MONTREAL, JUNE 15 2016- Ben Fagan will retire as principal of the High School of Montreal Adult Education Centre in Plateau Montreal this July.
Mr. Fagan received his B.A. in sociology from Loyola College in 1970. He initially worked for Catholic Family and Children’s Services from with the unemployed in Point St. Charles, helping them navigate with government agencies. In October 1972, he moved to Ireland to pursue his Master’s Degree. While there he worked part-time for two years with Dublin street kids.
Back in Montreal in October 1975, Fagan started to work for Shawbridge Youth as an educational counsellor, trying to help young people stay in school. “It was a futile effort as once September 30 enrolment day came and passed, the schools asked these kids to leave,” he recalls. “So I and two colleagues asked management if they would agree to us starting a Shawbridge School in the city. They agreed, as there was no other solution to keeping them off the street and educating them. That was in 1976 and I began my career as a teacher.”
In 1977, the former Protestant School Board of Greater Montreal (PSBGM) took over responsibility for the school and Fagan became a school board employee. He stayed at Shawbridge School until 1981. It is today called Mountainview and located on Côte St. Luc Road. In 1981, he became a teacher at the Philip E. Layton School for the Blind. He was appointed principal in 1995. Two years later, he added the same title at the Mackay Centre School for the Deaf and Disabled.
Mr. Fagan moved on to his current assignment, principal of the High School of Montreal Adult Centre in Plateau, in 2006. “During these years I was engaged also in volunteer work,” he says. I have served on the boards of Mackay Centre, Lethbridge Rehabilitation Centre, Propulsion -an organization for the physically disabled - and the Canadian Deafness and Research Training Institute. Most recently, I finished a 16 year involvement as president of the Board of Habitations Tango, a housing unit for the physically disabled in NDG. I was in 1999 a founder of Tango and saw it through its planning, building and operational stages.”
In May Mr. Fagan received a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Montreal Community Cares Gala.
Michael J. Cohen
Communications and Marketing Specialist
English Montreal School Board
Tel: (514) 483-7200 ext. 7243
Fax: (514) 483-7213