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MONTREAL ALOUETTES KICK OFF TOGETHER AT SCHOOL PROGRAM AT LESTER B. PEARSON HIGH SCHOOL

MONTREAL, FEBRUARY 7, 2014 – Lester B. Pearson High School (11575 P.M. Favier) in Montreal North, home to the English Montreal School Board`s Sport-Études program, is set to host the English school launch of the Together At School with CN and the Alouettes Program on Tuesday, February 11  (10 a.m.).

The annual program that brings current members of the Montreal Alouettes into schools across the community will debut the English school board portion of its program at Lester B. Pearson High School with both a motivational session for Grade 9 students followed by a student/teacher vs. Alouettes basketball game, in which the whole school will be present.  Lester B. Pearson graduate and Virgin Radio personality Freeway Frank is set to return to his alma-mater to lend a helping hand in the basketball game.

The event will also mark the growth of the long-time partnership between the EMSB and the Montreal Alouettes. In addition to a number of school visits, the Alouettes will welcome EMSB friends and family to a game  in June and host the inaugural EMSB Night at McGill`s Percival Molson Stadium.

The schedule for the morning will be as follows:

10:00: Player introduction in auditorium
10:12: Motivational speeches
10:30: Q & A Period
10:41: Contest winners announced

Following the conclusion of the auditorium portion, the athletes and students will all move to the gymnasium for the basketball game:

11:20: Alouettes introduced for basketball game
11:28: Warm up
11:33: Beginning of Basketball game
11:53: Half-time
12:03: Second half of the basketball game
12:37: Autographs and pictures

Throughout the off-season, a number of other EMSB schools will receive visits by members of the Montreal Alouettes, including: Vincent Massey Collegiate in Rosemount, Edward Murphy School in Hochelaga-Maisonneuve, Westmount Park, Marymount Academy in N.D.G., FACE school downtown and James Lyng in St. Henri.

Since 1998, The Alouettes have supported elementary and high school students in the greater Montreal area through in-school visits. Last year, players visited 123 schools and met with over 60,000 students.

The Alouettes involved in the program for 2014 include: Luc Brodeur-Jourdain, John Bowman, Martin Bédard, Josh Bourke, Éric Deslauriers, Scott Flory, Kristian Matte, and Ameet Pall. Players taking part in the program must first undergo 32 hours of training from specialists in the field of mentoring and counseling in order to be best equipped to help the students.

New to the program since 2013 is a French language component where the players will receive French lessons in order to further interact with the children they will visit. The weekly French classes will run through the end of April.

The program's main goal is to encourage kids to stay in school while focusing on a wide array of challenges that students face today, ranging from bullying and academic performance to peer pressure and the importance of staying active. The players look to inspire and motivate the students they meet to make the right choices and to reach their full potential through hard work and dedication.

Together at School with CN and the Alouettes initiatives fall under three categories:

• Elementary: Each two-hour visit includes four to six players who divide themselves up and go into each classroom to speak to the children. All students then congregate in the gym where activities and games are played involving both the students and the players.

• High School: Each one-hour visit sees one player lead a motivational conference attended by the student body where the player draws on their own personal experiences to inspire those in attendance. The floor is then opened for an interactive Q+A session with the player.

• Tutoring: Select schools receive tutoring twice a week. The tutors are volunteer students from local Universities and are joined by Alouettes players who provide mentoring, support and leadership to those receiving tutorial aid.

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Michael J. Cohen
Communications and Marketing Specialist
English Montreal School Board
Tel: (514) 483-7200 ext. 7243
Fax: (514) 483-7213
E-mail: mcohen@emsb.qc.ca