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MONTREAL, SEPTEMBER 20, 2011 – Established in 1961, St. John Bosco Elementary School (6255 Hamilton) is set to begin a year-long celebration marking its 50 years of service to the community of Ville-Émard and the surrounding area.

While students and staff have been working on various projects since the beginning of the school year, a “Family Reunion” will serve as the official event to begin the 50th Anniversary celebrations. The much anticipated evening will be held at the school on Friday, October 7 from 6  p.m. to 9  p.m.

Former students and staff will have the opportunity to reconnect, visit their former classrooms, share memories and photos and celebrate their time at St. John Bosco, as well as meet families and students who are at the school today. In anticipation of the evening, all 170 tickets for the kickoff event have been sold.

Other projects which students will work on throughout the year are:

Oral History Project:  Former students, staff and families are invited to tell  their story of the time they spent at St. John Bosco or its sister school St. Gall’s.  A video record will be compiled as a way of telling the story of St. John Bosco from the perspective of those who lived it.  A number of former students and staff have already come forward to be interviewed.  Current students and staff will also be interviewed for inclusion. To be included in the project, contact: Joyce Pillarella at or David Gagnon at

Time Line Project:  Students will be invited to create a timeline that will be added to by each grade level through the year highlighting historical, cultural, political and social events of the different eras of the past 50 years. Through a variety of visual arts, students will be invited to tell the story the St. John Bosco School family. Copies of photos offered by families, alumni and former staff will be added as well to complete the time line.

Archival Project:  All members of the extended family are invited to submit copies of photos, documents, report cards, yearbooks, event programmes and other materials to help the school compile archives of its 50 years of service through the documents and photos of those who lived this story.  Some of these materials will also be incorporated in the Timeline Project.

Alum-inspire:  Former students, teachers, and family members will come to speak with classes about their time at St. John Bosco and how it shaped who they are and what they have done in life.

Drawing SJB at 50:  Students will be asked to imagine and to draw their ideas of what it was like to go to school 50 years ago. 

School Song:  Students will be asked to express their thoughts about being at St. John Bosco today, and the eventual text will be set to music to create a School Song.

Poetry Writing Project:  In order to encourage creative writing, students will be asked to write a poem on a variety of themes such as: what it means to be 50; how their school makes a difference in the community or about their time at St. John Bosco, among others.

For more information on any of the projects, please contact David Gagnon, the Spiritual & Community Animator for St. John Bosco at He can also be reached at the school directly every Thursday.


Michael J. Cohen
Communications and Marketing Specialist
English Montreal School Board
Tel: (514) 483-7200 ext. 7243
Fax: (514) 483-7213