Humble ISD unveils observatory plans

Administaff publicly announced its financial support through a grant awarded to the Humble ISD project titled, Stars in Their Eyes and details of the observatory to be built on a parcel of land on the Jack Fields Elementary School campus were delivered at a press conference on Feb. 13. _x000D_
The proposal for Stars in Their Eyes was originally submitted by Jill Curfiss who spoke at the press conference about what the observatory would mean to her students. _x000D_
Dr. Guy Sconzo, superintendent of Humble ISD told those gathered that the $300,000 grant from Administaff was the largest grant in the history of Humble ISD. He said that this grant had raised Administaff’s commitment to students to a new level and that the Humble ISD Astronomical Observatory would bear Administaff’s name. _x000D_
“Administaff has always been there for our children,” said Sconzo. He called Administaff the best corporate partner that any school could have. Sconzo said that the students in Humble ISD will have an edge over students in other districts in the areas of science and math._x000D_
Paul Sarvadi, Administaff’s chairman and executive officer said that this project needed to happen and that they would make it happen._x000D_
“Promoting youth achievement has long been a cornerstone of Administaff’s philanthropic efforts,” said Sarvadi. “In our role as a corporate citizen, we firmly believe that we have an obligation to benefit the communities where we live and work.”_x000D_
Sarvadi talked about students who might become research scientist or astronauts of the future. The observatory will be available to classes at all grade levels throughout the district. Sconzo said that 31,000 students will be impacted by the project._x000D_
“We are certain that the educational potential of this facility will pay dividends for generations to come,” said Sarvadi._x000D_
Artist renditions of what the Observatory might look like were presented to the crowd. Those gathered were able to walk to the painted lines on the grass where the construction will begin. _x000D_
Astronomer Dr. Aron Clevenson provided visitors with details of the tentative observatory layout which included the observatory itself with three permanently mounted telescopes, a storage room with a larger telescope on wheels, exterior observation areas, displays, and a future addition area. The observatory will be wheel chair accessible and have a restroom. _x000D_
Clevenson explained that the retractable roof will be designed to slide in the direction of the playground, away from the back of the school and will provide a 360 degree view. He said that the sight was chosen because of its limited light pollution which will enable students to see celestial objects such as, planets, stars, nebula, and asteroids._x000D_
One of the projects Clevenson anticipated participating in involved watching _x000D_
For more information on astronomy in North Houston visit www.astronomyclub.org or contact Dr. Aaron Clevenson at aaron@clevenson.org. Those wishing more information on Administaff are directed to www.administaff.com and those who wish to make donations or contribution to the project through the Humble ISD Education Foundation may contact Dr. Karen Perkins at Karen.Perkins@humble.k12.tx.us. _x000D_
Cutline: Left to right are Dr. Guy Sconzo, superintendent of the Humble ISD, Paul J. Sarvadi, Administaff’s chairman and chief executive officer,and Corinn Price, Administaff’s Director of Community Involvement and Chair of the Humble ISD Education. Administaff has donated $300,000 to the Foundation for the observatory project benefiting students in the Humble ISD. Photo by Kathy Parks_x000D_
8observatory2.jpg Artist’s rendering of the face of the new observatory might look like. The architect has made drawings, but a builder has not been selected. Tentative designs mirror the architecture of the school. _x000D_
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8observatory3.jpg Artist’s rendering of what the retractable roof might look like. In the drawing, the roof slides off to give a 360 degree view of the night sky. _x000D_
Pull Quote: Dr. Guy Sconzo, superintendent of Humble ISD told those gathered that the $300,000 grant from Administaff was the largest grant in the history of Humble ISD. _x000D_
Info Box: Purposes of the Observatory: 1) used by schools and classes for daytime and evening viewing of celestial bodies 2) available to astronomy classes at Kingwood College 3) public viewing nights will be offered 4) North Houston Astronomy Club will conduct research using the telescopes in off-times. _x000D_
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