L. Jacques Ménard supports the Voies de réussites Announced by Education Minister Michelle Courchesne

    The Action Group on Student Retention and Success will closely monitor
    how the announced government measures are implemented

    MONTREAL, Sept. 9 /CNW/ - L. Jacques Ménard, President of BMO Financial
Group, Quebec, and Chair of the Action Group on Student Retention and Success
in Quebec, supports the Voies de réussites (paths to success) announced today
by Quebec's Minister of Education, Sports and Recreation.
    "The departmental document incorporates the main thrusts of the action
plan contained in the Knowledge Is Power report that our Action Group
published in March," Mr. Ménard said. The chair of the Action Group and author
of the book Beyond the Numbers, a Matter of the Heart reiterated his
commitment, shared by the members of his Action Group, to closely monitor the
implementation of the 13 success paths, including the allocation of the
budgets necessary to transform the intentions announced today into meaningful
    The departmental document recognizes the enormous challenge posed by the
dropout problem in Quebec as well as the urgent need for structured,
comprehensive and adequately funded action. "The road to success begins with
acknowledging that a problem exists and putting in place a realistic strategy
for dealing with it. This has now been done," said Mr. Ménard, who
congratulated the minister on her tenacity and vision.
    The action plan calls on all of Quebec society, including the department
of education, school boards and schools as well as social agencies, community
organizations and the business sector. "Getting young people to stay in school
is the responsibility of all society," added Mr. Ménard. "This has to be made
absolutely clear."
    Mr. Ménard stressed that the minister's action plan calls for
stakeholders to be involved in children's lives from birth through graduation.
"The factors that lead to dropping out sometimes come into play as soon as
children are born or during their earliest years, even before they enter
school. The announced actions targeting this stage in children's lives are
crucial and should be given all the attention they deserve," he explained.
    Mr. Ménard also mentioned that messages recorded by well-known Quebec
personalities and stars from various media began being aired yesterday to
remind adults and young people of the importance of student retention and
success. The messages are being carried by stations affiliated with the Corus
network. "I want to thank Corus and the Cossette Communication Group for
volunteering their support for this fantastic citizen initiative, which aims
to make the public aware of the dropout problem and the need to assist our
young people," said the President of BMO Financial Group, Quebec.
    "The minister's announcement today marks an important step in the major
effort that Quebec has decided to make to help our young people stay in
school," added Mr. Ménard.

For further information:

For further information: Ronald Monet, (514) 877-1873 or (514) 594-2501,

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