MANATEE COUNTY, Fla. -- As students prepare to head back to school Manatee County is pulling in everyone they can to fill their teacher shortage.
- More than 100 teachers joined Manatee schools this year
- District is still short about 50 teachers
- Using substitutes and retired teachers to fill the holes
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While students were enjoying their summer vacations, Tasha Walker was preparing her classroom to become her home away from home.
She left her teaching job in Texas to continue her career on the Gulf Coast of Florida.
"It's a lot of hard work at first, but we make it happen," said Walker.
Walker is one of more than 100 teachers who are joining the Manatee County School District for the first time.
But with six days until the first day, they're still roughly 50 teachers short.
"That does not mean that we will not have a teacher in the classroom for our students," said a spokesperson from the Manatee County School District.
The school district is calling on substitutes and newly retired teachers to fill those vacant spots. They hope to work in full-time replacements soon.
The hiring process for teachers will continue. Their goal is to hire 50 additional teachers within the next few months.
First-year teachers are seeing a starting salary of a little more than $44,000 because of the one-million increase on property taxes voters supported in March.
The school district is hoping the pay increase is enough to fill those spots quickly.