PROVIDENCE, R.I. — A Providence principal has been charged with failing to report allegations of sexual abuse against a teacher at her elementary school.

Violet LeMar pleaded not guilty Tuesday to a misdemeanor charge of failing to report allegations that a gym teacher touched girls inappropriately. State law requires that the Department of Children, Youth and Families be notified within 24 hours.

The Providence Journal reports a prosecutor told the judge that students and staff told LeMar May 9 about the allegations. She allegedly launched an internal investigation but didn’t contact police, speaking to them only after a parent made a criminal report and police contacted her May 12.

Prosecutors say LeMar contacted DCYF in July, after the gym teacher was charged with five counts of second-degree child molestation involving three 11-year-old girls.