ABOVE & BEYOND


[dcwp-jquery-accordion menu="Main Menu" event="click" save="true" auto_close="true" animation="fast" count="false" disable="false" expand="true" skin="clean"]

All posts by admin

Congratulations to WIC’s Graduating Class – June 18, 2020

WIC’s graduation ceremony took place outside on our sports field on Thursday, June 18, 2020. The ceremony began at 10 a.m. and finished around noon. Physical distancing was well maintained. Due to limited attendance protocol parents, staff and teachers were able to watch the live stream event from the comfort of their own home. The ceremony was also recorded and all students will be receiving a commemorative video of the graduation by email in the weeks following. Congratulations to the graduating class of 2020. Resilience was a true and well-experienced theme of the year. Stay strong and wishing you all much success in your future endeavors. Our graduates even got coverage during  CTV’s weather segment that same evening!

 

New Head of School Announcement – May 8, 2020

We are pleased to announce the appointment of Mr. Eric Jabal as the next Head of School at West Island College (WIC).  Mr. Jabal was selected for his passion and dedication to education, his strong leadership experience, and his numerous distinctions and achievements.

Mr. Jabal was born and raised in Montreal. He has been working internationally for the last 25 years and has been looking for the right opportunity to return to Montreal. 

Mr. Jabal grew up bilingually and, from his years living and working in Hong Kong and China, has developed a strong appreciation for Chinese culture and an interest in Mandarin. He started his career as a teacher in France and has been based in Hong Kong since 1995, where he has served three international schools. Mr. Jabal has worked as a Senior School Head (2007-10) and Secondary Principal (2010-18) of a bilingual PreK-grade 12 school. For the past two years, Mr. Jabal has served as a School Support and Evaluation Officer for the Council of International Schools. He has also had the role of Visiting Assistant Professor at the National Taiwan University where he has taught in the College of Education.

Among his academic qualifications, Mr. Jabal holds a Ph.D. in Educational Administration from the University of Toronto, a Masters Degree in Education from the University of Nottingham in the UK, a Postgraduate degree in language & cultures earned in France, and an Honours BA from Queen’s University.

Starting on May 19th, 2020, Mr. Lafrance and Mr. Jabal will work in close collaboration to ensure a smooth transition and continuity for West Island College.

In closing, we would like to acknowledge the exemplary contribution of our current Headmaster, Mr. Michel Lafrance. His dedication to WIC and commitment to our community have brought us tremendous growth and recognition as one of Montreal’s leading educational institutions. In particular, we are thankful for his strong leadership and unwavering support, as we have navigated the recent challenges brought on by the current global pandemic.

Thanks to the strength and depth of the school’s current leadership team, faculty, and staff, we are confident that Mr. Jabal’s transition to WIC will be smooth and seamless. Please join us in welcoming Mr. Jabal to the West Island College community.

Proud Moment for WIC’s Photography Club – April and May 2020

In spite of the confinement situation, members of M. Marsolais’ photography club participated in the annual provincial photo contest of the QAHN.  Six of M. Marsolais’ students took on the challenge which consisted of taking a significant picture and writing a text to tell the meaning behind it.  The judging was on both the picture and text.
 
Even though this year the participation level across the province was probably a fraction of what it usually is, M. Marsolais is still extremely proud to announce that WIC’s photography club won the top three spots, which respectively come with a $200, $150 and $100 prize!  The judges were impressed by all the entries from our school.
 
Here are the winners :
1st Prize: Brooke Sitcoff – “Some Traditions Never Change” – $200 prize
2nd Prize: Keira Gagliardi – “To Walk in His Shoes” – $150 prize
3rd Prize: Keira Morcos – “Reflection” – $100 prize
 

1st Prize: Brooke Sitcoff – Sec. 4
$200 Prize
Some Traditions Never Change

2nd Prize: Keira Gagliardi – Sec. 5
$150 Prize
To Walk in His Shoes

3rd Prize: Keira Morcos
$100 Prize
Reflection

 

Special mention as well to all the other participants: Deanna F. (Mangiamo and Kindness), Kahlyn L. (A Long Lasting Tradition and A Legacy of Giving), and Edwin L. (Happiness, Prosperity, Wealth All in a Box).

Deanna F. (Mangiamo and Kindness) – Sec. 3

Kahlyn L. (A Long Lasting Tradition and A Legacy of Giving) – Sec. 3

Edwin L. (Happiness, Prosperity, Wealth All in a Box) – Sec. 1

 

Creative Distance Learning as Students Document Their Daily Realities of Life on ‘Journalwic.blogspot’ – May 2020

Inspired and guided by their French teacher, M. Paradis, students at West Island College are enjoying a touch of creativity in their French class. For several weeks during their distance learning at WIC, students have been documenting their daily routines and realities of life at home during these COVID 19 pandemic times. Over 200 articles can be read on their blog (below). We invite you to take the time to read them and feel free to comment and share.

http://journalwic.blogspot.com 

 

Lessons in Distance Learning During the COVID-19 Outbreak – Press Release Published on March 18, 2020

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

March 18, 2020

Contact Michel Lafrance, Headmaster, West Island College [email protected]

Lessons in Distance Learning During the COVID-19 Outbreak

Dollard des Ormeaux, QC – As the world scrambles to contain or manage the COVID-19 outbreak, one Montreal school keeps students on track and learning.

West Island College, a high school in Dollard des Ormeaux, is using Google Classrooms, Google Meet, teacher websites and other technologies, to keep students’ minds off of the anxieties of the world and keeping their focus on school.

Knowing that the potential for all schools to close was looming, WIC kicked into high gear. On Thursday, March 12th, a professional day was called in the late afternoon for the next day. It was an opportunity for the school to speak to staff, prepare the resources for the challenges that lay ahead and ensure that they would have time to prepare for the inevitable. It was decided that school would continue as normal…almost! On March 17th, regular classes were held for all WIC students.

Parents and students were given a revised timetable and asked to check in to their regularly scheduled classes, every hour between 8 am and 2 pm. Each class is 45 minutes long. Some require the students to participate in a live chat, while others feature time for group work, projects, reading or individual work. An important element in the schedule is the 15 minutes between each class, when students are encouraged to get up, stretch, have a snack, take a break, or walk around the house.

Our Guidance Counselor and Resource Professional are posting regularly to students with tips and encouraging students to connect with one another.

Yesterday was our first learning from home day and it has been fairly seamless. It required a lot of planning, set-up and modifications on the part of the teachers, with the support of the administrative team and staff, many of whom are also at home with kids of their own. It has been a wonderful community effort so far, and we are receiving full support from our parents.” says Headmaster, Michel Lafrance.

 

 

 

 

 

The Quebec government announces that all schools in the province will be closed for at least two weeks as a precaution against the spread of COVID-19 – March 13, 2020

On Friday, March 13, 2020, the Quebec government announced that all daycares, schools, CEGEPS and universities in the province in Quebec will be closed for a period of two weeks as a precaution against the spread of COVID-19. Please note that West Island College will be closed until further notice from the government.

For general information on COVID-19 the government is asking people to call its 1-877-644-4545 or consult the Santé Québec website. 

Students and Teachers Experience an Unforgettable International Journey to South Africa – March 2020

Our Secondary III, IV and V students and teachers returned safe and sound from South Africa this past Monday. The first of WIC’s two International trips has wrapped up and is filled with memories that will last a lifetime. This unique adventure and cultural experience took students on a very memorable journey.  Some of the highlights included exploring the city and beach of Cape Town, a tour of Robben Island where students saw some African wildlife and visited the Maximum Security Prison where Nelson Mandela was incarcerated for 18 years. 

Our travellers also had the opportunity to attend a Cape Town Stormers vs. Auckland Blues Super League Rugby match. Some students also enjoyed an amazing tour at the KhwattuSan Culture and Education Centre! They saw artwork and archaeology from the First People learning first-hand about encounters and the colonization of Africa. They even practised speaking some new languages and tried medicinal tea!

On another day it was a cable car up to the flat mountaintop of Table Mountain for some incredible views!  The group searched for daisies and geckos while appreciating South African biodiversity. Midway into the trip, our South Africa international students learned about the history of Apartheid. Their visit to the Apartheid museum was a time for true self-reflection.

Then it was a visit to Soweto and a look at the struggles Black people endured in this neighbourhood especially during the uprisings in the 1960s and 70s. The stories were shared first hand by Antoinette Sithole, a tour guide at the Hector Pieterson Museum. Her brother, twelve-year-old Hector Pieterson, was killed in the riots of the Soweto uprising.

And finally, what would the adventure be without the safari experience? Students and teachers saw 4, excluding the leopard, of the Big 5 Animals (lion, leopard, elephant, rhino and buffalo).  Welcome back all and many thanks to the teachers accompanying our students―Mr. Fequet, Miss Santamaria, Mr. Thompson and Mme Lauzière.  

Impressive Win at the 19th Annual CRC Robotics Competition – February 13 to 15, 2020

West Island College and its Robotics Team participated in the 19th Annual CRC Robotics Competition, Flip 2020, which took place at Vanier College this year from February 13 to 15. Hundreds of students from 26 Canadian high schools and colleges participated and displayed their mastery of robotics, game strategy and the production of a working robot. But that was only one portion of the challenge. The CRC Robotics Competition also aims to recognize and award teams in other components, such as bilingual video production and website, kiosk, programming, robot construction and design, and sportsmanship. CRC Robotics organizers emphasize that such components challenge the students’ creativity and proficiency in the digital realm and allow them to innovate and learn how to be the leaders of tomorrow.  On this note, there was good news for the “WIC” leaders of tomorrow.  After months of hard work and preparation, our students paid homage to Stan Lee of Marvel Comics fame with their unique display and working robots. Their efforts paid off as they brought home 1st place for kiosk design and construction plus 2nd place for robot design. Congratulations to Adrien da S., Alexi D., Ally K., Avi A., Michael B., Cassidy M., Emma S., Hailey T., Joseph D., Jonny  H., Lauryn B., Luca D., Michael P., Randall L., Sam R., Samuele D.  They were given the opportunity to wear their robotics t-shirt all week following the competition. It was a well-deserved show of pride! Special mention and a big thank you to the volunteer alumni who helped out, Mr. Al Hilli and Mr. Abravanel for their support, guidance and mentorship leading up to and during the entire Robotics Competition. We even made an appearance on City News, featuring our very own Robotics participant and student Michael B.
https://montreal.citynews.ca/…/robots-put-to-the-test-at-v…/

For details and videos on this exciting event visit:

Website: www.robo-crc.ca

Facebook: www.fb.com/roboCRC/

Instagram: @roboCRC

 

WIC Celebrates Black History Month – February 10, 2020

In celebration of Black History Month, WIC welcomed Overture with the Arts’ Akila and Omari Newton to speak to students on Monday, Feb. 10th. The highly interactive presentation titled Tracking Black Canada focused on the forgotten histories of early Black communities in Canada and highlighted the contributions of their most prominent members. Omari Newton’s entertaining presentation style, which included a combination of humour, slam poetry and video, kept students engaged throughout the presentation. 

Exceptional Projects and Unique Ideas Showcased at WIC’s Science Fair – February 5, 2020

West Island College has seen another year of exceptional projects and unique ideas showcased at this year’s science fair on February 5, 2020.  The science department would like to congratulate all of the participants for their incredible and thought-provoking presentations.  Students in grade eight were instructed to conduct experimentally themed projects, using the scientific method in exploring many different topics ranging from acne bacteria to seasonal water pH. The grade nine students who worked under the design theme, formulated and produced many different technological objects ranging from a sophisticated crib to an Arduino senso/indicator for individuals affected by dementia.  Using bristol boards, students were able to immerse art into science, generating a creative medium through which they were instructed to prepare an oral presentation to communicate to the judges as well as to the public. Their enthusiasm and keen interest when summarizing their science projects was very inspiring to witness.

WIC would like to wish the best of luck to all the Secondary III winners of the gold, silver and bronze medals as well as the honourable mentions, who will be participating in the Hydro-Quebec sponsored Montreal Regional Science fair held at Vanier College from February 13 to 15.  

Finally,  we would like to thank our parent and alumni volunteers as well as secondary V students for participating in the judging of the students’ projects.

 

Teacher Appreciation Week at WIC – February 2 to 8, 2020

Teacher Appreciation Week was in full swing at WIC during the week of February 2 to 8.  It was an opportunity to acknowledge the hard work and dedication of all our teachers who work tirelessly toward the educational success of our students.  The gestures of appreciation by our students included daily snack carts, special messages to the teachers, personalized gifts and overall well-deserved attention every day!  Simple acts of kindness to show our teachers that their hard work does not go unnoticed.  

WIC Alumni Share Their Personal Success Stories on Career Day – January 30, 2020

On Thursday, January 30th, WIC hosted its annual Career Day.  Our Secondary 4 and 5 students had the opportunity to meet four WIC alumni and learned about their challenges, road to resilience and eventual success. A big thank you to Jonathan Weinstein (class of 2014), Tyler Safran (class of 2011), Tyler Wajcman (class of 2007) and Nadine Ishak (class of 1992) who shared their personal stories and different career paths. While the journeys were different the takeaway messages were the same—work hard, think out of the box, stay confident, be passionate about what you do and be resilient no matter what obstacles come in your way.

It’s Been a Busy Time of the Year for Everyone at WIC – December 2019

What a busy December it has been.  From the Reverse Advent Calendar and our annual WIC Attitude Show to the Winter Concert and the Cozy Art Fest, WIC has been a very festive place every day.  Thanks to all the teachers, administration, students and the entire school body for their exceptional dedication, hard work and inspiration in this first half of the school year. Happy Holidays and all the best in the New Year. 

Resilience in the Face of Adversity – November 28, 2019

Born to Rise founder, Aiesha Robinson, visited West Island College on Thursday, November 28, 2019 at 1:30 p.m. Model, speaker and influencer, Aiesha Robinson, is on a mission to help as many youths as possible, by helping them recognize their true worth and decreasing bullying on and off school grounds. Having been both the bully and the bullied, Robinson relates well to both sides of the spectrum. In talking to the students, she used her real life experience to connect with them and help them realize that they can RISE above their own challenges. Aiesha’s goal in these presentations is to use her story as an example to show that if she can stand and rise above adversity then so can others. Aiesha is making great strides to share her positive message and help our youth!

New Sec. 5 Biology Outing a Success – November 22, 2019

Twenty-five lucky senior science students had the chance to pursue their interest in Biology on Friday, November 22nd, at the McGill Campus. They started by visiting the beautiful Redpath Museum where they learned about Animal Biodiversity and Hominid Evolution. They then visited the exclusive and unique Maude Abbott Medical Museum in the Strathcona Anatomy and Dentistry Building where over 250 items such as diseased and healthy preserved organs, medical instruments and anatomy models are displayed. Dr. Fraser, museum director and senior pathologist, was a fascinating and knowledgeable host. Dr. Fraser had actually just performed an autopsy that very morning. Students were able to ask him all kinds of questions gaining an understanding of the work pathologists do as well as a greater understanding of the human body. Mme Vien (organizer) and Mrs. Fasanella (accompanying science teacher) were impressed with the students’ level of interest. Indeed, the outing was a huge success and one they hope to repeat next year.

 

All School Assembly Celebrates Accomplishments This School Year – November 18, 2019

We have been back at school for only a couple of months, but WIC had a lot to be proud of on Monday, November 18, 2019!  The student body, teachers, staff and invited parents gathered to celebrate. After a brief introduction by our headmaster Mr. Lafrance and Mme Simard, they then proceeded to thank the teachers who went out on outdoor education trips with students this past fall, those who coached our fall sport teams, teachers responsible for school clubs and committees and our yearbook advisors Mrs. Krespil and Ms. Hadef for an amazing yearbook.

Jessica Carter and Cindy Merritt from JDRF (Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation) were also introduced and the final total from our walkathon which took place on October 8th was announced. We raised a total of      $51, 358.86 this year! That makes our total raised over 19 years to be        502 877.86 $. Amazing! Seven students were recognized for raising over $1000 each! Great effort by Giada Di Schiavi, Siena Di Schiavi, Dante Di Schiavi, Emy Banas, Aaron Miller, Juliana Sangregorio and Ethan Pennee. We had a signed Max Domi jersey for our top fundraiser Giada Di Schiavi and a signed puck for the 2nd and 3rd top fundraisers Juliana Sangregorio and Siena Di Schiavi. Students who raised $100 or more for JDRF enjoyed a free dress day on Wednesday, November 20th.

We have been back at school for only a couple of months, but WIC had a lot to be proud of on Monday, November 18, 2019!  The student body, teachers, staff and invited parents gathered to celebrate. After a brief introduction by our headmaster Mr. Lafrance and Mme Simard, they then proceeded to thank the teachers who went out on outdoor education trips with students this past fall, those who coached our fall sport teams, teachers responsible for school clubs and committees and our yearbook advisors Mrs. Krespil and Ms. Hadef for an amazing yearbook.

Jessica Carter and Cindy Merritt from JDRF (Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation) were also introduced and the final total from our walkathon which took place on October 8th was announced. We raised a total of      $51, 358.86 this year! That makes our total raised over 19 years to be        502 877.86 $. Amazing! Seven students were recognized for raising over $1000 each! Great effort by Giada Di Schiavi, Siena Di Schiavi, Dante Di Schiavi, Emy Banas, Aaron Miller, Juliana Sangregorio and Ethan Pennee. We had a signed Max Domi jersey for our top fundraiser Giada Di Schiavi and a signed puck for the 2nd and 3rd top fundraisers Juliana Sangregorio and Siena Di Schiavi. Students who raised $100 or more for JDRF enjoyed a free dress day on Wednesday, November 20th.

    

    

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

    

WIC Hosts Debate Tournament – November 20, 2019

On Wednesday, November 20th, WIC hosted a debate tournament attended by junior debaters from five schools from both the public and private sectors. Participants engaged in three rounds of vigorous debate on topics related to veganism and animal cruelty. WIC students showcased their debate skills, winning several prizes in the individual speaker and team categories. Congratulations to all participants, but special recognition goes out to Alexandra B. (Individual Speaker, 2nd place), Serena K.(Individual Speaker, 4th place) and top teams, Cozette L. and Lilah G. (2nd place); and Alexandra B. and Serena K. (3rd place). A big thank you to the timers, moderator and runners who helped the tournament run so smoothly.  A very special mention goes to Mrs. Hastings.