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Anna Shaw-Amoah

Policy Associate

Pronouns: She/Her


  • M.A. in Public and Nonprofit Policy and Management: New York University
  • B.A. in Global Development and Social Work: New York University

About Anna Shaw-Amoah

Since joining RFA in 2018, Anna has worked on a variety of projects combining education research and policy. Anna co-directs RFA’s Pennsylvania Clearinghouse of Education Research (PACER) and Allegheny County Education Research (ACER) projects, which inform state education policy discussions through rigorous, objective policy briefs.

She contributes to RFA’s support of the Pennsylvania Academic and Career and Technical Training Alliance, or PACTT, including leading an assessment of juvenile services from PA’s Office of Vocational Rehabilitation. Anna also directed an audit of the school application system in Camden, NJ, contributed to a study about the childcare needs of Pennsylvanians who work nonstandard hours, and supports RFA’s work on school finance reform in Pennsylvania.

Prior to joining RFA, Anna was the Principal Policy Analyst at the Institute for Children, Poverty, and Homelessness in New York City, leading initiatives aimed at raising awareness about the education, health, and well-being of students experiencing homelessness. Anna is deeply committed to achieving equity in education and has extensive experience in quantitative analysis, research methods, and program development. In addition to her work at RFA, Anna serves on the Board of Directors for a national mentorship organization, Women and Youth Supporting Each Other (WYSE).

  • When I'm not at work, you can find me...

    Walking my dogs, Jackie and Jojo.

  • My favorite cuisine is...

    Indian food!

  • I'm a real nerd about...

    Housing policy.

Key Projects by Anna Shaw-Amoah

Allegheny County Educator Diversity Project

Read More K-12

Expanding the Knowledge Base on State Policies Impacting Undocumented Students in Higher Education

Read More Postsecondary & Workforce

Allegheny County Education Research (ACER) Project

Read More K-12

Examining the Status of Non-Traditional Child Care in Pennsylvania

Read More Early Childhood Education

Evaluation of Children’s Literacy Initiative’s Curriculum and Professional Development Model for Kindergarten Readiness

Read More Early Childhood Education

An Evaluation of Children’s Literacy Initiative’s Blueprint for Early Literacy

Read More Early Childhood Education

The Philadelphia Education Research Consortium (PERC)

Read More K-12

The Pennsylvania Clearinghouse for Education Research (PACER): Translating Research and Analysis for Education Policymakers

Read More

Career and Technical Training in Juvenile Justice Facilities: Increasing the Capacity of a Statewide Network to Make Evidence-Based Decisions

Read More K-12
See all author projects

Recent Publications by Anna Shaw-Amoah

Allegheny County Student and Teacher Race and Ethnicity, 2022-23


Allegheny County Teacher and Student Demographics: 2022-23 Update

This ACER brief updates RFA’s prior analyses of teacher and student race and ethnicity in Allegheny County public schools with data current through the 2022-23 school year. We found that in 2022-23, teachers of color (TOCs)…


Pennsylvania School Funding and School Staffing Disparities

Pennsylvania operates one of the most inequitable public school systems in the nation, with among the largest disparities in school funding, educational opportunities, and student achievement. In this brief, RFA examines the relationship between school…


Changing the Finish Line: Implications of new graduation requirements in the School District of Philadelphia

PERC research is produced through collaboration between researchers from Research for Action and the School District of Philadelphia’s Office of Research and Evaluation. For more information, please visit New graduation requirements, enacted in 2018…


Unequal Access to Educational Opportunity in the United States

Research for Action’s Educational Opportunity Dashboard is an interactive on-line tool to synthesize data and rank all 50 states by how well they provide students access to schools that offer 14 indicators of educational opportunity…


Students Experiencing Homelessness in Allegheny County

Close to 3,000 students in Allegheny County public schools were identified as experiencing homelessness during the 2018-19 school year, or 2.0% of the total student population. Meanwhile, homelessness rates have been growing in recent years…


Teacher Diversity in Pennsylvania from 2013-14 to 2019-20

As RFA documented in Patching the Leaky Pipeline, teachers of color (TOCs) are important for all students and particularly for students of color (SOCs). Yet, despite promising statewide initiatives to improve teacher diversity, there is…


Allegheny County Students in Foster Care

Students in foster care require additional supports from schools in order to maintain educational stability. And, in the time of COVID-19 school shutdowns, experts warn that vulnerable students such as those in foster care may…


Making It Work: Bibliography and Technical Appendix

A bibliography and suggestions for further reading, as well as the technical appendix to accompany Making It Work: Examining the Status of Non-Traditional Child Care in Pennsylvania.


Making It Work: Examining the Status of Non-Traditional Child Care in Pennsylvania

As the number of jobs that require non-traditional work schedules (evenings, weekends, and overnight) increases, families’ need for child care during non-traditional hours has also grown. An estimated more than 150,000 Pennsylvania families with young…
See all author publications

Recent Posts by Anna Shaw-Amoah


A Common Definition, a Common Understanding

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, too many families are having to choose between paying the rent or mortgage and paying for hospital bills, Internet connectivity, and other basic necessities. For students experiencing homelessness, the difficulties presented by their housing status become serious barriers to enrolling in, attending, and succeeding in school. Research has … Continued