The Yeshiva of Central Queens is dedicated to providing our students with the best possible educational, social and emotional experience in a Torah environment. YCQ recognizes the unique qualities of each student and encourages the development of self-knowledge and awareness in a loving and accepting environment. Together with a strong academic program in Judaic and General Studies, YCQ imparts ahavat Yisrael, her people and her history. In addition, we instill an understanding and appreciation of the Hebrew language, Medinat Yisrael and our heritage.
We provide innovative, stimulating and diverse learning opportunities in a nurturing atmosphere. A close relationship between home and school is encouraged to maximize the potential of each child. We, as a Blue Ribbon School, are committed to engaging each member of the YCQ family to be an integral part of the educational experience while promoting the achievement of excellence in education.
In addition, we encourage involvement with the Jewish community and active participation, while making a meaningful contribution to American society. With our rich curriculum and community involvement combined with opportunities to engage in chesed and mitzvot, we strive to develop future leaders based on character, morals, self-esteem and personal integrity.
Our goal is to cultivate in our students a desire for knowledge and a love for a Torah way of Life. We want to celebrate each achievement as they journey through our stimulating educational environment where they will find a high standard of learning, along with mutual respect and warmth; where every student feels welcome. Through a partnership between administration, faculty and parents every child will be guided to reach their fullest potential and gain a set of moral values based on honesty, integrity, trust and good judgment.
The history of the Yeshiva of Central Queens (YCQ) dates back to 1940 when New York City had 11 yeshiva day schools located in the other boroughs. Parents who wanted a yeshiva education for their children had to subject them to long daily commutes or have them live away from home. As a result, YCQ was established in 1941 to fill the need for quality local yeshiva education; reaching all parts of the large and continually growing borough of Queens and surrounding communities.
Within eight years of opening its doors, in March 1948, YCQ moved into its own building on 150th Street in Jamaica with seven classes that doubled by the end of the school term thanks to a surge of Jewish immigration from Europe. Hebrew principal Rabbi Baruch Charney and English principal Mrs. Min Suskowitz provided a warm environment, where each student was accepted and supported as if YCQ was their second home.
As our yeshiva expanded, we were joined by Mrs. Miriam Ginsberg as assistant principal in 1956; Rabbi Simcha Teitelbaum succeeding Rabbi Charney as dean and Rabbi Menachem Rottenberg as executive director, both in 1963. We became recognized as a unique institution, providing a blend of personal attention, academic excellence, Jewish values, and Zionistic ideals.
Enrollment continued to grow; academic levels advance and space shrink. By 1974, we moved to our current location, with the construction of a much needed spacious, modern facility in Kew Gardens Hills. As our yeshiva grew, so did our faculty of excellent administrators and educators. Rabbi Aaron Brander became Hebrew principal, Rabbi Chaim Messenger became assistant principal, and Mrs. Judy Lebovits took on the role of English principal. It was during this period that YCQ won recognition from the United States Department of Education as a Blue Ribbon School.
After a quarter-century of devoted service, Rabbi Brander retired as principal in 2000 succeeded by Rabbi Gideon Goldberg and today, with over 900 students from all over Queens and beyond, YCQ is led by Executive Director Rabbi Yaakov Lonner and Principal Rabbi Mark Landsman. Staying true to its roots and founding principles, YCQ remains a beacon of excellence in Jewish education. Thus bringing to fruition the dream of the Yeshiva of Central Queens founders, that a high-quality, nurturing Jewish education is always available and never far from home.