Wednesday, May 26, 2021


Joe Ortona and Pietro Mercuri accept lasagnas from school administrators and the Pisanos.

STUDENT OF THE MONTH: Vittoria Pisano, a 10-year-old from RDP and student at East Hill Elementary School,  is the EMSB’s Student of the Month for May. She is raising money for Alzheimer’s research by selling lasagna dinners she makes from home. Her younger brother Jax, also an East Hill student, assists her. Chair Joe Ortona  recognized her amazing work at the last Council meeting. Subsequently, he and Commissioner Pietro Mercuri visited her at the school.   Vittoria’s grandfather suffers from  Alzheimer’s. She has already raised $5,000. An anonymous donor matched that amount.  “It is so impressive for a 10 year old girl,” said Mr. Ortona.  “It is so rare in children. It is even rare in adults.” Added Mr. Mercuri: “It is  touching and inspiring. It is extraordinary  the amount of awareness she has raised.” Please see our video here.

PROFILE ON THE CHAIR:  The Montrealer Newspaper featured EMSB Chair Joe Ortona on the front page of its May edition, accompanied by a detailed profile written by Kristin McNeill. You can read it here.

Joseph Romano, Ms. Vicki and the Math Ninjas are congratulated.

TEACHER AWARDS: On the occasion of EMSB Teacher Recognition Day, three teachers were presented with special awards from La Cage Brasserie Sportive, as well as certificates and gift cards to Chapters/Indigo. The winners were profiled on television  by promotion co-sponsor CityNews Montreal. A ceremony was held  in the yard of Sinclair Laird Elementary School. The EMSB launched this ceremony seven years ago to coincide with National Teachers Appreciation Week in the United States and recognize this profession towards the end of the academic year. The EMSB received many nominations from parents for the awards, which fall into three categories. Groupe Sportscene, which owns La Cage, will award $100 gift cards to teachers Vicki Theophilopoulos from Sinclair Laird Elementary School in Park Extension (youth sector); Joseph Romano from John Caboto Academy in Ahuntsic (physical education) and Lea Zuravlyov, Mauro Cornelli, Itzhak Raz, Patrick Bramm, Silvia Bilotto and Galina Gatsko (adult sector), representing the mathematics staff at John F. Kennedy Adult Education Centre in St. Michel.

See our detailed press release.

Listen to our youth sector podcast 

Listen to our adult sector podcast

See the CityNews Report

See this story in the Park Extension News

A SPECIAL OFFER FOR TEACHERS:  As a special thank you to our teachers who have worked tirelessly during this pandemic and done their jobs with grace and without complaint as they always do;

Vittorio Rossi

Magjusjen Entertainment through their APPLAUSE Campaign would like to offer the screening of their film The Chain for free.  James Lyng High School graduate Vittorio Rossi’s film The Chain will be released at Cinemas Guzzoon July 23 and on designated days between July 26 and Aug 5  it will be screened for free for all our teachers in the Greater Montreal area. A special invite website will be set up where teachers can sign up and download their free tickets. The Chain, which highlights the dramas faced by a first-generation Italian immigrant family in Montreal, broke box-office records at The Centaur when it debuted in 1988. The story revolves around Tullio Testa, a modest landscape contractor, who is anxious to impress his visiting brother from Italy with his success in the New World. Tullio and his brother have not spoken for over 2 years due to a dispute over land inheritance in Italy. To create the appearance of a man of leisure, Tullio turns the business over to his sons, putting Massimo, the younger, educated, favourite son in charge. Joe, who has worked alongside his father in the dirt, is shunned. Massimo makes a fatal business error which puts the family company in jeopardy. Joe emerges as the one who will break through the façade. Refusing to put on la bella figura and act the happy family charade for his cousin Rina’s wedding to a WASP accountant, he ignites the true emotions that govern the family dynamic. The whole explodes in a family war between father and sons that wrecks not only the family garden, but forever changes the dynamics within the famil. Both producer Susan Fuda and strategic developer Susan Dabrowski for Magjusjen Entertainment are both proud Laurier Macdonald High School graduates.   You can watch the trailer for the filmed play here  

MENTAL HEALTH AWARENESS WEEK:   The theme for Mental Health Awareness Week at the EMSB this year, May 3 to 9, 2021, was COVID Time Capsule: Hope For The Future. It  focused  on new things we have learned about ourselves that will make us stronger.

See Bill Brownstein’s column in The Gazette

Tony Picciuto and Randi Katz  from the Directors at a Pre-COVID celebration.

EMSB VIDEO: As an incredibly challenging school year slowly comes to an end, the EMSB is planning to celebrate the resilience of our students, staff and families in a fun and unique way. Partnering with The Directors Showband and their team of professional videographers, The Directors will craft an original song that will celebrate wellness, resilience and perseverance. Accompanying the song will be a professionally shot and edited music video starring our students, staff and families.  From a family birthday to children playing the park, the EMSB is asking our community to upload their special moments to until May 31. Beginning on June 1, the public will then be able to vote on their favourite videos for inclusion in the music video. Capping off the campaign will be a special video launch on the first day of school where The Directors will perform the song live in a school yard. 

MIND students showcase their pies.

PIES ON YOUR MIND: The students at MIND High School in the Plateau have embarked upon a new community engagement project. The theme is education for social justice and personal wellbeing while creating spaces for youth autonomy within an alternative school system. MIND, an alternative option for independent and motivated students, strives to create a unique educational experiences within an environment that fosters diversity, inclusivity and critical thinking. MIND staff and students are currently involved in an experiential learning opportunity by working on an intergenerational project that will benefit a neighborhood community organization, Projet Changement, a community center for seniors. They are learning about the organization and are exploring the social justice issues that are at the core of their mission. Students  organized a pie bake sale to raise funds for Projet Changement. Their goal was to make 60 pies under the supervision of a professional baker in a MAPAQ (Ministère de l'Agriculture, des Pêcheries et de l'Alimentation du Québec) certified kitchen, following public health guidelines. Recording artist Martha Wainwright  generously allowed the access to Ursa MTL’s kitchen space at 5589 Park Avenue. Marie-Josée Katcho, a professional pastry chef,  oversaw the baking.  Info:

The LDVA Robotics team.

LOVE FOR ROBOTICS: At Leonard Da  Vinci Academy in RDP, robotics has taken off! The program, which started a short three years ago, has proven to be both popular but successful.  This year at RoboJunior 2021 the LDV “A” Team won gold. It was comprised of nine Grade 6 students: Anthony Gaetano, Jonathan Di Manno, Krystian Rakowski, Nicholas Giannni, Michael Di Nezza, Alessio Santella, Peter John Makridis, Luca Perugini and Lorenzo Ouzounis. They competed in a triathlon of events, including a robot built to climb stairs and a catapult robot with an arm programmed to throw a die and a line follower robot. They finished first overall and also won gold in two of the three events. The team proudly brought the Robojunior 2021 Trophy to the school, as well as gold medals for the team! This group was dedicated and although they had many challenges to overcome due to the restrictions of the COVID-19 pandemic, proved to all that perseverance really pays off! The administration, staff and students of the school congratulate the winners and continue to show that LDVA truly is the place to be!! 

Principal Sonia Marotta and Commissioner Mario Pietrangelo recognize two police officers.

FRONTLINE HEROES:  As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to define all of our lives, three St. Leonard elementary schools - Honoré Mercier, Pierre de Coubertin and Dante -  came together to honour the courage, selflessness and dedication of their local heroes.  On May 4   local healthcare workers  joined firefighters from Firehouse 21 and SPVM officers from Station 42 to participate in a special assembly at Honoré Mercier Elementary School. In addition to receiving special awards, these frontline workers  also shared poignant stories from the past 15 months with the students.  “The pandemic has become a defining moment in the lives of our students and we felt that it was important to show them some of the faces of our COVID-19 heroes,” said Sonia Marotta, Principal of Honoré Mercier Elementary School. “Our frontline workers have gone through so  and we believe it’s very important that our students not only learn about their lives, but have the opportunity to say thank you for keeping us all safe.”  The event was held in the school gymnasium and livestreamed to classrooms. There was a wonderful performance by the Honoré Mercier Bucket Drumming Club. EMSB Chair Joe Ortona,  Director General Nicholas Katalifos,  Commissioner Mario Pietrangelo (a retired police officer), Sector Director Pela Nickoletopoulos,  Interim Sector Director Jimmy Giannacopoulos, Leonardo Da Vinci Centre Director Pat Buttino and former EMSB Director General Antonio Lacroce were among the special guests. Mr. Lacroce shared the emotional story of losing both of his parents due to COVID-19 a year ago at a local CHSLD. Representing Police Station 42 were Officers Mai Dang and Julie Mazerolle.  From the healthcare network, there were parents  Dr. Tania Decobellis,  nurses Stella Racaniello, Rosie Calabretta and Woodline Dorlean and Enzo Caprio, who oversees the COVID-19 laboratory test centre at the MUHC.

Please see our  video.

ZOOMING WITH DR. OUGHTON: Grade 4 students in Donna Friedman-Perlin’s class at Bancroft Elementary School  in the Plateau recently zoomed with infectious diseases specialist Dr. Matthew Oughton from The Jewish General Hospital. They were able to ask him questions related to his job and COVID-19. Uwarna Markandu, a fourth year Concordia student teacher, had the students write thank you letters to the lab technicians at the   hospital. She initiated and organized this project! The students’ drawings and letters touched the lab technicians. 

John Grant High School students mark Autim Awareness Month.

AUTISM AWARENESS: In celebration of Autism Awareness Month in April, John Grant High School in Côte Saint-Luc organized  an “Autism Acceptance Walk and Talk.” This month-long effort to raise awareness and build a stronger inclusive community for those with autism featured speaker presentations broadcast into classrooms via Google Meet, and a walk - virtually for those at home, and a live  three km walk for those at school in their class bubbles on April 30. Students wore T-shirts designed and decorated by students and printed by Promo 21 bearing the slogan: Why celebrate autism acceptance month? On the autism spectrum, the possibilities are limitless! Read Jennifer Le Huquet, principal of John Grant’s full article on the Inspirations website  at 

EMSB B.A.S.E. (Before and After School Enriched) Daycare students    celebrated Daycare Week from May 10 to 14 with pirate-themed activities across 10 daycares. Each program  occurred at the individual daycares on their own time and respected  preventive measures. The daycare staff and students  then united for a Virtual Dance Party on   May 14, hosted by B.A.S.E. Project Development Officer in Environmental Education, Melina Trimarchi, and Leonardo Da Vinci Academy Daycare parent Nick Messina or more commonly known as Sicilianu di Montreal. See the press release here.

LINKS students looking dapper.

DRESSING FOR SUCCESS:  The Work Oriented Path (WOTP) students at LINKS High School know that perfecting specific job skills are only one part of the job.  Learning the soft skills are crucial for leaving a lasting impression during the interview and then keeping that job for which you applied.  WOTP teacher Anna Gualtieri  has imparted some very valuable knowledge to her students regarding appropriate attire for the work place. She reminds her students regularly that dressing professionally is as important as behaving professionally.  “The two go hand in hand,” Ms. Gualtieri says. “I saw a need to prepare the younger students for their future work placements, and they needed both practice and feedback. My instructions were as simple as how to plan the night before, by laying out their outfit, trying it on and making sure it was clean and pressed. We have a saying: Let’s iron out any wrinkles in our plans and our pants.”  Now, what better way to “show off” what they have learned? Professional Mondays, of course.  Students research what one wears when going for an interview or wears at a specific job and then come to school reflecting that image.  You can imagine their pride when they walked around the school that first Monday, and everyone was showering them with compliments and praise. What a great way to start the week!

WILDLIFE VIDEO: Montreal filmmaker and street photographer Ezra Soiferman and wildlife photographer Ilana  Block  have launched a brand new Montreal-themed project   called “The Wildlife - The Walled Life.”  The short ‘music photeo’ features a melding of their  animal photography (Ilana’s wildlife images and Ezra’s  Montreal animal mural images). It something both adults and kids can enjoy.   You can watch the video at this link and learn more about it in this interview.Soiferman and Block have  already been asked by a number of schools to show the short video and engage in discussion with students virtually.

LBPHS Before...

BEAUTIFICATION AT PEARSON: Lester B. Pearson High School’s Student Council recently undertook a project to beautify the main entrance of their school and to make it more functional. They began by weeding the area, removing any dead foliage, added new shrubs and spread-out fresh cedar mulch.

...And After.

In order to add a new interactive element, they built and planted garden beds for a community vegetable garden (with seedlings from their indoor greenhouse), added a bird feeder and a little free library (the community is invited to take a book or share a book). 

The VMC team and their car.

VMC STUDENTS BUILD A CAR: A group of Secondary V boys from Vincent Massey Collegiate in Rosemount  dedicated the last three years to make a car. While in Secondary II they approached  Science teacher Sabrina Mancuso with the idea of building a carbon free car.  Gianni Di Blasio, Anthony Parente, Mathew Rosse, Alexander Pillot, Christopher Boa  and  Vincent Boa were blessed with this opportunity to quench their love for auto mechanics and build a race car in high school. The students were supported by Ms. Mancuso, the VMC  staff and  Concordia University. Members of the Engineering Club were able to learn so much and have fun doing it “We hope that our creation will prove to the world that the carbon-neutral, renewable fuel known as ethanol should be what we put in our cars, not fossil fuels,” said Vincent Boa.

James Lyng students accept their award.

ENTREPRENERIAL AWARD: Congratulations to the students at James Lyng High School, in St. Henri who were awarded two prizes for entrepreneurial projects at this year’s OsEntreprendre competition.   In the first project, students designed and painted two shoes, taking inspiration from two opposing sides of their lives or themselves. Complementing the design, the students are also working with local filmmaker Stefan Verna to each create a short video that will showcase the shoes and explain their imagery. The shoes and videos will on display in a virtual art show, which is also being designed and promoted by the students. The project is carried out in the school’s Integrative Project classes, under the supervision of teachers Cynthia Meloche and Nathan Gage.  For the second project, James Lyng High School students created a mixtape! The project involved all of the school’s music students and has become an integral part of James Lyng High School’s music program. Participating students wrote, performed and recorded songs and then mixed and promoted their finished product. Their latest mixtape will be available in June, but visit to hear the school’s previous mixtapes. The project is under the supervision of Mr. Gage. 

A VIDEO PRODUCTION OFFER: Our friends at CTV Montreal/Bell Media is offering the EMSB community their professional video production services, shot at friendly rates. If you foresee any production needs, please contact them – see info in signature below.

Below are a few samples - video links with descriptions :

 Virtual Grad

Willingdon Video

The goal for this unique project was to emphasize the advantages of a big change. They used a DSLR and gimbal to follow students and staff as they navigated the shift to a new building for the senior grades of an elementary school with deep community roots.  They focused on symbolic parts of the school, close-ups of faces and a soundtrack of moving music and audio of a student’s poem to produce an uplifting video.  

EAST END PODCAST:   The new EMSB East End Podcast, hosted by Dino Sisto,  premiered with this episode focused on Rosemount High School. You can listen to this second one on John Caboto Academy in Ahuntsic

INTERACTIVE WORKSHOPS: Royal Vale students in Grade 4 enjoyed two dynamic and interactive workshops this month with Special Education Technician Tanya Saad   and   Carina Baladi. During the first workshop, the students explored what  “pushed their buttons.” They were given strategies as well as coping techniques that they could use to respond rather than react when triggered by someone.  In the second workshop, the focus was on conflict resolution strategies and understanding the meaning of perspective. Perspectives was taught through Optical illusions. Students saw that while looking at the same image, one student saw one image while the other saw something completely different. Just like when dealing with conflict, the importance of looking at the situation through the other person’s perspective was emphasized through this exercise.   Both workshops were delivered with humour, roleplaying and visual aids. Students were given YES/NO padlets to answer questions during the workshops so that even the shyer students could express themselves with ease. The workshops served to help empower students to become problem solvers and to help them navigate stressful periods in life with more clarity and confidence. What an amazing opportunity it was to come alongside our students and help equip them with the tools to be kind, calm and respectful through life’s challenges. 

UNITED WE CARE:  Spiritual Community Animator Rocco Speranza and Special Education Technician Christopher Simeone (Mr. Chris), along with staff and administration have been working hard to make sure that Edward Murphy Elementary School (EMS) in Hochelaga Maisonneuve is a place where kindness and unity thrive.    Mr. Speranza welcomes socio-community police officer, Jean Scalzo, from PDQ 48, every year to work and educate Grade 5 students as members “Unité sans Violence.” This anti-violence and bullying program   aims to promote kindness and unity.  Unfortunately, the SVPM was not able to officially run the program across Montreal this year due to the pandemic. To continue the program, reinforce kindness and combat the segregation and isolation that the pandemic has caused,  Mr. Speranza spoke with Principal  Rania Delis and Cycle 3 teachers to inquire if  they could still have the program in the school and he and staff would work with the students and train them. SPVM also supported this idea. Thus two groups were merged for this year only in order to create “United We Care.” This program includes multiple components.   You can read the complete story here.

The power of words.

POSITIVE REFLECTIONS: Thanks to a grant received from REISA in support of mental health, Laurier Macdonald   and Lester B. Pearson High Schools focused on the power of words for both mental health awareness and support through a project created by Joseph Monachino, Spiritual and Community Animator, titled Positive Reflections.  Uplifting and encouraging sayings were placed on mirrors throughout both schools where they can serve to create a climate for empowerment and support.  This project will provide much needed visual support and positive climate that is so greatly needed to help bolster our student’s mental health. 

Earth Day at PDC.

EARTH DAY AWARENESS AT PDC: Students at Pierre de Coubertin Elementary School in St. Léonard were engaged in presentations by Mr. Monachino, in honor of Earth Day.  Students learned about caring for the Earth, made Earth Day buttons, learned about the history of Earth Day and the importance of the 3 R’s (reduce, reuse, recycle). The older students even had Mother Earth as a guest speaker who helped show them the importance of the Earth and the impact we as humans have on her as well as our responsibility toward our planet.  It was an empowering learning experience for all our students at PDC as we, as a community, learned to care for our Earth! 

EMS SPIRIT QUEST V: Grade 6 students from Edward Murphy School in Hochelaga-Maisonneuve  recently participated in Spirit Quest V, where they developed a sense of community, spirituality  and deepened their connection to Mother Earth. 

An enthusiastic group of Edward Murphy School students.

Their quest began with a ceremony paying tribute to Canada’s First Nations groups with words and reflections from Chief Top Leaf. Students then deciphered clues to travel from one location to another using eco-friendly means of transit. Visits included green spaces, historic landmarks, and places of worship. Throughout the day, students performed acts of community service and completed challenges as teams while using creative problem-solving skills. Thank you to all who were involved, including Mayor Blais of Mercier Ouest and Ms Delis.

Pascal Fleury towers over the JFK team.

BASKETBALL GAME AT JFK: As students and staff at John F Kennedy High School focus on perseverance,  last week they had an opportunity to square off against former Harlem Globetrotter Pascal Fleury. Pascal, ran into a different kind of adversity come tip-off as he was pitted against a team of students and staff that came ready to play. After the game, Pascal and SCA Mr. Speranza, spent time with the Secondary V students to talk about the importance of following one’s dreams and persevering through all difficulties. Keeping kindness in mind was also part of the talk.  

A great example of community service.

COMMUNITY SERVICES AT JFK: On Thursday, May 6, JFK Secondary V students, teacher Konstantinos Kokkonis and SCA Rocco Speranza teamed up with Montreal City Councillor  Sylvain  Ouellet and local Eco-Quartier to perform community service. As the group walked towards Park Frederick, with pickers in hand, students cleaned up school grounds, city streets, and laneways. There is lots of litter in the streets, parks, and laneways, including a lot of disposable masks. If we all do our part and work together, our neighborhoods and parks will be more inviting places for all. This activity is part of the community service program that JFK is piloting within classes this year and will be implementing in the 2021-2022 school year in part via the school’s Spiritual and Community Animator.    

Elosie Lavoie is  recognized at JFK.

RSCA DAY: On March 9,  RSCA Day - A Day of Hope, Respect, Service, Commemoration, and Appreciation – took place at John F Kennedy High School. It was hosted by SCAs  Speranza and  Paolo Ruscito. During the day, frontline workers, school and BASE daycare staff, and everyday citizens were highlighted and thanked for their efforts to unite in solidarity and spread messages of hope, kindness, and compassion. The day also included messages from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Premier Francois Legault, Deputy Mayor Sterling  Downey, MNA Frantz Benjamin, as well as student performances and interviews with the Mayor of Villeray-Saint Michel-Parc-Extension and honoured guests: Elosie Lavoie, sailor third class with the Royal Canadian Navy and a nurse from Maisoneuve Rosemont hospital; and  a daycare technician at Gerald McShane School.

A look at the pantry.

LMAC FOOD PANTRY:  Laurier Macdonald High School has launched a Community Food Pantry Program, organized by Mr. Monachino. This project   has received outstanding support from the students who donate food and receive acknowledgment for community service while helping those in need! 

A NEW COOKBOOK:  Cycle 3 students at Honoré Mercier Elementary School in St. Léonard have created its first ever cookbook called "Une Boucheé à la Fois". The program was initiated by the Administration team of Principal Sonia Marotta and Vice-Principal Christina Voggas, Spiritual Community Animator Vince Lacroce and Cycle 3 teachers. Marco Campanelli and Gaètane Sanolus.  This intergenerational cookbook was a multimedia, cross-curricular project designed to engage the students in writing, photography, and other activities as they research the history behind their family’s traditional recipes. 

The cookbook.

After writing about their family members, the students shared a traditional recipe in this one-of-a-kind cookbook. A portion of the proceeds for this cookbook ($40) will benefit the Montreal Neurological Institute (The Neuro) for research and development in Alzheimer’s and Dementia ( Dr. Louis Collins ( and his team will be working with the funds generated from this initiative and will also dialog virtually with the students about their work and developments in the areas of the brain. If you would like to obtain a copy of the Boucheé à la Fois Cookbook, please contact Vince Lacroce at

Students take part in the B.A.R.E. program.

PILOT PROJECT: On April 28, Sexologist and Youth Program Coordinator at the Missing Children’s Network Cynthia Patenaude, Outreach Worker at La Sortie Gabrielle Barrette, and Mr. Lacroce  piloted a new program targeting the specific student needs of the Outreach Network of schools. This 45-minute B.A.R.E.  (Bravery | Assertiveness | Respect | Empowerment)  program addresses the importance of self-esteem, boundaries, healthy and unhealthy relationships, consent, and includes testimonials through their work experiences.  Students at Perspectives I and II High School had an opportunity to dialogue with these professionals in their respective fields about the challenges involved in first dating relationships, developing meaningful emotional and romantic relationships, belonging, social support, and intimacy. The program is aligned with the sexuality education program from the Ministry of Education and compliments the virtues teachings of bravery, assertiveness, respect, and empowerment. 

Marking Mother's Day.

EAST HILL MARKS MOTHER’S DAY: On May 4, Pre-K and K students at East Hill Elementary honored and celebrated mothers and Mother Earth, while learning how to take care of plants, and their environment. Thanks to the support of the admin, Libby Amato and Cynthia. Canale, SCA Speranza was able to continue the 15th annual Mother`s Day planting activity with students. During this activity, students learned about the parts of the plants (marigolds) and how to care for them and had a conversation that drew a connection between how mothers and Mother Earth care for and nurture us, and how we can care for and nurture our mothers and Mother Earth, who at present is in need of some care herself. After the hour-long hands-on planting activity and lesson with Mr. Speranza, students returned to their classes and worked with their teachers to decorate terracotta pots for their mothers.

AUTHOR’S VISIT: In April, Dunrae Gardens Grades 1 and  classes received a virtual visit from Toronto author Vikki Vansickle ,who was famously known for "If I had a Gryphon." Vikki, a publishing professional, Canadian Bookseller’s Association award-winning bookseller, and an award-winning author of over 14 children's books who has been interviewed on the CTV Your Morning, CTV I Read Canadian Day, The Morning Show, gave the students an opportunity to learn about what it means to be an author and the journey to get there, and reviewed the book "Teddy Bear of the Year" with the students. The story emphasizes the good values that build on friendship, which connected with the school's recent theme on literacy and kindness. She has written over 14 children's books touching on the environment, animals, and the growing pains in a relationship. Some students in the very beginning, could not believe they were speaking to an author and at one point asked her in disbelief, "Did you buy the books or did you make them?" SCA Puynung Choy said: "It was a great experience for the students. It was the first time they spoke to an author, as they learned the art of writing a book while reinforcing virtuous qualities like commitment to one's work and commitment to building healthy friendships." 

LONG SERVICE RECEPTION: Since the beginning of the pandemic the EMSB has not been able to host a reception in honour of its employees with 25 years of service.  From 2019-2021, a total of 69 employees, ranging from teachers, administrators and support staff attainted their 25th year with the Board.  This year the EMSB Director General's Office  honored those employees with a letter of congratulations.   Arrangements were also made  for them to receive an EMSB Monarch watch as a token of appreciation for their years of service.

Demetra Droutsas

The honourees are, from Head Office; Gil Abisdris (Educational Services), Paul Kettner (Educational Services), Martine Legault-Ciccia (Educational Services), Natalie Addison (Internal Audit), Teresa Federico (School Organization), Patricia Saba (Student Services), Beatrice Van Nuffel (Student Services).  From AEVS; Andrew Henderson (Laurier Macdonald Career Ctr.), Zsolt Szaktilla (Rosemount Technology Ctr.), Ginette Izard (Shadd Health & Business Ctr.), Patricia Murphy (Shadd Health & Business Ctr.), Lucy Bedrossian (St. Laurent Adult Ctr), Susie Douranos (St. Pius X Career Ctr.), Ioanna Lambropoulos (St. Pius X Career Ctr.), Lydia Landori (Wagar Adult Education Ctr.)  From the Secondary Network;  Klara Bourne (James Lyng), Yseult Blaise (John F. Kennedy), Apostolos Angelopoulos (LaurenHill Jr.), Julia King (LaurenHill Academy), Lucia Mancini (LaurenHill Academy), George Kalliabetsos (Laurier Macdonald), Peter Malanos (Laurier Macdonald), Reza Ahmadzadeh (Lester B. Pearson), Stavros Michelakis (Lester B. Pearson), Maria Pizzichemi (Lester B. Pearson), Michael Kappatos (Rosemount), Stacey Eftaxias (Royal Vale), Pardo Pannunzio (Royal Vale), Nino Cavallaro (Vincent Massey), Demetra Droutsas (Westmount High).  From the Elementary Network; Lina Gallaccio (Bancroft), Marylène Favreau (Cedarcrest), Bridgit Pion (Cedarcrest), Betty Constant (Coronation), John Wilcox (Coronation), Cynthia Racicot (Dalkeith), Romina Corbi-Gualtieri (Dante), Chantale Dussault (Dante), Maria Maiorano-Drudi (Dante), Fadila Amiri (Dunrae Gardens), Diane Paris (East Hill), Brian Joseph Turgeon (Edinburgh), Martine Bernier (Gardenview), Johanne Boudreault (Gardenview), Luc Pépin (Gardenview), Andréa Gagné (Gerald McShane), Michael Pellegrin (Gerald McShane), Lucy Buscemi (Hampstead), Fern Davis (Hampstead), Daniela Biagi-Buttino (Honoré-Mercier), Nadia Cancian (Honoré-Mercier), Isabelle Hert (Honoré-Mercier), Demetra Kriarakis (John Caboto), Sandra Cicalo (Michelangelo), Maria Tirelli (Michelangelo), Martin Marcil (Nesbitt), Kendra-Ann Fabes (Our Lady of Pompei), Agatina Nicita (Our Lady of Pompei), George Koutsoulis (Parkdale), Angeliki Mantzikas (Parkdale), Panagiota Vougiouklis (Parkdale), Michael Boucher (Philip E. Layton), Gail Belanger (Pierre de Coubertin), Marie-Josée Denis (Royal Vale), Laurence Elmoznino (Royal Vale), Maja C. Dousett (Sinclair Laird), Giuseppina Portaro-Testani (Sinclair Laird), Silvana Crigna (St. Monica) and Clementina Fraga (St. Raphael/Mtl Children’s)

RETIREES: This past year, due to the restrictions of the pandemic, a reception for retiring employees was cancelled. However, to honor the retirees, the EMSB Director General's Office honored those employees with a letter of congratulations.  Arrangements were also made for each person to receive a special thank-you gift of a crystal decanter with four stemmed glasses. There are 136 people who retired from the EMSB, who worked as educators, administrators, professionals and support staff, and whose combined years of service to the Board added up to 3,180 years.

Eddy Nolan

The retirees are: from AEVS; Maria Delego, Angela Ficara, Donna Harrisson and Roslyn Vininsky;  Bancroft, Catherine Katsaros and Estrella Lapin-Epifania; Carlyle,  Angela Crescenzi, Ingrid Eckerth and Patricia Gomez-Farias;  Cedarcrest, Ian Hanchet;  Coronation, Antonietta Palmarella-Orsetti;  Dalkeith, Diana Burghardt; Dante, Maria Bilyj; Dunrae Gardens, Nathalie Larochelle, Josephine Longo and Sylvie Mailhot; Education & Technology Services, Alessandra Furfaro, Eric Provencher and William Hawker; East Hill, Silvino Avila and Maria Rotella; Edward Murphy, Jeannine Tardif; Financial Services, Vassiliki Gdondelis and Lien H.  Nguyen; Galileo Adult Centre, Joanne Laggis-Sofroniou and Roberto Raes; Gardenview, Giuseppina Corrieri, Margaret Gajew, Martine Halé, Rachel Litwin and Annie Praw; Hampstead, Ekaterini Kiryakidis; High School of Montreal,  Lynn Barrett-Carrier; Honore Mercier; Delia Di Stefano-Marcone and Giovanna Giacomodonato;  Human Resources, Giovanna Di Donato, Garry Lorion, Marie-Luce Ouimet, Pamela Farmer and Marka Sani-Fett; James Lyng, Brenda Pion and Dave Wilkinson;  James Lyng Adult Centre, Robert Gallo, Cynthia Morris and Denis Roy; John Caboto, Denise Albert, Maria Chiovitti, Maria Adelina Lage and Tina Nardolillo;  John F. Kennedy, Bassam Srour, Gaetano Pucci and Antonio Pucci.  From John F. Kennedy Adult Centre; Hipolito Corral, Teresa Di Maulo, Nicole Mahoney, Bernadino Mancini, Denise Nash and Antonio Pietrantonio; John Paul I, John O'Neil; Laurenhill, Mustansara Ameen, Varouj Gurunlian, Diane Morais, Daniel Ouellette and Andreas Lambropoulos; Laurier Macdonald,  Sebastien Villani; Laurier Macdonald Career Centre,  David Locker; Leonardo da Vinci, Marinella Fiorino-Assalone; M.I.N.D., Patrice Asselin;   Mackay, Helene Diguer, Sandra Dorfman-Stein and Helen Radford; Marymount, Andrea Hill and Jacinthe Leclerc; Material Resources, Francois Lemyre, Domenica Mendicino and Youcef Sedrati;   Merton, Melania Silvia Ickovits; Michelangelo, Wendy Campbell, Carmela-Rita De Petris, Giuseppina Ferraiuolo-Capano and Maria Filomena Raposo-Reis; Mountainview, Eddy Nolan;    Nesbitt, Amal Abou Assaly, Lise Beauchemin, Julie Hervieux and Maria Mercandante; Our Lady of Pompei, Carole Bergamin-Campanelli, Martin Gagne, Maria Prizio-Marrazza and Maria Santoianni;  Outreach, Michel Latour;  Parkdale, Mona Khouri. Perspectives, Brenda Cooney-Brisebois and Barbara White; Pierre de Coubertin, Carolyn Hanenian, Antoinetta Pasquale and Mary Simeone;  Rosemount Technology Centre, Kerry BullisMarie Ines Da Costa, Constantin Munteanu, Richard Pilat and Luigi Scattone; Roslyn, Sylvie Lalonde, Charlotte Migicovsky, Roger Pelland, Aurora Venneri and Ysanne Zmanay; Royal Vale, Carole Caron and Anthony Erisshee;  Royal West,  David Edery, Karen Flynn, Helene Ibrahim and Carole Montpetit;    School Organization, Beatrice Cavaliere and Maria Ferrante; the Secretariat; Carole Gagnon;    Shadd Health & Business Centre, Robert Philip Christie and Angela Crasci; St. Dorothy, Denise Maroun; St. Laurent Adult Centre, Anna Saracino-Crivello and Nicolina Sindici; St. Pius X Career Centre, Larissa Scherbakow; Student Services,  Lew Lewis and Liliane Yiptong; Vezina,  Sharon Wurst; Vincent Massey, Gregory Louden, Vincent Trimboli and Janice Woodfine;   Wagar Adult Centre,  Elizabeth Gluch, Frank Johnson and Brenda Mahon; Westmount Park, Fatima Malki;   Willingdon, Isabelle Daniel, Maryse Lauzon, Vassiliki Mavidis and Barbara Weiss.

Sarah Wells.

OLYMPIAN CHAMPIONS LEADERSHIP: Are you looking for volunteer hours? Are you looking to put a leadership opportunity on your resume? Do you want to make an impact in your community? If so, I have an incredible opportunity for you!  Olympian Sarah Wells has an organization called the Believe Initiative, which helps students build resilience and self-belief, is looking for capable and passionate student leaders to run a Believe Leadership Chapter at their school!  If you are accepted as a Chapter Head at your school, you would run and manage the 7-week Believe Leadership program that can be facilitated virtually or in-person. You would set up and recruit members for your Chapter, teach the leadership sessions to your members, and guide students to apply those lessons through a Believe Passion Project. The Believe Initiative team would make sure you have everything you need including training, session tools and notes, and access to a group of other Believe Leadership Chapter Heads from across North America! To learn more & apply, visit the Believe Leadership Webpage! This application is very simple and consists of 2 written questions and one 2-3 min video about a time you had to be a leader. The other great news! You can apply to lead this with a friend! Check out the PDF attached, APPLY HERE, get set up over the summer, and then launch in the fall! Applications close June 15, so email if you have any other questions! 

PROGRAM FOR JEWISH TEENS: Diller Teen Fellows is a year-long leadership fellowship program for Jewish teens in grades 10 and 11. They help support the teens in developing their leadership skills through 14 workshops, a year-long volunteer commitment in their community (school or otherwise), three weekend retreats, as well as a hosting experience* and a three week experience in their partnership city in Be’er Sheva B’nei Shimon. *government travel restrictions and guidelines permitting.  To learn more about the program log on to  or reach out to me, Jessica at You can aso nominate teens to be a part of the Diller Teen Fellows program for 2021-2022. They must be in Grade 10 and 11 next year. Here is the link:.


AEVS RESOLUTION: The Council of Commissioners  has adopted a resolution that oversight of all aspects of the AEVS Department be returned to the Director  and that all staff dispersed to other departments by resolution passed by Trustee Marlene Jennings, be returned. The Council has mandated the Director General to strike a committee, including the Directors of Educational Services, Student Services, School Organization, Human Resources and Financial Services, to meet monthly with him or his delegate, to ensure proper oversight such that the AEVS Department improves and progresses as required. The Director General will evaluate the progress made by   department  and provide an update to Council no later than June 2022.

MAKING VISORS: For the past several years, Galileo Adult Education Centre in Montreal North has had an important partnership with the CIUSSS du Centre-Sud-de-l’Île-de-Montréal to help with the social and socio-professional integration of clients with an intellectual disability and autism. With the collaboration of Brigitte Boudreau, head of Rehabilitation in the Work and Community Integration sector at the CIUSSS, Galileo was given the opportunity to work on a contract where visors had to be assembled. Ms.  Boudreau consulted with Véronique Lavoie, coordinator of Technical Aids - Head of DI-TSA-DP (housing for adults with special needs) at the CIUSSS, to facilitate the participation of Galileo's work integration program with this project.

A student works on a visor.

The objective of this project has been to respect the standards set forth by the CIUSSS. Galileo staff consulted with CIUSSS experts who played a critical support role for the SVIS (Socio-Vocational Integration Services) team to help coordinate the assembly and delivery of visors.  The SVIS program at Galileo has been teaching students work skills by offering them learning opportunities in a work class environment, as well as internships within the community.  For many students the work class is the first step where they can practice a variety of social and work-related skills.    This project required a new way of organizing the school’s workspace due to the many steps involved in putting together a visor. Tasks included measuring and preparing transparency films, cutting foam and elastics to taping the pre-cut foam onto visors, stapling elastics and finally, disinfecting the visors before packaging them.    See  the full press release.

MENTAL HEALTH AWARENESS:   How do you manage stress and anxiety in a world filled with uncertainties these days? One possibility is to invite Erica Sweett to Galileo,   a drama therapist and presenter from Agence Ometz, a charitable organization supporting individuals and families through a range of immigration, school and social services.

In light of Mental Health Week (May 3-9), a virtual workshop was organized at Galileo, allowing many of the academic & CCBE teachers, tutors and students to connect with Ms. Sweett. This hour-long workshop helped students to better identify stress and anxiety in themselves, which is crucial during these trying times. Galileo students learned simple strategies such as breathing techniques, yoga or getting fresh air, can be beneficial to one’s mental and physical well-being. Students further explored that stress and  anxiety,  depending on the level of severity, can detrimentally impact one’s quality of life. Although stress and anxiety share many of the same emotional and physical symptoms – our students learned they have very different origins. Ms. Sweett provided guidance on how our students can determine their stress levels in order to find an effective treatment plan and feeling better. For further info, please go to: and

RAC candidate Caillan Loiseau.

RAC PROGRAM PACKS A PUNCH: The Recognition of Acquired Competencies (RAC) is a small and lesser-known service offered by the EMSB – but it packs a punch. The option paves the way for someone with existing skills and knowledge to prove their competencies in a certain trade and more quickly earn their vocational training diploma. And, it’s a way for the province to tap into the wealth of skillsets of people newly arrived in Quebec. There is a growing need for this service now, says Miriam Furfaro, Educational Consultant with the EMSB, who has been heading up and revamping EMSB’s RAC since 2016. Someone who already possesses job skills through years of work and life experience can have these tested through a series of assessments and be provided with official recognition of their competencies. In line with one of the eight programs in EMSB’s Adult Education and Vocational Training sector, it also provides a training plan that helps the candidate develop any skills they lack in order to obtain the Diploma of Vocational Studies – or its French equivalent more commonly used, the DEP (diplôme d'études professionnelles). With the DEP, many can negotiate higher salaries, greater job security and more employment opportunities. See our detailed story.  

WAGAR ALUMNI FOR CARE: The newly launched Wagar Alumni for C.A.R.E. aims to get 1,000 former students to donate $25 apiece to support this vital centre in the heart of Côte Saint Luc. The mission is to raise $25,000 for the 25th anniversary of this organization providing vital programming for adults with physical disabilities, often severe ones. With additional funding, the Centre would be able to eliminate long waiting lists, extend their program to 12 months a year, have health care professionals on staff, replace old technology, and so much more. There is a vibrant community of people at the C.A.R.E. centre, and we’re lucky to have such a gem right in the heart of our city. “Still to this day, the school system prepares students to graduate at 21 and then it is as if we push them off the cliff with no parachute”, says parent and C.A.R.E. Centre President, Joanne Charron. “This is why our continuing education program for individuals with severe physical disabilities ages 21 and over is so important.” In order to fulfill its mission to enhance the lives of adults with severe physical disabilities, the C.A.R.E. Centre requires funds. And that’s where Wagar Alumni for C.A.R.E. comes in. Even though the high school is gone, the building on Parkhaven still holds historical significance for its former students: A strong connection remains, as evidenced by active Facebook groups, a strong online community, and a (pre-pandemic) never-ending stream of class reunions. If the Wagar Alumni group can raise $25 from 1,000 former students, they will meet their fundraising goal and help the Centre achieve some of theirs. For more information on the campaign and how to donate, please visit:

A JEAN WALL IN ST. LAURENT: Victoria Callocchia’s  Common Core Basic Education (CCBE) class from St Laurent Adult Education created a “Jean Wall” for Denim Day this year. They came up with this idea to safely incorporate this important day to our calendar. They created a poster for the main hallway of a jean jacket and a pair of jeans. Students from CCBE and the Social Integration Services  (SIS) class wrote a person’s name who was affected by breast cancer (grandmother, mom, aunt, sister, friend…) onto a “jean heart”. This allowed all students to visually see the magnitude of how many close family members and friends are affected by breast cancer.  For academic students, wearing jeans has never been so important!  As a collaborated effort, $505.95 was raised. 

Mr. Nick in class.

TEACHING ENGLISH IN A FUN WAY: Common Core Basic English (CCBE) teacher Nick Galanogeorgos, affectionately known as “Mr. Nick,”  has created a truly fun way to help his students learn English at the St. Laurent Adult Education Centre. Just over a year ago Mr. Nick was teaching an English class at the High School of Montreal  Adult Education Centre when the pandemic hit. After class on March 12, 2020 they called it a day and went home for the last time. After that, everything changed. He was teaching a small Adult CCBE   group   at the time and decided it would be a great idea to keep his class going by meeting them on Zoom once or twice a week in the evenings. It was nothing formal, just some chitchat and small talk to keep up with some conversation practice. Knowing they could still gather and hang out with their classmates and teacher during those frightening times, gave them all a sense of comfort and unity.  This was particularly the case for  those students who were here alone, new to the country and away from families and friends. Mr. Nick joined the staff of the St. Laurent Adult Education Centre last August. In January 2021, it was time to finally listen to his students, so Mr. Nick recorded his first video and posted it on his classroom’s Facebook page. The lighting wasn't great, and the audio needed some help, but it was a start. He began shooting and incorporating some of these videos into his lessons and the reactions of students was very positive.  You can visit the  YouTube page and subscribe to get notified every time a new video is posted or search for "Everybody Loves English."  See our complete press release.

The memorial tribute.

REMEMBERING A TEACHER: The administration at St Laurent Adult Education Centre dedicated Room 121 to the memory of teacher Sandra Topping. Unfortunately, she passed away unexpectedly on January 2, 2021. Sandra was a caring and compassionate teacher with a big heart,  showed empathy towards her students and was passionate about teaching.  She was taken away much too early. She made her students feel comfortable and often provided advice on life topics that had nothing to do with her class.  She helped many students adapt to Quebec culture and society. She would leave her classroom door opened to students during lunch, where she played cool music that her students loved to hear. She was open minded and nonjudgmental with anything students would share with her.  She was a chill teacher!! She had a huge smile and a contagious laugh that filled our hallways with joy,  She is truly missed by her SLAEC family. A small ceremony took place on May 6,  which was attended by her brother-in-law and Cynthia Koomas, Sandra’s sister  and a former administrator of the  EMSB.


ÉLÈVE DU MOIS : Vittoria Pisano de RDP, âgée de 10 ans et élève à l’école primaire East Hill, est l’élève du mois de mai à la CSEM. Elle amasse des fonds pour la recherche sur la maladie d’Alzheimer en vendant des lasagnes qu’elle cuisine à la maison. Jax, son jeune frère qui fréquente lui aussi l’école East Hill, lui donne un coup de main. Le président Joe Ortona a souligné son travail remarquable lors de la dernière réunion du conseil. Par la suite, M. Ortona en compagnie du commissaire Pietro Mercuri lui ont rendu visite à l’école. Le grand-père de Vittoria souffre d’Alzheimer. Elle a déjà réussi à recueillir 5 000 $. Un donateur anonyme a égalé cette somme.  « Quel exploit pour une fillette de 10 ans », de dire M. Ortona. « Une telle initiative est tellement rare chez les enfants, et même chez les adultes, a renchéri M. Mercuri. C’est à la fois touchant et inspirant. C’est impressionnant de voir combien de personnes elle est parvenue à sensibiliser à cette cause. »

Nous vous invitons à visionner la vidéo :

PORTRAIT DU PRÉSIDENT : Le journal The Montrealer a présenté à la une de son édition de mai le président de la CSEM, Joe Ortona, accompagné d’un portrait détaillé rédigé par Kristin McNeill.Nous vous invitons à en faire la lecture :

DES ENSEIGNANTS À L’HONNEUR : À l’occasion de la Journée de reconnaissance du personnel enseignant de la CSEM, huit enseignants se sont vu remettre des prix de La Cage Brasserie Sportive, ainsi que des certificats et cartes-cadeaux chez Chapters/Indigo. La chaîne de télévision CityNews Montreal, co-commanditaire de l’événement, a également réalisé un segment mettant en vedette les lauréats. Une cérémonie a eu lieu dans la cour de l’école primaire Sinclair Laird. Cet événement a vu le jour à la CSEM il y a maintenant sept ans afin de coïncider avec la Journée nationale des enseignants aux États-Unis et pour rendre hommage à cette profession en fin d’année scolaire. La CSEM a reçu une foule de mises en candidature de la part des parents, dans les trois catégories primées.

 Le Groupe Sportscene, propriétaire de La Cage, a remis des cartes-cadeaux d’une valeur de 100 $ aux enseignants suivants : Vicki Theophilopoulos de l’école primaire Sinclair Laird dans Parc-Extension (secteur des jeunes); Joseph Romano de l’Académie John Caboto dans Ahuntsic (éducation physique et à la santé) ainsi que l’équipe des mathématiques du Centre d’éducation des adultes John F. Kennedy de Saint-Michel composée de Lea Zuravlyov, Mauro Cornelli, Itzhak Raz, Patrick Bramm, Silvia Bilotto et Galina Gatsko (secteur des adultes).


SEMAINE DE LA SANTÉ MENTALE : Cette année, la Semaine de la santé mentale à la CSEM s’est tenue du 3 au 9 mai 2021 sous le thème COVID Time Capsule: Hope For The Future. L’accent a été mis sur ce que nous avons appris de nouveau sur nous-mêmes pour être mieux outillés.

VIDÉO À LA CSEM : Alors que cette année scolaire qui s’est déroulée dans un contexte extrêmement difficile tire lentement à sa fin, la CSEM entend souligner d’une manière divertissante et unique la résilience de ses élèves, des membres du personnel et des familles. En collaboration avec la troupe musicale The Directors Showband et son équipe de vidéastes professionnels, The Directors composera une chanson originale en vue de célébrer le bien-être, la résilience et la persévérance. La chanson, qui sera accompagnée d’un vidéoclip dont l’enregistrement et le montage seront réalisés professionnellement, mettra en vedette nos élèves, le personnel ainsi que les familles. Qu’il s’agisse d’un anniversaire familial ou d’enfants qui s’amusent dans un parc, la CSEM invite la communauté à télécharger, jusqu’au 31 mai, ses précieux moments à : À compter du 1er juin, le public pourra voter pour ses vidéos préférées qui entreront dans la production du vidéoclip et dont le lancement spécial aura lieu le jour de la rentrée scolaire, alors que la troupe musicale The Directors interprétera la chanson en direct d’une cour d’école.

 MIND MET LA MAIN À LA PÂTE : Les élèves de l’école secondaire MIND sur le Plateau se sont lancés dans un nouveau projet d’engagement communautaire. Le thème de cette initiative porte sur la justice sociale et le bien-être personnel tout en créant des espaces favorisant l’autonomie des jeunes dans un système scolaire alternatif. École innovatrice destinée aux élèves motivés et autonomes, MIND s’efforce de créer une expérience éducative unique au sein d’un environnement qui encourage la diversité, l’inclusion et l’esprit critique. Le personnel et les élèves de l’école MIND se sont engagés dans une occasion d’apprentissage expérientiel en prenant part à un projet intergénérationnel qui bénéficiera à un organisme communautaire du quartier - Projet Changement, un centre communautaire pour les aînés. Ils découvrent l’organisme et explorent les enjeux de justice sociale qui sont au cœur de leur mission. Les élèves ont organisé une vente de tartes en vue d’amasser des fonds pour Projet Changement. L’objectif était de préparer 60 tartes sous la supervision d’un pâtissier professionnel dans une cuisine certifiée par le MAPAQ (ministère de l’Agriculture, des Pêcheries et de l'Alimentation du Québec), dans le respect des directives sanitaires de la Santé publique. L’artiste Martha Wainwright a généreusement permis l’accès à l’espace cuisine d’Ursa MTL situé au 5589, avenue du Parc. Marie-Josée Katcho, chef pâtissière professionnelle, a supervisé la préparation des tartes. Pour infos :

HÉROS DE PREMIÈRE LIGNE : Alors que la pandémie de COVID-19 continue à dicter nos vies, trois écoles primaires de Saint-Léonard – soit Honoré Mercier, Pierre de Coubertin et Dante – ont uni leurs efforts afin d’honorer le courage, l’altruisme et le dévouement de leurs héros locaux.

Le 4 mai, des travailleurs de la santé de cette localité se sont joints aux pompiers de la caserne 21 et aux agents du SPVM du poste de quartier 42 dans le cadre d’un événement spécial qui a eu lieu à l’école primaire Honoré Mercier. En plus de recevoir des récompenses bien spéciales, ces travailleurs de première ligne ont partagé avec les élèves des histoires touchantes qui ont marqué les 15 derniers mois. « La pandémie est devenue un moment déterminant dans la vie de nos élèves et nous avons cru qu’il serait important pour eux de mettre un visage sur certains de nos héros de la COVID-19 », a indiqué Sonia Marotta, directrice à l’école primaire Honoré Mercier. « Nos travailleurs de première ligne ont traversé tellement d’épreuves au cours des 15 derniers mois. Selon nous, il importe que nos élèves aient non seulement la chance d’en apprendre davantage sur leur réalité, mais qu’ils aient aussi l’occasion de les remercier d’assurer notre sécurité. » L'événement s'est déroulé dans le gymnase de l'école et a été retransmis en direct dans les salles de classe. Le Club de tambourinage d’Honoré Mercier a offert une magnifique prestation. Au nombre des invités de marque, mentionnons le président de la CSEM Joe Ortona, le directeur général Nicholas Katalifos, le commissaire Mario Pietrangelo (policier retraité), la directrice de secteur Pela Nickoletopoulos, le directeur de secteur par intérim Jimmy Giannacopoulos, le directeur du Centre Leonardo Da Vinci Pat Buttino et l’ex-directeur général de la CSEM Antonio Lacroce. M. Lacroce a partagé l’histoire émouvante du décès de ses deux parents des suites de la COVID‑19 il y a un an dans un CHSLD. Les agentes Mai Dang et Julie Mazerolle ont représenté le poste de quartier 42. Le milieu de la santé fut représenté par des parents d’élèves, soit Dr Tania Decobellis, les infirmières Stella Racaniello, Rosie Calabretta et Woodline Dorlean, de même qu’Enzo Caprio qui supervise le centre de tests de laboratoire COVID-19 au CUSM.

SEMAINE DE LA GARDE SCOLAIRE : Les élèves des services de garde B.A.S.E. (Before and After School Enriched) ont célébré dans 10 services de garde la Semaine nationale de la garde scolaire du 10 au 14 mai en participant à des activités ayant pour thématique les pirates. Chacun des programmes s’est déroulé dans les services de garde individuels et dans le respect des mesures préventives. Le personnel et les élèves des services de garde se sont ensuite « réunis » pour une danse virtuelle le 14 mai, animée par Melina Trimarchi, responsable du développement de projets B.A.S.E. en éducation environnementale, et Nick Messina – mieux connu sous le nom de Sicilianu di Montreal – dont l’enfant fréquente le service de garde de l’Académie Leonardo Da Vinci. 

PROJET D’EMBELLISSEMENT À PEARSON : Le conseil des élèves de l’école secondaire Lester B. Pearson a récemment entrepris d’embellir l’entrée principale de leur école et de la rendre plus fonctionnelle. Ils ont tout d’abord enlevé les mauvaises herbes et le feuillage mort, planté de nouveaux arbustes et épandu une couche fraîche de paillis de cèdre. Afin d’ajouter un nouvel élément interactif, ils ont construit des plates-bandes et y ont planté des végétaux afin d’en faire un potager communautaire (à partir des semis provenant de leur serre intérieure). Ils ont également ajouté une mangeoire à oiseaux ainsi qu’une petite bibliothèque gratuite (les membres de la communauté sont invités à prendre un livre ou à partager un livre).

CONSTRUCTION D’UNE VOITURE AU CVM : Un groupe de garçons de 5e secondaire du Collège Vincent Massey (CVM) de Rosemont ont consacré les trois dernières années à la construction d’une voiture. Lorsqu’ils étaient en deuxième secondaire, ils ont approché l’enseignante de sciences Sabrina Mancuso pour lui faire part de leur idée de construire une voiture sans émissions de carbone. Gianni Di Blasio, Anthony Parente, Mathew Rosse, Alexander Pillot, Christopher Boa et Vincent Boa ont eu la chance d’assouvir leur passion pour la mécanique automobile et de construire une voiture de course au secondaire. Ils ont reçu l’appui de madame Mancuso, du personnel du CVM et du club d’ingénierie de l’Université Concordia. Ils ont appris énormément tout en s’amusant. « Nous espérons que notre création prouvera à tous que l’éthanol – carburant sans carbone et renouvelable – devrait être utilisé dans nos voitures au lieu des carburants fossiles », s’est exclamé Vincent Boa.

PRIX ENTREPRENEURIAT: Félicitations aux élèves de l’école secondaire James Lyng à Saint-Henri qui ont remporté deux prix pour des projets entrepreneuriaux dans le cadre du concours annuel OsEntreprendre. Dans le cas du premier projet, les élèves ont fabriqué et peint deux chaussures, s’inspirant de deux aspects opposés de leur vie ou d’eux-mêmes. Par ailleurs, en complément au design, les élèves travaillent également avec le cinéaste local Stefan Verna à la réalisation d’une brève vidéo afin de présenter les chaussures et d’en expliquer l’imagerie. Les chaussures et les vidéos seront exposées lors d’une exposition d’art virtuelle dont les élèves assureront également la conception et la promotion. Ce projet s’inscrit dans le cadre des classes de projet interactif de l’école, sous la supervision des enseignants Cynthia Meloche et Nathan Gage. Quant au second projet, les élèves de James Lyng ont produit un mixtape! Tous les élèves de musique de l’école ont pris part à ce projet qui est devenu une partie intégrante du programme de musique de l’école secondaire James Lyng. Les élèves participants ont composé, interprété et enregistré des chansons, procédé au mixage et fait la promotion du produit fini. Leur plus récent mixtape sera disponible en juin. Nous vous invitons à écouter les mixtapes antérieurs produits par l’école à Nathan Gage, enseignant de musique à James Lyng, assure la supervision du projet.

PROMOTION DU LEADERSHIP PAR UNE OLYMPIENNE : Êtes-vous à la recherche d’heures de bénévolat? Souhaitez-vous ajouter à votre CV une expérience en leadership? Aimeriez-vous faire une différence au sein de votre communauté? Si c’est le cas, j’ai une occasion incroyable à vous proposer! L’olympienne Sarah Wells a créé Believe Initiative, un organisme qui aide les élèves à développer leur résilience et leur confiance en soi. Ce dernier est actuellement à la recherche de jeunes leaders aptes et passionnés afin de diriger un chapitre de Believe Leadership à leur école! Si vous êtes sélectionné à titre de dirigeant de chapitre à votre école, vous serez responsable d’animer et de gérer, virtuellement ou en personne, le programme Believe Leadership d’une durée de 7 semaines. Vous serez appelé à recruter des membres, à animer les séances de leadership ainsi qu’à guider les élèves afin qu’ils mettent en pratique les leçons tirées du projet Believe Passion. L’équipe de Believe Initiative s’assurera que vous disposez de tout ce dont vous avez besoin, y compris la formation, les outils et les notes en prévision des séances, de même que l’accès à d’autres dirigeants de chapitres de Believe Leadership à la grandeur de l’Amérique du Nord! Pour en savoir davantage et poser votre candidature, visitez la page Web de Believe Leadership! La marche à suivre pour poser votre candidature est toute simple. Il suffit de répondre à 2 questions par écrit et d’enregistrer une vidéo de 2 à 3 minutes où vous relatez l’une de vos expériences en tant que leader. Qui plus est, vous pouvez postuler afin de diriger ce programme en compagnie d’un ami! Postulez ICI, mettez tout en place au cours de l’été puis lancez l’activité à l’automne! La date limite pour poser votre candidature est fixée au 15 juin. Pour toute question, faites parvenir un courriel à 


 RÉSOLUTION SUR LE SEAFP : Le conseil des commissaires a adopté une résolution voulant que la supervision de tous les aspects du Service de l’éducation des adultes et de la formation professionnelle (SEAFP) soit restituée à sa directrice et que tous les membres du personnel mutés vers d’autres services à la suite de la résolution adoptée par l’administratrice de la tutelle, Marlene Jennings, soient rapatriés au sein du SEAFP. Le conseil a confié au directeur général le mandat de mettre sur pied un comité formé notamment des directions des Services éducatifs, des Services aux élèves, de l’Organisation scolaire, des Ressources humaines et des Services financiers, qui se réunira tous les mois en compagnie du directeur général ou de son délégué pour assurer une supervision adéquate du SEAFP favorable à l’amélioration et à la progression qui s’imposent. Le directeur général évaluera les progrès réalisés par le SEAFP et présentera un compte rendu au conseil au plus tard en juin 2022.

FABRICATION DE VISIÈRE : Depuis plusieurs années, le Centre d’éducation des adultes Galileo de Montréal-Nord entretient un important partenariat avec le CIUSSS du Centre-Sud-de-l’Île-de-Montréal afin de favoriser l’intégration sociale et socioprofessionnelle de la clientèle autiste ou atteinte d’un handicap intellectuel. Avec la collaboration de Brigitte Boudreau, chef de service en réadaptation en contexte d’intégration travail et communautaire au CIUSSS, le Centre Galileo a eu l’occasion d’exécuter un contrat d’assemblage de visières. Madame Boudreau a consulté Véronique Lavoie, coordonnatrice des aides techniques – responsable du programme DI-TSA-DP (logement pour adultes ayant des besoins particuliers) au CIUSSS, en vue de faciliter la participation à ce projet des élèves du programme d’intégration professionnelle de Galileo. Dans le cadre de ce projet, l’objectif a été de respecter les normes établies par le CIUSSS. Ainsi, le personnel du Centre Galileo a fait appel aux experts du CIUSSS qui ont offert un soutien essentiel à l’équipe SISP (services d’intégration socioprofessionnelle) afin de l’aider à coordonner l’assemblage et la livraison des visières. Le programme SISP offert à Galileo permet aux élèves d’acquérir des compétences professionnelles dans un environnement de travail en classe et par l’entremise de stages au sein de la communauté. Pour bon nombre d’élèves, la mise en situation de travail simulée en classe représente une première occasion de mettre en pratique diverses compétences sociales et professionnelles. Ce projet a nécessité la réorganisation de l’espace de travail au Centre étant donné les multiples étapes nécessaires à l’assemblage des visières, soit mesurer et préparer les films transparents, découper la mousse et les élastiques, fixer la mousse prédécoupée sur les visières, agrafer les élastiques, puis désinfecter les visières avant de les emballer.  

SENSIBILISATION À LA SANTÉ MENTALE : Comment gérer le stress et l’anxiété dans le monde actuel ponctué d’incertitude? En invitant, notamment, Erica Sweett à Galileo. Madame Sweet est thérapeute en théâtre et présentatrice pour le compte de l’Agence Ometz, organisme de bienfaisance qui soutient les individus et les familles en leur offrant divers services d’immigration, scolaires et sociaux. À l’occasion de la Semaine de la santé mentale (3 au 9 mai), un atelier virtuel a été organisé à Galileo afin de permettre à de nombreux enseignants, tuteurs et élèves des classes régulières et du programme de formation de base commune (CCBE) d’établir un contact avec madame Sweett. Cet atelier d’une heure a aidé les élèves à mieux identifier les signes de stress et d’anxiété, ce qui est crucial en ces temps difficiles. Les élèves de Galileo ont découvert que des stratégies toutes simples, comme des techniques respiratoires, la pratique du yoga ou le fait de prendre l’air, peuvent avoir des effets bénéfiques sur le bien-être mental et physique d’un individu. Les élèves ont également appris que selon leur degré de sévérité, le stress et l’anxiété peuvent avoir un impact négatif sur la qualité de vie. Bien que le stress et l’anxiété aient en commun plusieurs symptômes émotionnels et physiques, nos élèves ont été à même de constater que leurs origines diffèrent grandement. Madame Sweett y est allée de conseils sur la manière dont nos élèves peuvent déterminer leur niveau de stress afin de trouver un plan de traitement efficace pour ainsi se sentir mieux. Pour plus d’informations, et

UN PROGRAMME PERCUTANT : Le service de reconnaissance des acquis et des compétences (RAC) offert par la CSEM, bien qu’il soit moins connu, vaut bien son pesant d’or. Cette démarche ouvre la voie à ceux et celles qui possèdent déjà des compétences et des connaissances dans un métier donné afin de démontrer leur savoir-faire et ainsi obtenir plus rapidement leur diplôme d’études professionnelles. Sans compter que c’est aussi une façon pour la province de mettre à profit la panoplie de compétences des nouveaux arrivants au Québec. Miriam Furfaro, conseillère pédagogique à la CSEM et chargée d’y revamper le programme RAC depuis 2016, explique que ce service est de plus en plus en demande à l’heure actuelle. La personne qui possède déjà des compétences professionnelles acquises au fil de ses années de travail et d’expériences de vie peut demander qu’elles soient validées au moyen d’une série d’évaluations dans le but d’en obtenir la reconnaissance officielle. Parallèlement aux huit programmes offerts au secteur de l’éducation des adultes et de la formation professionnelle de la CSEM, ce service propose également un plan de formation dans le but d’aider le candidat à acquérir les compétences manquantes pour décrocher son diplôme d’études professionnelles communément appelé DEP. Le DEP permet à plusieurs de négocier des salaires plus élevés, d’obtenir une plus grande sécurité d’emploi et d’accéder à davantage de débouchés.

À LA MÉMOIRE D’UNE ENSEIGNANTE : La direction du Centre d’éducation des adultes Saint-Laurent a dédié le local 121 à la mémoire de l’enseignante Sandra Topping, décédée subitement le 2 janvier 2021. Sandra était une enseignante attentionnée et compatissante avec un grand cœur, elle faisait preuve d’empathie envers les élèves et était passionnée par l’enseignement. Elle nous a quittés beaucoup trop tôt. Elle savait mettre ses élèves à l’aise et leur donnait souvent des conseils sur des aspects de la vie qui n’avaient rien à voir avec son cours. Elle a aidé de nombreux élèves à s’adapter à la culture et à la société québécoises. Elle laissait la porte de sa classe ouverte le midi pour que les élèves puissent écouter la musique « cool » qu’elle faisait jouer. Elle était ouverte d’esprit et ne portait aucun jugement sur les confidences que lui faisaient les élèves. C’était une enseignante vraiment sympathique! Elle avait un grand sourire et un rire contagieux qui remplissait nos corridors de joie. Elle manque énormément à sa grande famille du Centre d’éducation des adultes de Saint-Laurent. Une petite cérémonie a eu lieu le 6 mai, à laquelle ont assisté son beau-frère et Cynthia Koomas, sœur de Sandra et ex-administratrice à la CSEM.

Le prochain numéro de Pleins feux sur Fielding sera publié le 29 juin. Prière de soumettre vos articles au plus tard le 23 juin à midi, à

The next edition of the Focus will be on June  29. Deadlines for submissions is June 23 at Noon to 

1 comment:

  1. you forgot to include the great performance of music and diverse videos they have done at FACE School