Tuesday, June 20, 2023


Registration for the 2023-24 academic year is ongoing.

BACK TO SCHOOL: Students  of the English Montreal School Board’s (EMSB) primary and secondary institutions will return to class on  Wednesday, August 30, 2023. Kindergarten children must be five years of age on or before September 30, 2023 while  Grade 1 (Cycle 1) students must be six years old on or before the same date. Registration for those not previously enrolled will begin on Tuesday,  August 15  for elementary and secondary schools. Parents are asked to call the school in their neighbourhood to make an appointment. Parents are urged to consult the Board’s  website at www.emsb.qc.ca, which also contains information about the successful adult education and vocational training programs. E-mail inquiries can be sent to informationdesk@emsb.qc.ca  or you can call 514- 483-7200.    All pupils registering for the first time are required to provide a birth certificate and  vaccination records to the school the child will be attending. Parents will be asked to fill out forms which will allow the school to apply for the  certificate of eligibility for English schooling. Under the Charter of the French Language, a certificate of eligibility is generally granted to children who did the majority of their elementary or secondary studies in English in Canada; whose mother or father did the majority of his/her  elementary studies in English in  Canada or whose brother or sister did  the majority of his/her elementary or secondary studies in English in Canada. Please note that as a result of Quebec law, this criteria excludes studies completed in the Quebec Private School system.

RADIO COMMERCIAL: Listen to our new radio commercial running on CFQR AM 600, recorded by two students from Dante Elementary School in St. Léonard right here.

CJAD INTERVIEWS TEACHERS: For LaurenHill Academy's Louis Bilodeau and Dunrae Gardens' Iris Del Degan, this is their last week of school - forever!  Louis and Iris spoke to Andrew Carter on CJAD 800 to talk about their amazing careers in education and upcoming retirement. You can listen here

Daniel Juneau (second from the right) and  Principal Tony Pita representing his teacher.

LOVE OF READING: Two EMSB employees have been recognized for their influence in encouraging and instilling the love of reading in children: Danielle Juneau, Librarian, Educational Services and Louise Moreau, Teacher, Royal West Academy

BUDGET MEETING: The EMSB Council of Commissioners will hold a special meeting on Thursday, June 29 to adopt the 2023-24 budget.

Committee members at the conference.

PARENT CONFERENCE: The annual EMSB Parent Conference took place on May 28 at Rosemount High School.   Keynote speakers provided valuable insights into the latest research and trends in child psychology, and offer practical tips and strategies for raising resilient, confident, and healthy children. In The Truth about Lying:  Science-based strategies to address lying and foster honesty in children, child psychologist Dr. Victoria Talwar provided an excellent presentation. She is   the Canada Research Chair (Tier II) and Chair of the Department of Educational and Counselling Psychology at McGill University’s Faculty of Education. 

Parent Commissioner Daniel Tatone  with Bowser and Blue.

The other session, Responding to our children’s dependency/addiction, was presented by Bill Yong from  Chabad Lifeline. There was also a performance by Bowser and Blue.  From May 29  to June 3,   a series of virtual lunch and learn sessions were presented. 

You can watch these and the entire conference  here

See this CBC report

Nick Suzuki gets a warm Dalkeith welcome.

SUZUKI VISITS DALKEITH:  Montreal Canadiens captain Nick Suzuki visited Dalkeith Elementary School in Anjou in his capacity as an ambassador for the Asista Foundation, which focuses on rescuing dogs from difficult situations and giving them a new lease on life by training them to be service animals. Dalkeith has two service dogs, Kira and Jessie, fostered by Principal John Wright. They help students with their social interactions, reduce stress and anxiety and assist the children in the recovery phase of a crisis. Some students get to spend company with one of the dogs as a reward for good behavior and hard work in the classroom. Such students can spend 15 minutes with Kira  or Jessie or take one of them for a walk. In addition, the dogs build students’ confidence in their reading through the school’s “Reading to Kira” program. Suzuki spent time with the dogs and sat down with a number of student groups to talk to them about life in class, their long term goals and the impact these two canines have on them. 

Nick Suzuki signs his name on the Dalkeith Respect Wall.

Much like playing in the NHL, Asista Foundation officials maintain that rehabilitating dogs takes a lot of hard work and a sustained effort, but the rewards are priceless when those lovely animals pay it forward by helping people cope with mental health conditions, one of the most important aspects of our society. 

Valerie Barnabé and the LMAC students.

VOICES OF OLYMPIA: On May 11 the Voices of Olympia Canada Competition & Ceremony Awards were held at Concordia’s  John Molson School of Business. The Laurier Macdonald High School team represented by Gianna Simancas, Hannah Tinker, Andrea Vaccaro, Giovana Wendling and led by teacher Valerie Barnabé, had an extremely successful evening. Their project on Online Gender Based Violence was recognized and won the following awards: Jury Mention for High Impact Community Project, le Prix Jobel pour la Créativité à Impact Social and le Prix Coup de Coeur des Jeunes 2023 de la Fondation du Docteur Julien. “We are impressed and encouraged by the passion and citizenship our students have already devoted to this project and we have no doubt that they will continue to make the Laurier Macdonald Community proud as they embark on the next steps,” said Principal Cristina Celzi.

Students are recognized for their achievements.

PROBLEM SOLVERS RECOGNIZED: Before the last Council meeting, the EMSB celebrated  student achievement at the Affiliate/National Bowl that earned them an invitation to the Future Problem Solving International Competition at the University of Massachusetts – Amherst as part of the Gifted initiative. The EMSB can boast as having the only Canadian team to reach the finals in two competitive components of the Future Problem Solving International, namely- the Global Issues Problem Solving, a team-based competition and the Scenario Writing Problem Solving, an individual competition! Global Issues Problem Solving delves into global issues, real-life situations, and the ability to creatively problem-solve. This program enables students to think creatively and explore collaboratively a selected inquiry topic from a diverse range of contemporary global topics, such as Digital Realities, Robotic Workforce and Throw Away Society. Four competitions took place throughout the year amongst primary and secondary students in 36 countries. Four elementary schools and one high school at EMSB put forward the teams with Pierre de Coubertin Elementary and Royal West Academy achieving exceptional results! Pierre de Coubertin’s Rocco Palmieri, Eva Ciarlo, Graziella Corsi-House, Gianmassimo Antonio Pietrangelo – all in Grade 6 – qualified for the final international competition in the global issues problemsolving component. Four students from Royal West Academy reached the finals. Grade 9 students Sumin Woo, Sophie Iny, Anya Figlarz-Grassino and Jake Gurevitch travelled to University Massachusetts Amherst from June 7 to 11 to compete in the final GIPS team competition. Finally, but not the least, at Willingdon Elementary School in NDG, Grade 4 student Sky Fraser qualified in the finals for her individual written work in the Scenario Writing Future Problem Solving component on the topic of Throw Away Society. The task was to write a piece consistin of 1,500 words or less, set at least 20 years in the future about imagined but logical outcome of actions or events taking place in the world. Bravo to Dr. Camelia   Birlean, who heads the Gifted initiative.

THE LOVE OF READING: Two EMSB employees have been recognized for their influence in encouraging and instilling the love of reading in children:  Danielle Juneau, Librarian, Educational Services; and Louise Moreau, Teacher, Royal West Academy.

FACE students will be on the move.

FACE  RELOCATION UPDATE:  The primary and secondary levels of FACE School, from both the English and French sectors, are expected to be relocated to two buildings beginning in the 2024-25 and 2025-2026 academic years in order for major renovations to occur at their historic home at 3449 University Street downtown.  The work will take several years to complete. This school is operated jointly by the Centre de services scolaire de Montréal (CSSDM) and the EMSB. The elementary school students will move first in the summer of 2024 to 4835 Christophe-Colomb in The Plateau and a year later the secondary students will move to 4251 St. Urbain Street, also in the Plateau. This same building once housed the iconic Baron Byng High School and following that was the home of the Sun Youth Organization. It is just down the street from the EMSB’s Bancroft Elementary School. Info: You can find more information here
Taking part in the Munsch Creation.

YOUNG AUTHORS DAY: The Grade 2 students at FACE participated in their very first Young Author's day. Students were inspired to create their own Robert Munsch story and turn a cereal box into their very own Munsch Creation. Students could also choose to dress up to showcase their creative stories. Students invited their peers and other adults to enjoy this very engaging and rich literacy experience.

LETTER TO THE SENATE: EMSB Chair Joe Ortona has  written letters to each member of the Senate of Canada on the subject of Bill C-13, urging Senators to   fulfill their roles “as the Chamber of sober second thought” and to propose amendments to in order to ensure the rights of minority-language communities in this country.  For more click here

PRAYERS IN SCHOOLS: EMSB Chair Joe Ortona has written to Quebec Minister of Education Bernard Drainville to express his concerns over his directive banning prayers in public schools. The directive requires school service centres to ensure that  in each of their schools and centres, no place is used, in fact or appearance, for the purpose of religious practice. Mr. Ortona points out that the EMSB  is not a school service centre. On August 10, 2020, the Quebec English School Boards Association obtained an unconditional stay of Bill 40 in the English sector. This Act, which gave rise to school service centres, would have transformed the governance system of English-language school boards and removed many of their powers. In a unanimous decision on September 17, 2020, the Quebec Court of Appeal upheld the stay of Bill 40. Therefore, the Directive does not currently apply to the English Montreal School Board. For more click here.

Gardenview students focus on the Holocaust.

HOLOCAUST PROGRAM: Today, there is an alarming and virulent increase in human rights violations in North America and worldwide; antisemitism, violence, racism, and hatred.  Quebec is one of the provinces in Canada that does not mandate Holocaust education. Major changes in the content of curricula in schools is required. In response to this reality, the EMSB launched a Holocaust Education Program. This project was funded for the 2022-2023 academic year by the Jewish Community Foundation of Montreal. This enabled hundreds of students and their teachers, most of whom are not Jewish, to visit the Montreal Holocaust Museum, meet and hear from Holocaust survivors and learn about the consequences of antisemitism. In addition, the EMSB has organized relevant webinars streamed directly into classrooms. As these students move on to CEGEP and university they will have the tools to be our ambassadors, responding appropriately to the many anti-Semitic campaigns on campus.  We are presently seeking  financial contributions  to the Holocaust Education Program at the EMSB in order to secure the continuation of this vital project. Every dollar will help! Every donation will be greatly appreciated and a full tax receipt will be issued. Contributions may be sent to The English Montreal School Board, 6000 Fielding Avenue, Room 109, Montreal, Quebec, H3X 1T4 Attention to: Mr. Michael J. Cohen. For more details e-mail:  mcohen@emsb.qc.ca.

Listen here  to our latest podcast with some students from Gardenview Elementary School

FRENCH TEACHERS HIGHLIGHTED: To improve French proficiency among elementary and high school students, Education Minister Bernard Drainville is proposing, among other things, daily writing exercises.  CTV filed this report and spoke to two EMSB French teachers (grads of our Board). 

NHL MOBILE ARENA: Students from Royal Vale School got to visit the NHL Mobile Museum at nearby  Confederation Park on June 16. They were especially invited by the Montreal Canadiens..  The mobile museum is a unique experience featuring 840 square feet of history, including exclusive artifacts from players of all backgrounds, video components, an interactive play-by-play broadcast booth and a look at the next generation of young players, officials, broadcasters and women in hockey. The exhibit celebrates trailblazers and changemakers from multiple underrepresented and multicultural demographics, all of whom have left their mark on our sport and are truly highlighting that hockey is for everyone. The museum is suitable for all age groups.  

Habs alumni and Youppi with Royal Vale students and Mr. Katz.

ROYAL VALE HOCKEY:  Since the event’s inception, Royal Vale School in NDG has participated in Hockey de Rue at the Snowdon YM-YWHA and played street hockey with present-day and alumni of the Montreal Canadiens. This year’s event was more of a hockey workshop, with former Habs Stephane Richer, Gilbert Delorme, Lucien Deblois and Rick Green present. Royal Vale was the only school represented, headed by Physical Education and Health teacher Norman Katz.

CF Montreal President Gabriel Gervais with Chair Joe Ortona, Principal Nadia Sammarco and the two students.

CF MONTREAL NIGHT: More than 1,300 members of the EMSB family came together on a beautiful Saturday night to watch CF Montreal beat Inter Miami FC 1-0 at the end of May. Before the game, two students: Simona Ouzounis (Leonardo Da Vinci Academy, Grade 6) and Liam Daoust (LaurenHill Academy, Grade 11) were recognized by CF Montreal Team President Gabriel Gervais on the field for their excellence in both academics and athletics.  A portion of each ticket sold was donated to Inspirations Newspaper. 

CF Montreal players are welcomed to Michelangelo.

MICHELANGELO VISIT: Recently, Michelangelo International in RDP welcomed CF Montreal’s Logan Ketterer and Judewellin Michel. The athletes spent time with the Grade 6 students and spoke to them about never giving up on their dreams and the importance of working hard. Following their talk, students even got the chance to play a min-soccer game with theme.

ALOUETTES NIGHT: More than 250 members of the EMSB family attended the Montreal Alouettes’ home opener recently. Prior to the game, Gerald McShane Elementary School’s Morgan Rinaldi and Westmount High School’s Jessica Lo Raso were honoured by the Alouettes President and CEO Mark Weightman alongside EMSB Chairman Joe Ortona, Director General Nick Katalifos and Assistant Director General Jack Chadirdjian. The students were recognized for their excellence in athletics and academics and presented with bursaries from the Alouettes. 

Students do some heavy lifting.

LIFTING THE WEIGHT OF OPPRESSION: Students from eight high schools, including host Options Alternative in Ville Émard   collaborated on a unique project on June 8 called “Lifting the Weight of Oppression.” Inspired by the fight by women for equal rights in Iran, students wanted to demonstrate their support and honour the strength of the protestors by undertaking an incredible physical challenge.  Forty students collectively lifted 250,000 pounds in 40 minutes. This feat was   accomplished by using 15 balls of various weights that will all be lifted in unison, one lift every 10 seconds. In planning this event, students also wanted fundraiser for Iranian women, but as there was no way to channel funds to the protestors, the students decided to support Chez Doris instead.   “Our support for Chez Doris will further drive home the fact that women aren’t just treated unfairly in countries that are far away,” added lead staff person Jason Gannon. “This is a global issue that happens right here in our city too.”  To fundraise, the school printed a QR on commemorative shirts that link to a donation page. Students have worn these shirts regularly as they trained for Thursday as well as sold them to the public.  The other seven schools were: The schools involved are: Venture, Vezina, Focus, Outreach, Elizabeth. Mountainview  and Sacred Heart.

See our press release

CTV report   

Global TV report 

Floor Hockey players from the four schools unite.

BALL HOCKEY TOURNAMENT:  On Thursday, June 1, Dante Elementary School, John Caboto Academy, Willingdon Elementary School, and Pierre Elliott Trudeau Elementary School got together in the spirit of competition to play  ball hockey. In previous years, Jon Stein (Willingdon) and Patty Foschi (P.E.T.) have hosted a ball hockey tournament for grade 5-6 students. However, for the first time since its inception, Pierre Elliott Trudeau School hosted the tournament for teams consisting of grade 3 and 4 students. It was a great success, and the participating teams demonstrated exceptional sportsmanship and remarkable talent. Four students were recognized for their hard work and commitment, including Liev Ellison and Bhavaan Kulaveerasingam from John Caboto Academy in Ahuntsic; Milan Fazzolari from Pierre Elliott Trudeau Elementary School in Rosemount and Brontë Piccolino from Willingdon in NDG.The recent tournament served as a testament to the significance of teamwork and sportsmanship. A tip of the hat to the physical education teachers, Jon Stein (Willingdon), Joesph Romano ( JCA) and Ryan Grad (Dante) and Patty Foschi (PET), who worked hard to prepare their teams for the big day!

GMAA TRACK: The heat didn't stop EMSB elementary students from bringing their best effort to run, jump and throw in competition earlier this month at the GMAA Elementary Track and Field Meet. Congrats to all athletes who participated from seven schools (Parkdale, Cedarcrest, Royal Vale, Carlyle, Gerald McShane, East Hill and Edward Murphy).

Priscilla Gagné is welcomed.

PARALYMPIAN VISITS: In a heartwarming display of sportsmanship and inclusivity, Paralympian judoka Priscilla Gagné visited LINKS High School in Ahuntsic. Ms. Gagné shared her experience and her inspiring journey of becoming a Paralympian with a visual impairment. Some of her more recent accomplishments included, but were not limited to, the winning of the silver medal at the 2020 Tokyo Summer Paralympics as well as being Canada’s flagbearer for the opening ceremony. In addition to sharing her inspirational story, she showed students the medals she has won over her years in judo. Students were also fortunate enough to have the opportunity to gain some judo techniques and even had the chance to practice these techniques on Ms. Gagné herself! Her visit helped highlight the power of sports to inspire and unite students of all abilities.  “I was honored to speak and interact with the students and teachers at LINKS High School,'' she said. “These students have a place in my heart for life. Having grown up with a severe vision impairment, I understand there are many obstacles to overcome when you are living with a disability. Even as a young child I knew my life was different.” 

A student gets into the action.

SPECIAL OLYMPICS EVENT: McGill University’s Tomlinson Fieldhouse was transformed into a multi-sport playground as the EMSB partnered with Special Olympics to present a field day for 85 students with intellectual disabilities recently. Studies have shown that physical exercise can aid in the cognitive development of students with intellectual disabilities. The students from eight EMSB schools participated in a variety of activities adapted to their needs. There was bowling, curling, running, obstacle courses and throwing balls through targets. Physical education teachers from the EMSB served as coaches and organizers and were assisted by volunteers and 35 students from the sports leadership program Lester B. Pearson High School. See the complete story here.

Gianluca Minicozzi

QVA ATHLETE: While his cohorts in Montreal were tramping to class through snow, Gianluca Minicozzi was going to hockey practice in shorts and sandals while completing his Secondary V education through the Quebec Virtual Academy (QVA). The EMSB is one of nine English-language boards across Quebec who participate in QVA to offer virtual learning experiences for students with medical needs, those who live in rural areas and don’t have access to some courses and for elite athletes whose training schedules make in difficult to attend regular classes. In Minicozzi’s case, he attended virtual classes while playing for the Bakersfield Roughnecks in California’s San Joaquin Valley. The Roughnecks play in the USPHL Premier League which serves as a stepping stone to U.S. college hockey. 

Erika Gordon

Erika Gordon, meanwhile. is also looking forward to competing at the NCAA level.  The 14-year-old swimmer in completing her Secondary III studies through QVA while training as part of the Pointe Claire Aquatic Club’s elite sports étude program. Please read the complete story on our sports page 

The quilt.

ART PROJECT: A student teacher at Quebec Virtual Academy  named Aaron Ansuini has concluded a wonderful Art project that he did with virtual art classes. The supervising QVA teacher is Sabrina Di Girolamo.   In this visual arts project, students   were prompted to create their own quilt blocks as part of a community quilt. In the first half of this project, students used printmaking to explore personal connections to community by creating patterned sheets of paper featuring a motif that they designed to represent what community means to them, or how they personally connect to or identify with concepts of community.  In the second half of this project, students used piecing techniques and quilt design to explore the collective elements of community; as students designed and pieced together their own quilt blocks, they were prompted to consider what it means for a whole to be composed of many parts and respond to this in their design process.  This is where the concept of respect became central to this work. Much like the many blocks that form the whole of this community quilt, being part of a community does not mean that we’re all the same—but rather, that we create belonging together by respecting, recognizing, and holding space for the diverse range of people that form the parts of our community’s whole, valuing the people in our community, and making an active effort to join together with them.

Nick Katalifos, Kitsana, Joe Ortona and Principal David Servello.

STUDENT OF THE MONTH: Kitana Nesfield has been chosen as the EMSB Student of the Month for June. Kitana is a Secondary II student who started the year with Quebec Virtual Academy. Kitana has proved to be a very mature, determined and intrinsically motivated student who excels academically and is mutually respected by her peers. Kitana is a well-rounded student who enjoys playing tennis and has a keen interest in E-Commerce, Entrepreneurship and Coding.

Adriana Pineda is rewarded.

Grade 5 student Adriana Pineda was chosen by the EMSB Junior Chorale as the Chorister of the Year. This is Adriana’s second year representing Our Lady of Pompei Elementary School in Ahuntsic and she is very motivated to continue doing so. 

Damien Custodia gets on to his bike.

SUN YOUTH PRIZE: Congratulations to Our Lady of Pompei Elementary student  Damien Custodio for winning the bike prize from the Sun Youth initiative-Avri Morrow Bicycle Distribution. Damien Custodio was selected by his teachers from the Ahuntsic school to receive this award for his optimistic attitude and perseverance despite having to deal with some challenges. New bicycles are distributed to young people whose actions have positively influenced their community or have shown exceptional courage in difficult situations.  Our Lady of Pompei  Elementary School in Ahuntsic is incredibly proud of all the obstacles Damien has overcome this school year. 

CREATIVE WRITING CONTEST: "Alternative United's" creative writing contest, Voices, is collaborating with Yolk Literary Journal and Concordia University this year.  Voices is a yearly creative writing contest and publication open to high school students from EMSB's  Alternative Outreach Network. There are great prizes, including $250 for first place, and everyone who submits gets published in our yearly anthology, which also includes an incredible visual arts section made up of student artwork created in throughout the year.  Curtis McRae, editor-in-chief at Yolk, agreed to be the guest judge this year and he proposed that they also publish the winning piece in their literary journal. Not only that, they  hosted  the launch party in the Mordechai Richler room in Concordia's English  on   June 19  at the McConnell (LB) building.

Derrek Cauchi, Eramelinda Boquer, Melanie Reiss-Carreira, Penny and students.

SINCLAIR LAIRD GOES GLOBAL: Principal Derrek Cauchi, his comfort dog Penny, teacher Melanie Reiss-Carreira  and some Grade 5 students at Sinclair Laird Elementary School in Park Extension took part in the recording of a Global TV commercial for EMSB registration, which will air in August. Broadcaster Eramelinda Boquer did the weather from the school all morning on June 8 

Watch Mr. Cauchi and Penny do the weather forecast 

Watch Physical Education and Health teacher Scott Danovitch talking about finding the right balance between physical and mental health 

Enjoying the color run.

JCA COLOUR RUN: John Caboto Academy in Ahuntsic is home to three specialized classes. Autism Acceptance is celebrated during the month of April. However, the staff and students at John Caboto   made a conscious effort to recognize neurodiversity throughout the 2022-2023 academic year. The JCA Colour Run was held on June 8, with the joint efforts of students and staff from John F. Kennedy's W.O.T.P., Tina Filippone (Special Education Technician at John Caboto), Alex Rosauri (Grade 3 and Science Teacher at John Caboto), Anthony Tonin (Vice Principal at John F. Kennedy High School) and Patrizia Tummillo (Principal at John Caboto Academy). "The diverse colours in the run represent the uniqueness of the human brain, as well as their individual strengths and abilities," mentions Alba Cano-Juarez, WINGS 2 teacher at John Caboto. Teachers, support staff and students recognize that embracing neurodiversity can undoubtedly foster a more harmonious and inclusive community for all learners.

Simon Chang got a warm welcome.

SIMON CHANG VISITS: Grade 4 John Caboto Academy students in teacher Khalida Smahi’s Club des petits artisans are just about ready for summer. For the past few months, they’ve been sewing and decorating their own beach bags with the skills that Ms. Smahi has been teaching them, and fabric that was donated by Chabanel-area suppliers via the Simon Chang Foundation for Change. On June 15, the class was excited to receive a visit from Simon Chang. The morning included a Q & A session where students asked all sorts of questions about Mr. Chang’s career in fashion. They wanted to know what inspires him when designing, what triggered his desire to create fashion, and more personally, if he likes being famous and why he chose to live in Montreal.  Mr. Chang also had the opportunity to ask the students about what inspired their beach bag designs, which led to lively discussions. The students were captivated when Mr. Chang brought out his sketchbook that includes many drawings, and the mutual Q & A continued. This friendship between Mr. Chang and Ms. Smahi’s class has just begun. Next week, the whole class will visit the Simon Chang showroom on Chabanel Street just down the road, and the inspiration and collaboration will continue!

Visitors enjoy the vernissage.

DUNRAE VERNISSAGE: After one of their oldest trees in the school yard of Dunrae Gardens  was affected by the ice storm, a large brick wall lay naked. Art teacher Mike Venditti  came up with the idea to create a mural on this facade. To make this happen, the school held an Art Vernissage on  June 8 to raise the funds necessary. The showcase highlighted graduate works, yet also spotlighted some of the school's finer works from throughout the grades. From cubism, surrealism, pop art and urban street art , guests were witness to creative flood that is Dunrae Gardens.   The event sponsor, Decarie Motors, parked a beautiful Aston Martin DBX 707 at the entrance, accompanied by the sleek 2023 Land Rover Defender 75th anniversary edition. On display was a painted hood from the Jaguar F-pace designer Ian Callum. The dealership gave a generous $2,000 donation that quickly brought the school closer to its goal.  Wine, sweets, and a variety of delicious arancini from Arancini Manuzza were served and the evening’s musical soundtrack was provided by parents and famed Ninja Tune deejays Kevin Moon and Tasha Anestopoulous.  International urban artists WhatIsAdam and Teetz graced the school with their presence and donated two of their own pieces of art to help the cause. Both works were sold over the starting bid. In addition, a collaborative work from our sixth-grade class too was sold for a whopping $300. The mural by Montreal urban artist WhatIsAdam is planned to be created this summer and the students of Dunrae Gardens school can expect a work of beauty this coming September on the west facade as they return to school after this coming summer holiday. 

NATIONAL INDIGENOUS HISTORY MONTH: Dunrae Gardens opened the school year with a commemoration of National Day of Truth & Reconciliation and closed the year with a commemoration of National Indigenous History Month by a sage ceremony with special guest, former Chief Tom Dearhouse. The ceremony took place on June 9, in front of the entrance to the school. In the weeks leading up to the ceremony, during environment week, students learned about plant education from Spiritual and Community Animator, Puynung Choy, with a focus on ancient medicinal remedies, which are also experiencing a current resurgence of interest in North America. During the ceremony, students were really engaged in the multi-sensory experience, particularly as many were observing this sacred ceremony for the first time. The staff was also very interested in the ceremony. The sage ceremony is about letting all the bad energy out and breathing in the good; it was unanimously agreed that the purification process was much needed and so appreciated. Evidently, after returning to their classes, some started dancing in the classroom and in the staff room. Dunrae Gardens is ready to leave this year behind, and invite in a new, fresh start next year.

Julian Sher and Pearl Grubert with staff and students.

AUTHOR/FILMMAKER RETURNS: Award-winning journalist and author Julian Sher graduated from Coronation Elementary School in Côte des Neiges 58 years ago. One of his favorite teachers was Pearl Grubert, someone he credits for inspiring him to follow his dreams.  On Friday, May 26 he returned to Coronation with Ms. Grubert to talk to students about his successful career. He is the author of seven books. As an investigative reporter, he worked for the Toronto Star and The Globe and Mail. He was the senior producer of CBC’s The Fifth Estate, Canada’s premier investigative TV program, for five years. In addition, he has directed and written major documentaries, covering wars and intrigue across the globe. His documentary Nuclear Jihad, produced for the New York Times and CBC, won the broadcast equivalent of the Pulitzer Prize. Sher’s 2021 film, Ghosts of Afghanistan, won three top Canadian Screen Awards, including Best Documentary. He is also active in protecting media freedoms, working with the Centre for Free Expression and Journalists for Human Rights.Now comes his latest book, just released, called The North Star. It weaves together the different strands of several Canadians, and a handful of Confederate agents in Canada, as they all make their separate, fateful journeys to the night of Abraham Lincoln’s assassination on April 14, 1865. Mr. Sher was peppered with some excellent questions from students.

Phil Santagata was given a school jersey.

MANMADE: Honoré Mercier Elementary School alumnus Philip Santagata returned to his former elementary school recently to speak to the Grade 6 class. He spoke about the important lessons he brought forward from his public education when creating his successful business Manmade, boxer briefs which shot to North American fame when he and his three partners appeared on CBC’s  Dragons’ Den. He spoke to the students about the five pillars he followed when working toward his success: curiosity, focus, work ethic, promises, and kindness. Santagata encouraged the current Honoré Mercier students to take on these pillars as they work toward their own goals, whether that be in high school or in their later adult life. In his talk, Santagata showed his continued love and appreciation for Honoré Mercier Elementary School and all it has given him and expressed how fortunate he was to be able to return and talk to this year’s graduating class. 

Russell Copeman fields questions.

COPEMAN RETURNS: Willingdon Elementary brought back one of its own last month when former politician and current executive director of the Quebec English School Boards Association (QESBA), Russell Copeman, returned to speak to the school’s senior campus. The visit was arranged as part of an EMSB alumni series. Mr. Copeman began at Willingdon himself in 1965 and remained enrolled at the school through his Grade 6 graduation in 1971. His sons would also attend the school in the 1990s. He reflected on his time at Willingdon with today’s students, a period where there was no bus service and students would return home each day for lunch. Mr. Copeman even brought his Grade 3 class picture to show students. He also spoke about the importance of being a good citizen and how that principle tied into his professional life as an MNA for the Notre-Dame-de-Grâce riding and Côte-des-Neiges–Notre Dame-de-Grâce borough mayor, a post he held from 2013 to 2017. He told students how his work-related travels have brought him across the globe and afforded him the chance to learn about other cultures, all the while reaffirming how fortunate we are to live in Canada. Above all else, Mr. Copeman imparted to students the importance of learning, not just basic facts and information, but also how to be a good person with good values. “It was an absolute delight to speak with the students at Willingdon’s Senior Campus,” said Mr. Copeman. “Despite it being their last activity of the day, they were engaged, curious and quite knowledgeable about what government does. I think there were some budding candidates for political office in the room! I came away with the overwhelming feeling that we will be in good hands with this next generation of Willingdon graduates.”

The Serour Brothers with their parents, Commissioner  James Kromida, Principal Elena Zervas and VP Laura Fundaro.

SEROURS BROTHERS AT GARDENVIEW: On the eve of their appearance at the Ottawa Natural Bodybuilding Championship, the  Serour brothers   visited their former elementary school, Gardenview in St. Laurent, on Tuesday, June 13 to talk about the importance of keeping in good physical condition and staying in school. Liam 22, Jordan, 20 and Adam, 18 are excited to be headed to the nation’s capital  and  fulfill a lifelong dream of theirs  to  be stepping on to the bodybuilding stage together. They each had a unique introduction to fitness and bodybuilding,  but have pushed through any and all obstacles as brothers.  Their dad, immigration specialist and politician Richard Serour, is better known to some radio listeners via his alter-ego Ricky Cyr from several years  ago on CJAD. Mom Gabrielle Azran Serour is an attorney and as her husband notes: “She prepares most of their meals. It’s like feeding three hungry lions; but it’s a labor of love on behalf of the lioness!” The brothers note that the underlying factor that has led to their combined success in bodybuilding, martial arts, academic achievements, and all other challenges life has thrown their way, has always been their brotherhood.

See this report on their visit from Global TV

See our full press release 

See their YouTube channel  

See this video interview 

COLORS FOR PEACE: The EMSB hosted an exhibit and ceremony on April 26  at its central head office  at which time  students from three integrated Italian PELO primary (Programme d'enseignement des langues d'origine) programs were recognized for their participation in the COLORS FOR PEACE activity. Watch this report that was recently aired on Italian television 

LDVA indeed lights up the night.

LDVA LIGHTS UP THE NIGHT: On June 2, the school yard at Leonardo Da Vinci Academy in RDP took on a magical transformation as they lit up the night for the Montreal Neurological Institute. This community truly came together to enjoy a fabulous evening with delicious food, musical entertainment by students, including a dance choreography with 50 grade 6 students, individual musical performances, a choir performance accompanied by alumni David Marino and a fabulous walk/run. Together they raised over $23 000.  The evening was also filled with touching tributes to those we have lost, including courageous words from Giulia Garofano, the mother of CF Montreal, soccer player, Jason Di Tullio, who lost his battle to an aggressive brain tumor. Di Tullio was an inspiration to LDVA’s passionate soccer students and the community was thrilled to hear the breaking announcement that night that the adjacent park to the school will be renamed the “Jason Di Tullio Park.” A big thank you to all the sponsors, those who donated online, and the 600 people in attendance at this fabulous event. 

Engaging in artistic explorations.

VMC AND CENTRE OF DREAMS: On May 19  Centre of Dreams and Hopes had the privilege to accommodate Secondary IV students from Vincent Massey Collegiate in Rosemount. The students worked with neurodiverse young adults in collaborative artistic work. The students directed and engaged in conversations and artistic explorations about how mental health affects our everyday lives. Each group created a project relating to a theme and message about mental health they identified with. This workshop was a great success! Centre of Dreams and Hopes is proud to have collaborated with these generous and supportive students.

Cooking up a storm.

ASIAN HERITAGE MONTH:  John Grant High School in Côte Saint-Luc marked Asian Heritage Month. Vincent, a student from the Work Oriented Training  Pathway (WOTP) program., along with his supportive schoolmates and teachers organized a sushi-making project that brought the flavors and traditions of Asia to the school community. Inspired by the richness of Asian cuisine, Vincent and his classmates embarked on an educational and culinary adventure. With guidance from Vincent's mother, Natalie, they learned about the cultural significance of sushi and crafted a delightful assortment of freshly made sushi rolls which were enjoyed by students and staff at our school cafeteria. This student-led project promoted cultural diversity, teamwork, and creativity throughout the school. Engaging conversations about Asian heritage were sparked, providing an opportunity for everyone to appreciate and explore this vibrant culture, says teacher Zhen Qin.

HIGH SCHOOL GRADS:  Graduation ceremonies are taking place this month.  Pictured here at Royal Vale, William Zaifman is congratulated by Assistant Director General Pela Nickoletopoulos and Regional Directors Nathalie Lacroix and Jimmy Giannacopoulos (pictured above). William was also the recipient of the Governor General’s Medal.

Students enjoy their experience.

NON-VIOLENCE AND ACCEPTANCE: Since the implementation of the SPVM “United Without Violence” program over 15 years ago, Cycle III students and staff from Edward Murphy Elementary School in Hochelaga-Maisonneuve have been actively taking part to promote peace, acceptance, and non-violence within their school and communities. This year, on June 13, joined by their teachers, CCWs, and Spiritual and Community Animator Rocco Speranza, they spent a fun-filled day at Centre Claude Robillard interacting with students from elementary schools across Montreal through sports and other creative workshops. They were joined by SPVM socio-community officers, members of the mounted division, canine division, and Montreal firefighters, with the goal of promoting nonviolence and acceptance of others and their differences. This celebration marks the end of the yearlong United Without Violence programming in and among the participating Montreal Elementary schools. Mr. Speranza, and SPVM Officer Jean Scalzo, have been working together delivering this program for many years with great results.   

Matt Devine gets a hero's welcome.

BIKE RIDE ACROSS CANADA: The Habilitas Foundation and its partners, the EMSB and CIUSSS West-Central Montreal,  welcomed cyclist Matt Devine during his stop at the Philip E. Layton and Mackay Centre schools in NDG as he bikes across Canada. Matt and his wife Nicole, who is driving the support vehicle alongside him for the entire trip, are partnering with Edmonton-based charitable organization You Can Ride 2 for this transformative cycling journey. The trip, which is expected to take approximately three months, benefits a fundraising campaign in support of adaptive cycling, with recipient partners identified in cities from coast to coast.  The Philip E. Layton and Mackay Centre schools were tapped as the Montreal recipients, and welcomed the Devines with a modest celebration. The Devines have gifted the school with an electronic inventory system to help track the assignment and maintenance of their fleet of adapted bikes. "We are very grateful to Matt and Nicole," says CIUSSS West-Central Montreal physiotherapist Arlene Rosenberg, who works directly with the clients at the Philip E. Layton and Mackay Centre schools. "This is a terrific initiative. It will allow us to spend more time with them since the tracking system will take care of so many of the administrative tasks that we had to perform before. Biking is a fundamental part of growing up. We are here to make biking accessible to everyone."  On May 30, the clients, supported by teachers, therapists and parents,  mounted their adapted bikes and joined Matt for a ceremonial ride around the school before sending him off on the next portion of his ambitious journey.

Enjoying their retreat.

NATURE RETREAT: On May 30, senior classes from the Mackay Satellite class (Westmount High) and Philip E.  Layton had their retreat on the mountain with Forest Therapy Guide Sophie Monkman, who led them on their sensory journey by the lake and into the forest. "We were lucky that a whole family of fish and ducks joined us for an unusually long visit with the students" says SCA Puynung Choy.  During the retreat, students learned about all the various trees on the mountain, and students and staff even tried out some greens from some of the coniferous trees. Later, some students went to the lookout to experience a bird's eye view of Montreal! It was a refreshing trip for the spirit, and everyone is looking forward to its sequel come September, when they will return with an Indigenous Teacher who runs a youth camp in Kahnawake.

EXPLORING DIVERSE COMMUNITIES: Elizabeth High had three trips to sacred places from March to June, (Kahnawake, Islamic Centre of Quebec, Sikh Temple).  The students came back from each trip, enriched by their learning experiences.  The facilitators at all the sites were amazing, and generously shared their knowledge with students. Students and staff had lots of questions that facilitators answered with patience and kindness. After each community outing, students extended their learning by enjoying a meal connected to the cultures of the various sites they visited.  “The way of life we learned about at each site really differed from the cultures of the schools…what a privilege!” said Spiritual and Community Animator Puynung Choy, who organized the trips. These community visits were supported by funding from the Multicultural Funds Grant. 

Getting a chance to spend some time outdoors.

WELLNESS IN NATURE: On June 5 and 6, Nesbitt and Pierre de Coubertin Elementary Schools  participated in a “Wellness in Nature” Workshop with Soft Earth Forest Therapy. Cycle II and III students had an outdoor, sensory-based experience founded on the practice of forest therapy by Nature and Forest Therapy Guide Sophie Monkman. Students had an opportunity to spend time outdoors as they learned about the benefits of connecting to nature, promoting their overall well-being, and the importance of fostering a sustainable future. The “Wellness in Nature” program was offered to schools as part of a larger EMSB Student Services initiative to promote well-being in the schools. It was a perfect follow up to Nesbitt and PDC’s recent 21-Day Minimalism Challenge to reduce waste and consumption in the schools initiated by Spiritual and Community Animator Vince Lacroce. “The  Wellness in Nature  program aligns with the school’s commitment to providing a well-rounded education that prioritizes the physical, emotional, and social development of our students. By immersing our students in nature, our schools aim to instill a deep appreciation for the environment and inspire them to become advocates of the planet. With a focus on wellness, sustainability, and fostering a love for nature, our hope is that it creates an enriching environment where students can thrive academically, emotionally, and socially,” says Mr.  Lacroce, Spiritual Community Animator. “We were very happy to have been able to bring this program to our students.”

Listening to Rube Lutes.

ARTS AND CULTURE: In May, Cedarcrest Elementary School’s Grade 4 to 6 classes participated in interactive workshops funded by an ELAN ArtistsInspire Grant. The workshops were coordinated by Spiritual and Community Animator Christa Dumkee and were facilitated by award-winning folk and blues musician Rob Lutes. Rob has eight albums and an extensive touring history in Canada, the US and Europe. In teaching workshops about songwriting and creativity, Rob helps students bypass their own internal critic to allows them to experience the joy of creation. During the workshops, students gained an appreciation for the rich history of the Blues and had the opportunity to share their own ideas to create a fun and meaningful class song that Rob performed for the whole group at the end of the day.  

Ms. Ahn and some of her students.

HEALTHCARE AT JAMES LYNG: On May 9, the Academic Immersion in Healthcare (AIH) program from McGill University visited Secondary III students at James Lyng High School in St. Henri under the guidance of science teacher Hayoung Ahn. AIH, a non-profit club run by McGill University medical students, has been offering an e-mentorship program with James Lyng students since last year. The students had the opportunity to learn how to make medical sutures and use an ultrasound machine.

MIXTAPE RELEASED: James Lyng High School has released their seventh year-end mixtape, available at www.upnextrecordings.com,  as well as on all major streaming services. The mixtape compiles 19 original songs written, performed, and recorded by James Lyng students in their music classes during the 2022-2023 school year. “Our mixtapes are the culmination of much of our students’ work throughout the last term of their music classes,” says music teacher Nathan Gage. “Not only does it give students a platform to artistically express themselves in a confident and positive way, but it allows me to teach my students music technology skills, which are so central to the practice of today’s working musicians.” James Lyng High School's music program is a non-traditional, student-centered program that draws inspiration from Hip Hop, Rock, and R&B, as well as whatever their students are into."

Enthusiastic fundraising participants.

SUPPORTING JDF: Congratulations to Michelangelo International Elementary School! Students recently participated in a fundraiser in support of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. Michelangelo started with a goal of $10,000 and ended up raising $21,124. The school currently has three students living with Type-1 Diabetes and thought it would be a great idea to support them and raise awareness in the community. 

Enjoying a hands on cooking experience.

ITALIAN CULTURE: Students from the integrated PELO elementary schools,  Dante, Pierre de Coubertin, and East Hill,  recently had the delightful opportunity to immerse themselves in Italian culture through a TARALLI cooking activity held at Casa D'Italia throughout the month of June. This engaging event, organized by the Educational Services department at the school board, aimed to foster a deeper understanding and appreciation of Italian customs and traditions among the young learners. TARALLI, a customary Italian snack, took center stage as the students eagerly participated in a hands-on cooking experience. Guided by an experienced Italian chef, they learned the art of crafting these delicious, ring-shaped biscuits. The activity provided practical opportunities for the students to apply and reinforce their language skills while experiencing the richness of Italian culinary heritage .Following the cooking session, the students embarked on a historical tour of Casa D'Italia. Led by knowledgeable guides, they explored the significance of this iconic institution within the Italian community in Montreal. The students gained insights into the Casa D'Italia's longstanding support of the Italian community and its contributions to preserving Italian culture and heritage in the city. The event on June 19 was graced by the presence of esteemed guests, including Console Commerciale Fortunato Mangiola and  Diretrice Scolastica del Consolato D’Italia, Isabella Di Finis, Giovanna Giordano, Director General of Casa D’Italia as well as  Anna Villalta, Assistant Director of Educational Services. Their participation added to the excitement and significance of the occasion. The representatives from the Consolato Generale d’Italia a Montreal shared their appreciation for the students' engagement in Italian cultural activities and their commitment to learning the Italian language. This activity served as a testament to the school board's commitment to providing a comprehensive and immersive learning experience for students in their language of origin. Above all, it celebrated the diversity and richness of Italian culture while fostering intercultural understanding and appreciation.

FOOD TRUCK: The Plaza Antique food truck stopped off at Westmount High School on June 2 and fed 1,000 hungry students and staff. Event Coordinator Mario Pizzuto is an EMSB alumni and parent. Info: . details@plazaantique.com


Christopher Honce and Tommaso Maffei.

RTC MEDAL WINNER: On May 25 and 26, Winnipeg hosted the 27th Canadian Skills and Technology organized by Skills/Compétences Canada.  Quebec was represented by 47 competitors who qualified for the Olympiades québécoises. A blue wave swept across the Canadian competition, with Team Quebec taking home 32 medals in 29  trades. Representing 24 school service centers, school boards and CEGEPs across   Quebec, these results reward the excellence of the know-how of the entire vocational and technical training network. With medals around their necks and stars the 47 finalists proudly returned to their home regions. This included Tommaso Maffei from Rosemount Technology Centre, who captured third place in cabinetmaking. He was accompanied by his coach Christopher Honce, Academic Advisor Nadia Zuccaro and Educational Counsellor Miriam Furfaro.

Pictured above, Mr. Maffei  was recognized at the last Council meeting along with the co-winners of  the Olympiades québécoises des métiers et des technologies where, in Industrial Drafting, Eduardo Gutierrez Madariaga from Rosemount Technology Centre won the gold medal and In Automobile Mechanics, Austin Bertone from Laurier Macdonald Career Centre won the silver medal. 

Preparing sandwiches.

WAGAR STUDENTS ASSIST CHARITY: Center of Dreams and Hopes is a community school through the Wagar Adult Education Centre in Côte Saint-Luc. Teacher Hannah Ryan recently arranged for the non-profit group called Bread and Beyond to come to the school and guide students in preparing sandwiches for the less fortunate.  With guidance from Bread and Beyond organizers, the students surprisingly took like a fish to water, and impressed everyone.  They were separated into different roles and the group prepared over 200 sandwiches. Even those students who didn't want to actively participate in sandwich making found their place in labeling, designing artsy stickers, and stuffing bags. This was a  true example of the Social Integration Services ( SIS) system in action.

MARTIAL ARTS: Every Friday, the Galileo Adult Education Centre in Montreal North presents karate  classes for students with special needs via Karate Autism (https://www.autismekarate.com/) . More than 50 students participate. André Langevin, the parent of an autistic child, is the coordinator. In addition to the AEVS Wellness Fund, he has also been able to get some local politicians to provide sponsorship.

Raising money for a cause.

BIG HEARTED STUDENTS: St Laurent Adult Education Center believes in teaching students to be world citizens and care about their community. To that end, they held a fundraising campaign and raised $1.462.50 to help finance research against breast cancer. These  big hearted students generously participated in a doughnut and coffee/chocolate sale and wore jeans on National Denim Day. They also continued to build community and enjoy the learning experience via the Improv Montreal team. Students, staff, and teachers eagerly participated in the event and built remarkable memories that will stay with them for years to come.


DES ENSEIGNANTES DE FRANÇAIS À CTV : Pour améliorer la maîtrise du français chez les élèves du primaire et du secondaire, le ministre de l'Éducation, Bernard Drainville, propose, entre autres, des exercices d'écriture au quotidien. CTV a réalisé ce reportage et s'est entretenu avec deux enseignantes de français de la CSEM (anciennes élèves de notre commission scolaire) : .

CONFÉRENCE DES PARENTS: La conférence annuelle des parents de la CSEM a eu lieu le 28 mai à l'école secondaire Rosemont. Les principaux orateurs ont fourni de précieuses informations sur les plus récentes recherches et tendances en matière de psychologie de l'enfant, et y sont allés de conseils pratiques et de stratégies pour les aider à élever des enfants résilients, confiants et en bonne santé. Dans le segment « The Truth about Lying: Science-based strategies to address lying and foster honesty in children », la Dre Victoria Talwar, pédopsychologue, a livré une excellente présentation. Elle est titulaire de la Chaire de recherche du Canada (niveau II) et directrice du Département de psychopédagogie et de psychologie du counseling à la Faculté d'éducation de l'Université McGill. L'autre segment, « Responding to our children’s dependency/addiction », fut présenté par Bill Yong de Chabad Lifeline. Du 29 mai au 3 juin, une série de dîners-causeries virtuels ont eu lieu. Vous pouvez les visionner, ainsi que l'ensemble de la conférence, à https://www.youtube.com/@emsbparents.

LETTRE AU SÉNAT: Le président de la CSEM, Joe Ortona, a adressé des lettres à chaque membre du Sénat du Canada au sujet du projet de loi C-13, exhortant les sénateurs à remplir leur rôle de « Chambre de second examen objectif » et à proposer des amendements afin de garantir les droits des communautés linguistiques minoritaires au Canada. 

PRIÈRES DANS LES ÉCOLES: Le président de la CSEM, Joe Ortona, a écrit au ministre de l'Éducation du Québec, Bernard Drainville, pour lui faire part de ses inquiétudes concernant sa Directive visant l’interdiction de prier dans les écoles publiques. La Directive oblige les centres de services scolaires de s'assurer que dans chacune de leurs écoles et chacun de leurs centres, aucun lieu n'est utilisé, en fait et en apparence, à des fins de pratique religieuse. M. Ortona précise que la CSEM n'est pas un centre de services scolaire. Le 10 août 2020, l'Association des commissions scolaires anglophones du Québec a obtenu un sursis complet de la loi 40 dans le secteur anglophone. Cette loi, à l’origine des centres de services scolaires, aurait transformé le système de gouvernance des commissions scolaires anglophones, tout en retirant plusieurs de leurs pouvoirs. Dans un jugement unanime le 17 septembre 2020, la Cour d'appel du Québec a confirmé le sursis de la loi 40. À l’heure actuelle, la Directive ne s’applique donc pas à la Commission scolaire English-Montréal.  

PÉRIPLE PANCANADIEN À VÉLO: La Fondation Habilitas et ses partenaires, la CSEM et le CIUSSS du Centre-Ouest-de-l’Île-de-Montréal ont accueilli le cycliste Matt Devine lors de son passage aux écoles Philip E. Layton et Centre Mackay à Notre-Dame-de-Grâce, dans le cadre de sa traversée du Canada à vélo. Matt et son épouse Nicole, qui conduira le véhicule de soutien à ses côtés tout au long du voyage, se sont associés à l'organisme de bienfaisance You Can Ride 2, basé à Edmonton, pour ce parcours transformateur à vélo. Le voyage, qui devrait durer environ trois mois, est en lien avec une campagne visant à recueillir des fonds au profit du cyclisme adapté pour des partenaires bénéficiaires désignés dans des villes d'un océan à l'autre. Les écoles Philip E. Layton et Centre Mackay ont été choisies comme bénéficiaires à Montréal et ont accueilli la famille Devine lors d'une modeste célébration. Le couple Devine a fait don à l'école d'un système d'inventaire électronique pour faciliter le suivi de l'affectation et de l'entretien de son parc de vélos adaptés. « Nous sommes profondément reconnaissants envers Matt et Nicole », a déclaré Arlene Rosenberg, physiothérapeute au CIUSSS du Centre-Ouest-de-l’Île-de-Montréal, qui travaille directement avec les clients des écoles Philip E. Layton et Centre Mackay. « C'est une initiative formidable. Ce don nous permettra de passer plus de temps avec les clients, car le système de suivi nous libérera d'un grand nombre de tâches administratives qu’il fallait auparavant accomplir. La pratique du vélo est essentielle au développement de l'enfant. Nous sommes là pour rendre le vélo accessible à tous ». Le 30 mai, les clients, soutenus par les enseignants, les thérapeutes et les parents, ont enfourché leurs vélos adaptés et se sont joints à Matt pour une balade cérémoniale autour de l'école avant de le laisser poursuivre son ambitieux périple.

OLYMPES DE LA PAROLE: Le 11 mai, le concours et la cérémonie de remise des prix d’Olympes de la Parole Canada ont eu lieu à l'École de gestion John-Molson de l'Université Concordia. L'équipe de l'école secondaire Laurier Macdonald, représentée par Gianna Simancas, Hannah Tinker, Andrea Vaccaro, Giovana Wendling, et dirigée par l'enseignante Valerie Barnabé, a connu une soirée fort réussie. En effet, leur projet sur la violence en ligne fondée sur le sexe a remporté les prix suivants : Mention du jury pour un projet communautaire à fort impact, le Prix Jobel pour la Créativité à Impact Social et le Prix Coup de Cœur des Jeunes 2023 de la Fondation du Docteur Julien. « Nous sommes impressionnés et encouragés par la passion et la conscience citoyenne dont nos élèves ont déjà fait preuve dans ce projet et nul doute qu'elles continueront à faire la fierté de la communauté Laurier Macdonald alors qu’elles amorcent les prochaines étapes », a déclaré Cristina Celzi, directrice de l'école.

LE POINT SUR LA RELOCALISATION DE L’ÉCOLE F.A.C.E.: Les niveaux primaire et secondaire de l'école F.A.C.E., des secteurs anglophone et francophone, devraient être relocalisés dans deux bâtiments à partir des années scolaires 2024-2025 et 2025-2026 afin de permettre la réfection majeure de l’édifice historique situé au 3449, rue Université, au centre-ville. Les travaux s’échelonneront sur plusieurs années. Cette école est administrée conjointement par le Centre de services scolaire de Montréal (CSSDM) et la CSEM. Dans un premier temps, les élèves du primaire déménageront à l'été 2024 au 4835, boul. Christophe-Colomb, sur Le Plateau, et un an plus tard, ce sera au tour des élèves du secondaire de s’installer au 4251, rue Saint-Urbain, également sur Le Plateau. Ce même bâtiment a déjà abrité l'emblématique école secondaire Baron Byng, puis l'Organisation Jeunesse au Soleil y a élu domicile. Il se trouve à proximité de l'école primaire Bancroft de la CSEM. Pour infos : http://face.emsb.qc.ca/face/about/relocation

LES FRÈRES SEROUR À GARDENVIEW: À l’aube de leur participation au championnat de culturisme naturel d'Ottawa qui se tiendra ce mois-ci, les frères Serour se sont rendus à leur ancienne école primaire Gardenview, à Saint-Laurent, le mardi 13 juin, afin de discuter de l'importance de la santé physique et de la persévérance scolaire. Liam 22 ans, Jordan 20 ans et Adam 18 ans sont emballés à l’idée de se rendre dans la région de la capitale nationale pour y réaliser l’un de leurs rêves, soit celui de monter ensemble sur la scène du championnat de culturisme. Chacun s’est initié à sa façon à l'entraînement physique et au culturisme, mais c’est ensemble, en tant que frères, qu’ils ont surmonté tous les obstacles. Leur père, Richard Serour, spécialiste de l'immigration et politicien, est mieux connu par certains sous son pseudonyme Ricky Cyr à l’époque où on pouvait l’entendre sur les ondes de CJAD. Leur mère, Gabrielle Azran Serour, est avocate et, comme le souligne son mari : « Elle prépare la plupart de leurs repas. C'est comme nourrir trois lions affamés, mais elle le fait avec amour! » Les trois frères attribuent à leur grande fraternité leurs succès conjugués en culturisme et arts martiaux, sur le plan scolaire et dans tous les autres défis qui ont marqué leur vie. 

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SOULEVONS LE POIDS DE L'OPPRESSION : Des élèves de huit écoles secondaires, dont l'école innovatrice Options à Ville-Émard agissant à titre d’établissement hôte, ont collaboré le 8 juin à un projet unique intitulé Lifting the Weight of Oppression (Soulevons le poids de l'oppression). Inspirés par la lutte que mènent les femmes iraniennes pour l'égalité des droits, les élèves ont voulu témoigner leur soutien et saluer la force dont font preuve les manifestantes, en relevant un défi physique incroyable. Ainsi, quarante élèves ont collectivement soulevé 250 000 lb (environ 113 000 kg) en 40 minutes. Cet exploit a été réalisé à l'aide de 15 ballons lestés de poids différents qui ont tous été soulevés à l'unisson, à raison d'une levée de poids toutes les 10 secondes. Dans la foulée de la mise sur pied de cet événement, les élèves souhaitaient également organiser une collecte de fonds au profit des Iraniennes, mais comme il était impossible de leur acheminer de l’argent, ils ont plutôt décidé de soutenir l’organisme Chez Doris. « Notre appui à Chez Doris permettra de mettre davantage en lumière que l’injustice envers les femmes, ce n’est pas un phénomène observé uniquement dans les pays éloignés », s’est exclamé Jason Gannon, membre du personnel responsable. « Il s'agit d'un enjeu planétaire également présent ici-même, dans notre métropole ». Afin de recueillir des fonds, l'école a imprimé sur des chandails en appui à cette cause un code QR menant vers une page Web où il est possible de verser un don. Les élèves ont porté ces chandails lors de leur entraînement en prévision de l’événement tenu ce jeudi et en ont aussi vendus au public. Les sept autres écoles participantes sont les suivantes : Venture, Vezina, Focus, Outreach, Elizabeth, Mountainview et Sacré-Cœur.

CONCOURS DE CRÉATION LITTÉRAIRE: Le concours de création littéraire « Voices » d'Alternative United collabore cette année avec Yolk Literary Journal et l'Université Concordia.  « Voices » est un concours annuel de création littéraire qui s’adresse aux élèves du réseau des écoles secondaire innovatrices de la CSEM. Il y a de grands prix à remporter, dont 250 $ pour la première place, et les productions écrites de tous les participants sont publiées dans notre anthologie annuelle, qui comprend également une incroyable section d'arts visuels composée d'œuvres réalisées par les élèves tout au long de l'année. Curtis McRae, rédacteur en chef de Yolk, a accepté d'agir à titre de juge invité cette année et a même proposé de publier le récit gagnant dans sa revue littéraire. L’activité de lancement s’est déroulée le 19 juin à l’Université Concordia, dans la salle Mordechai Richler de l’édifice McConnell (LB).

SINCLAIR LAIRD SUR LES ONDES DE GLOBAL TV: Le directeur Derrek Cauchi, son chien Penny, l'enseignante Melanie Reiss-Carreira et quelques élèves de 5e année de l'école primaire Sinclair Laird dans Parc-Extension ont participé à l'enregistrement d'une publicité sur les inscriptions à la CSEM qui sera diffusée au mois d’août sur les ondes de Global TV. La reporter Eramelinda Boquer a présenté le bulletin météo depuis l'école pendant toute la matinée du 8 juin.

PROJET ARTISTIQUE: Aaron Ansuini, stagiaire en enseignement à l'Académie Quebec Virtual, a terminé un magnifique projet artistique qu'il a réalisé avec les élèves de 1re secondaire des classes d'arts plastiques. Sabrina Di Girolamo, enseignante, a supervisé l’activité. Dans le cadre de ce projet, les élèves ont été invités à créer leurs propres blocs de courtepointe pour la réalisation d'une courtepointe communautaire. Dans un premier temps, les élèves ont utilisé la gravure afin d’explorer leurs liens personnels avec la communauté en créant des feuilles de papier à motifs qu'ils ont conçues pour représenter ce que la communauté signifie pour eux, ou la façon dont ils sont connectés ou s'identifient personnellement aux concepts de la communauté. Dans la seconde partie du projet, les élèves ont utilisé les techniques d'assemblage et la conception de courtepointes pour explorer les éléments collectifs de la communauté. La conception et l’assemblage de leurs propres blocs de courtepointe les ont amenés à réfléchir à la signification d'un tout composé de plusieurs parties et à en tenir compte dans leur processus de conception. C'est là que le concept de respect est devenu central dans ce projet. À l'instar des nombreux blocs qui forment l'ensemble de cette courtepointe communautaire, faire partie d'une communauté ne signifie pas pour autant que nous sommes tous pareils, mais plutôt que nous créons un sentiment d'appartenance en respectant, en reconnaissant et en faisant place à la diversité des personnes qui forment l'ensemble de notre communauté, en valorisant les membres de notre communauté et en faisant un effort pour se rassembler. Vous trouverez ci-dessous une photo de la courtepointe qu'Aaron a fait imprimer sur des feuilles de tissu et qu'il a commencé à coudre. Il est à mettre la touche finale au projet avec l’ajout d’une jolie bordure. 

ATHLÈTES DE L’AQV :  Alors que ses camarades de Montréal marchaient dans la neige pour se rendre à l’école, Gianluca Minicozzi, lui, se rendait à ses entraînements de hockey en short et en sandales tout en suivant ses cours de 5e secondaire par le biais de l'Académie Quebec Virtual (AQV). La CSEM est l'une des sept commissions scolaires anglophones du Québec à faire partie de l’AQV dans le but d’offrir de l'apprentissage virtuel aux élèves ayant des conditions médicales, à ceux qui habitent en zone rurale et n'ont pas accès à certains cours, ainsi qu'aux élèves-athlètes de niveau élite dont les horaires d'entraînement rendent difficile leur présence dans des classes régulières. Dans le cas de Gianluca, il a assisté à des cours virtuels tout en évoluant avec les Roughnecks de Bakersfield, dans la vallée de San Joaquin en Californie. L’équipe Roughnecks de l’USPHL sert de tremplin au hockey universitaire américain. Erika Gordon, quant à elle, brûle toujours d’impatience de compétitionner au niveau NCAA. La nageuse de 14 ans termine ses études en 1re secondaire par l'entremise de l'AQV tout en s'entraînant dans le cadre du programme élite Sports-étude du Club aquatique de Pointe-Claire. Pour l'intégral de l’article, consultez notre section des sports  

ÉLÈVE DU MOIS : Kitana Nesfield a été nommée l’Élève du mois de juin à la CSEM. Kitana est en 2e secondaire et a commencé l'année à l'Académie Quebec Virtual. Très mature, déterminée et intrinsèquement motivée, elle excelle dans ses études et est mutuellement respectée par ses pairs. Kitana est une élève équilibrée qui aime jouer au tennis et qui s'intéresse vivement au commerce électronique, à l'entrepreneuriat et au codage.

MANMADE : Philip Santagata, ancien élève de l'école primaire Honoré Mercier, a récemment rendu visite à l’école primaire qu’il a lui-même fréquentée pour s'adresser à la classe de 6e année. Il a parlé des leçons importantes qu'il a tirées de son éducation publique au moment de fonder son entreprise de caleçons boxeurs Manmade devenue célèbre en Amérique du Nord après que lui et ses trois partenaires aient participé à l'émission Dragons' Den de la CBC. Il a parlé aux élèves des cinq piliers qui ont guidé sa réussite : curiosité, détermination, éthique de travail, engagement et bienveillance. M. Santagata a encouragé les élèves de l'école Honoré Mercier à s'inspirer de ces piliers pour atteindre leurs propres objectifs, que ce soit une fois rendus au secondaire ou plus tard dans leur vie adulte. Dans son message, M. Santagata a témoigné l'amour et la reconnaissance qu'il éprouve toujours à l'égard de l'école primaire Honoré Mercier et pour tout ce qu'elle lui a apporté. Il s’est également dit privilégié de pouvoir être de retour pour parler aux finissants de cette année.

COLORS FOR PEACE: La CSEM a organisé une exposition ainsi qu’une cérémonie le 26 avril à son centre administratif. À cette occasion, des élèves de trois programmes d'enseignement des langues d'origine (PELO) ont été récompensés pour leur participation à l'activité COLORS FOR PEACE (couleurs pour la paix). Nous vous invitons à visionner ce reportage récemment diffusé à la télévision italienne : https://vimeo.com/834721887?share=copy.

ILLUMINATION À L'ACADÉMIE LEONARDO DA VINCI: Le 2 juin, la cour de l'Académie Leonardo da Vinci à Rivière-des-Prairies s'est transformée en un lieu magique au profit de l'Institut neurologique de Montréal. La communauté s'y était donné rendez-vous pour profiter d'une merveilleuse soirée agrémentée de plats délicieux, d’animation musicale présentée par les élèves - dont une chorégraphie de danse regroupant 50 élèves de 6e année -, de prestations musicales individuelles, d’un numéro présenté par la chorale et accompagné par l'ancien élève David Marino, de même que d’une fabuleuse course/marche. Ensemble, ils ont recueilli plus de 23 000 $. La soirée a également été ponctuée de témoignages touchants à la mémoire de ceux qui nous ont quittés, notamment un message empreint de courage de la part de Giulia Garofano, la mère du joueur de soccer du CF Montréal, Jason Di Tullio, emporté par une tumeur cérébrale agressive. Jason était une source d'inspiration pour les élèves passionnés de soccer de l'Académie Leonardo da Vinci et la communauté a été ravie d'apprendre, ce soir-là, que le parc adjacent à l'école sera rebaptisé le « Parc Jason Di Tullio ». Un grand merci à tous les commanditaires, à ceux qui ont fait des dons en ligne et aux 600 personnes présentes lors de ce merveilleux événement.

VISITE D'UNE PARALYMPIENNE: Dans une démonstration chaleureuse d'esprit sportif et d'inclusivité, la judoka paralympique Priscilla Gagné a rendu visite à l'école secondaire L.I.N.K.S. à Ahuntsic. Mme Gagné a partagé son expérience et son parcours inspirant pour devenir une athlète paralympique atteinte d'une déficience visuelle. Parmi ses plus récents exploits, citons notamment sa médaille d'argent aux Jeux paralympiques d'été de 2020 à Tokyo, ainsi que son rôle de porte-drapeau du Canada lors de la cérémonie d'ouverture. En plus de partager son histoire inspirante, elle a montré aux élèves les médailles qu'elle a gagnées au cours de ses années comme judoka. Les élèves ont également eu la chance d'apprendre quelques techniques de judo et même de s’exécuter sur Mme Gagné elle-même! Sa visite a permis de mettre en lumière à quel point le sport peut être inspirant et rassembleur pour les élèves, quelles que soient leurs habiletés. « J’ai été honorée de parler et d'échanger avec les élèves et les enseignants de l'école secondaire L.I.N.K.S. », a t elle déclaré. « Ces élèves auront une place dans mon cœur pour la vie. Ayant grandi avec une grave déficience visuelle, je sais qu'il y a beaucoup d'obstacles à surmonter lorsqu'on vit avec un handicap. Dès mon plus jeune âge, j’ai su que ma vie était différente. J’étais consciente que je devais travailler deux fois plus fort pour avoir le droit d'essayer ce que les autres enfants faisaient tous les jours sans se poser de questions. Trop souvent, nous sommes sous-estimés, nos attentes sont faibles et nous restons fréquemment à l’écart pendant que les autres s'amusent. Les moments que j'ai passés ici avec les enseignants et les élèves de L.I.N.K.S. m’ont fait réalisé que beaucoup de choses ont changé depuis que j’ai quitté l’école. Ces élèves ont tous pu participer à la présentation de judo, chacun avait ses points forts et tous semblaient partager le même esprit de joie. Nous avons tous des rêves et des aspirations quant à notre avenir, tout comme ces élèves. J’ai été à même de constater à quel point le personnel croit en ses élèves, ce qui se reflète dans leurs interactions avec eux. J’en ai également été témoin dans mes divers échanges avec les enseignants. Le fait de voir tout un groupe de personnes travailler ensemble avec une passion commune pour permettre aux élèves de se dépasser et de découvrir ce dont ils sont vraiment capables est à la fois réconfortant et encourageant. Chacun a la chance de s’épanouir et d’être inclus de façon concrète lorsqu’on a la conviction que c'est possible ».

MOIS DU PATRIMOINE ASIATIQUE: L'école secondaire John Grant de Côte Saint-Luc a célébré le Mois du patrimoine asiatique. Vincent, un élève du programme Parcours de formation axée sur l’emploi (PFAE), ainsi que ses camarades de classe et ses enseignants, ont organisé un atelier de préparation de sushis qui a permis à la communauté de l’école de découvrir les saveurs et les traditions de l'Asie. Inspirés par la richesse de la cuisine asiatique, Vincent et ses camarades de classe se sont lancés dans une aventure éducative et culinaire. Natalie, la mère de Vincent, leur a enseigné la signification culturelle des sushis et les a guidés dans la préparation d’un éventail de délicieux rouleaux de sushis que les élèves et le personnel ont pu ensuite déguster à la cafétéria de l'école. Dirigé par les élèves, ce projet a fait en sorte de promouvoir la diversité culturelle, le travail d'équipe et la créativité à la grandeur de l'école. L'enseignante Zhen Qin a déclaré que des conversations passionnantes sur le patrimoine asiatique s’en sont suivies, donnant à chacun l'occasion d'apprécier et d'explorer cette culture dynamique.

PRIX JEUNESSE AU SOLEIL: Félicitations à Damien Custodio, élève de l'école primaire Our Lady of Pompei, qui a remporté un vélo dans le cadre de l’initiative de distribution de bicyclettes neuves Avi Morrow de Jeunesse au Soleil. Damien Custodio a été sélectionné par ses enseignants de l'école d’Ahuntsic pour son attitude optimiste et sa persévérance malgré les défis auxquels il a été confronté. Des vélos neufs sont distribués à des jeunes dont les actions ont exercé une influence positive sur leur communauté ou qui ont fait preuve d'un courage exceptionnel en situations difficiles. L'école primaire Our Lady of Pompei est incroyablement fière de Damien pour tous les obstacles qu’il a su surmonter tout au long de la présente année scolaire.

DIPLÔMÉS DU SECONDAIRE : Les cérémonies de remise des diplômes ont lieu ce mois-ci. Ici, à Royal Vale, William Zaifman est félicité par la directrice générale adjointe Pela Nickoletopoulos et les directeurs régionaux Nathalie Lacroix et Jimmy Giannacopoulos. William a également reçu la Médaille de la Gouverneure générale.


MÉDAILLÉ DU CENTRE DE TECHNOLOGIE ROSEMONT: Les 25 et 26 mai, Winnipeg accueillait les 27es Olympiades canadiennes des métiers et des technologies organisées par Skills/Compétences Canada. Le Québec était représenté par 47 compétiteurs qualifiés lors des Olympiades québécoises. Une vague bleue a déferlé sur la compétition canadienne et Équipe Québec a remporté 32 médailles dans 29 métiers. Représentant 24 centres de services scolaires, commissions scolaires et cégeps du Québec, ces résultats viennent récompenser l’excellence du savoir-faire de l’ensemble du réseau de formation professionnelle et technique. Médailles autour du cou et des étoiles plein les yeux, les 47 finalistes ont regagné fièrement leur région, notamment Tommaso Maffei du Centre de technologie Rosemont qui a remporté la médaille de bronze dans la catégorie Ébénisterie. Il était accompagné de Christopher Honce, son formateur; Nadia Zuccaro, conseillère en formation scolaire et Miriam Furfaro, conseillère pédagogique.

ÉLAN DE BIENFAISANCE PARMI LES ÉLÈVES DE WAGAR: Centre de rêves et espoirs est une école communautaire qui relève du Centre d'éducation des adultes Wagar, à Côte Saint-Luc. L'enseignante Hannah Ryan a récemment fait en sorte que l’organisme à but non lucratif Pain et Plus vienne à l'école et guide les élèves dans la préparation de sandwichs pour les plus démunis. Avec l'aide des organisateurs de Pain et Plus, les élèves se sont pris au jeu et ont impressionné tout le monde. Répartis en différents groupes selon leur rôle, ils ont préparé plus de 200 sandwichs. Même ceux qui ne voulaient pas participer à la préparation des sandwichs y ont trouvé leur compte, soit en préparant les étiquettes, en créant de jolis autocollants et en remplissant les sacs. Voilà un bel exemple des Services d'intégration sociale (SIS) en action.

Le prochain numéro de Pleins feux sur Fielding sera publié le 6 septembre 2023. Prière de soumettre vos articles au plus tard le vendredi 1er septembre à midi.

Our next Focus newsletter will be published on September 6, 2023. Deadline for submissions is Friday, September 1 at Noon.