Press Releases


MONTREAL, FEBRUARY 15, 2005- The English Montreal School Board (EMSB) and The Black Coalition of Quebec will hold a significant cultural exchange on Monday, February 21 at the Centre Loisirs Sportifs de Côte-des-Neiges (4880 avenue Van Horne) to focus on Black History Month. St. Léonard’s Laurier Macdonald High School has spearheaded this initiative.

Students from more than a dozen schools, representing the English and French public sectors as well as the Jewish, Muslim and Native Canadian communities, will participate. Opening ceremonies are scheduled to take place between 10:30 a.m. and Noon. Among the confirmed special guest speakers are Quebec Revenue Minister Lawrence S. Bergman, Parti Quebecois MNA Louise Harel, Bloc Quebecois MP for St. Lambert Maka Kotto (the first ever African MP), West Island Nelligan MP Yolande James, EMSB Chairman Dominic Spiridigliozzi, EMSB Director General Antonio Lacroce and Canadian Jewish Congress Quebec Region President Jeffrey Boro. The day’s activities will include many student performances, ranging from readings and poems, to music. There will also be an exhibition of student art for all to enjoy.

In addition to Laurier Macdonald, other EMSB schools planning to participate are John Paul I Junior High, St. Pius X, Royal Vale and Vincent Massey; from the Lester B. Pearson School Board, LaSalle Catholic Comprehensive High School; from the French sector, Louis Joseph Papineau, La Voie; from the Jewish community, Bialik High School; and the Muslim Schools of Quebec. The Kahnawake Survival School is also expected to be represented.

Laurier Macdonald’s multicultural club, headed by Jake Sookhdeo, has been working with Black Coalition of Quebec President Dan Phillip to plan this event. " We would like to reflect and sensitize students about black history," says Laurier Macdonald Vice-Principal Joe Harty. "We will be linking it to Canada, and the Black history in and related to Canada. We would also want to highlight the importance of one’s own heritage culture and history."

Mr. Harty will be producing a booklet for the schools and teachers to bring back with them about Black History Month.

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