Tuesday, February 25, 2020


More Pre- K students like these will be enrolled next year.
MORE PRE-K CLASSES: The English Montreal School Board will welcome 10 new Pre-Kindergarten classes funded by the Ministry of Education for the 2020-21 academic year. At present there are already 28 such classes at the board Set to receive new Ministry funded full-day Pre-K classes are Carlyle (2), St. Monica (3), Pierre de Coubertin (1), Dunrae Gardens (1), Leonardo Da Vinci (1), Honoré-Mercier (1) and East Hill (1).  The   conditions and criteria considered when making these selections were the poverty index, schools with existing half-day Pre-K’s and available space.     “We are pleased that we have been able to add additional classes to our list of Ministry funded Pre-K’s,” said EMSB Assistant Director General Evelyne Alfonsi.  “Due to an increase in enrolment and long Pre-K waiting lists in two east end schools, we have requested the addition of two more classes.” Our educators are doing a wonderful job welcoming these young children to our system. We will continue to pay close attention to the placement of these classes in the coming years as there is a significant space problems in our west end schools.”
Royal Vale students perform.
THE ARTS AND SCHOOL PERSEVERANCE:  The launch of the annual School Perseverance Week by the  Réseau réussite Montréal (RRM) took place on February 17 at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts. EMSB Director General Ann Marie Matheson is the president of the RRM and gave opening remarks. Special guests included Minister of Education Jean-François Roberge, Montreal Mayor Valerie Plante and  Kansas City Super Bowl winning football player Laurent Duvernay Tardif, a graduate of McGill University Medical School. The focus was on how the arts make more engaged citizens. Among disadvantaged students, those exposed to arts are five times less likely to drop out. Students who have meaningful arts experiences in high school are two times more inclined to do volunteer work and 20 percent more likely to vote.  EMSB students from Royal Vale and FACE showcased their artistic talents on stage. Among those guiding them was arts consultant Nicolas Doyon. The Grade 6 Royal Vale students, taught by Nathalie Malhamé, performed a Commedia dell’arte skit   in collaboration with students from St. Clement School from the CSMB. “This wonderful experience gave me a glimmer of hope that we can we can all work together to ensure student success across language or school board divides,” said Ms Malhamé. “This is what the magic of the arts represent.”

John Caboto, Dunrae Gardens and LaurenHill Academy team up. 
COMMNITY SPORTS ACTIVITY: On   February 20, three EMSB schools came together to take part in a community sports activity in the spirit of les Journées de la persévérance scolaire (Hooked on School Days). John Caboto Academy hosted Dunrae Gardens Elementary to a double header basketball game event. The John Caboto Academy teams were coached by teachers Joseph Romano and Jennifer DeLeeuw. The Dunrae Gardens teams were coached by teachers Luce Demers and Eddy Fundaro. LaurenHill Academy supported the event through their Athletic Leadership program as teacher Julia King and five of her students came out to be the official scorekeepers and referees of the game. The John Caboto students were treated to an exciting pair of games with the Dunrae Gardens girls team coming out on top by a score of 36-6 and a tie in the boys game at 34-34. The Cycle 1 students performed a halftime gymnastics routine and students were also surprised with a visit from the LaurenHill Lynx mascot, Lincoln!  Parents from both schools came out to support the students and the two teams ended their day together with a pizza lunch.  The event showcases the many talents of the students and emphasized the importance of school life and spirit and the link to school perseverance.

Marcio Melo works with students.
SCHOOL MURAL: Royal Vale Grade 5 students had the chance of working with Brazilian artist Marcio Melo on a school mural that represents kindness and empathy. “One of our primary duties as a teacher is to prepare our students to take flight as independent, holistic and kind citizens of the world,” said Ms. Malhamé. “Through the painting of the mural, the students reflected upon the kind of world they which to protect.  I am touched by my students’ perseverance and by their willingness to create a better world. Their light must not be dimmed, it is much needed. I am also grateful for the chance to work with artists and drama consultants that can help us expose our students to such important channels that can feed their soul.”

Grade 5 Royal Vale Students are also learning to sign with Tina Panzini from the MacKay Centre and high school RVS student Norbert weekly.  The most recent subject was food! 

CPR TRAINING:  Secondary V students at Royal Vale School in NDG students are receiving training for first aid, CPR and AED.  The training is being done by Spiritual Community Animator Paulo Rusciti.  At the end of the course all of these students will have the first aid certification.

Sandra Furfaro
FURFARO RETIRES: After 45 years of services in the field of public education, Sandra Furfaro has retired. For the past 15 years she served as  Director of Educational Services, also assuming responsibility for Technology Services the past six years. Mackay Centre/Philip E. Layton Elementary School Principal Anna Sanalitro has been appointed as Ms. Furfaro’s successor. Technology Services has become its own Division, with Assistant Director Bob Thomas promoted to director. Ms. Furfaro spent her first 21 years in education as a teacher,  moving on to become a vice-principal at Rosemount High School, a  principal at École Primaire Tetraultville, Principal at Leonardo Da Vinci Academy in RDP, Assistant Director of Educational Services and then Director.
Ms. Furfaro will remain with the EMSB on a part-time basis as chef d’equipe for the home schooling team. Please see the full article here.

NUTRITION MONTH: March is Nutrition Month all across Canada. The national theme for this year’s campaign is More than Food: How you eat is important too! Which aims to fuel healthy eating habits and inspire people to find pleasure around all activities surrounding food. It’s important that we remember that cooking together and enjoying food amongst family and friends is just as important as making healthy foods choices. For more information and inspiration please visit www.nutritionmonth2020.ca  To commemorate nutrition, EMSB dietitians will be animating “READ WHAT YOU EAT” in-class activities, orienting students to read and better understand nutrition labels in West Sector elementary schools. These activities are building blocks for our kindergarten to 6 students for better nutrition knowledge and making and enjoying healthy food choices.  Celebrate this month with Nutrition and Food Services, by encouraging your school and community to learn more about nutrition and to enjoy one of life’s pleasures which is eating good food!

Irini Margetis
ADMINISTRATIVE ASSIGNMENTS: Some new administrative assignments have been announced.  Anna Sanalitro, Director of Educational Services (previously Principal of Mackay Centre/Philip E. Layton); Sabrina Petrocco, Assistant Director of Student Services (previously Principal of East Hill); Irini Margentis, Principal of Mackay Centre/Philip E. Layton (previously Principal of Dante); Libby Amato, Principal of East Hill (previously Principal of John Paul I Junior High School); Joe Schembri, Principal of Dante (remains Principal as well for General Vanier); Vito Guerrero-Campbell, Vice-Principal Temporary at Dante and General Vanier (presently, VP, John F. Kennedy High School); Cristina Celzi, Interim Principal of John Paul I (presently Principal of Edward Murphy); Rania Delis, Interim Principal of Edward Murphy (presently VP at Rosemount High School); Myrianne Lusignan, Interim Assistant Director of Education Services (presently Principal of Gardenview); and Gaetano Sifoni, Interim Principal of Gardenview (presently VP of Gardenview).

GREATER MONTREAL DAY: The fourth annual Greater Montreal Day, presented by Global News,  takes place Thursday, May 7. Greater Montreal Day encourages all of us to do what we can to be kind to each other and share our acts of kindness on social media on Thursday, May 7. Once again this year, two social media postings will be chosen at random to receive a $1, 000 donation for a local charity. Please let us know about your plans in advance and we may be able to feature your activity/event on Global News. For more information or to tell Global about your  event   email: travis.todd@globalnews.ca.

Ari Skye
SINGING STAR: On February 2, Ariana Ianniciello a Secondary IV student at Lester B. Pearson High School in Montreal North and music phenom, was invited by the Montreal Canadiens to sing both the American and Canadian national anthems for an afternoon matchup versus the Columbus Blue Jacket.  Ariana also celebrated her sweet sixteen that day. Ariana performs by the professional name Ari Skye.  She has been busy having recently released some original studio-produced singles, acting as a youth ambassador for the Shriner’s Hospital and singing the national anthem at Impact soccer home games. She reached the finals for Superfantastico when she was 12 years old!

See her Habs performance here.

COMMITMENT TO SUCCESS PODCASTS: The Commitment to Success Plan is an evaluation of student life among all EMSB schools. Tracy Mangal, the EMSB Consultant for Commitment to Success and FACE student   Samantha Treville-Monroe, discussed this with Suzanne Desautels on a recent podcast. Click here to listen.
Students work on their push ups.
PUSH-UPS FOR ELLIE: On Friday February 14, the students and staff in the EMSB’s Outreach Network united in the Options  Alternative High School gymnasium to complete a two week-long initiative  known as “Push-Up for Ellie.” It was created to support  seven year-old cancer fighter Ellie White and her family as they recover from a $1,000,000 (US) experimental treatment received in Columbus, Ohio. Following the treatment, which ended in great success, the Outreach Network wanted to offer their support to Ellie and the White family as they continue to recuperate financially and emotionally.  Initially, the Outreach Network pledged to complete 100,000 push-ups to show their support to the White family, and to promote the “Fight for Ellie” GoFundMe page via the social media hashtag “#pushupforellie.”  As the network gathered on Valentine’s Day to complete the final push-ups together, the 10 alternative schools were pleasantly surprised to learn that they surpassed their goal of 100,000 push-ups, by 11,047. This left them with a grand total of 111,047 push-ups. 

Their support through the form of push-ups was symbolic to the idea that they wanted Ellie to feel empowered and uplifted following her cancer-fighting treatment. Furthermore, although the Outreach Network cannot take full credit for the donations made to Ellie’s public GoFundMe page surrounding their initiative, the “Fight for Ellie” donation page saw an increase of around $5,000, and the network’s students and staff are honoured to be a part of such efforts. The Outreach Network hopes that the completion of the 111,047 push-ups was only the beginning of the Push-Up for Ellie movement, and that others in the community will continue to show their support through the “#pushupforellie” hashtag. Other groups in the Montreal community, such as the staff and children of a local Montreal daycare partook in the push-up initiative and were able to raise $700 dollars to be donated to the “Fight for Ellie” GoFundMe page. If you would like to join the movement or show your support to the White family, we welcome you to do so through the “#pushupforellie” hashtag on Instagram, or by visiting her GoFundMe page: https://ca.gofundme.com/f/fightforellie. See the full story.

SHARING STRATEGIES: Patrick Maynard, a math and physics teacher at Lester B. Pearson High School, was recently interviewed in Spectrum Magazine. He shared teaching strategies and was featured on the cover page.

Students take in the Black History Month Museum.
BLACK HISTORY MONTH: With Black History Month underway, the EMSB is raising awareness in engaging and creative ways,  Rosemount High School created its very first Black History Month Museum.   At LINKS High School in Ahuntsic, Gail Bernstein’s students in the DÉFIS program  studied prominent African American figures. LaurenHill Academy’s senior campus in St. Laurent  had a special treat February 11 when Juno award-winning singer and actor Kim Richardson performed for students in the school’s auditorium. Ms. Richardson, who has won three Juno Awards, was there to celebrate the school’s opening of Black History Month and convey a message of positivity to the students.  A special lunch at John F. Kennedy High School in St. Michel on  February 14 consisted of jerk chicken, beans and rice, cornbread and vegetables. On the tables in the cafeteria were runners with information regarding black history and food  At Westmount High School, several teacher-led Black History Month programs and activities are taking place, including special screenings of films, including Black Panther; guest speakers, assemblies as well as informative workshops.   At James Lyng High School in St. Henri, several lunch-time movies with a black history context were to be screened, explained SCA Paolo Ruscito. At Sinclair Laird Elementary School in Park Extension,SCA  Puynung Choy  reports that a performance combining gospel singing, fiery storytelling, piano, congo drumming and the guitar “brought us musically back in time.” Powerhouse vocal and community leader Achlaie Ernest and Kenneth Wallace were to present “A Musical Venture into Black History; Going Back in Time.” Several members of the EMSB administration shared  their stories related to Black History Month and were the special guests at a “Perseverance and Leadership” assembly . At Dunrae Gardens Elementary School in TMR, students were treated to “Rise Above,” which focused on famous black people in Canada and the US. It was performed by three actors, a beatboxer and jazz singer  At Nesbitt Elementary School in Rosemount, the Cycle 1 classes will visit “Heroes and Art Program,” a large banner displaying the images of Black Canadian and Americans from different walks of life.  Honoré Mercier Elementary School in St. Léonard, had a similar program. Students from Rosemount High sang a rendition of “Amazing Grace.” At Dante Elementary School in St. Léonard, Leonardo Da Vinci Academy in RDP and Gerald McShane Elementary School in Montreal North, SCA Mary Poullas, there were   appearances by Haitian dancer  Mapou Ginenà. SCA for Elizabeth Ballantyne School  in Montreal West and Roslyn in Westmount, Gladys Batten, explained her plan to engage students in hour-long class presentations with a focus on Canadians Viola Desmond, and John and Mildred Ware; and Americans Wilma Rudolph, Booker T. Washington, Frederick Douglass, Rosa Parks and Dr. Martin Luther King.  At Edinburgh Elementary School  in Montreal West and Westmount Park Elementary School, Cycle 3 classes were invited to Black History Month presentations led by their Spiritual Community Animator Jagdeep Trehin. The focus and theme for this year ascourage, with an emphasis on the inspirational story of a Canadian woman from Nova Scotia, Viola Desmond.  Please read our detailed report by Kristin McNeill. 

Staff and students present their cheque.
BELL LET’S  TALK: Rosemount High School  collected over $1,300 for Bell Let’s Talk Mental Health initiative.    The money was raised from its Mental Health Coffee House “A Storied Mind” in late November.   Bell Let’s Talk Day was January 29 and students and staff presented a cheque to  Kids Help Phone  Senior Development Officer Chelsea Lumière.

MEET AND GREET: EMSB Trustee Marlene Jennings recently hosted a Meet and Greet with stakeholders at LaurenHill Academy Junior Campus.  See this report by Domenic Fazioli.

SCHOOL CHANGE VIDEO: Two Concordia students completed this class project, a report on the recent EMSB Major School Change process.

Carlyle students display their project.
IB PYP EXHIBITION: The Grade 6 students at Carlyle Elementary School in TMR, presented their IB Primary Years Programme (PYP) Exhibition entitled “Our Planet is Changing, Why Aren’t We?” on February 6. The event began with a remarkable climate change video showcasing worldwide changes and Carlyle’s contribution to the subject matter. Students were inspired by Greta Thunberg’s visit to Montreal last September.  They wrote a song about climate change with help of their music teacher, Mme Christine Rahal-Crawford.  Principal Dina Vourdousis said: “This has been a student-driven project from start to finish, and I am so proud of them.” IB Coordinator, Christina Mallozzi, elaborated on the project. “This year’s Exhibition stems from the Transdisciplinary Theme: Sharing the Planet,” she said.  Students began by creating their own central idea; “Climate change impacts our planet and all living things.”  Next, they uncovered nine sub-topics related to their theme:  global warming, waste management, pollution, endangered species, politics & activism, finite resources, renewable energy, natural disasters and climate change and health. Throughout the process, they used books and online sources and creatively compiled information to put together this year’s project. Students also collectively created 3D Mapping projects, stop-motion videos and PowerPoint presentations. See the full press release

KINDNESS GEMS: On this year’s Valentine’s Day, the Carlyle students spread kindness with some help from our mascot Bumble. The students each picked another student’s name and made a Kindness Gram for the other person. The Kindness Gram included kind words and drawings. During the assembly, where they distributed the Kindness Grams, students were asked what they enjoyed most about this activity and they said: “I felt happy receiving one” and “I like giving them because we got to spread Kindness to the whole school.” The students of Carlyle truly felt the love and kindness spreading.

Once Upon a Time at Carlyle.
ONCE UPON A TIME: The Grade 4 students at Carlyle completed their unit of inquiry on fairy tales.  Students learned about the elements that encompass a traditional story, common themes across cultures, and the genre of writing that authors use to express their ideas, feelings, and beliefs. This unit of inquiry provided the students with a new insight into fairy tales as well as a unique experience into myths. Furthermore, it provided them with the tools to create their own magical story by using all of the components explored. In addition, an art piece was added to showcase their newfound knowledge.

Lana Button was a big hit at FACE.
BUTTON AT FACE:  FACE School had the pleasure of having author Lana Button come to speak about the writing process and how she was inspired to write her books. She emphasized that she often was rejected,  but still kept trying to pursuing her dreams. She also shared   her three rules against bullying which was very pertinent as the students are getting prepared to highlight Pink Shirt Day. The students enjoyed her presentation and were inspired by her too.

Sterling Downey and students.
WORLD READ ALOUD DAY: On February 5 FACE School was pleased to welcome Sterling Downey, Kim Sullivan and Stephanie Bellenger Heng to highlight World Read Aloud Day.  Students and teachers were happy to have them to help share the joy of reading and to promote literacy.

Recognizing seniors at Dalkeith.
DALKEITH SENIORS: At Dalkeith Elementary School,  Kindergarten & Cycle 1 classes celebrated the 100th day of school. To end our celebration students and staff dressed up as seniors! All sporting fashion for a 100 year old, noted teacher Luba Kalba.

SUBSIDIES FOR JEWISH CAMPS:  Jewish overnight camp gives kids the chance to explore their connection to Judaism in a meaningful way, all while having the summer of their lives! Thanks to Federation CJA’s Generations Fund Camp Initiative, your child may be eligible for up to 1000$ off Jewish overnight camp. Simply fill out the application form on www.generationsfund.ca to find out if you are eligible.  Many EMSB families in the past have taken advantage of The Generations Fund Camp Initiative. It was created to help children in Montreal experience the transformative impact that Jewish overnight camp can provide by offering grants, multi-year subsidies, and incentives to families in our community. Check out the One Happy Camper first-time camper incentive grants, as well as Federation CJA’s CAMPS Access Grants designed to make Jewish camping experiences accessible to more children in our community.   Federation CJA is committed to increasing the number of children attending Jewish overnight camp so they can enjoy quality experiences and be exposed to Jewish life, values and make connections with other Jewish children. In doing so, they leverage a tremendous opportunity to transform young lives and help secure a vibrant Jewish future. Studies show that children who go to Jewish camp are more likely to become adults who value their heritage, are engaged in their communities, support causes, and take on leadership roles throughout their lives. For all other questions, please contact info@generationsfund.ca, or  log on to www.generationsfund.ca.   

YA WRITERS CONTEST: Ya Media has reached out and is pleased to announce its fourth annual writers contest which provides students with the opportunity to explore their creativity by crafting an original short story. Ya Media offers all its employees to be creative. They produce reality shows, and in order to produce an episode editors and videographers need to be creative for a show to come to life. According to Giancarlo Mirabella the executive producer of Ya Media, “Every student has the ability to be creative, we all have an imagination, we just want to bring that out in as many students possible.”  To be eligible for the contest, students are asked to write and submit an original story that meets the criteria. The story needs to be handwritten or typed; illustrations are optional. No longer than 12 pages, bound by staples or paperclip or presented in a folder. Accompanied by a cover page consisting of the student’s name, grade, school, the date and the title of the story.  For more details  email gmirabella@yamediatv.com.

Jessica Monti, Jon Struthers and students take part in the ceremonial opening faceoff.
RANGERS HOCKEY: The EMSB’s new partnership with the Junior AAA Montreal East Rangers has been a nice success this year. Owned by EMSB parent John Struthers, the Rangers arranged school visits to East Hill, Michelangelo and Leonardo Da Vinci in RDP this season as well as providing tickets to the games. Players spoke to students about the importance of staying in school, took part in scrimmages and signed autographs. At the February 12 game, East Hill Vice Principal Jessica Monti sang O Canada. You can view it here. She and some students took part in the opening puck drop. See Domenic Fazioli’s report. 

Nadia Sammarco and  Sabrina Gavita.

FASHION SHOW: Leonardo Da Vinci Academy held its first student-led fashion show and raffle: Hope and Love for Tomorrow, with the proceeds   going to the Montreal Neurological Institute.  This year’s event was held on  February 13. Some of the sponsors included MIRA, Joe Fresh, Old Navy, Land Rover, Boutique Ricci, Signor Terry and others. In addition, LDVA partnered with Laurier Macdonald Vocational Centre to style the students’ hair. “Here at LDVA, we believe that it is important to shape the minds of our young students by having them take part in meaningful events to show them that they too can help make a difference,” said Principal Nadia Sammarco, who worked alongside teacher Sabrina Gavita. “We also feel that raising awareness with our youth on the importance of the brain will give HOPE to patients fighting this battle.  We have been raising money for the Montreal Neurological Institute since 2015, and have managed to raise over $10,000 in the last few years. We want to continue making a difference and continue to inspire our community.” See Domenic Fazioli's report.

LINKS PARTERNSHIP:   Students at LINKS High School in Ahuntsic have been engaged in a multitude of exciting and relevant projects.  Their specialized programs focus on vocational, social and community integration.  Two of these programs are DEFIS (Démarche Éducatif Favorisant Intégration Sociale) and WOTP (Work Oriented Training Path) that offer functional academic, preparation for the job market courses as well as experiential learning in school and in community work placements.  Project based learning is the key, so as one walks along the halls of LINKS, one will immediately see students actively leading and participating in entrepreneurial ventures.  Gail Bernstein’s DEFIS and Ms. Webber’s Pre-work students have embarked on a particularly interesting partnership with the St. Pius X Career Centre (where they are located) related to their culinary institute. Budding LINKS entrepreneurs are gaining invaluable business experience selling  products they have created to the Pius budding chefs who will create dishes with local fresh, natural ingredients.They are honing their business skills including marketing, selling, advertising, planning, and practicing the appropriate behaviours and attitudes of a suitable employee.

LINKS students at Moisson Montreal.
WELL BEING AND GIVING BACK:  The Work Oriented Training Path (Pre-work & Semi-Skilled options) at LINKS offers   students an opportunity to hone their functional academic skills, explore potential job opportunities through a variety of work placements and develop the soft skills essential for success in any job. Before embarking on this exciting journey, each student has to be ready socially, mentally and emotionally. At LINKS, the team of dedicated teachers, support staff, guidance counselor and EMSB consultants collaborate regularly to ensure a smooth transition from school to work.  In fact, most of our staff has been certified in Mental Health First Aid.   Besides working hard in their various work placements, the students feel it is important to give back to the community.   February being the month of love, the WOTP students volunteered at Moisson Montreal, a non-profit organization that collects donations of food and other essentials and distributes them to local organizations.  They  also brightened up the day for children attending Garderie Éducative Capricorne, hosting a Valentine’s Day extravaganza.  They planned and led a scavenger hunt and delighted the little ones with pink pancakes, cupcakes, strawberry milk and lots of love. 

Tu Hoang and WE's Spencer West.
CORONATION STUDENT AT WE DAY: Tu Hoang, a student from Coronation Elementary School’s  Kids for Social Change Group, was invited on stage at WE day to highlight their contribution to the WE Walk for Water campaign. Last June, Kids for Social Change packed their bags with heavy objects, like bricks and textbooks, and walked around the track next to school during their lunch break. This was done to raise awareness, and help them better understand what many people go through daily in order to access clean water. They raised a total of $1,550, reports proud teacher Valerie Chiniara.

St. Raphael students soak in the experience.
ST. RAPHAEL DEBUTS:  For the first time a group of students from St. Raphael Elementary School attended the WEDay event, which was fun and inspiring for many. Some students were at the edge of their seats, cheering on. Others watched intently. After a day of immersion to youth leadership and making a difference, the students and staff were charged to take on WeDay challenges.
Enjoying the winter season.
JOINT FIELD TRIP:  Students from Sinclair Laird and St. Raphael  Elementary Schools in Park Extension enjoyed a joint school  outing  at Centre de la Nature in Laval. What an experience it was for all students who attended! A great opportunity to learn and participate in an introductory skiing lesson given by qualified instructors. A day full of smiles and fun!

JUICE BOX PROGRAM: Rosemount High School’s Spiritual Community Animator, Vince Lacroce, along with teacher Lisa Sanzone  and EMSB dietician Giuliana Di Quinzi will be launching a new initiative called “The Juice Box.” In February, Ms. Di Quinzio was invited to present a Nutrition Education Program to RHS Juice Box student organizers who  incorporated this knowledge into their creations of healthy smoothies and shakes.The Juice Box program will allow RHS students the opportunity to showcase and sell their healthy creations to the student body. All proceeds of the Juice Box program will benefit Rosemount High School’s Build a School in Kenya initiative with the WE organization.

Mastering techology at Our Lady of Pompei.
POMPEI TECH INITIATIVE: This school year, Our Lady of Pompei Elementary School in Ahuntsic has been implementing their new Tech Initiative. All students from Pre-Kindergarten to Grade 6 have Chromebooks or iPads in the classroom and benefit from having a 1-to-1 device. Technology has become a daily part of the curriculum and the students’ experience in the classroom. Students engage in a variety of programs, both in and out of the classroom, such as, multimedia, coding, and robotics. Currently the 5/6C and 6A classes are working on a 3D printing project where they are creating their own game pieces using TinkerCad. This exciting project, as well as many others, will be showcased during the school’s Science Fair on February 27.  

Nicolas Doyon at Bancroft.
A VISIT FROM NICK: Bancroft  Elementary School would like to thank Arts Consultant Nicolas Doyon for spending the day with  students to help them prepare for storytelling this month! Nick visited Grades 3 to 6 and kept the students engaged with his stories.

MENTAL HEALTH SUMMIT:  Student leaders from six high schools will gather at the Leonardo Da Vinci Centre on Wednesday, March 18 to participate in the second annual HEADSTRONG Summit to end the stigma of mental health.  Throughout the Summit students will hear stories of hope and recovery from guest speakers who faced a variety of challenges surrounding their own mental health. Students participated in stigma-busting activities, and explored the benefits of living a healthy life and its effects on mental wellbeing. Finally, these student leaders  will brainstorm about unique initiatives to bring back to their school, all in an effort to share what they learn at the Summit with their peers. Each participating school will  receive  a certificate acknowledging their participation in this great initiative which is organized by REISA - The East Island Network for English Language Services, in partnership with The Mental Health Commission of Canada, Laurier Macdonald High School CLC, John F. Kennedy High School, and with support from the EMSB Student Services Department. REISA will graciously provide the venue, the nutritious lunches, and will partially fund  each participating school’s initiative. 

Rocket players read to students last year.
EMSB NIGHT WITH THE ROCKET: The first ever EMSB Night with the Laval Rocket will take place on  Saturday, March 14. The Rocket, the Montreal Canadiens’ American Hockey League minor league club,  will host the Binghamton Devils at Place Bell. Tickets, priced as low as $12.50 each, are available to EMSB families by clicking on this link.   Please use the promo code EMSB20.

Presenting a cheque for Australian wildfires relief.
FUNDRAISER FOR AUSTRALIA: Social Change Leadership Students from Gardenview Elementary  School in St. Laurent helped raise money for the animals that got affected by the wildfires in Australia. With the help of teachers Johanne Boudreault and Valerie Honig-Nandhra, they managed to raise a total of $10,215.35 for WIRES Australian Wildlife Rescue Organization. In true Gardenview fashion, they saw a cause that needed help and wanted to make a positive social change. They began by visiting every class, showing them pictures and videos and educating them about what was happening in Australia and asked them to help. They made a short video to inform the parents and other schools about our fundraiser and held a dress down day on  January 17  to help motivate the students, encouraging them to wear the colors of the Australian flag ( red, blue and white) or the Australian Olympic team.

SOFT AND SOOTHING:   Students at Edward Murphy and East Hill School were treated to an amazing, interactive, and educational workshop on pet therapy/animation. Spiritual Care and Guidance and Community Involvement Animator   Rocco Speranza teamed up with school staff, administration, and zoo therapy facilitators in order to present the interactive workshops. Mr. Speranza noted that “these workshops are an effective way to engage students and teach them about ways to care for animals and themselves.” During the workshop, students also form connections with the animals and the other students taking part. These types of programs provide an opportunity for students to work on joint attention skills, memory, language development, emotions, team work, and relaxation in a nontraditional learning environment. The students were all smiles when interacting with the stars of the workshops: The Pantoufle and Greta, two very soft, calming, and cuddly rabbits, and Karma and Ermine the wonderful, playful dogs. Many students and staff noted that being with the animals was comforting and having them visit made their days!

The Year of the Rat.
LUNAR NEW YEAR: Westmount Park Elementary School celebrated the Lunar New Year and the Year of the Rat on February 6. Staff and students at both the North and South campuses were invited to join in a special presentation and celebration hosted by Spiritual and Community Animator  Jag Trehin. During the assembly, students learned about the many traditions and festivities that take place globally for the traditional Lunar New Year and Spring Festival originating in China, where it is widely celebrated. It is also celebrated in other Asian and Southeast Asian countries, and marks the beginning of spring.  It begins each year with the first new moon of the lunar calendar and lasts 15 days. Celebrations this year took place from January 25 to February 8.  The presentation highlighted the origins of the Lunar New Year festival, which are thousands of years old and are steeped in legends. The celebration included the telling of these legends and showcasing the beautiful folk culture, while emphasizing the similarities in other traditions and holidays. The presentation concluded with an upbeat, interactive, vibrant and colourful Lion Dance performance presented by Master Jimmy Chan and his Montreal Chan Lion Dance Club. It was “a day of celebration, dedicated to culture, education and unity, and a day that tells us that spring is on its way!” said Ms. Trehin.

FACE GOES PINK: FACE School will proudly celebrate Pink Shirt Day –a day of action against bullying on Wednesday, February 26. Acording to Prevnet, known as Canada’s authority on bullying, 75 percent of people say that they have been affected by bullying. However, research shows that when peers intervene, the bullying usually stops. So the entire school shall wear pink shirts in support of respect, diversity and inclusion –but also to show their commitment in ending bullying. Many fun-filled-pink activities are planned for the day, such as am Open zumba lesson for all; a  photo booth with important messages; and  a pledge taken by students

PINK SHIRT DAY:  Despite the falling white snow outside, inside the school it was all PINK. As part of their ongoing kindness campaign, Edward Murphy School invited SPVM officers from PDQ 48 and Pascal Fleury to speak to students about kindness, and the importance of education, determination, and perseverance. At the end of the talk, students were encouraged to continue performing acts of kindness daily. After speaking with students, the guests joined EMS students and staff to take part in the 5th annual EMS SCA- SPVM Community Basketball Game.  Guests ran into a little adversity come tip off as they were pitted against students and staff that came ready to play, have fun, and win. The game ended with a score of 24 to 22, with the winning basket going in just before the buzzer. In the end it does not matter who won; students, staff and invited guests enjoyed the game, creating connections and memories, and spreading the message of kindness.

HEART TO HEART:  Written in collaboration with Ms. Fraga and Ms Iacono. Valentine’s Day 2020 was all smiles at the Montreal Children’s Hospital. Coordinated by Ms. Fraga (Gerald McShane School Daycare), Ms. Iacono (General Vanier School Daycare), and Mr. Speranza, the visit was a great success. This year, four EMSB schools – East Hill, Edward Murphy, General Vanier, and Gerald McShane – participated in the annual Heart to Heart program where students collect toys and money, and write handmade personalized cards to deliver to children in the hospital on Valentine’s Day.Acting in the spirit of St. Valentine through the messages of hope, students traveled floor to floor distributing gifts and cards, and receiving many smiles and thanks in return. A parent took a few minutes to personally thank the adults and students for this wonderful initiative. He noted, “What you are doing here means so much to us (the parents) and our children. When we come to the hospital with our children it is often a very sad time for us. It is gestures like yours that make our children smile and feel better. It is very special and an unexpected surprise and act of kindness.”

VALENTINE'S PROGRAM:  During the festive season of love, Grade 4 students at Nesbitt Elementary School partnered up with the Almage Senior Community Centre in Rosemount for a great Valentine’s Day program called “Will you be my Valentine?” The students participated in arts and crafts activities, a fun game of Bingo, and a gift exchange. This intergenerational activity will be followed by many more visits in the near future. This program was spearheaded by Vince Lacroce, Spiritual Community Animator and Lynne Tinman, Community Support Worker.

H.E.A.L.T.H.: Mr.  Lacroce,   launched a new spiritual retreat program at Rosemount High School  called H.E.A.L.T.H. (Health, Empathy, Assertiveness, Listening, Thankfulness, and Honesty) on February 14. A Spiritual Retreat is not about the practices or beliefs of any particular religion, it is based on character education and the virtues program; a moral and spiritual development of people of all cultures, by helping them to remember who they really are and to live by their highest values. The program will run from February through April and will include Cycle 3 students from local feeder elementary schools in the community. This fun-filled educational program will be include a nutritional workshop, games, exercises, mental health practices, guests speakers, yoga and meditation.

BHASKAR GOSWAMI: During the month of January and in honor of Bell’s “Let’s Talk” annual mental health initiative, students at Perspectives I High School welcomed Bhaskar Goswami for a 10-week interactive mindfulness program. Bhaskar Goswami is originally from India and now lives in Montreal. He is a yoga and meditation teacher with a Masters in Electronic Engineering. In 2007 he founded multiple award-winning ‘BODHI’ (bodhiprinciple.com), a company dedicated to offering genuine wellbeing to people in the workplace. In 2016, he launched daana (globaldaana.org, CBC Media Prize Winner), a Non-Profit Organization, making wellness accessible to all by creating anonymous contribution activities around the world. The 10-week program will be complemented by ongoing mindfulness and stress management workshops facilitated by Mr. Lacroce, and Melissa Modica, Physical Education teacher at Perspectives I. This two and half month program will culminate in a visit to Vulture Peak Buddhist Meditation Centre in the spring.

YEAR-LONG SENSITIZATION PROGRAM ABOUT THE HOLOCAUST AND JEWISH TRADITION: Students from Perspectives I & II High Schools, Nesbitt Elementary School, and Honore Mercier Elementary have been involved in an incredible sensitization program about the Holocaust and Jewish tradition. The program has been coordinated by Mr.   Lacroce while the goal of this cross-curricular project is to bridge the gap between cultures and people and address the rise of religious intolerance in the world by encouraging greater understanding. This sensitization program commenced with an interactive Remembrance Day Ceremony held locally in their schools along with in-house workshops on empathy and compassion.  The program will include multiple visits to the Montreal Holocaust Museum, testimonials from Holocaust survivors, and visits to various sacred spaces. Over 150 students will take part in the program.

Students get cooking.
CUISINONS ENSEMBLE: New to East Hill School since November  is the "Cuisinons ensemble!" initiative, a lunchtime cooking club brought to new heights with a dash of empathy! On a weekly basis, Mme Catherine and students from various classes get together to cook some delicious meals for Old Brewery Mission. The recipes include ingredients that would otherwise been unused and eventually, thrown away! Examples of some of the dishes are steaming pots of vegetable soup, hearty meatballs, chili and some sweet cake pops! All of us at East Hill are proud of this initiative! We look forward to seeing how the “Cuisinons ensemble!” compliments our empathy mission!

MINDFULNESS: January was all about MINDFULNESS at East Hill as   students got to experience a taste of relaxation through different mindfulness practices. The two weeks of classroom activities culminated with an amazing yoga session, offered by qualified yoga instructor, Lidia Di Pietro.  The promotion of mindfulness has become a team effort amongst the staff at East Hill and we are proud to see the positive impact it is having on our students! The focus on this theme will continue with pet therapy sessions in each   class via Au bout du Museau.  Many schools, regular and otherwise, have drawn great benefits from Au bout du Museau's recurrent services. The sessions being offered are otherwise known as animal-assisted activities (AAA). AAA involves more casual meetings in which an animal and its handler interact with one or more people for comfort or recreation. In addition to increasing positivity and happiness, some additional benefits of pet therapy may include reducing anxiety because of its calming effects, helping children learn empathic and nurturing skills, etc.  Twenty-one sessions will be held at East Hill over five days from February to April 2020. 

 The EMSB Senior Chorale with the St. Lawrence Choir, November 30, 2019 at Saints-Anges de Lachine Church   
( Jean-Paul Desjardins, Photo)
CHORALE NEWS: The EMSB Chorale resumed rehearsals on January 11 and has been hard at work learning new repertoire for its busy schedule of spring concerts in this 40th anniversary year. The EMSB Senior Chorale will once again perform at the Earth Hour Concert in Christ Church Cathedral on Saturday, March 28 (8 pm). This spine-tingling concert by candlelight brings together several youth choirs hosted by the Choeur des enfants de Montréal. On April 18  (7 pm)  the EMSB Junior Chorale will perform in the annual En harmonie 4 Kids concert at Mountainside United Church. This is an annual benefit concert for Sun Youth featuring adult and youth community choirs and the Con Brio concert band from FACE School.  Of course, the big event of the choir’s season will be the 40th Anniversary Spring Gala Concert on May 2 (7:30 pm). at Oscar Peterson Hall. The chorale will be singing a new work by renowned Canadian composer Sarah Quartel, who will be coming to Montreal for the premiere. Conductor Patricia Abbott is also hoping that many alumni of the chorale will join the current members for the grand finale of the concert. If you, or someone in your family, sang with the PSBGM Children’s Chorus/Chorale or the EMSB Chorale under the direction of Iwan Edwards (1980-1984), Jean Sult (1984 to 1990), Erica Phare (Junior Chorale 1988 to 1999) or since 1990 with Pat Abbott, please get in touch with Pat at pabbott@emsb.qc.ca or 514-483-7200, ext. 7234 for more information. Tickets for the Spring Gala will be on sale as of March 1. 


Tamarack Verrall
WORLD PULSE SPIRIT AWARD:   In January, Wagar Adult Education Centre English teacher Tamarack (Tam) Verrall was awarded the first ever World Pulse Spirit Award for her work as both an ‘Encourager’ and ‘Ambassador’ to World Pulse members across the globe. “Receiving this award was a wonderful surprise,” said this energetic 71-year-old. “It has infused me with a surge of confidence in my work.” World Pulse is a safe social network with a global mission to end every form of violence and suppression against women. It connects over 70,000 women from 190 countries by sharing their written stories of struggle and success, driving them into action together and in their own communities. Issues at the forefront of their work include violence towards women and ensuring every girl goes to school.  Verrall has been an advocate for women’s rights for over 50 years, and continues to do all that she can to lift the spirits of women who have been broken due to life events, and fight for the rights. She has heard the stories of women serving sentences in the Kingston Penitentiary, and those who came to the St. Famille Women’s Centre, which she and a handful of others founded many years ago, for support. She was instrumental in the push to establish women’s shelters.  See the full story here.

A most dynamic workshop.
YELLOWBUG THEATRE: At the Galileo Adult Education Centre in Montreal North actor Milva Franzini led multiple sessions of dynamic workshops that allowed the SIS students (adult learners with special needs) in collaboration with academic students, express themselves through the realm of theatre. Lisa Trotto (SIS teacher)  and Miss Melissa (academic teacher) introduced  theatre to their students to enhances verbal and nonverbal expression of their ideas.  During her workshops, she encouraged students to infuse their creativity, instill their confidence and build their self-esteem through self-expression and teamwork. She also ensured that her activities were adapted to meet the diverse needs of our students. Classroom sessions with Milva focused on the dynamics of acting; namely, recreating scenes from popular films in groups while allowing students to portray distinct characters. Students had the opportunity to play, practice, and perform while developing a constant focus of mind, body, and voice. She also assisted them with important skills such as: eye-contact, stage presence and voice projection. Milva’s thoughtfully led workshops allowed students to explore a character’s motivation and emotional state which in turn, assisted them with their own social skills. They did a fantastic job working collaboratively while portraying their newly learned skills through their performances with support from a professional actor. Students had the chance to recreate scenes from: Gone with the Wind, Rocky, Police Academy, The Terminator, Star Wars  and Ghostbusters. Acting roles from different social situations, time periods, and cultures promotes compassion and tolerance for others. They also had the opportunity to do some singing and expressive dance from epic movies like Risky Business and Flashdance. Theatre can bring humor, and laughter to learning which enhances motivation and greatly reduces stress. The social interaction and risk taking in the process also allows students to develop trust in oneself and in others. Every session with Yellowbug Theatre we continue to enhance our acting skills with Milva and we look forward to the next workshop. You will be able to see our recreations come to life at our Musical Theatre show in May 2020!

Clowning around.
CLOWNING AROUND: Michel Lapointe, a clown, actor and puppeteer for 30 years, trained by the Montreal Circus School and the Theatre Program at Collège Lionel-Groulx visited Galileo recently. He is distinguished by his different comedic characters and his contribution to puppetry at the circus arts! He has worked for Cirque du Soleil, and many TV shows including Iris the nice teacher, Solstrom, Barney the movie and many others. He is now part of the Cirque Éloize and Cirque du Soleil special events team. Michel is also a teacher and artist and students thoroughly enjoyed their workshop with him. The Galileo students were shown and  learned the  theatre techniques, improvisation, clown art, circus as well as puppetry! They spent an exhilarating three days in workshops exploring their deeper selves all the while laughing and further discovering their passion for acting. The students truly demonstrated once again their talent and their capacity to let themselves go, in spite of their differences; they are a source of inspiration for us all. Within each one of us there is a clown hidden inside, who is your clown? 

An entertaining day at SLAC.
SLAC HAS TALENT: At what they hope will become an annual event, the St. Laurent Adult Education Center  (SLAC) held an incredible talent show  that united the school community and its many cultures.  Two shows were held on February 3, featuring Common Core Basic Education (CCBE) and Social Integration Services (SIS) and academic students. Emceed  by Christian Puga Garcia, the shows featured dancers and singers, many of whom displayed songs and dances from their native countries. Performances included a belly dancer from Libya,  a group Armenian dance called Ess Kisher, a Bandari dance from Iran, and a rapper from Syria who rapped about his experiences growing up in the war torn country. "I'm just so proud of them!" said a beaming Anne Lacroce, Counsellor in Re-education, who spearheaded the show, "They've come out of their shells, and they formed this amazing bond amongst each other and with us as well. It's an opportunity that they may not have had anywhere else."  Vice Principal Maria Savignano agreed: "It's a bond that moved them to the next level of maturity!" See the full story.

LMAC Olympians.
HAIRDRESSING OLYMPICS:   As part of the  Vocational Training Olympiad, Laurier Macdonald Career Centre in St. Léonard hosted the  regional competition for   hairdressing. Students were judged on how to cut, style, color and other techniques..  See  this report from Domenic Fazioli. 

The  Cirque visits JFK.
CIRQUE DE SOLEIL: Close to 200 students packed the auditorium on February 5 at the John F. Kennedy Adult Education Centre in St.  Michel, as Cirque Du Soleil's Head of Community Relations Anik Couture, spoke to them about the incredible ups and downs of the company's 35 year history. The Cirque has come a long way from organizing a summer fair in Baie-Saint-Paul in 1979! While they've mainly had success stories, the road also consisted of trials and tribulations.  One of the main messages that Anik delivered to the students was to not be afraid to do something different- just go for it!  "Cirque Du Soleil has always been able to rise above any obstacles that we've had. Not giving up, and going for the dream every single time has been our motto. Nothing is impossible!" See full story.

Student interviews.
SHADD AND CIUSSS: Shadd Health and Business Centre  in NDG is proud to announce that the  Centre intégré universitaire de santé et de services sociaux de l’Ouest-de-l’Île-de-Montréal and CIUSSS du Centre-Ouest-de-l'Île-de-Montréal interviewed their students during the months of December and January for a scholarship program.  The Ministry is offering bursaries to Quebec students enrolled in the Health and Institutional Homecare Program as  préposés aux bénéficiaires.  Out of the 63 bursaries offered by the CIUSSS for all for all Dep (diploma), CEGEPs and universities, 54   were awarded to Shadd Health students.  Upon completion of the program and obtaining a Diploma at Shadd Health and Business Centre, the students are guaranteed a position and agree to work for a two year period at a Health Care Centre within these regions.  ! 


JOURNÉE MONTRÉAL ENSEMBLE: La quatrième édition annuelle de la Journée Montréal Ensemble (Greater Montreal Day) aura lieu le jeudi 7 mai. Une initiative de Global News, Journée Montréal Ensemble invite chacun d’entre nous à faire preuve de gentillesse les uns envers les autres et à partager nos bonnes actions sur les médias sociaux le 7 mai. Encore une fois cette année, deux publications affichées sur les médias sociaux seront choisies au hasard et leur auteur verra l’organisme sans but lucratif de son choix recevoir un don de 1 000 $. Faites-nous part de vos intentions et nous pourrions peut-être diffuser votre activité/événement sur les ondes de Global News. Pour plus d’informations ou pour nous parler de votre événement, faites-nous parvenir un courriel à travis.todd@globalnews.ca.

UNE STAR DE LA CHANSON: Le 2 février, Ariana Ianniciello, élève de 4e secondaire à l’école Lester B. Pearson de Montréal-Nord et étoile montante de la chanson, a été invitée par les Canadiens de Montréal à interpréter les hymnes nationaux américain et canadien lors d'un match disputé en après-midi contre les Blue Jackets de Columbus pour couronner cette journée spéciale. En effet, Ariana célébrait son 16e anniversaire de naissance ce jour-là! Elle se produit sous le pseudonyme Ari Skye. Elle a été fort occupée ces derniers temps avec la sortie récente de quelques chansons originales enregistrées en studio, son rôle de jeune ambassadrice de l'Hôpital Shriners et ses apparitions aux matchs à domicile de l’Impact pour y interpréter l'hymne national. Elle s’est illustrée en accédant à la grande finale de Superfantastico à l'âge de 12 ans!

RENCONTRE AVEC MARLENE JENNINGS : L’administratrice de la tutelle à la CSEM, Marlene Jennings, a récemment convié les personnes intéressées à une rencontre au campus junior de l’Académie LaurenHill. Nous vous invitons à visionner ce compte rendu de Domenic Fazioli.

EXPOSITION DU PROGRAMME PRIMAIRE DU BI: Dans le cadre du programme primaire du Baccalauréat international (BI), les élèves de 6e année de l’école primaire Carlyle de Ville Mont-Royal ont présenté le jeudi 6 février 2020 leur exposition intitulée "Our Planet is Changing, Why Aren’t We?" (Notre planète change, pourquoi pas nous?). L’activité a débuté par le visionnement d’une superbe vidéo montrant les changements climatiques à l’échelle de la planète et la contribution de l’école Carlyle. Les élèves ont été inspirés par la visite de Greta Thunberg à Montréal en septembre 2019. Avec l’aide de leur enseignante de musique, Mme Christine Rahal-Crawford, ils ont composé une chanson ayant pour thème les changements climatiques. « Les élèves se sont appropriés ce projet du début à la fin, et je suis très fière d’eux », a déclaré la directrice Dina Vourdousis. La coordonnatrice du programme du BI, Christina Mallozzi, a fourni certaines précisions quant au projet. « L’exposition de cette année gravite autour du thème transdisciplinaire Partager la planète », a-t-elle indiqué. « Les élèves ont d’abord identifié leur propre idée principale : Les changements climatiques ont des répercussions sur notre planète et sur tous les organismes vivants. » Puis, ils ont relevé neuf sous-aspects liés à leur thème : le réchauffement planétaire, la gestion des déchets, la pollution, les espèces en voie d’extinction, la politique et l’activisme, les ressources non renouvelables, l’énergie renouvelable, les catastrophes naturelles, de même que les changements climatiques et la santé. Tout au long de ce processus, ils ont consulté des ouvrages et des sources en ligne, et ont usé de créativité pour compiler l’information nécessaire à la réalisation de ce projet. Les élèves ont également créé collectivement des projets de cartographie en 3D, des vidéos image par image ainsi que des présentations PowerPoint. Nous vous invitons à consulter l’intégral du communiqué de presse.

SUBVENTIONS DISPONIBLES POUR VIVRE L’EXPÉRIENCE D’UN CAMP DE VACANCES JUIF: Le camp de vacances juif permet aux enfants d’explorer leur attachement au judaïsme, tout en vivant une expérience inoubliable. Grâce à l’Initiative des camps de vacances d’été du Fonds Générations, votre enfant pourrait être admissible à un rabais allant jusqu’à 1 000 $ sur un séjour dans un camp d’été juif. Il suffit de remplir une demande en visitant www.generationsfund.ca pour savoir si vous êtes admissible. Plusieurs familles de la CSEM ont profité de l’Initiative des camps de vacances d’été du Fonds Générations. Celle-ci a été créée pour permettre aux enfants de Montréal  de vivre l’expérience déterminante d’un séjour dans un camp d’été juif. À cette fin, elle met à la disposition des familles de notre communauté, des subventions, des bourses pluriannuelles et des subventions incitatives. Les subventions incitatives de la Fédération CJA sont conçues pour encourager un plus grand nombre d’enfants de notre communauté à tenter l'expérience du camp d'été juif. La Fédération CJA s’est engagée à faire croître le nombre d’enfants séjournant dans un camp de vacances d’été juif, car les jeunes y vivent des expériences de qualité tout en étant exposés à la vie et aux valeurs juives. De plus, les jeunes y établissent des liens avec d’autres enfants juifs. Nous tirons ainsi parti d’une occasion exceptionnelle de transformer la vie des jeunes et contribuons à sécuriser la vivacité de l’avenir de la communauté. Les études démontrent que les enfants qui séjournent dans des camps de vacances d’été juifs ont plus de chance de devenir des adultes qui accordent de la valeur à leur héritage, qui s’engagent dans leurs communautés, qui soutiennent des œuvres caritatives et qui occupent des postes de leader tout au long de leur vie. Pour toute autre question, veuillez communiquer directement avec nous, par courriel à info@generationsfund.ca ou visitez www.generationsfund.ca.

LINKS: Les élèves de l’école secondaire LINKS d'Ahuntsic ont participé à une multitude de projets passionnants et pertinents. Les programmes spécialisés que propose cette école sont axés sur l'intégration professionnelle, sociale et communautaire. Au nombre de ces programmes, mentionnons DEFIS (Démarche éducative favorisant l’intégration sociale) et PFAE (parcours de formation axée sur l’emploi), lesquels offrent une préparation académique fonctionnelle vers l’intégration au marché du travail ainsi qu'un apprentissage par l’expérience, et ce, à l'école et dans le cadre de stages en milieu communautaire. L'apprentissage par projets étant la clé, lorsqu’on déambule dans les corridors de LINKS, on est à même de voir les élèves diriger et mettre en place des initiatives entrepreneuriales. Les élèves de DEFIS A de Mme Bernstein et ceux de la formation préparatoire à l’emploi de Mme Webber ont créé un partenariat particulièrement intéressant avec l’Institut culinaire du Centre de carrières St. Pius X (dans le bâtiment même où ils se trouvent). Les entrepreneurs en herbe de LINKS acquièrent ainsi une expérience commerciale inestimable en vendant des produits qu'ils ont créés aux chefs en herbe de Pius qui concocteront des plats avec des ingrédients locaux frais et naturels. Ils perfectionnent leurs compétences en affaires, notamment en matière de marketing, de vente, de publicité, de planification et de mise en pratique des comportements et attitudes recherchés chez un employé.  

BALADOS: Le plan d’engagement vers la réussite permet d’évaluer le cheminement des élèves à la grandeur du réseau des écoles de la CSEM. Tracy Mangal, conseillère attitrée à l’engagement vers la réussite à la CSEM ainsi que Samantha Treville-Monroe, élève à l’école FACE, se sont entretenues avec Suzanne Desautels dans le cadre d’un récent balado.

SMOOTHIES: Vince Lacroce, animateur de vie spirituelle et d’engagement communautaire à l’école secondaire Rosemont, en compagnie de l'enseignante Lisa Sanzone et de la diététiste Giuliana Di Quinzio de la CSEM ont lancé une nouvelle initiative : The Juice Box (La boîte de jus). En février, Mme Di Quinzio a été invitée à présenter un atelier d'éducation en nutrition aux élèves ayant mis sur pied l’initiative The Juice Box à l’école secondaire Rosemont. Ces derniers mettront à profit ces connaissances lors de la préparation de smoothies et de frappés santé. Ce programme permettra aux élèves de l’école Rosemont de présenter et de vendre leurs créations santé aux élèves. Tous les profits découlant du programme The Juice Box seront versées à Build a School in Kenya (Construire une école au Kenya), une initiative qui a vu le jour en partenariat avec l’organisme WE.

NOMINATIONS ADMINISTRATIVES: Les Services éducatifs et de la technologie seront désormais deux entités distinctes à la CSEM. Anna Sanalitro, directrice du Centre Mackay/Philip E. Layton, succédera à Mme Furfaro. Bob (Charalambos) Thomas, l’actuel directeur adjoint des SET, devient directeur des Services des technologies de l'information. Sabrina Petrocco, directrice de l'école primaire East Hill à RDP, est nommée directrice adjointe des Services aux élèves. Elle succède à Julie René de Cotret, qui assure désormais la direction de ce service.

LA CSEM ET LE ROCKET: La toute première activité CSEM-Rocket de Laval aura lieu le 14 mars 2020 à 15 h. À cette occasion, le Rocket - club-école des Canadiens de Montréal dans la Ligue américaine de hockey - accueillera les Devils de Binghamton à la Place Bell de Laval. Les familles de la CSEM peuvent se procurer des billets à partir d’aussi peu que 12,50 $ chacun, en cliquant sur le lien suivant :  https://oss.ticketmaster.com/aps/rocket/EN/link/promotion/home/681dd758b82a5bd0dfa13c5830d860f1cb8761ef et en utilisant le code promotionnel « EMSB20 ».

COLLECTE DE FONDS EN APPUI À  L’AUSTRALIE: Solidaires du changement social, les élèves de l'école primaire Gardenview à Saint-Laurent ont recueilli des fonds pour venir en aide aux animaux touchés par les feux de forêt en Australie. Avec l'appui des enseignantes Johanne Boudreault et Valerie Honig-Nandhra, ils sont parvenus à amasser 10 215,35 $ au profit de l’organisme WIRES Australian Wildlife Rescue Organization. Se sentant profondément interpelée par cette cause et fidèle à elle-même, l’école Gardenview a voulu poser un geste social positif. Pour ce faire, les élèves ont d’abord rendu visite à chacune des classes pour présenter des photos et des vidéos, décrire la situation en Australie et solliciter leur appui. Ils ont également réalisé une courte vidéo pour informer les parents et les autres écoles de la mise sur pied de cette collecte de fonds et ont organisé une journée vestimentaire décontractée le 17 janvier pour motiver leurs pairs et les inciter à revêtir les couleurs du drapeau australien (rouge, bleu et blanc) ou de l'équipe olympique australienne.


THÉÂTRE YELLOWBUG: L’actrice Milva Franzini a animé plusieurs ateliers dynamiques qui ont permis à nos élèves du programme SIS (apprenants adultes ayant des besoins particuliers) et aux élèves du programme de formation de base de s’exprimer par le théâtre au Centre d’éducation des adultes Galileo de Montréal-Nord. Lisa Trotto (enseignante SIS) et Mme Melissa (enseignante du programme de formation de base) ont initié les élèves au théâtre afin de les aider à mieux exprimer leurs idées, et ce, de façon verbale et non verbale. Au cours des ateliers, Milva a encouragé les élèves à faire preuve de créativité, a su renforcer leur confiance en eux et les a amenés à rehausser leur estime d’eux-mêmes par l’expression de soi et le travail d’équipe. Elle a également fait en sorte d’adapter ses activités pour répondre aux divers besoins de nos élèves. Nos séances en classe avec Milva ont porté principalement sur la dynamique du jeu d'acteur, notamment en recréant en groupe des scènes de films populaires tout en permettant aux élèves de jouer des rôles distincts. Nos élèves ont eu l'occasion de répéter et de se produire tout en demeurant constamment centrés sur l'esprit, le corps et la voix. Elle les a également aidés à acquérir des compétences-clés, notamment le contact visuel, la présence sur scène et la projection de la voix. Les ateliers de Milva, dirigés de manière réfléchie, ont permis aux élèves d'explorer la motivation et l'état émotionnel d'un personnage, ce qui a contribué au développement de leurs propres compétences sociales. Ils ont accompli un travail remarquable en travaillant ensemble tout en démontrant leurs compétences nouvellement acquises lors de leurs prestations, avec le soutien d'un acteur professionnel. Nos élèves ont eu la chance de recréer des scènes tirées des films suivants : Autant en emporte le vent, Rocky, Police Academy, Terminator, Star Wars et Ghostbusters. Jouer des rôles liés à des situations sociales, des époques et des cultures différentes favorise la compassion et la tolérance envers les autres. Ils ont également eu l'occasion d’interpréter des chansons et des danses expressives associés à des films épiques comme Risky Buisness et Flashdance. Le théâtre permet d’intégrer l'humour et le rire au processus d'apprentissage, ce qui a pour effet d’accroître la motivation et de réduire considérablement le stress. L'interaction sociale et la prise de risques inhérentes au processus permettent également aux élèves de développer la confiance envers eux-mêmes et les autres. À chaque séance en compagnie du Théâtre Yellowbug, nous continuons d’améliorer nos compétences d'acteur avec Milva et nous attendons toujours avec impatience le prochain atelier. Vous pourrez voir le fruit de notre travail lors de notre spectacle musical en mai 2020!

DU TALENT À REVENDRE À SAINT-LAURENT: Lors de ce qui, espèrent-ils, deviendra un événement annuel, le Centre d'éducation des adultes de Saint-Laurent a organisé un incroyable spectacle d’amateurs réunissant la communauté scolaire aux multiples cultures. Deux spectacles ont eu lieu le 3 février, mettant en vedette des élèves du programme de formation de base commune (CCBE) et des services d'intégration sociale (SIS). Animés par Christian Puga Garcia, les spectacles mettaient en vedette des danseurs et des chanteurs, parmi lesquels plusieurs ont interprété des chansons et des danses de leur pays d'origine. Au nombre des numéros présentés, mentionnons une danseuse du ventre originaire de Libye, la troupe de danse arménienne Ess Kisher, une danse Bandari d'Iran et un rappeur de Syrie qui a raconté ses expériences de jeunesse dans ce pays déchiré par la guerre. « Je suis si fière d'eux », a déclaré Anne Lacrocce, conseillère en rééducation, qui a piloté le spectacle. « Ils sont sortis de leur coquille et ont tissé des liens incroyables entre eux et avec nous. C'est une chance qu'ils n'ont peut-être jamais eue auparavant ». La directrice adjointe, Maria Savignano, a abondé dans le même sens : « C'est un lien qui leur a permis de gagner de la maturité! »

OLYMPIADES DE LA COIFFURE: Dans le cadre des Olympiades de la formation professionnelle (https://www.competencesquebec.com), le Centre de formation professionnelle Laurier Macdonald de Saint-Léonard a accueilli la compétition régionale dans la catégorie Coiffure. L’évaluation des élèves a porté sur les techniques de coupe, de mise en plis, de coloration et autres. Nous vous invitons à visionner le reportage de Domenic Fazioli : https://vimeo.com/389550711.

CIRQUE DU SOLEIL: Près de 200 élèves se sont entassés dans l'auditorium le 5 février dernier au Centre d'éducation des adultes John F. Kennedy de Saint-Michel, alors qu'Anik Couture, chef des relations avec les communautés du Cirque du Soleil, a relaté les incroyables hauts et bas des 35 ans d'histoire de cette entreprise. Le Cirque a fait beaucoup de chemin depuis la foire estivale à Baie-Saint-Paul en 1979! Bien qu'il ait surtout connu des succès, son parcours a aussi été parsemé d'épreuves et de tribulations. L'un des principaux messages qu'Anik a transmis aux élèves c’est de ne pas avoir peur de faire quelque chose de différent - il suffit de foncer! « Le Cirque du Soleil a toujours su surmonter les obstacles. Ne pas abandonner et aller au bout de ses rêves a toujours été notre devise. Rien n'est impossible. » 

SHADD ET LE CIUSSS: Le Centre de santé et d’études commerciales Shadd de NDG est fier d'annoncer que le Centre intégré universitaire de santé et de services sociaux (CIUSSS) de l'Ouest-de-l'Île-de-Montréal et le CIUSSS du Centre-Ouest-de-l'Île-de-Montréal ont rencontré en entrevue leurs élèves au cours des mois de décembre et janvier dans le cadre d'un programme de bourses d'études. Le Ministère offre des bourses aux élèves québécois inscrits au programme Assistance à la personne en établissement et à domicile, pour devenir préposés aux bénéficiaires. Au total, 63 bourses ont été octroyées par le CIUSSS, dont 54 à des élèves de Shadd. À la fin du programme et lorsque le Centre de santé et d'études commerciales Shadd leur aura décerné leur diplôme, les élèves seront assurés d’un poste et devront s’engager à travailler pendant une période de deux ans dans un centre de soins de santé de ces régions. 

The next Focus will be on March 26,  Deadline for submissions is Friday March 20  at Noon.
Le prochain numéro de Pleins feux sur Fielding sera publié le 26 mars. La date limite pour soumettre vos articles est fixée au vendredi 20 mars, à midi.