Get to Know Ascension Catholic School

Although this blog is sponsored by our partners at Ascension Catholic School, the words of this guest contributor our completely authentic and a true reflection of her experiences with the school.

ascension catholic schoolIf you’ve been looking for a school that prioritizes community, literacy, and faith-based education, you should get to know Ascension Catholic School. My name is Emily Weitz, and I am a local mother of 3: Dagny (2nd grade), James (Kindergarten), and Alice (3 years old). My husband, Josh, grew up in the Dayton area and attended Ascension Catholic School from K-8th grade. His family has truly been involved in Ascension’s Parish since the beginning. Not only did he and his 6 siblings attend Ascension when they were in elementary school, their mom also attended school there when she was in elementary school!

Ascension is such a huge part of our lives. We attend Ascension Parish for mass weekly, my husband is still friends with many of his Ascension classmates and we spend time with each other, and our kids are growing up together! Our extended family also attends Ascension. My kids currently attend school with 5 cousins, one 3rd cousin, and one uncle.

Ascension Catholic SchoolWe have been so happy with Ascension for so many reasons, but here are the areas I truly believe set Ascension apart from other schools in our area:

Community: The community at Ascension is very special. Our families come from all different walks of life (socioeconomic status, faith denominations, ethnicities, stay at home moms, working parents, etc.), but everyone shares the same value of being involved with the school. I have served on the PTO board for two years now, and parents are always wanting and willing to help out. As a working mom, I appreciate the different types of opportunities I have to be involved. There are many ways to get involved during the school day but also for after school events as well. I never feel like the school is asking me to give too much. There are enough people willing to help that you don’t feel obligated to volunteer for everything. At one of our open PTO meetings last year, the parents said that they want to do more events at our school instead of out in the community so that we establish a sense of community at our own “home base”. We continue to add more community-building events each year and try to keep them low cost so that it is truly just about all of us coming together. Two of these new traditions are the annual Breakfast with Santa and Meatball Madness in March.

Student activities: There are many ways for the kids to get involved at school. Through Beacons of Light, we have been able to share resources with the whole Kettering Catholic Community (Ascension, St. Charles, and St. Albert). This has really been a great experience that has allowed us to have sports teams for most grade levels and not have to play co-ed for SAY and CYO. My kids have also enjoyed getting to know students from the other schools who might one day be at their high school. There are other activities such as Cub Scouts and sacrament preparation that the schools are able to share resources for. There are activities for students in all grade levels that include a Power of the Pen team, Peacemakers, Art Club, choir, Scouts, and our Junior Optimist Club. Last summer, the elementary aged students were able to attend a free STEM summer camp at Ascension that was 4 half-days a week for 3 weeks. They got the opportunity to do hands-on STEM activities as well as work on reading and math. My daughter really enjoyed it and hopes to do it again this year!

Ascension Catholic SchoolLiteracy: I have been so impressed by Ascension’s focus on literacy right from Kindergarten. The literacy leader, Mrs. Friel, is amazing. Our school has started screening every kindergarten student for dyslexia. This has recently become a state law for all public schools in Ohio with a slow roll-out. Ascension started doing this before it even became a requirement and despite the fact that private schools are exempt from this requirement. They did it because they care about the students and want to give every student the support they need. They have a way of making this screening, testing, and high focus fun for the students. My kids don’t ever appear to feel pressure to perform or stressed by the assessments. The teachers try to give as many interventions to the whole class to catch and support all students. There are also additional interventions available to students who need that extra support such as Title 1 services. This is all done in a way that does not make the student feel “less than”. All the teachers have always been so thorough in their responses whenever I have questions about how they are teaching the material and go out of their way to do research about what books would be most beneficial for me to buy for my kids to have at home. They stay in great communication with me about how my kids are doing and ways I can help them at home. 

Faith-based education: Ascension welcomes families of all faith backgrounds and teaches the Catholic faith. My daughter will make her First Communion this spring! The students attend mass weekly (and days of holy obligation), and families are always welcomed and encouraged to attend if they are able! Prayer is incorporated into their day, and they receive religion class. The younger students will bring home little packets of what they learned in religion and ways to reinforce it at home. This is nice because it helps me know what they are learning, and I can see it being beneficial to a family who is not Catholic because it gives them an opportunity to see what is being taught and how it relates to their own faith background. My older daughter also sometimes brings religion homework home, which I also appreciate because it gives me an opportunity to see what she is learning about in school. I appreciate that I can trust what is being taught in my kids’ school and that it will be in line with my family’s Catholic values.

Our Catholic Faith is the cornerstone of all we do at Ascension. The students learn that God Loves Them, and the interactions with the students will highlight that each and every day. Students become active participants in daily prayer, weekly Mass, and special events like Come to The Stable where all students dress up as if they were there at the foot of the manger with Baby Jesus. 

If you are interested in learning more about Ascension, please reach out to the school office to set up a tour with the school principal. Our Learning Fair, scheduled for Wednesday, March 27 at 6:30 PM, is open to prospective families. This is a community celebration of our school community, which highlights grade level/curricular projects. Our Ascension PTO hosts this evening, which includes a Taco Bar, performances by the school band, and an opportunity to meet teachers and staff.

Families who are considering Ascension for the 2024-2025 school year should call the school ahead of time so that we can be sure to greet prospective families!

Please email principal, Susan DiGiorgio, at [email protected] for more information or visit their website.

Ascension Catholic School

Emily, Guest Contributor

Emily lives in Riverside with her husband and 3 kids. She is the Outreach Coordinator for On Our Sleeves at Dayton Children’s Hospital where she gets to provide free mental wellness educational resources to families, caregivers, and caring adults in the Dayton region. The Weitz family enjoys spending time together hiking, ice skating, and playing games.


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