Communities in Dialogue 2007: Montreal, City of Knowledge... We need everyone to take part! Foster a learning-oriented culture to create a knowledge economy

    MONTREAL, Oct. 26 /CNW Telbec/ - As part of the third edition of its
annual conference, Communities in Dialogue, Montreal Hooked on School invites
the various socio-economic stakeholders to become collectively involved in
encouraging youth to stay in school. This, in turn, will foster the next
generation of qualified workers and create the conditions needed to position
Montreal as a city of knowledge.
    Montréal's economic development plan, Imagining - Building Montreal 2025,
makes knowledge the central focus for achieving its prosperity. As with other
large cities in developed countries, Montreal is building on creative,
knowledge-based activities and has identified innovation, attracting skilled
immigrants as well as developing human capital as the areas on which to
    "These are admirable avenues to pursue. However, it is equally important
to concentrate on lowering the student drop out rate in Montreal. Presently
there are 4,000 young Montrealers dropping out of school each year without
acquiring a high school diploma. We have to mobilize our business, education
and community leaders to work collaboratively to ensure that students value
their education, stay in school and do not join the work force prematurely. It
is crucial that we take action not only at the secondary level, but also at
the elementary and post-secondary levels," notes Don Taylor, Vice-Chairman,
Montreal Hooked on School.
    Pierre Gosselin, Chairman, Montreal Hooked on School, adds: "In order to
foster the development of a qualified labour force, we must create gateways
among all educational institutions (high schools, CEGEPs and universities) to
encourage a flow from one academic level to the next. It's also essential that
we create links between educational milieus and the labour market so that we
can better guide our young people."
    As part of this third annual Hooked on School conference, which will be
held at one of Montreal's knowledge centres, the Grande Bibliothèque, Montreal
Hooked on School is pleased to welcome three well known speakers who
understand the importance of education in sustaining Montreal's dynamism and

    Mr. Claude Dauphin
    Chairman of the Conférence régionale des élus
    Claude Dauphin will speak about the necessity of working together to
    lower the student dropout rate and he will discuss the actions taken to
    promote the emergence of a city of "learning, knowledge and innovation."

    Mr. André Gamache
    Interim Chief Executive Officer of Montréal International
    André Gamache will speak about the importance of managing talent within
    the context of Montreal's desire to attract international firms, which is
    essential to the creation of collective wealth.

    Mr. Tony Tomassi
    MNA for LaFontaine, Liberal Party of Quebec, Parliamentary Assistant to
    the Premier
    Tony Tomassi will speak about his vision for youth and the importance of
    student retention in the development of a strong city that is proud of
    its youth. He will also speak about the youth action strategy, the
    government's framework for a wide range of youth issues.

    The Communities in dialog event will provide stakeholders with a forum
for discussions on the need to invest in our future workforce and to develop
synergy in order to ensure Montreal's economic prosperity and social
    Montreal Hooked on School will take this opportunity to present its
annual report as well as the planning of its activities for 2007-2008.

    Communities in Dialogue 2007: Montreal, City of Knowledge… We need
    everyone to take part!
    Foster a learning-oriented culture to create a knowledge economy

    DATE :    Friday, october 26, 2007

    TIME :    From 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

    PLACE :   Auditorium of the Grande Bibliothèque
              (475, De Maisonneuve blvd. East - Berri Street entrance)

    Montreal Hooked on School was created in response to the concerning fact
that 4 000 teenagers and young adults in Montreal quit school each year. In
addition to working actively with the five school boards of Montreal to set up
preventive initiatives promoting the importance of staying in school and
obtaining a qualifying diploma, MHOS also serves as a forum that encourages
partners to share their experiences and best practices. The organization
offers services to young people, parents, education professionals, and the
general public and implements activities with the business community and
political partners to raise awareness about the drop out phenomena and its
impacts on the socio-economic development of our society.

For further information:

For further information: Sonia Lombart, Coordinator, Vocational training
project and Communications, Montreal Hooked on School, (514) 286-2346, ext.
205, (514) 910-2634 (cell),

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Montreal Hooked on School

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