Sixty-one Glendale Unified teachers have accepted the district’s early retirement plan, a figure that could prevent teacher layoffs later this year, officials said.

District officials had hoped at least 75 teachers would take the offer, but just 61 certificated employees accepted it by the Feb. 1 deadline.

Glendale Unified officials had previously said that 75 to 125 employees could be let go in an effort to save about $6 million.

But with 14 teachers short of the initial goal, plans to lay off teachers remain uncertain.

District officials will make the decision in the coming weeks as they weigh the total financial impact of the teachers who volunteered to retire early.

Maria Gandera, assistant superintendent of human resources, said the district may still have to lay off teachers in an effort to save Glendale Unified millions more dollars.

“I’m very sad because they’re some really great teachers,” she said. “It’s a great opportunity — if we do not have to replace some of those teachers — to save the district some money. We are looking at what that implication will be.”

Of the 61 teachers, 25 are multiple-subject elementary school teachers, six are special-education teachers and five are English teachers. A nurse, a counselor and Spanish teacher also signed up for the offer, the district reported this week.

Out of the pool of 1,290 employees — including teachers, nurses or counselors — about 350 were eligible for the early retirement plan.

The incentive entails each teacher receiving 50% of their base salary for five years. Teachers can be paid the sum over a period longer than five years if they choose.

“There are some excellent teachers on that list,” Gandera said. “They have been excellent for many, many years. If all goes according to plan, we’re going to wish them well."

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