Ashley McDaniel | ACE Partner School Principal

ACE Partner Schools Set the Standard for Success

Ashley McDaniel is the principal of ACE partner school St. Thomas More Catholic School (STM) in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. She is in her second year as principal and served 19 years as vice principal prior to her current position.

Since 1960, STM has prepared students for success in life and strives to maintain its legacy to guide, inspire, and serve.“I know this not just from my years working there but also from my years attending as a student,” said Ashley. “I myself am a product of St. Thomas More. I know the strong foundation established for me as a student is the same foundation that we are providing for our children today.

STM groups classes into three levels while students are in first through fifth grade. “Every child has the capacity for learning and it’s our mission to nurture and cultivate that,” Ashley stated. By grouping students into levels, STM is able to augment their growth, challenge them, and prevent them from getting complacent in their learning.

“This is a tremendous opportunity for them because we can devote extra classroom resources to bridge those gaps… We don’t let kids get left behind. We work very hard to bring them forward,” said Ashley.

STM is a school choice option for many parents in Baton Rouge due to the personalized approach to meeting students’ unique academic needs. Along with STM’s academic standards, this ACE partner school proudly instills a strong spiritual component where students learn to embrace their Catholic faith.

This school year, STM has 31 ACE Scholars. Ashley emphasized that without a scholarship from ACE, these 31 students would not be able to attend a school that challenges and guides them. “We need to send children to a school with an environment where they feel safe, loved, and challenged,” Ashley said.

“ACE Scholarships plays such an important role in our school”

St. Thomas More Catholic School cultivates a learning environment that allows students to grow academically and spiritually and leads them to a successful future. ACE Scholarships bridges the financial gap for parents in Louisiana and allows students to attend schools like STM, the school of their choice.

“For many, private school tuition is beyond their means. If it wasn’t for their access to a partial scholarship, attending STM would not be in the cards for them… we have a number of first and second-generation Americans who have come to our community from other countries. They are working very hard to establish their businesses and provide for their families,” Ashley stated.

Ashley appreciates the philosophy of ACE Scholarships and the significant impact of families having partial buy-in financially in their child’s education. “They get to maintain family dignity and be a part of the solution. I don’t think there is a better gift,” Ashley said.

ACE Scholarships allows students in underserved communities to receive an education at the school of their choice and thrive in their learning environment. “Without the support of generous donors like you, we would lose out on these students. These students would lose out on an education that prepares them for lifelong success. Ultimately, our nation would lose out on these children becoming the contributing members of society they were meant to become,” Ashley expressed.

Below you will find a video of Ashley McDaniel speaking at the 2022 ACE Scholarships Louisiana Luncheon.