More than 25 Muncie teachers resignation approved by school board

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MUNCIE, Ind. -- More teachers are leaving Muncie Community Schools.

On Friday, the school board approved the resignation of more than 25 teachers and retirement of one.

Within the last few weeks more than 100 teachers have resigned or retired. Both teachers union and school board leaders said many teachers were being offered positions in neighboring school districts. One teacher was offered a position in more than 5 districts.

"Teachers who are working in the system understand what has been going on, but now all of a sudden it’s going to brought home to all of our families when they don’t have teachers in the classroom or classrooms are stuffed with children," said Muncie Teachers Association President, Pat Kennedy.

Muncie School Board Assistant President, DiLynn Phelps said the district currently can't offer any financial incentives for current teachers to stay or for new ones to be hired.

"We don’t have anything that's like signing bonuses and things like that. I'm sure you guys are aware of our fiscal situation. That’s just not possible at this particular time," said Phelps.

The fiscal situation has crippled the district that's now more than $9million in debt. Kennedy said teachers are taking note of what she called "bad decision making" and going to districts that are considered more stable.

'They want to go, number one, where they can be appreciated, where their years of experience can be granted to them, and where they can be professionals and they’re treated like professionals as though their opinion counts. They don’t feel that way in Muncie right now," said Kennedy.

Phelps said the district has already hired 24 teachers. There are also more than 100 applicants for other open positions. Phelps said she's confident there will not be a teacher shortage to start the school year.

"We're going to have a highly qualified teacher in every classroom. Our students deserve it. Our parents deserve it," Phelps said.

Kennedy told CBS4News she is aware of at least 4 other teachers that are planning on turning in their resignation soon. Teachers are obligated to give the district 30 days notice, meaning some of them may start the school year in Muncie and then move to other districts.

The district's emergency manager, "Administrator Assistance" was chosen earlier this week. They'll begin their work on the districts financial situation starting next week.

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