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EMSB Presented With Two Awards at AAESQ/QESBA Conference

Montreal - Thursday, June 15, 2017

EMSB Communications and Marketing Specialist Michael J. Cohen was recognized with the Public School Promotion Award while Focus Alternative High School in NDG received the Innovation in Teaching or Program Delivery Award.

“The Board of Directors of QESBA has created these awards with a view to celebrating the excellence, dedication and innovation demonstrated by teachers, administrators, parents, professionals and school board members at our nine English Boards across Quebec,” said QESBA President Jennifer Maccarone. “The students and communities we serve are the beneficiaries of this excellence. The accomplishments of English public education are worth celebrating.   

The Public School Promotion Award is presented annually to a QESBA-member school board or individual school for a program or campaign that enhances the image and awareness of English public schooling in Quebec. The winning entry should have had a visible and demonstrable impact on the school and/or school board in which it originated including measurable goals and objectives surrounding the program or project.

The recipient this year was the EMSB’s “ÊTRE BILINGUE, C’EST GAGNANT!” marketing and promotion campaign, submitted by Mr. Cohen. With the intent to highlight its excellence in French instruction and to persuade more parents to choose the EMSB for their children, this ambitious marketing and promotions campaign included: billboards, brochures, newspaper advertisements, shopping back, television commercials, photo shoot with EMSB students, and a slogan that helped create a very positive “buzz.” Not only does it enhance to profile of EMSB, it in fact highlights excellence in French instruction for all nine public school boards in Quebec. It also has no time limit, and the slogan and accompanying material can be used indefinitely.

The Innovation in Teaching or Program Delivery Award goes to an individual teacher, consultant or school administrator or a group of such individuals for the development or implementation of a classroom or after-school program that best exemplifies innovation in teaching or program delivery. Focus High School revamped its program by shifting it from a traditional structure in which students were expected to adapt, to one that is intentionally adapted to students instead. This was mainly achieved through closed-classroom learning environments, small class sizes, individualized programming, with emphasized academics during the morning and structured social, physical, recreational and skill-based activities in the afternoon.  

The model aims to make learning more relevant through a curriculum that is inquiry and project based, and connected to ‘real world’ application, with emphasis on technology integration.  As such games like Minecraft are used as teaching tools, and students direct daily news through filmed clips as reporters, researchers, and contributors which are published daily on Youtube. The co-curricular program includes animal, art, and drama therapy, robotics, black history, swimming lessons, CPR training and certification, music production and DJ competitions, school garden, beehive maintenance and honey extraction, healthy meal planning and preparation, and community outreach such as mentoring students from Giant Steps and volunteering at the local SPCA.

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