Local school districts address ‘Devious Licks’ Tik Tok trend, vandalism at schools

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – Its known as the ‘Devious Licks Challenge’, a trend on the app Tik Tok that’s gone viral across the country, even making its way to some of our local school districts here in Kentucky.

Lick is just another term for stealing. The trend has students going into their school bathrooms to steal items like soap dispensers, toilet paper dispensers and some students across the country are even stealing bathroom stall doors, but it’s not just thefts in the school bathrooms…some students being bold enough to steal lockers, fire alarms and more.

‘”It’s a lot especially when you’re in the middle of a pandemic and you can’t even have any soap to wash your hands” said Alyssa Fish.

8th grader Alyssa Fish says its happening at her school…Robert D. Campbell junior high in Clark County.
She says it’s mostly been happening in the boys bathrooms.
She says bathroom monitors are now in place…that you can’t bring in a backpack or purse into the bathroom, or go in with anyone else.

The trend is causing uproar among students and parents alike. Many commenting on Facebook posts their disdain with the trend.

“A whole bunch of children are stealing either the soap dispensers or the bags of soap out of the bathroom, there has been some occasions where children have been stealing calculators and there was a time when a child stole four chrome books” said Fish.

Clark County Public Schools addressed the tik tok challenge in a statement to ABC 36.

“Whenever there is vandalism, theft, or other infractions that cause disruption to the school setting, we take that very seriously. As you know the Tik Tok nonsense has done just that. Our leaders and security teams will try to identify those few that are responsible. Those students will have appropriate consequences according to policy and discipline code. We have a culture of greatness at our middle school and a handful of our kids are not reflecting that. Instead they were drawn into the negative impacts of social media. They know better and made bad decisions. At this time, we would really like for all parents to be aware of the pitfalls of allowing younger students to have unlimited and un-monitored access to social media. It’s so easy for any of us to fall into the wide open content that is available on phones. We all have to remember that today’s youth have access to things we never experienced and we have to be aware of how they influence not just their decision over stealing a soap dispenser, but how they interact with their peers or view themselves. Our kids are inundated with messages daily that create negative perceptions or compromise responsible decision making. While we wish it didn’t happen, we will use this experience to strengthen our intentionality around our role in walking students into greatness and being more aware of impacts of social media in a broader sense. We hope all parents and community members’ partner with and support local schools to build each other up.”

And it’s not just Clark County schools…Fayette County Public Schools and Jessamine County Schools among others,

Fayette County Schools also addressed the issue in a statement to ABC 36.

“Fayette County Public Schools – like school districts across our state and nation – has seen evidence of students taking part in challenges circulating on social media encouraging individuals to damage or take school property. Though the participants represent a small fraction of our student population, we have seen instances of this behavior – primarily in boys’ restrooms – on nearly all of our middle and high school campuses. This is certainly not reflective of the incredible students who attend FCPS or the supportive families we serve. Leaders in each school have addressed incidents by increasing supervision near bathrooms, closing restrooms in need of repair, making intercom announcements to students, communicating with families, limiting the number of students who can be in the restroom at once, and escorting students to the restroom during instructional time. Those engaging in this negative behavior face administrative consequences up to and including expulsion, as well as legal consequences depending on the severity of the damage. Students and families may also be required to make financial restitution to cover the cost of needed repairs.”

Jessamine County Schools provided the following statement.

“The Jessamine County School District has seen isolated incidents of restroom vandalism in our middle and high schools that we believe are related to recent “challenges” circulating on social media.  We have taken steps at the school level to increase monitoring and supervision, limit opportunities for damage to occur, and address this behavior.  JCS is committed to providing safe, clean, and well-maintained facilities and we appreciate that the vast majority of JCS students are respectful of their school communities and take pride in their school buildings.

We are taking action to identify the very small number of individuals who are causing damage and will apply appropriate consequences as necessary.  Our district family remains focused on supporting our students’ social and emotional well-being and our efforts to ensure that students continue to have the opportunity for safe, high-quality in-person instruction in Jessamine County Schools.”

“A lot of them see it and think its really funny so they decided to do it for themselves and that’s where all of it started and a big spike of it happening” added Fish.

It’s a trend that Alyssa Fish and our school districts hope dies down soon.

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