LAYTON -- Vae View Elementary School -- known as "the round school" because of its circular design, with the gym at the center and classrooms around the circumference -- is celebrating its 50th anniversary.
When the school was built in 1962, it was hyped as "snob hill," said one of the teachers who transferred there in the 1960s. That was because everyone was in awe that $1 million had been spent to build the uniquely shaped school.
The teacher, Ruby Price, 96, of Layton, was a little uncertain about what to expect working at the school originally built for the children of officers at Hill Air Force Base. She now says, "It was one of the best choices I ever made."
The building's circular design was most likely the reason for such a pricey school in the day, said Principal Dr. Helene Van Natter.
"Being round costs a lot more. Standard shelves didn't fit, and the angles weren't the same, so they couldn't put up square ceiling tiles without cutting galore," Van Natter said.
Currently, only one-third of the schools in Davis School District have been around for longer than 50 years. According to district officials, a school's lifetime is about 50 years, at which point the building gets either an entire rebuild or major renovations to extend its life another 25 years.
Vae View recently had major renovations done, making it possible for its 450 students to keep attending classes there.
To recognize the event, students had a special assembly, singing songs spanning the years since the school was built and watching a video showing photos of the teachers throughout the years.
Each student received a book courtesy of the Ken Garff Road to Success program and math bags filled with games and educational materials funded by Title 1 funds.
"I just think there aren't that many milestones like this, so we need to celebrate what we've done in the past and what we've done for the future," said Van Natter.
The school started collecting pictures and memories of former teachers and students, including one teacher who had several generations of family members attend the school.
Sixth-grader Karlee Floyd realized for the first time that she is the fourth generation of her family involved with Vae View Elementary. Karlee's mom attended the school, Karlee's grandma was the PTA president at the school, and her great-grandma taught at the school.
"I like how many of my family came here, and I think it's pretty cool," Karlee said.
Her mom, Angela Floyd, 35, of Layton, was shocked when the principal mentioned their four-generation involvement at the school.
"I had a great experience going here, and it's been great to come back and help as a parent," she said.
Sixth-grader Loghan Kendall knows how it feels to be following in his family's footsteps because both of his parents and several aunts have attended the school.
"They say I better be doing good at their school," Loghan said.
As the ninth principal at the school, Van Natter is honored to uphold the school's traditions.
"There is a nucleus of people that have lived here their whole life, which is what makes us special."