Controversy Continues Involving Suspended Arnold Teacher Keith Christie

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Panama City mother Cindy Bacot opened up to NewsChannel 7 Wednesday about Arnold High School teacher Keith Christie.

"I am just really shocked," said Bacot.

Her special needs son Nicholas, 16 years old, used to be one of Christie's students before Bacot pulled him out of the school.

"He would just be quiet and withdrawn and not himself at all," said Bacot.

After seeing NewsChannel 7's story Tuesday, she said it all began to make sense. The Bay District School Board placed Christie on unpaid leave for admitting last month to threating to slap an autistic student and making his special needs class act like pigs.

"It's just so despicable," said Bacot.

The school never notified parents about the allegations, and the only reason anybody found out about the case is because Christie refused to resign, forcing the school board to get involved.

Arnold Principal Keith Bland said he didn't think it was necessary at the time.

"We really don't know the outcome of the situation yet," said Bland.

Bacot disagreed.

"There's clearly something wrong with that," said Bacot.

She and many others said they also wondered how Christie made it into a classroom in the first place given this situation and his arrest record before he became a teacher. Bland said he himself wasn't to blame.

"He's someone that's been on staff prior to my attaining the position," said Bland.

Bacot said she contacted a lawyer and plans to pursue legal action against Christie and Bland.

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