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A Truly New Approach to Education

Quest to Learn is a public 6–12 school with an innovative educational philosophy developed by top educators and game theorists at The Institute of Play, with funding from The MacArthur Foundation.

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Summer Rising - Students Grades K-8

Get Ready for K–8 Summer Rising 2023!
Dear New Yorkers,

Last year, students across the city took part in our comprehensive summer learning program—Summer Rising—which includes fun and enriching activities, from visits to parks and museums to challenging computer science and robotics experiences. I had the chance to visit a few Summer Rising sites last year and was thrilled by the learning and exploration I saw our kids enjoying.

This free program is a real winner for our students and families, and I’m very pleased to announce that we will be offering it again this summer—now with a more equitable and inclusive application process.

Summer Rising 2023(Open external link) will provide engaging, high-quality academic support to combat learning loss from the pandemic as well as plenty of opportunities to play, create, and explore. New York City students in grades K–8 will be able to develop new interests and build skills while connecting with their peers, school community, and our amazing city. All programs will offer the social, emotional, and academic support your children need to thrive inside and outside school.

We’re pleased to once again partner with the Department of Youth and Community Development to serve around 110,000 students across the five boroughs. Enrollment will open on April 17, with an improved application process. Instead of a first-come, first-served approach, you will now be able to rank multiple program preferences. This will improve your chances of receiving a placement that works best for your child.

In filling seats, we are prioritizing students mandated to attend summer school, students in temporary housing and foster care, students in 12-month IEP programs, and those with a local connection to a school-year, community-based program or school community. We made these changes based on feedback from our families, community-based organizations, and schools, and I’m grateful for everyone’s input. Regardless of these enhancements, students who are mandated to attend summer programming will be able to access a seat affiliated with their home school.

I encourage you to visit the link to the application portal on April 17: The portal will be translatable and accessible from any device with an internet connection. We have trained parent coordinators to assist families who need support in completing the application. The application window will close on May 1, and we’ll confirm placements by email approximately a week later.

I’m so excited to bring our popular Summer Rising program back! All our students deserve the opportunity to keep the learning going year-round. I’ll share more details about summer programming in the coming weeks, and I’m confident that we will make Summer 2023 our best one yet.

Soaring high,

David C. Banks
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Game-Based Learning

At Quest, we define games as carefully designed, student-driven systems that are narrative-based, structured, interactive and immersive.
Why games? In the past decade or so, leading educational researchers have discovered that games allow for some of the richest learning experiences.
  • Games ask us to collaborate with others and learn by doing.
  • Games let us know if we are failing or succeeding at a moment’s notice and allow us to retry, or “iterate,” after a failure or loss.
  • Unlike traditional educational systems, failure is a necessary and integral part of the “game.” It creates a context for students to be motivated to try again and succeed.
  • Learning experiences in games don’t feel like spoon-fed education. Learning experiences feel like play.