ExplorSchool Online

For Students Entering Grades 5 – 7 in the Fall of 2020

MITY’s Online ExplorSchool provides bright students the opportunity to explore a topic of interest with similarly motivated peers. The goal is to keep students challenged and engaged as they build, create, and solve real world problems. Importantly, each two-week class features daily activities that take students away from a screen, and weekly social activities facilitate connections to others.


Jump to Classes

2020 Online Summer Program Dates:

Session A: June 15 – 26
Session B: July 6 – 17
Session C: July 20 – 31

Program Details

Technology Skills and Requirements

Students will need reliable high-speed internet access and a desktop, laptop, or iPad with audio and video enabled. Students should be comfortable creating new documents, videos, and presentations, navigating the web to conduct research, and uploading documents. MITY does not utilize a Learning Management System such as Schoology, Canvas, SeeSaw, or Moodle.


Parent Involvement

Some parent/guardian involvement may be required depending on their student’s comfort level with the technology being used. Parents/guardians are encouraged to talk to their student about what they are doing in their MITY coursework.


Student Performance Evaluation

Each student will receive an end-of-session evaluation. No letter grades or numerical scores will be issued.


Admissions Criteria

There is no specific test score or GPA requirement. We are looking for students who perform well in school and are excited about learning.

How It Works

Class Structure

Teachers post instruction and assignments each morning of the session (Monday – Friday). Each class features a combination of asynchronous and synchronous instruction. Depending on the nature of the course, instruction will consist of some combination of the following: live or recorded instructor video; audio, video, written texts, or other media; links to websites for research; other as appropriate. Students should expect to participate in whole class discussion forums, reflection activities, online small group assignments and/or labs, and perform individual tasks. Importantly, while instruction and some activities will take place online, students will be asked to do hands-on projects each day that do not use a screen.


*Students who are unable to participate in synchronous learning sessions should contact their instructor ahead of time to make alternate arrangements.


Time Commitment

Students should expect to spend 10-12 hours per week working on each class, noting that this is an average and that some individuals may require more or less time with the material. Students are expected to log on and do work daily, Monday – Friday.


Class Size

Classes will be kept small (averaging 6-16 students) to ensure individual attention and a high-quality experience for all learners.


Social Time

MITY’s educational philosophy focuses on whole-child development, and hence MITY teachers and staff will host weekly non-academic virtual sessions to meet and enhance students’ socio-emotional skills as well. These social forums will feature fun activities and some wacky challenges that enable students to socialize, build friendships, find peer support, explore new talents, take risks, expand their cultural awareness, and experience the joy that comes with being part of the MITY family.

Application Instructions & Eligibility


MITY seeks applicants who demonstrate both academic talent and a passion for learning. Students must be entering grades 5 – 7 in the fall of 2020 to be considered for admission. All requested materials are considered. Students who attended ExplorSchool last summer do not need to submit an essay.


Dual Enrollment

Students may enroll in more than one course during a single session; however, it is important for students and families to consider the time required for each class and their other activities to ensure the student has enough time to complete all of their work. Students may not enroll in more than two classes per session.


Application Instructions

1. Complete the Online Application. *Students who have already been accepted into ExplorSchool for summer 2020 should complete this form and do not need to complete any additional items.

2. Upload Required Materials. This can be done when completing the application or by emailing items to mity@macalester.edu. Be sure all items are clearly labeled with the student’s full name.

a. Current Transcript / Grades (All Students)

b. Short Student Essay: Write a 200-word essay about yourself, why you want to attend MITY and why you want to take the class that you selected. (New Students Only)

3. Submit Payment, Summer Grant Application or Financial Aid Form.

Methods of Payment:

a.  Check payable to MITY. Please write the student’s name on the memo line.  Send the check to: MITY, 1600 Grand Avenue, St. Paul, MN 55105.

b.  Pay by credit card using PayPal. You do not need to have a PayPal account. Select the correct item(s) using the drop down menu.  NOTE: To add course fees or additional students, select “Continue Shopping” before checking out. Please enter the student’s name in the space provided.


Online ExplorSchool Tuition
Please enter student’s name.



Minnesota Institute for Talented Youth does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, gender, sexual orientation, disability, national or ethnic origin in administration of its education policies, admission policies, or financial aid program. 

Cost, Financial Aid, & Refund Policy

Program Cost


Cost: $300 per class

*Some classes also require a small materials fee as noted in the course description.


Financial Aid


There are two ways to apply for financial aid:

  1. For Minnesota residents who qualify for free or reduced lunch: You are eligible to apply for the Summer Academic Enrichment Grant offered by the MN Department of Higher Education.  You will need to complete the Summer Academic Enrichment Grant Form and submit a copy of the free/reduced lunch qualifying letter you received from the student’s school in the fall.
  2. If you do not qualify for free or reduced lunch: You can apply for financial aid through the MITY giving program. Complete the financial aid form and submit the first page of your most recent federal tax statement.


Refund Policy


MITY hires its teachers based on student enrollment in each online course; therefore, we are unable to provide refunds to students who cancel within 7 days of the session start date. For additional information, please see the table below:

Prior to 30 days of session start date

100% refund

15-29 days prior to session start date

50% refund

8-14 days prior to session start date

25% refund

Within 7 days prior to session start date

No refund

If MITY cancels a course before it begins, students enrolled in the course can either enroll in their second-choice class or receive a full refund. In the unlikely event that MITY terminates a course during the session, MITY will consider the circumstances and may, at its sole discretion, issue a partial refund or credit. Refunds are not provided once the course begins.


Policies for MITY Online Programs

All program participants and their parents or guardian are required to read and abide by the “MITY Online Expectations and Code of Conduct” and the “MITY Digital Citizenship Agreement.” Families are asked to acknowledge their understanding of and acceptance of these documents when they apply to a MITY online program.

MITY Online Expectations and Code of Conduct 

MITY Digital Citizenship Agreement