LES Principal, Mr. Cohen

Phone: 919-870-4200


Degrees and Certifications:

MSA, UNC Chapel Hill

Ari Cohen

email address: acohen

It is hard to believe that I am entering into my ELEVENTH year as the Principal here at Leesville Rd. Elementary School.  It has been a terrific honor to serve as the leader for this community throughout the past decade and while the past two and a half years have been the most challenging of my professional life, I can honestly say that I have still looked forward to coming to work each day.  Mrs. Bailey and I say that the worst and most difficult days at LES are still better than the best days anywhere else. 

To share a bit about my path that led me to Leesville Rd. Elementary School, I joined Teach for America as a 1995 Corps Member. TFA sent me out to Compton, California, where I taught first grade for five years at Thomas Jefferson ES. Once my first class of students completed their 5th grade year, I moved back home to NYC, where I taught first grade for another two years at PS 189 in Washington Heights.  

During my second year, I determined that I wanted a broader impact on school operations, which led me to the NC Principal Fellows and the Masters in School Administration Program and UNC-CH. 

Following my internship at Forest View Elementary in Durham, I became the Assistant Principal at Southwest ES.  After one and a half years as AP and five and a half years as Principal, my family and I moved to Paris, France, where I spent two years leading the Pre-K through 8th Grade Program at Marymount International School. 

As my family and I made our plans to return to North Carolina, I was fortunate to land here in the Leesville community.  The PRIDE Starts Here Leesville!