Blackwell Principal steps down amid allegations of sexual assault at school

Posted at 7:12 PM, Mar 09, 2023
and last updated 2023-03-09 19:12:23-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- The principal of Richmond's Blackwell Preschool stepped down on Thursday amid allegations of a sexual assault that happened at the school.

Dr. Elaine Probst, the principal, shared the following message with the school community on Thursday:

I am proud of the work we have accomplished together during the past four years and I am thankful to have had the opportunity to serve as a leader in such a wonderful preschool. I am thrilled to embrace the next chapter in my life, however this experience will remain near and dear to my heart.

Richmond Public Schools' Superintendent shared the following message about the resignation:

After further discussions with Principal Probst, we have mutually decided that it would be best for her to step down from the principal role. I will be assigning her to assist the early childhood team under the leadership of Dr. Wiggins for the remainder of the year, effective tomorrow.

Last month, a Richmond mother came forward with claims that a child assaulted her five-year-old daughter in a preschool bathroom at the preschool.

"I want answers, and I need answers, and I wish that it didn't have to go this far for me to get answers," Shayla Roberts said. "People need to understand that it's not okay. I'm not okay. I’m bringing my daughter to school to be safe."

Roberts said she noticed something was wrong when she gave her daughter a bath the night of January 23, the same day of the alleged assault.

She said she immediately took her child to a hospital where doctors confirmed the child had suffered injuries to her private area.

Roberts said she reported the incident to the school principal the very next day on January 24, but since then, she claimed she has not been told what happened, nor how it could have happened to her child.

This is a developing story, so anyone with more information can email to send a tip.



Watch 'The Jennifer Hudson Show' weekdays at 3 p.m. on CBS 6!

📱 Download CBS 6 News App
The app features breaking news alerts, live video, weather radar, traffic incidents, closings and delays and more.