Feds investigate Lee Co. Schools after alleged teacher kiss

Posted at 6:54 PM, Mar 03, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-03 18:54:38-05

LEHIGH ACRES, Fla -- The U.S. Department of Education has launched a civil rights investigation into the Lee County School District after a teacher kissed a student and kept his job.

58-year-old Jonathan Blikstad is still a math teacher at East Lee High School after admitting to kissing a student on the neck in front of other students. The student reported the incident in February of 2016. "He walked all the way from the front of the room, all the way around, pulled my hair aside and kissed me on the neck," said the student. "I'm just thinking, why me? Why did he have to do that to me?"

According to a summons from February 15th, 2017, Blikstad was charged with battery for the action. Even still, he remains in the same position and the student was removed from his class. The student's family feels that the school district failed her. 

Now, the federal department of education is investigating whether the Lee County School District violated the student's civil rights by not providing the proper response to sexual harassment. 

Despite the investigation, the district stands by their initial decision to suspend Blikstad for three days with no pay, and then let him back into the classroom. In a statement, they said the following:

"We conducted a full investigation. Mr. Blikstad was given due process and disciplined accordingly. In addition, the matter was referred to the Florida Department of Education."