Press Releases


MONTREAL, JULY 8, 2015 – The Ministère de l'Éducation, de l'Enseignement supérieur et de la Recherche (MEESR) has authorized a sum of $21.9 million for the English Montreal School Board to build a new facility to house the Mackay Centre and Philip E. Layton Schools.

EMSB Chairman Angela Mancini and Vice-Chairman Sylvia Lo Bianco were elated with the news. The Mackay Centre and Philip E. Layton Schools have effectively been tenants of the MAB-Mackay Rehabilitation Centre (MMRC), which falls under the jurisdiction of Minister of Health and Social Services.  For decades, the Philip E. Layton School was located at the Montreal Association for the Blind (MAB) facility on Sherbrooke Street West in NDG, where renovations forced them to move to the Decarie Boulevard building last September.  The Mackay Centre School, educates children with physical disabilities, the deaf and students with communication disorders.  P.E. Layton services the blind and/or physically handicapped and /or intellectually handicapped students. Both schools have a supra-regional mandate and consequently, the EMSB is the only school board to offer services to this particular group of English students, not only in the Montreal region, but in the province of Quebec.

“We have been working with the Ministry of Education for four years now to make this dream come true,” said Ms. Mancini. “I am so pleased to say that the wait is finally over. We will now begin the work necessary with our staff to get this project started.”

Ms. Lo Bianco noted that the EMSB will unveil a proposed timeline and location for the new facility in the coming weeks. Newly installed Director General Ann Marie Matheson is more than pleased with the news. “Our most vulnerable students deserve a home of their own,” she said. “I look forward to working with our staff and the team at Mackay and Philip E. Layton to ensure that we construct a state of the art facility second to none.”

Added Ms. Lo Bianco: “We also want to take this opportunity to thank the former Minister of Education Dr. Yves Bolduc. He not only visited the school, but put a lot of energy into the file.”

Joseph Lalla, the EMSB commissioner for NDG and parent commissioner for special needs students Joanne Charron, extended their gratitude to school principal Patrizia Ciccarelli, her staff and a number of EMSB senior management personnel who devoted an enormous amount of time to this dossier. Ms. Ciccarelli called this a victory for the entire English community.
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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