GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — Pitt County students and teachers will be back in the classroom next Monday. Some of those classes won’t be fully staffed to start the school year.

Pitt County Schools says they have been keeping an eye on this nationwide issue. They’re now finding ways to make sure students learn even with open positions.

As of yesterday the district had 53 open positions for classroom teachers. That’s up from last year when they had about 34 open spots. Most of those vacancies are for exceptional children teachers. They’re also seeing openings for math, science and high school elective classes.

Now the school district is getting creative to make sure they fill the gaps. They’re bringing back retired teachers, using full-time substitute teachers, and some teachers are using their planning period to teach an extra class.

Some students could even have a virtual class instead of in-person instruction.

“There are students who may not be face to face with a classroom teacher, but they will be connected with a teacher virtually. someone will be in the classroom to assist them while that instruction is being facilitated,” said Dr. Kristi Rhone, Pitt County Schools assistant superintendent for human resources.

Pitt County Schools still has sign on bonuses for some of these higher-demand positions like math, science and E-C.

The school system also has 26 openings for classified positions like teacher assistants, bus drives and custodians.

Those interested in applying can find openings and applications on their school websites.