School conducting own investigation into alleged teacher punching incident

Sunday Times Newspapers

RIVERVIEW – Riverview Community Schools officials expect to close up their investigation into alleged inappropriate behavior by a computer and design teacher.

Police finished their investigation into the Feb. 13 alleged incident where teacher Donald Ukrainec reportedly punched a student. The prosecutor didn’t sign the warrant, saying there wasn’t enough evidence for a charge.

Supt. Russell Pickell said the prosecutor was concerned with a criminal matter. The school has different concerns.

“We are doing our own investigation,” Pickell said. “The district has its own set of standards. We have to make sure his conduct was up to what is expected.”

Meanwhile, Ukrainec, a well-liked computer and design teacher, remains on paid administrative leave. The incident reportedly occurred during Free Hug Day at the school.

Authorities were contacted and a report was filed after Ukrainec was placed on leave.

Free Hug Day is a time where students can hug each other if they are wearing a sticker and want to be hugged. Students talking about the incident said Ukrainec wasn’t wearing a sticker and the student insisted upon hugging him. A few students said the teacher was just defending himself.

Police, however, haven’t confirmed those reports.

(Tereasa Nims can be reached at