What to Know
- Tiffany Nichols, 39, of Kennett Square, was arrested Tuesday and charged with endangering the welfare of children and failure to report child abuse.
- Nichols was the executive director of the Westtown location of the Malvern School, a daycare and preschool for ages six weeks through 8 years.
- Officials said Nichols failed to immediately report and remove a teacher who physically abused at least three toddlers at the school after witnesses told her about it, causing a six-day delay in the investigation.
A Chester County preschool executive director is accused of failing to report a teacher’s alleged physical abuse of toddlers, causing a delay in the investigation.
Tiffany Nichols, 39, of Kennett Square, was arrested Tuesday and charged with endangering the welfare of children and failure to report child abuse. She was later released on $35,000 bail.
Nichols was the executive director of the Westtown Township location of the Malvern School, a daycare and preschool for ages six weeks through 8 years.
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Victoria Aronson, a former caretaker at the school who worked in a class for ages 12 through 18 months, is accused of physically abusing at least three different children who were between 14 and 16 months of age.
Investigators said Aronson used unreasonable force on the toddlers by slamming them onto changing tables or onto the ground, screaming at them and other criminal behavior.
On Sept. 28, 2021, a witness expressed concern about Aronson’s lack of attentiveness to the children under her care but Nichols failed to investigate, officials said.
On Sept. 29, a witness reported that Aronson used unreasonable force on two children earlier that day but Nichols allegedly failed to contact Childline to make an official report of child abuse. Investigators said she also failed to notify the childrens’ parents and continued to give Aronson access to children in the school.
On Sept. 30, a witness sent an email to Nichols describing Aronson’s physical abuse of three children on Sept. 28 and 29, investigators said. Nichols met with the witness shortly after receiving the email but allegedly failed to make an official report to Childline or notify the parents. She also once again failed to remove Aronson from the classroom until late in the afternoon that day and still gave Aronson limited access to children on the morning of Oct. 1, according to investigators.
On Oct. 1, Nichols discussed Aronson’s abuse with a witness but failed to contact Childline until 9:34 p.m. that evening and did not give an accurate report of the abuse, according to investigators.
It wasn’t until Oct. 7 when police received a report of Aronson’s alleged abuse. After launching an investigation, they arrested Aronson on Oct. 25. She was charged with aggravated assault, endangering the welfare of children, and other related offenses.
Officials said Nichols’ failure to immediately report the abuse and to remove Aronson from the school led to a six-day delay in the investigation. The delay also prevented parents from immediately seeking medical evaluations for their children.
“As the executive director and a mandated reporter, it was the legal and moral duty of Tiffany Nichols to ensure the safety and care of all children at The Malvern School,” Chester County District Attorney Deb Ryan said. “It is unconscionable that the defendant failed to protect these innocent, nonverbal, and defenseless young children. By not immediately notifying Childline, authorities, and the parents about her employee’s actions, she allowed abuse to continue. This astonishing criminal behavior will never be tolerated.”
If you ever suspect child abuse, call Childline at 1-800-932-0313.