Philadelphia Academy of School Leaders | Shira Woolf Cohen
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Fellow Profiles

School Type


Grade Levels

K – 8

Student Enrollment



Northeast Philadelphia


M.A. Education,

Administrative Certification,

Temple University


B.S. Education,

Lesley University

Shira Woolf Cohen

Principal, New Foundations Charter School
2017 Neubauer Fellow

Every student deserves an opportunity to learn, to grow, to lead, and to make a difference.”

Shira has served as the principal of New Foundations Charter School since 2014. Under her leadership, New Foundations earned recognition as the top-performing charter school in Philadelphia in 2015. New Foundations Charter School also secured national recognition by the National Youth Leadership Council for service learning initiatives, was recognized as a Distinguished School through Project Lead the Way, and was named a Disney Musicals in Schools site through the Walnut Street Theater.


Shira has been an educator since 2000. Prior to becoming a principal, Shira served as a middle school math teacher, out-of-school time director, dean of programs, and vice principal. Shira received the Bernard Gill Award for Urban Service Learning Leadership by the National Youth Leadership Council in 2015. Shira’s commitment to students also extends to service outside of her school – she is the board secretary for National Youth Leadership Council and the founder of Teachers in the Workplace STEM Fellows. Shira grew up in West Hartford, Connecticut.

2017 Neubauer Fellows Page