Marco French’s story was featured on “The Wonderful World of Disney: Magical Holiday Celebration” on ABC.
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Each morning, the principal at Queensborough Elementary in Shreveport, Louisiana, greets every student by name. And he does it with a smile.

Over the last two incredibly difficult years, Marco French, A.K.A. "The Bowtie Principal," helped the school end its decades-long stint as one of Louisiana's "academically unacceptable" schools and earn recognition as Louisiana's Outstanding School.

The Wonderful World of Disney: Magical Holiday Celebration 2021 Marco French
Credit: Disney

"Before I stepped foot in these doors, this school was not so welcoming, the standards were not there let's put it like that," French told ABC 11. "But now when you walk in, the atmosphere is contagious of love, excitement, music. It instantly puts a smile on your face."

French has committed himself to preparing at-risk students for the near and distant futures by teaching them everything from handshake skills to resume building—and his efforts haven't gone unnoticed.  

"When I look at the impact Marco has had in his community, he is an amazing principal," Dr. Lamar Goree, superintendent of Caddo Parish Public Schools, told ABC 11.

Marco French
Credit: Disney

In addition to being named Louisiana's 2021-2022 Principal of the Year, Disney recently thanked French for his unwavering commitment to his students by presenting him and his family with a well-deserved vacation to the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida during the resort's 50th anniversary celebration.

"With Queensborough serving one of the most at-risk communities in Shreveport, Marco works tirelessly to ensure his students have everything they need both at school and at home throughout the year including school supplies, take home care packages and a gift for all 200+ students at Christmas," Disney said in a statement. "His approach to educating goes beyond the classroom as he takes an active role in ensuring the school is supporting not only its students, but the community as a whole."

Disney surprised him and his family with the trip during a school assembly last month.

An appreciative French accepted the honor with his signature humility. "Why me?" he asked KTBS. "Why little old Marco French from Haynesville Louisiana?"

We think we know why, Marco.

French's story was featured during ABC's The Wonderful World of Disney: Magical Holiday Celebration which is streaming now on Hulu.