Bassick High Stargazers Debate Planetarium Costs

From Linda Conner Lambeck, CT Post:

Stargazing is still among the plans for a new Bassick High School, but students will probably have to settle for the real kind.

The idea of adding a planetarium when the school’s 51-year-old observatory is moved to the new Bassick got a lukewarm reaction when it was proposed to the city’s School Building Committee.

“Spending a half a million dollars for a nice thing … is problematic,” City Finance Director Ken Flatto said. “Unless there is a commitment to staffing it, it seems like a waste of money to me.”

… Larry Schilling, a program manager for the city’s school construction projects, said the idea for a planetarium was raised by architects because it would complement the rooftop observatory.

An observatory has telescopes, in Bassick’s case, a Japanese-made Goto astronomical telescope with a hydrogen alpha solar filter and 6-inch refracter lens good for viewing the planets.

Full story here.



  1. I understand this may be too expensive to keep the planetarium at the school. They should find a place for it to be used not packed away, thrown away or sold. I am sure you could find some star gazing organization that would find an interest in teaching people astronomy. There are a lot of things to see in the night sky all it takes is exposing people to it. If it is done right and that is the key, it could be something unique for the city. There could be some educational benefits as well.

    UB or somewhere is the south end away from the city lights would be a good place to start.

    It is going to take someone or some group to to keep the interest or it will be lost and forgotten about and that would be sad.

    1. @Stringfellow
      You are confusing the existing observatory and telescope which will be retained and a request for a planetarium which does not exist in the current school.
      You can’t keep in place something that does not exist.

  2. But we have $100,000,000.00 for a new building we don’t need
    Speaking of corruption, can someone please give me contact information for the FB I. ?

    I wish to report possible grafting by a connected City contractor who is working closely with the Ganim Administration

    How did that anonymous person report that scrap metal activity?

  3. Bob it’s impractical for a standard high school, consider the time of day these type of telescopes are used for, “Stargazers”., night time. Stringfellow is more on point UB university. If the old Bassick School is going to get rid of its telescope maybe Finch is interested in a scope. 🙂

    Speaking of stars and space. Buzz Aldrin made someone see stars. No scope necessary. 🙂

  4. You know what is amazing about this? The Superintendent and Board of Education must decide upon and vote on the education specifications. We discuss and vote on whether we are going to focus on advanced manufacturing, IT, culinary, first responders, etc.

    Once the Board votes on the education specifications and projected enrollment numbers, the architect designs a school building based on the education specifications and enrollment.

    The Board has NEVER discussed adding a Planetarium which would require developing a curriculum, impact teaching positions, the purchase of instructional materials, and more.

    Who the hell do these architects think they are to discuss adding a Planetarium with the School Building Committee BEFORE discussing it with the Superintendent and the Board?

    The only question the School Building Committee should have had is have you consulted the Superintendent and Board of Education PRIOR to speaking with the us today???



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