Emerson Preparatory School's Blog

Welcome to Emerson Preparatory School's Blog. We hope to use this space to share information about our unique liberal arts, private college preparatory school. We have been a quiet force in DC since 1852!



November 26, 2018

Welcome to Emerson Preparatory School’s Inaugural Blog!

As we launch our blog, we felt it critical to share a little bit about our history and introduce our current President and Head of School. It is our hope that this information will provide critical context for our future blogs. Once again welcome to our Blog.

The Emerson Institute currently known as Emerson Preparatory School has been serving students and their families for one hundred and sixty-six years as the oldest non-denominational college preparatory school in Washington, District of Columbia (DC). Founded in 1852 and named in honor of noted New England educator, author, and Harvard graduate, George Barrell Emerson, a progressive thinker in women's education and cousin of Ralph Waldo Emerson, the Emerson Institute originally prepared DC area boys to enter Harvard College and became Washington’s first co-ed preparatory school in 1920. 

Emerson first opened at 914 14th Street Northwest Washington DC near Franklin Square between K and I Streets. In 1928, Emerson moved to a new building at 1740 P Street Northwest near DuPont Circle between Massachusetts and New Hampshire Avenues. In 1933, Emerson moved to 1525 16th Street Northwest near Stead Park between Q and Church Streets. In 1937, Emerson moved to 1324 18th Northwest near DuPont Circle between Massachusetts and Connecticut Avenues. 

In 1940, Emerson adopted the current academic term system, modeled after the British system of secondary education, that allows students to take a maximum of 4 courses per term with 2 terms per academic year. Throughout the years, the Emerson philosophy has remained focused on flexible, intellectually engaged, and student-centered programs for students looking for alternatives to high stress independent and public schools. 

In 2017, Emerson moved to the fourth floor of the Thurgood Marshall Center for Service and Heritage at 1816 12th Street Northwest (stop number 6 on the Greater U Street Heritage Trail) near Ben’s Chili Bowl between S and T Streets. 

Today, Emerson supports an intentionally small, welcoming community of diverse and engaged learners in grades 9 through 12 from local and international communities and prepares them for post-secondary careers, college, and life

Emerson Preparatory School Welcomes New President/Head of School

Nationally respected educator takes helm at Washington D.C.’s oldest private non-denominational college preparatory school—one of the city’s best-kept secrets.

The new President and Head of School at Washington, D.C.’s oldest private non-denominational college preparatory school, is bringing fresh vision—and a wealth of experience—to one of the city’s hidden gems

For 166 years, Emerson Preparatory School has offered bright and diverse students a unique college preparatory education in one of the most vibrant political and cultural centers in the United States. Located in DuPont Circle since the 1920s, the school has temporarily relocated to the Thurgood Marshall Center as it forges a new chapter in its history under the leadership of Dr. Peri-Anne Chobot.

Emerson Preparatory School’s Board of Directors is proud to announce her appointment as the school’s seventh President and Head of School.

Dr. Chobot brings more than 30 years of experience to Emerson, including an education in Bilingual and Bicultural Education, and leadership successes at schools throughout the country. Her background will be an asset to the school as it focuses on preparing students for an increasingly mobile and global future. While keeping pace with rapidly changing career trends and technology, and honoring Emerson’s legacy, Dr. Chobot is committed to emphasizing timeless critical reasoning and writing skills. 

Dr. Chobot is a longtime urban educator who has served as principal of several Connecticut schools with large and diverse student populations. After brief tenure in Virginia, Dr. Chobot is excited to be back in D.C. where for six years she was CEO of the Kingsbury Center, the city’s oldest non-public school for students with learning differences. Before that, she was Assistant Headmaster for Academic Affairs and Dean of Faculty at North Broward Preparatory Schools in Coconut Creek, Florida. There, she launched the Cognitive Development Institute, a for-profit tutoring program, and used cutting edge research to improve student achievement and support dynamic curricular implementation. 

In addition to her Master’s degree in Bilingual and Bicultural Education from the University of Connecticut, Dr. Chobot holds an Educational Doctorate in Administration from Walden University, a sixth year degree in Education Administration and an undergraduate degree in Education/Spanish from Eastern Connecticut State University. 

“Dr. Chobot takes the helm at a critical time in our school’s development and at an important point in the national discourse of the education process,” according to Ms. Annette Rossi, the new Chairman of The Emerson Board of Directors. “She possesses an innovative leadership style, insight into and experience with national education trends, a comprehensive approach to education and innate understanding of the history and guiding ethos behind Emerson’s student-centered Liberal Arts education model. 

“Further, this is the first time that Emerson has hired an experienced professional school administrator with the background and skills required to attend, not only to the immediate needs of day-to-day operations, but to the needs of community stakeholders. We wholeheartedly welcome Dr. Chobot to the Emerson community.”

Check back as we intend to explore topics, issues, and research including but not limited to:

  • A Student’s Voice (the emotional and academic security of an intentionally small high school)

  • The college essays are in – now what?? (The last 5 months of senior year)

  • Cyber Security and Your Teen

  • Mindsets

  • Kindness