School Album

École Notre-Dame

École Notre-Dame, institution founded in 1953, Isle Maligne (Alma), Quebec, [between 1954 and 1971]. Archives Congrégation de Notre-Dame - Montréal.

Saint Michael School

Saint Michael School, institution founded in 1948, Alma (Riverbend), Quebec.

In 1948, at the request of the English-speaking Catholic population of Riverbend, near Alma, Saint Michael School, formerly a Protestant school, became a Catholic institution. In January of that same year, the Catholic School Commission, asked the Congrégation de Notre-Dame to send sisters to teach in the new school. The request was at first refused. However, it was accepted two months later thanks to the involvement of Father Gérard Bujold, of the Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament, who approached the council of the Congrégation de Notre-Dame and requested that two English-speaking sisters be sent to the school. A few months later, Sister Saint-Jean-des-Anges (Margaret Annie McKenna) and Sister Sainte-Agnès-de-la-Croix (Jane Margaret Perro) arrived in Riverbend. They joined Sister Saint-Joseph-du-Temple (Marie-Joséphine Lanctôt) who, since 1947, at the request of Father Ludger Gauthier, had been providing religious education to the Catholic children studying in the Protestant school in Riverbend. The three sisters resided in Saint-Joseph d'Alma Convent. In September 1948, the school opened under the administration of lay personnel. There were eighty registered students. The sisters taught from Grade 1 to Grade 7. Higher grades were taught by lay teachers. Most Reverend Georges-Arthur Melançon, bishop of the Diocese of Chicoutimi, blessed the building on October 30 of the same year. In 1950, registrations increased with the arrival of the Catholic English-speaking students from L'isle Maligne. Two years later, the boys of the school won the boys’ provincial curling championship. In 1960, the school authorities decided to separate Grades 1 and 2 because registrations for Grade 1 had increased. In September 1961, a new method of teaching arithmetic in elementary schools was adopted. There were one hundred twenty-five students. In 1962, the sisters left the school.

Saint Michael School was founded in 1948 to provide education to the Catholic English-speaking girls and boys of Riverbend in the Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean Region. During their mandate, the sisters taught Grade 1 to Grade 7. They also taught Domestic Sciences, Drawing, English and Math to the students of the other grades. The school was administered by the Riverbend Catholic School Commission until 1961 and by the Alma School Commission after that. The teaching sisters were under the direction of the General Council of the Congrégation de Notre-Dame.

NB: This text was written using documents found in the archival holdings in our possession and does not constitute a complete administrative history of the teaching establishment.

École Saint-Cléophée

École Saint-Cléophée, institution founded in 1958, Alma, Quebec.

École Sainte-Bernadette

École Sainte-Bernadette, institution founded in 1943, Alma, Quebec, [ca. 1955]. Photography : Jean le photographe. Archives Congrégation de Notre-Dame - Montréal.

In August 1943, at the request of Bishop Georges-Arthur Melançon of the Diocese of Chicoutimi, the sisters of the Congrégation de Notre-Dame arrived in Alma. Sainte-Bernadette School, on the corner of Collars Street and Labrecque Avenue, was a branch school of Saint-Joseph Convent, also in Alma, which had been established that same year. Sister Sainte-Madeleine-de-la-Provence (Germaine Chagnon) became the first director. Education was provided by lay teachers. In September 1943, the school received eighty-three students divided into two classrooms. In 1955, the school received Grade 3 boys from Saint-Pierre Parish. After 1959, as decided by the commissioners, a laywoman was appointed director of the school.

NB: This text was written using documents found in the archival holdings in our possession and does not constitute a complete administrative history of the teaching establishment.

École Saint-Thomas

École Saint-Thomas, institution founded in 1961, Pointe-Claire, Quebec.

École Sainte-Cécile

École Sainte-Cécile, institution founded in 1944, Alma, Quebec, [ca. 1955]. Archives Congrégation de Notre-Dame - Montréal.

École Saint-Thomas-Apôtre

École Saint-Thomas-Apôtre, institution founded in 1953, Montreal, Quebec, 1953. Archives Congrégation de Notre-Dame - Montréal.

École Sainte-Madeleine

École Sainte-Madeleine, institution founded in 1945, Alma, Quebec, [ca. 1955]. Photography : Jean le photographe. Archives Congrégation de Notre-Dame - Montréal.

Académie Saint-Urbain

Académie Saint-Urbain, institution founded in 1889, Montreal, Quebec, [18-?]. Archives Congrégation de Notre-Dame - Montréal.

In 1889, the pastor of Notre-Dame de Montréal Parish, Father Léon-Alfred Sentenne, decided to establish Académie Saint-Urbain on the corner of Prince-Arthur and Saint-Urbain Streets and asked the Congrégation de Notre-Dame sisters to teach at this school. On August 15, 1889, four sisters opened the school, which was bilingual at first. They were: Sister de la Nativité-de-Jésus (Marie-Thérèse-Elmire Pinsonneault), the superior, Sister Saint-Néré (Marie-Octavie Bernier), Sister Saint-Jérôme-Émilien (Marie-Eulalie Toupin) and Sister Sainte-Ida (Josephine McDougall). During the first weeks, the sisters of Académie Saint-Denis offered support by providing the sisters with food and furnishings. At the beginning of the 1889 school year, there were forty enrolled students. On September 8, Father Sentenne blessed the school. In addition to the regular curriculum, the students were offered music and drawing classes. Académie Saint-Urbain also received boarders. Over time, the school was modernized and went through many changes. As soon as it opened, one room was changed into a chapel. At the turn of the 20th century, there were one hundred fifteen young women enrolled. In 1918 and 1919, Quebec was hit by a serious Spanish flu epidemic. Notre-Dame de Montréal Parish was not spared. Churches were obliged to close on Sundays to prevent the spread of the disease. During this time and because the school was quiet, the sisters of Académie Saint-Urbain were very much involved with the sick – they visited and provided care for them.

From the 1920s, the population of the school’s English-speaking students progressively decreased while that of the French-speaking students steadily increased. In 1930, Notre-Dame-de-la-Fidélité Alumnae Association was established with one hundred twenty-five former students. In 1936, one hundred eighty-five students were enrolled, of whom twenty-six were boarders. In May 1939, the members of the Alumnae Association participated in Académie Saint-Urbain’s golden jubilee celebrations. In 1946, the school went from coal heating to oil heating. The two coal cellars were changed to serve as a vegetable cellar and an ironing room. In January 1942, a fire broke out at the school. Although the firefighters responded quickly, damage was considerable. In September 1945, due to the decrease in students, the English classes were closed. In 1947, the dormitory was enlarged to accommodate a dozen new boarders. The students’ and the sisters’ involvement in their school was significant. The students gave recitals, participated in student congresses organized by Comité central de l’Action Catholique and in various religious celebrations. On the other hand, the sisters also looked to improve their course selection. Therefore, the teachers of the Letters and Sciences program attended development courses on Saturdays at Collège Marguerite-Bourgeoys. In 1954, the school received nearly two hundred students. They considered moving Académie Saint-Urbain into a new and larger building. In 1955, the school was sold. The sisters who taught there were transferred to the new Collège Régina Assumpta in Montreal’s north end.

NB: This text was written using documents found in the archival holdings in our possession and does not constitute a complete administrative history of the teaching establishment.

École Saint-Vincent

École Saint-Vincent, institution founded in [1858], Montreal, Quebec.

Around 1853, the neighbourhood known at the time as Pied-du-Courant numbered only a few households. A chapel was built on the corner of Sainte-Catherine and Fullum Streets, but there was no school. It was then that the sisters of the Congrégation de Notre-Dame started their work among the children in the area. The sisters taught in various wooden houses until they rented a stone house, in 1863, on Sainte-Marie Street which became Notre-Dame Street. In 1866, the Saint Vincent Convent also became a residence. The following year, the Pied-du-Courant neighbourhood broke away from Notre-Dame Parish and established its own parish which was named Saint-Vincent-de-Paul. The pastor of the new parish, Father Louis-Moïse Lavallée, built a church and convent on Sainte-Catherine Street. In 1881, Saint Vincent School was transferred there. The convent was divided into two sections: Saint Catherine Academy and the parish school. The stone building on Sainte-Marie Street was rented to individuals pending an offer to purchase. After many hardships because of insolvent debtors, the house was sold in 1888.

NB: This text was written using documents found in the archival holdings in our possession and does not constitute a complete administrative history of the teaching establishment.

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