programme sport-études de haut calibre depuis 2003, en collaboration avec diverses fédérations sportives provinciales. Dans le cadre de ce programme, les élèves-athlètes s'entraînent cinq jours par semaine pendant un minimum de 15 heures cumulées, conformément aux exigences de leur fédération. Le programme est reconnu par le ministère de l'Éducation du Québec (MEQ) et Lester B. Pearson est la seule école de la CSEM à offrir un tel programme. Celui-ci offre aux élèves-athlètes la possibilité d’allier les études et leur passion pour l'une des nombreuses disciplines sportives offertes, notamment le baseball, la boxe, la claque (cheerleading), la danse, le patinage artistique, le hockey, le judo, le kickboxing, le soccer, le patinage de vitesse, la natation, le taekwondo et l'athlétisme.

Avant d'être admis dans le programme sport-études, les élèves-athlètes doivent être reconnus par l'un des partenaires sportifs de l'école et satisfaire aux normes provinciales. Par ailleurs, les joueurs de soccer et de hockey doivent se soumettre à des essais dans leur sport respectif, puis présenter une demande au programme sport-études de l’école Lester B. Pearson, qui tiendra compte du dossier scolaire de l’élève. Mentionnons que des changements ont dû être apportés, cette année, à la journée Portes ouvertes de l'école. En effet, une journée Portes ouvertes virtuelle a été organisée à la fin septembre, au lieu de la traditionnelle visite en personne. Malgré tout, M. Gagné affirme que les élèves-athlètes potentiels « ont pu se faire une bonne idée du programme et de toute l’équipe » grâce à la visite virtuelle en ligne. Il ajoute que de nombreux élèves des écoles primaires locales, en cinquième et sixième année, ont reçu l’an dernier la visite d'élèves et de membres de la direction dans le but de leur présenter le programme. Les inscriptions au programme sport-études pour l’année scolaire 2021-2022 sont présentement en cours en ligne. Les élèves-athlètes avaient jusqu’au 15 octobre 2020 pour soumettre une demande d’inscription en 1re secondaire. Quant aux élèves de la 2e à la 5e secondaire, ils doivent transmettre leur demande au plus tard le 31 janvier 2021. Pour plus d'informations, veuillez contacter Casey Gagné au 514 328-4442, poste 6, ou par courriel à cgagne@emsb.qc.ca. Nous vous invitons à consulter l’intégral de l’article : https://www.emsb.qc.ca/csem/nouvelles/des-eleves-athletes-sillustrent-dans-le-cadre-du-programme-sport-etudes-de-lecole-secondaire-lester-b-pearson-de-la-csem.

GAGNANTS DU CONCOURS LA DIVERSITÉ PARMI NOUS : Deux élèves de l'Académie Royal West de Montréal-Ouest ont remporté le concours d’écriture littéraire La diversité parmi nous (Diverse Minds) de B'nai Brith Canada, tenu à Montréal en 2020. Dans la catégorie création anglaise, les corécipiendaires du premier prix sont Liem Yip et Gabriel Morin, deux élèves de 4e secondaire à Royal West. Ils sont coauteurs de leur livre The Eggnapper, lequel porte sur la nécessité d'être aimable et compréhensif envers les autres et de s'abstenir de porter des jugements. Les livres gagnants, sélectionnés par un jury composé de célébrités, ont été publiés professionnellement et seront distribués gratuitement dans les écoles primaires et les bibliothèques publiques de Montréal. 

« À mon sens, chacun des élèves qui a pris part à ce concours est gagnant », s’est exclamée Adriana Glikman, coordonnatrice du programme national de B'nai Brith Canada. « Nous avons été ravis de voir autant de talents dans la région du Grand Montréal et nous sommes impatients de voir ce que l'avenir réserve à cet important concours d'écriture ».

Les élèves couronnés vainqueurs ont reçu chacun un chèque de 500 $, tout comme leur école et l’enseignante Gloria Koyounian. Pour visionner la présentation virtuelle des gagnants qui a eu lieu le mois dernier, visitez le https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8QlHxaiNQ2A&feature=youtu.be. 

Le concours La Diversité parmi nous vise à encourager la diversité et l’inclusion au Canada par l’entremise de récits et d’illustrations. Cette toute première compétition à Montréal s’est déroulée dans les deux langues officielles. Les élèves du niveau secondaire ont été invités à écrire et à illustrer une histoire destinée aux élèves du primaire, puis à la soumettre pour courir la chance de remporter des prix en argent pour eux-mêmes, leur école et leur enseignant. Chaque soumission a contribué à la promotion unique et créative de ces valeurs fort importantes.    

ÉLEVER LES ESPRITS : Les élèves de la classe des compétences axées sur la participation sociale (CAPS) à l’école secondaire L.I.N.K.S. ont lancé une initiative centrée sur l’art et destinée à remonter le moral en ces temps difficiles. L'objectif du programme CAPS est d'aider les élèves ayant des besoins particuliers à développer des compétences en matière de participation sociale et de comportements autodéterminés grâce à un enseignement basé sur les compétences. Inspirée par les murales interactives de l'art urbain, Loredana Scotto, titulaire d’une classe CAPS, a guidé ses élèves afin de recréer ce style d'art au sein de l'école. Les accompagnateurs Evan Lichty et Aude Rioland ont également encadré les élèves tout au long de l'activité. Sous le thème des couleurs de l’arc-en-ciel, les élèves ont colorié des pochoirs de mandala, déchiré et froissé du papier de couleur dans le but de créer la forme des ailes d’un papillon sur le tableau d'affichage à l'extérieur de leur classe. Ce projet s’inscrivait dans le cours d'art et celui des aptitudes de vie, car l'objectif était d'encourager la détermination ainsi qu’une image de soi positive. Chaque jour, la classe CAPS lit et analyse une citation inspirante pour entamer la journée sur une note positive. Grâce à l'art interactif, ils ont pu créer leur propre répertoire de mots inspirants. Ils ont réfléchi ensemble et ont créé les mots-clics #FlyStrong et #Don'tbeafraid non seulement comme façon de promouvoir la bravoure, mais aussi pour encourager les autres à « s’envoler » vers leurs objectifs. Ces mots-clics ont également pour but de diffuser le message au sein de la communauté par le biais des médias sociaux. Les élèves et le personnel de l’école secondaire L.I.N.K.S. ont bien aimé se faire prendre en photo devant la murale en levant les bras au ciel, ce qui illustre leur propre force et leur liberté. La classe CAPS a été ravie de voir son initiative égayer la journée des élèves et des membres du personnel et espère qu'elle continuera à encourager d'autres personnes à « déployer leurs ailes » sans aucune crainte! On peut voir sur les photos les élèves de la classe CAPS, Mme Loredana, M. Evan et Mme Aude devant la murale #FLYSTRONG.

SE DÉPLACER EN TOUTE CONFIANCE : Des inspecteurs de la STM, des membres du personnel de l’école secondaire L.I.N.K.S., la directrice Maria Caldarella et l’animateur de vie spirituelle et d’engagement communautaire Rocco Speranza ont uni leurs efforts pour lancer le programme Ride with Confidence (Se déplacer en toute confiance). La présentation interactive porte sur ce qu’il faut faire et ne pas faire lorsqu'on utilise le transport en commun. Ce programme a pour but de bien renseigner les élèves et de faire d’eux des utilisateurs autonomes en leur enseignant à lire les cartes de la STM, les horaires d’autobus et plus encore. 

L'ESPOIR PAR LES ARTS : Les élèves de la 4e année de l'école Royal Vale à NDG répandent l'espoir par le biais des arts. Cette fois-ci, ils ont dessiné des pissenlits comme symbole et message d'espoir. Leur œuvre s’intitule « Les Pissenlits d'espoir ». Avec le temps, des jours meilleurs porteurs d’espoir pointeront à l’horizon. « Pour l'instant, nous réfléchissons à la manière dont nous pouvons rester forts, aimables et optimistes », de dire l'enseignante Nathalie Malhamé.

JEUNE PIANISTE : Âgé de 14 ans, Devon Parker élève de Royal Vale (présentement inscrit à l’école virtuelle) s’est classé parmi les 10 premiers lors d’un prestigieux concours international de composition musicale : Commonwealth Composition Challenge 2020. Cliquez ici pour visionner et écouter sa composition. Trois prix seront remis et vous êtes invités à voter pour le compositeur qui, selon vous, mérite le prix CICA Audience.  

COVID-19 ET LES AMBASSADEURS DE LA SÉCURITÉ : Chaque semaine, la CSEM vous présente un nouvel ambassadeur de la sécurité en ces temps de pandémie. Récemment, nous avons publié un message du directeur général des Alouettes de Montréal, Danny Macioca.

UNE ENSEIGNANTE DE DANTE À LA TÉLÉ: Nahal Derayeh, mieux connue des parents et des enfants sous le nom de Madame Nahal, est enseignante d’une classe de maternelle française à l'école primaire Dante de Saint-Léonard. Elle enseigne à la CSEM depuis 18 ans. Au cours des quatre dernières années, elle a intégré de manière innovante la technologie à son enseignement. Grâce à des vidéos YouTube qu’elle réalise en classe et un groupe privé sur Facebook appelé « Madame Nahal et ses amis », elle parvient à rester en contact avec les parents et les enfants tant à l’école qu’à l’extérieur. Elle a été interviewée par Global TV à l'occasion de la Journée mondiale des enseignants. De plus, elle a fait l’objet d’un reportage sur CityNews

DIGITAL 2PLAY : La tournée Digital 2Play du Théâtre Geordie est désormais en ligne! Le Théâtre Geordie est en mesure de diffuser des spectacles en direct pour les élèves partout au Canada et ailleurs! Pour offrir le théâtre en classe, tout ce qu’il vous faut c’est une connexion Internet. Ce qui nous importe le plus c’est de pouvoir redonner de la joie à vos élèves par tous les moyens possibles. Communiquez avec nous à : schools@geordie.ca.

Le Théâtre Geordie permet aux élèves de revivre aisément l’expérience de la représentation en direct, et ce, où qu'ils soient. Les élèves peuvent interagir en direct avec la troupe après chaque représentation. L'accès à des plans de cours détaillés portant sur des thèmes qui vont de l'identité personnelle à l'image corporelle, en passant par la tradition et la narration est inclus! La diffusion peut se faire dans des classes individuelles, pour préserver la sécurité des élèves.

CONCOURS DE CHANSONS POUR ADOLESCENTS : À la suite du succès remporté par le Concours de chansons pour adolescents de 2019, Overture with the Arts (OWTA) est heureux d'annoncer la tenue de sa deuxième édition annuelle. Destiné aux jeunes de 13 à 18 ans qui composent des chansons originales, ce concours offre aux jeunes auteurs en devenir une plate-forme pour présenter leur musique originale devant un auditoire. Cette année, OWTA diffusera en direct son programme intégral afin d'assurer la sécurité de tous les participants et spectateurs. Les candidats intéressés doivent résider à Montréal ou dans les arrondissements environnants et sont invités à soumettre une vidéo YouTube d'eux-mêmes ou de leur duo interprétant une chanson originale. Pour être admissibles, les candidats devront être âgés entre 13 et 19 ans à la date limite de soumission le 13 novembre. Il n'y a pas de frais pour participer. Les participants pourront prendre part à plusieurs ateliers d'écriture de chansons d’ici la tenue du concours en direct le 28 novembre. Ces ateliers sont gratuits et se dérouleront sur six samedis consécutifs, soit du 17 octobre au 21 novembre, sur la plate-forme Zoom. Rendez-vous sur le site Web de l'OWTA pour vous inscrire et pour en savoir plus sur le concours d'écriture de chansons destiné aux jeunes. Vous pouvez également visionner une vidéo de la gagnante de l'année dernière, Billie Du Page, 15 ans, de Ville Mont-Royal : http://owta.org/teen-songwriting-competition/.

CRISE D’OCTOBRE : Programme éducatif de Compagnie Canada créé en collaboration avec la Fondation du Royal Montreal Regiment (RMR) et le Royal 22e Régiment (R22eR), Je Me Souviens (JMS) a lancé « La crise d’Octobre de 1970 », une exposition virtuelle qui souligne le 50e anniversaire de cette période controversée dans l’histoire canadienne.

La crise d'Octobre fait référence aux événements qui se sont déroulés au Québec à l'automne 1970. Ce fut le point culminant des attaques terroristes du Front de libération du Québec (FLQ), un mouvement indépendantiste militant du Québec, qui a vu le jour en 1963. En octobre 1970, une cellule du FLQ kidnappe James Cross, diplomate britannique, et enlève et assassine Pierre Laporte, ministre québécois de l'Immigration et du Travail. En réponse, le gouvernement fédéral invoque alors la Loi sur les mesures de guerre pour la première et seule fois en temps de paix dans l’histoire canadienne et mobilise les Forces armées canadiennes. Basée sur le programme du ministère de l’Éducation du Québec, l’exposition interactive « La crise d’octobre de 1970 » se veut principalement une ressource pour les enseignants et les élèves du secondaire. L’enseignante Chantal Clabrough de l’école secondaire Westmount a recours à ce programme. Pour de plus amples renseignements, visitez le https://jemesouviens.org/en/students/octobercrisis/.

SERVICE DE L’ÉDUCATION DES ADULTES ET DE LA FORMATION PROFESSIONNELLE

RESPECT DES CONSIGNES À GALILEO: Le retour en classe en contexte de pandémie mondiale s’accompagne de questions sans réponse, d'incertitudes et d'anxiété. Au Centre d'éducation des adultes Galileo de Montréal-Nord, les élèves ayant des besoins particuliers ont vu leurs classes fermer à la mi-mars et ont dû s’adapter rapidement à l'apprentissage en mode virtuel. Le mot d’ordre fut sans contredit l’adaptation aussi bien pour les membres du personnel que les élèves de Galileo. Comme le rapportent les enseignantes Lisa Trotto et Felicia Nardolillo dans un article publié sur le site Web de la publication Inspirations, près de 150 élèves des Services d'intégration sociale (SIS) sont de retour à l'école et font ce qu'ils aiment : apprendre et grandir ensemble. Seul un petit nombre d'élèves ayant des problèmes de santé sous-jacents ne sont pas encore de retour en classe. Heureusement, ils peuvent participer virtuellement et, bien qu'ils ne soient pas physiquement présents en classe, ils éprouvent toujours un sentiment d'appartenance grâce aux plates-formes en ligne qui nous permettent de rester connectés. Le programme des Services d'intégration socioprofessionnelle (SVIS) a accueilli 42 élèves impatients de réintégrer le marché du travail. Les élèves des programmes SIS et SVIS font un travail remarquable en respectant les nouvelles consignes en vigueur à l'école. Le port de masques et de visières, la prise quotidienne de température, le lavage régulier des mains et la désinfection font désormais partie de notre routine. Les classes ont été modifiées et les élèves du programme SIS demeurent dans leur « bulle-classe ». Nous vous invitons à consulter l’intégral de l'article : http://inspirationsnews.com/inspirations/articles/back-to-school-at-galileo-tips-to-improve-our-students-mental-health-during-covid-19.

FIN DE LA FORMATION DES PRÉPOSÉS AUX BÉNÉFICIAIRES : En voie de devenir préposés aux bénéficiaires (PAB), 160 élèves de Shadd ont relevé un défi colossal l’été dernier en suivant une formation accélérée de 375 heures en soins d’assistance, offerte au Centre de santé et d’études commerciales Shadd. Ce programme mène à l’attestation d’études professionnelles (AEP) Soutien aux soins d’assistance en établissement de santé, un préalable à l’exercice du métier de préposé aux bénéficiaires dans le réseau de la santé au Québec. Les élèves de Shadd étaient répartis en huit groupes, composés de 20 élèves chacun. Les six premiers groupes ont suivi une formation de trois semaines au centre à partir de la mi-juin. Les autres groupes ont entamé le programme au début du mois de juillet. Tous ont ensuite poursuivi leur formation pratique pendant six semaines au CIUSSS auquel ils ont été affiliés et où ils s’engagent à travailler pendant au moins un an dans un CHSLD. La formation est assortie d’une bourse du gouvernement du Québec. Joe Cacchione, directeur du Centre Shadd, a indiqué qu’environ 95 % de la cohorte a obtenu une attestation à la suite du programme dispensé au cours de l’été. Le gouvernement du Québec a lancé ce programme de formation au début de l'été 2020 afin de recruter des préposés aux bénéficiaires dans le réseau de la santé. Nous vous invitons à lire l’intégral de l’article : https://www.emsb.qc.ca/csem/nouvelles/des-eleves-de-shadd-terminent-leur-formation-acceleree-en-soins-de-sante.

Le prochain numéro de Pleins feux sur Fielding sera publié le 26 novembre. La date limite pour soumettre vos articles est fixée au 20 novembre.

The next Focus will be published on November 26. Deadline for submissions is November 20.



Sunday, September 27, 2020

SEPTEMBER 27, 2020 EDITION / VOLUME 23 NUMBER 2/ THE OFFICIAL BULLETIN OF THE EMSB

Joe Ortona
CHAIR AND NINE COMMISSIONERS ACCLAIMED: Nominations closed on Sunday, September 27 for EMSB elections. Joe Ortona has been acclaimed as chair,  as have nine of the 10 available positions for commissioner: the only election will occur in Ward 3 (Westmount/Sud Ouest) between Julien Feldman (Team Ortona) and Irwin Rapoport (Independent). The candidates  acclaimed as commissioners are listed in this press release.

SCHOOL BOARD ELECTIONS: As a result of the Court of Appeal of Quebec's decision to suspend Bill 40 until the Superior Court of Quebec rules on the case,  elections for Chair and 10 members of the Council of Commissioners were put back in place. For more details please go to the school board elections section on our website.

BILL 40:   EMSB Acting Chair Joe Ortona expressed  his strong satisfaction over the decision  by the Court of Appeal of Quebec to suspend Bill 40 until the Superior Court of Quebec hears the case beginning in November. Among other changes, Bill 40 would have transformed English-language school boards into school service centres. Speaking on behalf of the Council of Commissioners, Mr. Ortona cited this part of the ruling which painted a very clear picture: “Given that the changes in school governance resulting from Bill 40 appear, at first glance at least, to withdraw powers of management and control from the English school boards and limit the eligibility of the members of the official language minority of Quebec for elected positions in the new school service centres, in this case the public interest leans in favour of protecting the rights of the official linguistic minority rather than implementing Bill 40 in the English educational sector, at least until there is a judgment on the merits.”

“This is the third time the government has defended this bill in the courts, and they have lost every round,” Mr. Ortona maintains. “It is my hope that the Government works constructively in the interests of the children's education, especially in a pandemic, rather than to keep imposing what we consider to be an unconstitutional law. It was ill-advised to appeal this decision in the first place, and it would be just as ill-advised to appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada. We, the EMSB, will continue to represent the English minority and defend the fundamental freedoms of all Quebecers, the English-speaking community, religious minorities and others.” See the full press release here 

A flyer that promoted LaurenHill's Virtual Open House

VIRTUAL OPEN HOUSES:   With the COVID-19 pandemic ushering in a host of changes in the education system, beginning on September 15, prospective EMSB students and parents began to experience a new first: virtual open houses. With Royal West Academy in Montreal West kicking off EMSB Open House season, prospective students and parents  have the opportunity to visit any EMSB school from the comfort of their home or office. Royal West launched this  student-produced video that introduces some of the features of the school.  This video has been posted on their website, and shared through social media outlets.  Also, prospective parents can complete an online form in order to ask questions to the staff – the questions will be compiled, answered and posted online as a Q&A document.  LaurenHill Academy streamed their open house live.    

From personal appointments, booked through applications embedded in school websites, to virtual school tours and even live broadcasts with administrators and teachers streamed to social media, the EMSB is using creative ways to ensure that this critical component of the educational journey is not lost due to COVID-19. For a full list of EMSB Open Houses, please visit this link.   Stay tuned for more information.

VIRTUAL EDUCATION FAIR: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 20th annual EMSB Education Fair (formerly the Career Fair) will take place virtually this year toward the end of October.  Jack Dym of Pipe and Piling Supplies Ltd. and RBC Royal Bank are once again the event’s title sponsors.  The Education Fair represents a good opportunity for students and their parents to look towards post-secondary education options. This program is coordinated by the EMSB Adult Education and Vocational Services and the Student Services Departments. The main objective is to provide students with an in-depth exposure to the various educational opportunities available to them. Stay tuned here for more details regarding programming. Students will then have the chance to visit virtual information booths from English vocational centres, CEGEPS, universities and some private business colleges.  There will be a video describing the steps that must be taken to apply for CEGEP and another featuring present-day vocational students sharing their positive experiences.   Info: www.emsb.qc.ca/virtualeducationfair

VIRTUAL SCHOOL: The EMSB’s newly established Virtual School is offered to students from Pre-Kindergarten to Grade 11, who have qualified for exemptions and will not be returning to their regular schools this school year. In a context outside of the COVID-19 global pandemic, these students would have attended one of the EMSB’s other schools.   The dedicated, experienced, and certified staff includes an administration, preschool, elementary, and secondary level teachers as well as support staff including childcare workers, behaviour technicians and professionals (psychologists, speech and language pathologists, occupational therapists, etc.). The Virtual School will also rely on the experience and expertise of specialists, professionals in education, and educational consultants. The students will be paired with a teacher who will accompany them during the 2020-2021 academic year. Finally, Student Services and Educational Services will assist the school team to facilitate the educational progress of the students of the Virtual School.   See this report on CBC TV.

THE FACES OF THE FRONTLINES:    Inspired by the devastation of the Coronavirus, Spiritual Community Animator  (SCA) Vince Lacroce is launching a new educational program that will take a closer look  inside the world of this pandemic. “The Faces of the Frontlines” program is a partnership with local Montreal frontline workers, nurses and doctors, and  the SCA Service to help facilitate interactive presentations in both elementary and high schools of the EMSB. 

A nurse with a student at Nesbitt School.  

These 30 to 45 minute sessions will consist of candid first hand experiences of life inside the frontlines of this pandemic, interactive activities and scenarios, safety and best practices to help slow the spread of COVID-19. The program is running throughout the month of September to acknowledge the tireless hours and endless sacrifices of local Montrealers in our community.  

SELF-CARE AND WELLNESS INITIATIVE: Inspired by the new normal, Spiritual Community Animators Vince Lacroce, Linda Luca, Joseph Monachino and Jagdeep Trehin have developed a Self-Care and Awareness campaign geared towards primary and secondary school students. The self-care program will discuss the importance of daily self-care, and help students develop coping strategies and tools that support their well-being. “The need for self-care is extremely important during these difficult times," said Mr. Lacroce. "The lessons and coping strategies provided are beneficial for both adults and students. We all need to assess and take care of our well-being in order to be a support for others. The program will be both virtual and classroom-based and will run throughout the month of September. It is available to be implemented by the Spiritual and Community Animator in each school."

Sebastian Villani  
VETERAN TEACHER RETIRES:  Sebastian Villani doesn’t seem like a man on the doorstep of retirement. After 47 years as a teacher, his interest and passion for the calling seem just as ripe as someone starting out. However, after almost a half century and some 15,000 students later, he’s hanging up his skates.  

Mr. Villani’s career started when he was just 22 at a Catholic English Junior High School in St. Leonard, and ended recently at the English Montreal School Board’s (EMSB)  Laurier Macdonald High School, where he had been teaching for the last 33 years.  See the full article here.

TEACHER INTEGRATES TECHNOLOGY INTO LESSONS: Nahal Derayeh, better known to parents and children as Madame Nahal, is a French kindergarten teacher at Dante Elementary School in St. Léonard who has been teaching at the EMSB for 18 years. Over the past four years she has been innovatively integrating technology into her teaching.  By using YouTube videos she records of herself in the classroom and on a private Facebook group called “Mme Nahal et Ses Amies,” she manages to stay connected to parents and children in and out of the classroom.  

Madame Nahal  

It started four years ago when Mme. Derayeh attended an EMSB workshop to learn new skills on how to integrate technology into her teaching because she felt that she was not “tech savvy.” She said she was inspired to use the Facebook medium to communicate with parents because that is what she uses to feel close to her friends and family. So far, she never had a parent who did not want to participate, and her Facebook groups have been a huge success, increasing her popularity with parents and students alike. “As a working mom of four children, I always wanted to see what is going on when my children are at school, wishing I could be a  fly on the wall," she said.  "I felt like I was missing an important part of their life because they spend so much time at school.  I saw a Facebook group as an opportunity to help parents feel connected with their children even when they are at school and to help parents and children with homework." Please read Ivana Bahdo's complete interview with her here.

SOMETHING NEON AWARD: When COVID hit, Something Neon was founded in Montreal by husband and wife, Daniel and Lauren, decided to create reusable masks and used a proceed of their sales to provide masks to frontline workers. Fast forward six months ....a week before students were returning to school, Donna Friedman-Perlin, a teacher at Bancroft heard that Something Neon wanted to provide their masks to educators. 

Donna Friedman- Perlin and team model the masks.  

Donna thought who better to benefit from these masks then her and her co-workers at Bancroft. She reached out to them and they were happy to provide their unique colourful masks to Bancroft staff! Thank you to Something Neon for helping to keep the staff at Bancroft safe and stylish!

DIRECTOR GENERAL SEARCHMs. Jennings  announced that Mandrake, an executive search firm, has been awarded a mandate to lead the recruitment process for the new Director General of the EMSB. The position has been held on an interim basis by Evelyne Alfonsi since August 13, 2020 when former Director General Ann Marie Matheson stepped down from the position. See the full article here, including the names of those serving on the selection committee. 

ANTI-RACISM STAND: The EMSB has adopted a resolution, denouncing any form of racism of discrimination  and supports its schools and centres in their efforts to educate students within a caring, safe and inclusive learning community.  Recent tragic events in North America have confirmed the need to acknowledge and address the presence of systemic racism and other forms of discrimination in Canada. “We  condemn racism in any form,” stated EMSB Trustee Marlene Jennings. “Recent racist incidents documented in Quebec require us to re-examine our responsibility, as part of the educational community  for the prevention and intolerance of discrimination in all of our schools, centres and head office.”

Ms. Jennings noted that the public education system should offer an inclusionary curriculum for all. ‘The EMSB believes in the respect and dignity of all individuals,’ she said. “No individual or group should be made to live in fear or should be excluded from society.” The  resolution also states  that the Ministry of Education should develop and mandate a provincial task force to examine systemic racism in the education network and make recommendations on the changes needed to combat systemic racism. Such a task force should include representatives of the diverse communities.


John Grant students in the great outdoors.  

OUTDOOR LEARNING: In the early going of this very different academic year, many teachers have taken their classes outdoors. Carla Toffoli has been taking her gym classes outdoors for healthy activities  at John Grant High School in Côte Saint-Luc. Everyone participates while respecting physical distancing.  Her students are working up a sweat and are learning great exercises they can do to stay fit.

The Dalkeith math project.  

MATH ABOUT ME: At Dalkeith Elementary School in Anjou, Back to school coincided with the "Math About Me" activity! The cycle two students completed their "All About Mathematical Me" activity. They discovered the place that numbers have in their world. They had so much fun describing themselves using math. Great job cycle two!!

Marilyn  Ramlakhan
ADMIN APPOINTMENTS: The English  sector of  FACE School  has its first  principal in Marilyn Ramlakhan, previously the vice-principal at James Lyng High School. Jennifer Harriet remains as vice-principal. Andrea Dillon, a teacher at Royal West Academy, is now interim vp at James Lyng;  Peter McKelvie, a physical education teacher at Vincent Massey Collegiate, is now the interim vp there.

INFRASTRUCTURE TALKS: Following the  publication of a number of media reports that speculated on infrastructure projects involving its schools, EMSB Trustee Marlene  Jennings   insisted on addressing the situation and clarifying specific information. “In compliance with its role and responsibilities, the EMSB regularly participates in formal, as well as informal, discussions with the Ministère de l’Éducation et de l’Enseignement supérieur (MEES) and with other school service centres on the Island of Montreal regarding future infrastructure needs. These discussions include investments in the maintenance and renovation of existing buildings, construction of new schools and other challenges associated with demographic changes in Montreal. Over the last year, the EMSB has held these types of discussions on an exploratory basis with public service members of the MEES along with representatives of the Centre de services scolaire de la Pointe-de-l’Île as well as those of the Centre de services scolaire Marguerite-Bourgeoys. We want to make it clear that various scenarios involving many existing and projected schools were discussed. Although it was considered, the ideas were never sufficiently feasible nor relevant enough to warrant holding talks with members of the EMSB Long Range Planning Committee or with any of the governing boards of one of our schools.”

For the full statement click here  

Here is a report from Global TV  

Psychologist Cheryl Wiltzer did a number of interviews on the first day of school.

THE CURRENT:  The team from CBC National Radio’s The Current came to Montreal for the first day of school and, based at Bancroft Elementary School in the Plateau, filed this excellent 20 minute feature. EMSB teachers, psychologist Cheryl Wiltzer and Interim Director General Evelyne Alfonsi were among those quoted. You can listen to it here

COVID-19 INFORMATION: The EMSB continues to publish its special COVID-19 newsletter.  Four editions have already come up and plans call for uch updates to continue. They are posted on the EMSB website and sent out via School Messenger to all stakeholders.  There is also a comprehensive FAQ section, updated daily. 

FAQ SECTION UPDATED DAILY:  As parents, we understand that you have many questions/concerns and that this is a period of uncertainty. Rest assured that we are preparing to reopen our schools and doing everything possible to make sure your children are safe while attending school.  Although there will be differences in the organization of each school based on their own realities, the general planning and organization must respect the directives from the Ministry of Education. Please stay up to date with our comprehensive FAQ section.

Lots of colour at Sinclair Laird.  

WEAR YOUR GRADE COLOURS:  It has been an excellent start at Sinclair Laird  Elementary School in Park Extension, especially for  students.  Opening day featured  a "Wear Your Grade Colours" t-shirt day in order to celebrate. The school was filled with bright colours, balloons, and smiles all around.

Gerald McShane B.A.S.E. Daycare educator Candida Di Zazzo assists a pre-kindergarten student with washing his hands.

B.A.S.E. TEAM VISITS DAYCARES: In an effort to address the new challenges brought on by COVID-19 and to support the approximately 240 daycare staff members during their new reality, members of the B.A.S.E. Daycare Team are visiting the EMSB’s 28 daycares over a period of three weeks (September 21 to October 9, 2020).  Daycare Manager  Teresa Federico and Daycare Project Development Officers Jennifer De Freitas and Melina Trimarchi are performing the daycare visits. The purpose of the visits are twofold: to discuss and complete a COVID-19 Preventive Measures Checklist with the daycare technicians and to see firsthand how the daycares are operating with the new preventive measures. Checklists from the 28 daycares will then be compiled to determine what complementary actions can be put in place to provide additional support to the daycare staff and children. 

A scene from last year's event at John Caboto.

TERRY FOX RUNS AT 40: This year marks the 40th anniversary of Terry Fox’s Marathon of Hope, and many schools are creating innovative, fun and safe ways to continue the legacy of the great Canadian. Fundraising takes place online, but the actual physical event is being played out in different and interesting ways at the English Montreal School Board. The official date for the Terry Fox Foundation school run across Canada is September 30, but schools are having their events at different times during the fall. Among the elementary schools which have a strong annual Terry Fox Run tradition is Roslyn Elementary School. This year, it will continue to be a school-wide event with all students running for 10 minutes, in their classroom bubbles, around their schoolyard at staggered times on October 6 and 7.  A brand-new initiative – the “40 for 40 Virtual Walk of Hope” – will unfold at Rosemount High School, Perspectives I and II  Alternative High Schools in St. Michel,  Nesbitt in Rosemount   and Honoré Mercier Elementary in St. Léonard. It takes place over a month, starting September 28.  Please read our more detailed story here.

BEAVER TAILS AND PIZZA: Students and staff at L.I.N.K.S. High School in Ahuntsic, and Edward Murphy School in Mercier Ouest, marked the return to school with delicious beaver tails and Mediterranean style pizza made on the spot from an authentic wood burning pizza oven. Chef Robert’s and Chef's Ken’s award-winning pizza made everyone’s day. Students and staff enjoyed spending time together and reconnecting outdoors. Thank you to Principals Ms. Caldarella & Ms. Delis, and their teams for the wonderful welcome back.

ARMY OF MASKS: The Army of Masks is an amazing army of volunteers of all ages who are giving their time to fight COVID-19. Since March 20, armed only with cotton fabrics, needles and thread, compassion and kindness, hundreds of local sewers across Canada are helping in the battle against COVID-19 by creating reusable masks for those in need. Mr. Speranza heard about this group after learning that students and communities that he serves could not obtain face coverings. After making a request, a local volunteer named Andrea contacted him. The conversation was uplifting. She told him that children, mothers, fathers, grandparents, experienced and novice sewers, were working together to sew masks for their community. With the price of PPEs skyrocketing and in short supply, this group is a life saver. Due to high demand and limited volunteers the group was struggling to keep up with the requests they were receiving. They have now expanded the army and staff and students at several EMSB schools have joined in the effort. If you would like to join, contact Mr.   Speranza  at rsperanza@emsb.qc.ca. Anybody who can cut with scissors can participate!

CN RAIL SAFETY: Constable Andre from the Canadian National Police Service teamed up with Mr.   Speranza, in order to launch Rail Safety Week.  Starting on Sept 21,  Constable Andre will be visiting with students from L.I.N.K.S. High School and virtually with students at Edward Murphy, East Hill, and JFK. His message is clear, “See Tracks, Think Trains.” The interactive safety workshops aim to remind students and adults about the importance of changing their train of thought and being more aware and alert around trains, train tracks, and platforms. One of the growing distractions around tracks is the increased headphone use and people being on their mobile devices (some wanting to take that perfect selfie). As the coming years will see an increase in the number of passenger trains in service, providing students with these workshops offers a timely reminder about train and rail safety.

OPERATION ROSCO:  Operation R.O.S.C.O was recently launched by SCA Mr. Speranza, ERC teacher Ms. Luciana, and caretaker Mr. Silvino from East Hill School. Operation ROSCO (Rays of Sunshine, Caring and Open-mindedness) aims to spread messages of peace, hope, joy, and thanks to our front-line workers and patients in the Health Sector.  Students and staff at East Hill as well as Royal Vale, St. Gabriel, Gerald McShane, Edward Murphy, LINKS, and JFK are preparing hundreds of cards to be delivered in the coming weeks. It is our hope that the pictures and cards will help brighten their days. The name and project was inspired by a 91-year-old senior citizen who Mr. Speranza had the privilege of spending time with over the summer. He was never able to pronounce Rocco, calling him “Rosco” instead.

HEALTH ASSESSMENT TOOL: The EMSB has implemented  an online Health Assessment Tool  to remind all stakeholders to assess their health daily in regards to COVID-19.  This tool is a questionnaire/form with four questions. It is emailed out to all stakeholders. Please ensure to fill it out. We are introducing a  new program of COVID-19 Safety Ambassadors. Here is our first message from Mount Royal Liberal MP Anthony Housefather.

MEET  VALERIE: Welcome to Fielding Avenue  Valerie Honig.  She is a new robotics and STEAM consultant, having worked as a science and technology specialist at Gardenview Elementary School in St. Laurent for over 10 years.  She has a special interest in technology, environmental sustainability, and inquiry-based learning.  "While I was fortunate to be a teacher in a wonderful school community, I am thrilled to be part of an inspiring and dedicated team at the Board," she says.

FREE ONLINE TUTORING: Tutoring is back for the fall session! LEARN Quebec's effective and popular program, offered at no charge, provides online homework help and tutoring appointments based on needs identified by parents, students, or schools. Our online tutors are fully qualified Quebec teachers, experienced in tutoring, review and consolidation. They work directly with elementary (grades 2 and up) and secondary students, and their families. You can consult their FAQ page to find answers to common questions: https://www.learnquebec.ca/faqé Registration is open and ongoing. The fall online tutoring session starts October 5. 

ÉDITION DU 25 SEPTEMBRE 2020 / BULLETIN DE LA CSEM

PORTES OUVERTES VIRTUELLES: Au nombre des changements entraînés par la pandémie de COVID-19 au sein du réseau de l’éducation, à compter du 15 septembre, les futurs élèves de la CSEM et leurs parents vivront une toute nouvelle expérience : les portes ouvertes virtuelles. L'Académie Royal West de Montréal-Ouest a donné le coup d’envoi à la saison des portes ouvertes à la CSEM. Futurs élèves et parents ont la possibilité de visiter les écoles de leur choix, dans le confort de leur foyer ou au bureau. Royal West a lancé une vidéo réalisée par les élèves où sont mis en lumière certains atouts de l'école. Cette vidéo a été publiée sur le site Web de l’académie et partagée sur les réseaux sociaux. De plus, les parents peuvent remplir un formulaire en ligne afin de poser des questions au personnel – les questions seront compilées, traitées et mises en ligne sous forme de document Foire aux questions. 

Nous vous invitons à visionner la vidéo 

Qu'il s'agisse de rendez-vous personnels fixés au moyen d'applications intégrées aux sites Web des écoles, de visites virtuelles des établissements ou encore de présentations en direct par les directions et les enseignants diffusées sur les médias sociaux, la CSEM redouble d’efforts et de créativité afin de s’assurer que cette importante étape du cheminement scolaire ne soit pas exclue en raison de la COVID 19. Pour la liste complète des journées portes ouvertes à la CSEM, visitez le : http://emsbopenhouses.ca/emsb/open-houses. D’autres informations suivront.

FOIRE DE L’ÉDUCATION EN MODE VIRTUEL : En raison de la pandémie de COVID-19, la 20e édition annuelle de la Foire de l’éducation à la CSEM (anciennement la Foire des carrières) se tiendra virtuellement cette année, vers la fin du mois d'octobre. Jack Dym de Pipe and Piling Supplies Ltd. et la Banque Royale RBC sont une fois de plus les commanditaires en titre de l'événement. La Foire de l'éducation est une excellente occasion qui permet aux parents et élèves de se renseigner sur les options postsecondaires. Coordonnée par les Services de l'éducation des adultes et de la formation professionnelle en collaboration avec les Services aux élèves de la CSEM, cette foire vise principalement à sensibiliser les élèves aux divers programmes d’enseignement qui s’offrent à eux. Restez à l'affût et rendez-vous sur le www.emsb.qc.ca/educationfair pour tout savoir sur la programmation. Les élèves auront l’occasion de visiter en mode virtuel les divers kiosques d’information d’établissements anglophones, notamment des centres de formation professionnelle, des cégeps, universités et certains collèges privés. Une vidéo présentera la marche à suivre pour faire une demande au cégep, et une autre mettra en vedette des élèves actuels à la formation professionnelle qui partageront leur expérience positive. 

ÉCOLE VIRTUELLE : L’école virtuelle récemment mise sur pied par la CSEM s’adresse aux élèves du préscolaire à la 5e secondaire qui ont bénéficié d’une exemption et qui ne réintégreront pas leur école habituelle au cours de la présente année scolaire. N’eût été la pandémie actuelle de COVID-19, ces élèves auraient fréquenté l'une des autres écoles de la CSEM. Sonia Marotta a été nommée directrice et est secondée par les directeurs adjoints Jessica Monti et Francesco Magliocca. Le personnel dévoué, expérimenté et compétent regroupe des enseignants du préscolaire, du primaire et du secondaire ainsi que du personnel de soutien, notamment des éducateurs en services de garde, des techniciens en comportement et des professionnels (psychologues, orthophonistes, ergothérapeutes, etc.). L'école virtuelle mettra également à contribution l'expérience et l'expertise de spécialistes, de professionnels en éducation et de conseillers pédagogiques. Les élèves seront jumelés avec un enseignant qui les accompagnera tout au long de l'année scolaire 2020-2021. Enfin, les Services aux élèves et les Services éducatifs assisteront l'équipe-école afin de faciliter la progression scolaire des élèves de l'école virtuelle.

PROGRAMME THE FACES OF THE FRONTLINES: Inspiré par les ravages du coronavirus, l’animateur de vie spirituelle et d’engagement communautaire Vince Lacroce lance un nouveau programme éducatif qui permettra de mieux comprendre cette pandémie. Baptisé The Faces of the Frontlines, ce programme se veut un partenariat entre les services d’animation de vie spirituelle et d’engagement communautaire et des travailleurs de première ligne, des infirmières et des médecins de la grande région de Montréal, afin d’animer des présentations interactives dans les écoles primaires et secondaires de la CSEM. Ces séances d’une durée de 30 à 45 minutes porteront sur des expériences réelles vécues au front en cette période de pandémie, en plus d’offrir des activités et des scénarios interactifs, de rappeler les mesures de sécurité et les meilleures pratiques pour contribuer à ralentir la propagation de la COVID-19. Le programme se déroulera tout au long du mois de septembre afin de souligner les heures inlassables et les sacrifices sans fin des Montréalais et Montréalaises de notre communauté. 

FIN DE PARCOURS POUR UN ENSEIGNANT DE LONGUE DATE: Sebastian Villani ne semble pas mûr pour la retraite. Même après 47 ans à titre d’enseignant, son intérêt et sa passion sont tout aussi fervents qu'un nouveau venu dans la profession. Mais près d’un demi-siècle et 15 000 élèves plus tard, il a décidé de tirer sa révérence.  

Sa carrière a débuté à l'âge de 22 ans dans une école secondaire catholique anglophone de premier cycle à Saint-Léonard, et a pris fin récemment à l'école secondaire Laurier Macdonald de la Commission scolaire English-Montréal, où il a enseigné pendant les 33 dernières années.  

SOMETHING NEON: Lorsque la pandémie de COVID-19 a été déclarée, Something Neon – entreprise fondée à Montréal par le couple Daniel et Lauren – a décidé de confectionner des masques réutilisables et d’utiliser une partie du produit de la vente pour fournir des masques aux travailleurs de première ligne. Six mois plus tard, une semaine avant la rentrée scolaire, 

Donna Friedman-Perlin, enseignante à l’école Bancroft a eu vent que Something Neon fournissait des masques aux enseignants. Elle a tout de suite pensé qu’elle et ses collègues de Bancroft pourraient en profiter. Elle a donc communiqué avec eux et c’est avec plaisir qu’ils ont offert leurs masques uniques et colorés au personnel de l’école Bancroft! Merci à Something Neon de contribuer, avec style, à la sécurité du personnel de Bancroft!

PRISE DE POSITION CONTRE LE RACISME : La CSEM a adopté une résolution afin de dénoncer toute forme de racisme ou de discrimination et de soutenir ses écoles et ses centres dans leurs efforts en vue d’éduquer les élèves dans un cadre d’apprentissage attentionné, sûr et inclusif.  Les récents événements tragiques survenus en Amérique du Nord sont venus confirmer la nécessité de reconnaître et d’aborder la présence du racisme systémique et d’autres formes de discrimination au Canada. « Nous condamnons toute forme de racisme », a déclaré Marlene Jennings, administratrice de la tutelle à la CSEM. Les récents incidents racistes documentés au Québec nous obligent, en tant qu’acteur du milieu de l’éducation, à revoir notre responsabilité à l’égard de la prévention et de l’intolérance face à la discrimination dans toutes nos écoles, nos centres et au centre administratif. »

Madame Jennings a souligné que le système d’éducation publique devrait offrir un programme d’études inclusif pour tous. « La CSEM croit au respect et à la dignité de tous les individus, qu’aucun individu ou groupe ne devrait être contraint de vivre dans la peur ou être exclu de la société », a-t-elle poursuivi. La résolution stipule également que le ministère de l’Éducation devrait mettre sur pied et mandater un groupe de travail provincial pour se pencher sur le racisme systémique dans le réseau de l’éducation et formuler des recommandations sur les changements à apporter afin de combattre le racisme systémique. Un tel groupe de travail devrait inclure des représentants des diverses communautés.

APPRENTISSAGE EN PLEIN AIR: En ce début d’année scolaire exceptionnelle, nombre d’enseignants font de l’enseignement en plein air. Ainsi, à l’école secondaire John Grant de Côte Saint-Luc, Carla Toffoli a décidé de dispenser ses cours d’éducation physique à l’extérieur. Les élèves prennent part à de saines activités tout en respectant la distanciation physique. Ses élèves se donnent à fond et apprennent d’excellents exercices pour garder la forme.

MATH ABOUT ME: À l’école primaire Dalkeith à Anjou, la rentrée a coïncidé avec l’activité Math About Me! Les élèves du deuxième cycle ont complété l’activité All About Mathematical Me. Ils ont découvert la place qu’occupent les nombres dans leur vie. Ils ont eu un plaisir fou à se décrire à l’aide des mathématiques. Bravo à tous!

NOMINATIONS ADMINISTRATIVES : Le secteur anglophone de l'école FACE a sa première directrice en la personne de Marilyn Ramlakhan, auparavant directrice adjointe à l’école secondaire James Lyng. Jennifer Harriet demeure directrice adjointe. Andrea Dillon, enseignante à l’Académie Royal West, est désormais directrice adjointe par intérim à James Lyng; Peter McKelvie, enseignant d'éducation physique au Collège Vincent Massey, y est désormais directeur adjoint par intérim.

DISCUSSIONS ENTOURANT LES INFRASTRUCTURES: À la suite de la parution de certains reportages dans les médias spéculant sur des projets d’infrastructures touchant les écoles de la CSEM, Marlene Jennings, administratrice de la CSEM, a tenu à faire le point et à rectifier certaines informations. Conformément à son rôle et à ses responsabilités, la CSEM participe régulièrement à des discussions formelles et informelles avec le ministère de l’Éducation et de l’Enseignement supérieur (MEES), ainsi qu’avec les autres centres de services scolaires de l’île de Montréal, relativement aux besoins d’avenir en matière d’infrastructures. Ces échanges portent notamment sur les investissements dans l’entretien et la rénovation de bâtiments existants, la construction de nouvelles écoles et les défis liés à l’évolution démographique à Montréal. Au cours de la dernière année, la CSEM a tenu des discussions de cette nature sur une base exploratoire avec des membres de la fonction publique du MEES et des représentants du Centre de services scolaire de la Pointe-de-l’Île et du Centre de services scolaire Marguerite-Bourgeoys. Nous tenons à être très clairs à l’effet que des scénarios variés visant de nombreuses écoles existantes et projetées ont été évoqués. Bien qu’il ait été considéré de le faire, jamais les échanges n’ont été assez viables ou pertinents pour qu’il y ait lieu de tenir des discussions avec les membres du comité de planification à long terme de la CSEM ou avec l’un ou l’autre des conseils d’établissements de l’une de nos écoles.

Nous vous invitons à lire l’intégral de la déclaration 

.https://www.emsb.qc.ca/csem/nouvelles/discussions-en-cours-concernant-planification-a-long-terme-des-besoins-en-infrastructures

THE CURRENT: L’équipe de The Current de la radio nationale CBC s’est rendue à Montréal à l’occasion de la rentrée scolaire et, depuis l’école primaire Bancroft sur le Plateau, a produit cette excellente capsule d’une durée de 20 minutes. Des enseignants de la CSEM, la psychologue  Cheryl Wiltzer et la directrice générale par intérim Evelyne Alfonsi figurent parmi les gens cités. Nous vous invitons à en faire l’écoute 


INFORMATIONS SUR LA COVID-19: La CSEM continue de publier son Infolettre spéciale sur la COVID-19. Trois éditions ont déjà été publiées et d’autres sont à venir. Elles sont affichées sur le site Web de la CSEM et envoyées via School Messenger à tous les partenaires. Une Foire aux questions (FAQ) exhaustive a également vu le jour et est mise à jour quotidiennement.


MISE À JOUR QUOTIDIENNE DE LA FOIRE AUX QUESTIONS (FAQ) : En tant que parents, nous sommes conscients que vous avez de nombreuses questions/préoccupations en cette période d'incertitude. Nous tenons à vous assurer que nous nous préparons à rouvrir nos établissements et que nous faisons tout le nécessaire pour assurer la sécurité de vos enfants à l’école. Bien que l'organisation de chaque école diffère en fonction de sa propre réalité, il n’en demeure pas moins que la planification et l'organisation générales doivent être conformes aux directives du Ministère. Nous vous invitons à consulter régulièrement la section FAQ.

PORTE LES COULEURS DE TON CYCLE: L’école primaire Sinclair Laird de Parc-Extension a connu une excellente rentrée, en particulier les élèves. En effet, dans le cadre de l’activité « Porte les couleurs de ton cycle » organisée le premier jour, les élèves ont pu revêtir un t-shirt aux couleurs de leur cycle et célébrer ce grand jour. Couleurs vives, ballons et sourires étaient au rendez-vous pour l’occasion. 

INITIATIVE D’AUTOPRISE EN CHARGE ET DE BIEN-ÊTRE: Devant la nouvelle normalité, les animateurs de vie spirituelle et d’engagement communautaire Vince Lacroce, Linda Luca, Joseph Monachino et Jagdeep Trehin ont mis sur pied une campagne de sensibilisation sur l’autoprise en charge de la santé destinée aux élèves des écoles primaires et secondaires. Ce programme porte sur l'importance de se prendre en charge au quotidien, contribue à développer des stratégies et des outils d'adaptation, ainsi qu’à créer une harmonie pour le bien-être intérieur. « La nécessité de prendre en charge sa santé est extrêmement importante en ces temps difficiles. Les leçons et les stratégies d'adaptation sont bénéfiques à la fois pour les adultes et les élèves, car nous nous devons d’être en mesure d’évaluer notre bien-être et de soutenir ceux qui pourraient éprouver des difficultés ou être dans le besoin », a déclaré M. Lacroce. « Le programme sera dispensé en mode virtuel ainsi qu’en classe et se déroulera tout au long du mois de septembre. »

OUTIL D’ÉVALUATION EN MATIÈRE DE SANTÉ:  La CSEM a créé un outil d'évaluation de la santé en ligne qui sera envoyé à tous ses partenaires le mercredi matin et le dimanche après-midi afin de leur rappeler d'évaluer quotidiennement leur santé en lien avec la COVID-19.  

STATUT DES ÉLECTIONS ET LOI 40: Le président par intérim de la CSEM, M. Joe Ortona, a exprimé sa grande satisfaction devant la décision rendue par la Cour d’appel du Québec de suspendre l’application de la loi 40 jusqu’à ce que la Cour supérieure du Québec entende la cause en novembre. Entre autres changements, la loi 40 aurait transformé les commissions scolaires anglophones en centres de services scolaires. S’exprimant au nom du conseil des commissaires, M. Ortona a cité cet extrait du jugement qui dépeint clairement la situation : « Puisque les changements dans la gouvernance scolaire institués par la Loi 40 semblent, à première vue du moins, retirer des pouvoirs de gestion et de contrôle aux commissions scolaires anglophones et restreindre l’éligibilité des membres de la minorité linguistique officielle du Québec aux postes électifs des nouveaux centres de services scolaires, l’intérêt public penche dans ce cas-ci en faveur de la protection des droits de la minorité linguistique officielle plutôt qu’en faveur de la mise en œuvre de la Loi 40 dans le secteur éducatif anglophone, du moins jusqu’à ce qu’une décision sur le fond de l’affaire soit rendue. » 

« C'est la troisième fois que le gouvernement défend cette loi devant les tribunaux, sans jamais avoir eu gain de cause », de souligner M. Ortona. « J'ose espérer que le gouvernement travaille de manière constructive dans l'intérêt de l'éducation des enfants, tout particulièrement en période de pandémie, plutôt que de continuer à imposer ce que nous considérons être une loi anticonstitutionnelle. Il était mal avisé d’en appeler de cette décision en premier lieu, et il serait tout aussi mal avisé d’interjeter appel devant la Cour suprême du Canada. Nous, à la CSEM, continuerons à représenter la minorité anglophone et à défendre les libertés fondamentales de l’ensemble des Québécois, de la communauté anglophone, des minorités religieuses et autres. » Info ici.

https://www.emsb.qc.ca/csem/nouvelles/la-csem-salue-la-decision-de-la-cour-dappel-concernant-la-loi-40

Le prochain numéro de Pleins feux sur Fielding sera publié le 29 octobre. La date limite pour soumettre vos articles est fixée au 26 octobre.

The next Focus newsletter will be on October 29.  Deadline for submissions is October 21, 2020