The giant in the world of education bows

EDUCATION. After developing in the world of education for 40 years, Esther Lemieux, 10-year-old director general of the Center de services scolaire des Navigateurs (CSSDN), announced her retirement at the end of the school year in late March. If she thinks her upcoming departure is “the hardest decision of her life,” even the leader leaves with a sense of accomplishment.

Author Érick Deschênes – Special Collaboration

“My husband, who was in business, decided to sell his property three years ago. And I, it’s been 40 years since I’ve evolved in the world of education. Even if he left in a year, the pain of leaving will be the same. The last two years due to the pandemic have not been years of educational development. With the new commitment plan that comes with the department’s new strategic planning, I would rather leave room for a new director general, ”Ms Lemieux explained the reasons for her retirement.

His departure from the general leadership of the CSSDN will thus end a rich career dedicated to the education community on the South Coast. If, at her father’s request, she first considered studying law, her interest in pedagogy finally pushed her to study to be a teacher.

“I don’t remember what inspired me to get an education, but I think my uncle’s example inspired me. He started his career in education and the passion he had when talking about his work and students seemed fascinating to me. Finally, I never regretted my choice. I have always been very happy. […] I chose the best job in the world. I believe that I fell for a lucky star and that I often won the lottery, I always had the opportunity to work with great teams, ”said the General Director of CSSDN.

According to the teacher and the school principal, he holds a postgraduate degree in education, a micrograduate program in school administration, a master’s degree in administration and school policies, a graduate correctional educator and a bachelor’s degree in primary, pre-school and remedial education. du Loisir et du Sport.

In 2003, she became director of education services for the CSSDN ancestor, the Commission scolaire des Navigateurs (CSDN), before succeeding Joanne Plourde as head of the organization nine years later.

A student at the center of the action

Among her successes, Esther Lemieux is particularly proud to have managed to create a strong team spirit at CSSDN, whose mission is to keep the student at the center of her concerns.

“Honestly, I’m proud to have put together a team of managers who don’t work for their school, but for the organization. It wasn’t easy, but you have to believe in getting there. For an organization to develop and become mature, there must also be maturity at the micro level. People love to work together and building networks within our organization has solidified the transitions for our students. […] Before you decide, it’s important to always think about students. Our basic mission is to educate, qualify and socialize our students. This has always been most important to me. The best gifts I can get are former students I have tagged and reconnect with me. All this has never spared me the right, “said the director general of CSSDN.

However, as with any responsible position, Esther Lemieux’s transition to the overall leadership of the organization was not a long calm river. One of the most difficult times she has experienced is the political crisis that paralyzed the failed CSDN Committee of Commissioners in mid-2010 over a dispute between President François Caron and most Commissioners.

Even the CSSDN director general will not be bored with layoffs or the decision to close schools due to the storm, a judgment as welcome as well as criticism from citizens.

Always present passion

If she wants to dedicate this new period of her life to realizing personal projects, Esther Lemieux does not intend to sever ties with the environment in which she has developed over the last four decades.

“I have had to turn down this offer in the past, but I would definitely like to teach at a university. I would also like to support young managers in the education sector. In the context of labor shortages, resources are scarce and must be preserved. I do not have to look for mandates, but I want to continue to make changes in the field of education. But my first retirement project will be to take a break, “concluded the one who has not counted the hours at the helm of the CSSDN in recent years.

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