Wolftrap Elementary School will hold a groundbreaking ceremony for the new Candace Leyton Innovation Learning Lab at noon on Monday, May 21.
The lab, which will be a freestanding building on the Wolftrap Elementary campus, is named after the late Candace Leyton, a 30-year employee of Fairfax County Public Schools who taught at the school for more than 20 years.
She is remembered as an educator who inspired her students to reach beyond the classroom walls to experience learning, and helped her students develop into thinkers and problem solvers. Leyton was known for her ability to establish positive relationships with her students, a key to motivating them.
She is credited with establishing family math nights at Wolftrap to encourage school and home partnerships in learning and traveled with colleagues to the Metropolitan Opera in New York City to learn how to incorporate opera into the elementary school curriculum. Leyton died in 2003.
Her former student, Chris Shumway, has donated the funds to support construction of the building. Shumway approached Wolftrap principal Anita Blain for a way to honor Leyton, one of his most influential teachers.
Construction on the Candace Leyton Innovation Learning Lab is anticipated to take between six and nine months. Once complete, the lab will be furnished with state-of-the-art technology and will be used by all Wolftrap teachers and students.