Wayne Harvey, teacher-director of the Linworth Alternative Program for the past 21 years, will retire at the end of the school year.
“It’s been a long haul, but I’m getting old,” Harvey said. “The kids aren’t slowing down, but I am.”
Harvey actually began his teaching career 38 years ago as a student teacher at Linworth. That was 1973, the first year of the much-honored alternative high school.
In the following year, Worthington City Schools hired Harvey to teach English. For 17 years, he taught at Worthington High School. Some of those years were spent at the school’s former ninth-grade campus at 50 E. Granville Road.
He then returned to Linworth, where the program has continued to draw accolades under his leadership. It is one of the only lasting examples of an open-concept school, of which many were started in the 1970s.
The Linworth program stresses a democratic philosophy and student choice and responsibility. Seniors spend a semester on Walkabout, learning about a chosen field experientially.
Harvey, 59, said this is a good time to leave, as several new teachers have joined the Linworth staff this year after many veterans retired.
“It is time to let the next wave take over,” he said.
School board members said they would be sorry to see Harvey leave.
“I thank you, Wayne, for all you have done,” board member David Bressman said. “It will be a sad day when you’re not at Linworth.”
Bressman called Linworth one of Worthington’s “signature programs.”
Board member Julie Keegan said Harvey was her ninth-grade English teacher, and she recently laughed when her daughter had asked if she could attend an event called “Waynestock.”
“I appreciate what you have given to this district for many, many years,” she said.