Some NKY students destroying school bathrooms for TikTok challenge

Published: Sep. 16, 2021 at 4:14 PM EDT
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BOONE COUNTY, Ky. (WXIX) - A TikTok trend called “devious licks” has some Northern Kentucky students destroying the bathrooms at their schools.

Campbell County Middle School and Camp Ernst Middle School are two places seeing dealing with the viral trend.

The “devious licks” trend challenges students to go to the bathrooms and steal something, explained Camp Ernst Middle School Principal Stephanie Hagerty.

“Basically, challenging kids to go in and steal something and they give it a point value, I could be wrong, but this is what the kids tell me, and they tell you,” Hagerty said.

Soap dispensers inside Camp Ernst’s bathrooms have started to go missing because of the challenge, the principal said.

Boone County Schools sent a letter to parents Thursday to let them know what punishments students could face.

“Destruction of school property will result in school discipline being applied to the fullest extent, including paying restitution for property that has been damaged or destroyed and possibly being criminally charged by our local police or sheriff’s department.”

Campbell County Middle School has reprimanded several students they caught taking part in the TikTok trend, according to Assistant Principal Eric Blankenship.

“We have had students break soap dispensers and throw them in toilets or stealing them in backpacks, taking toilet paper rolls, throwing them in toilets to stuff them up and flush them to then flood the bathrooms,” said Blankenship.

Why might kids be going to such great lengths to destroy school property?

Dr. Stuart Bassman is a psychologist, who thinks students and adolescents are acting out because of a feeling of powerlessness, anxiety, and insecurity.

“The child or adolescent is taking out their frustration, taking out their fear on something that is in some ways there to provide structure and stability,” explained Dr. Bassman. “The point of school is two-fold. One is to educate and provide a safe stable environment, and unfortunately, students and adolescents are not feeling that security.”

Dixie Heights High School is another school trying to control the chaos from the TikTok challenge.

The school is blocking off the unsupervised bathrooms during class times. This forces students to use the main bathroom, which is supervised.

Principal Hagerty is putting a twist on the TikTok challenge with the hopes it will become a positive experience for students.

Instead of students getting points for destroying and stealing stuff, Principal Hagerty is offering prizes and points to kids for doing deeds like doing chores at home.

TikTok announced Thursday they banned the viral challenge from its platform.

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