Petersburg school board 'does not intend to comment' on absence of schools superintendent

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Posted at 10:40 PM, Mar 06, 2024
and last updated 2024-03-06 22:44:43-05

PETERSBURG, Va. -- On Wednesday night the Petersburg School Board met for the first time since questions were raised regarding the status of the city's public schools superintendent, Dr. Tamara Sterling.

Concerns were brought forward following the release of conflicting statements from local and state school officials late last week.

Petersburg School Board Chair Kenneth Pritchett read the following statement ahead of Public Comment during the board meeting:

“We understand there is a great deal of interest in the status of our Superintendent Dr. Sterling. Please understand the board does not intend to comment this evening nor will we be responding to public comment regarding the Superintendent at this time. We will provide an update when one is available and it is appropriate to do so.”

Pritchett confirmed Friday that Dr. Sterling is on a leave of absence.

The Virginia Department of Education on the same day also confirmed they are helping the district with a "transition."

CBS 6 found that Sterling's biography is still listed on the school website, and a LinkedIn profile with the same name and information also states she ended her work with the district last month and is now an independent education official.

Petersburg Chief of Staff Dr. John Farrelly sat in for the superintendent during Wednesday night's school board meeting.

The statement read by Pritchett was all that was discussed regarding Dr. Sterling's absence.

CBS 6 continues to try to make contact with Dr. Sterling for comment and have not heard back.

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

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