DUBLIN, Calif. - It’s an alarming new trend on social media where students are destroying school property and promoting it on TikTok.
At least two Bay Area school districts had problems. The challenge calls for students to steal or vandalize school items and post about it. San Ramon Valley Unified and Dublin Unified both sent letters to parents.
It’s all over TikTok and now compilations are showing up on YouTube. The trend is called the "Devious Licks" challenge. It involves students posting videos showing them stealing, damaging and taking items from school.
A TikTok user started it earlier this month. It is now happening at school campuses in the Bay Area.
"In our bathrooms, they’ve been stealing soap dispensers, mirrors and they’ve also been trashing the bathrooms," said Dougherty Valley High Junior Lance Sapida.
"We will take each case seriously, it is vandalism and we will involve our police as necessary," said San Ramon Valley Unified School Superintendent Dr. John Malloy.
San Ramon Valley Unified’s Superintendent said at least four schools, middle and high schools, in the district have been vandalized.
In a letter to parents, Dougherty Valley’s principal said the entire school has only one open boys bathroom and its reserve supplies are depleted.
"There’s a supply chain problem in our nation connected to the pandemic so when something needs to be ordered such as a soap dispenser it’s not as though, it’s readily available which is causing frustration for our kids who simply want to use the bathroom," said Dr. Malloy.
The high school is asking parent volunteers to monitor the hallways.
"It’s sad that youngsters turn to stuff like this and destroy the place that they get to go to school," said Parent Aaron Horner.
"It’s just insane trying to get it under control because they are really good at hiding," said parent Jennifer Griffin.
Griffin works for Dublin Unified with similar problems. The culprits don’t show their faces, just the theft and there are no cameras in the bathrooms. At Griffin’s school, staff members are now tasked to check the restrooms.
"We literally have to catch the kids doing it to figure who’s doing it because they are kind of all doing it and different times," said Griffin.
School officials are urging parents to monitor their children’s social media accounts. The concern is the challenge may be spreading to other social media platforms.
"It’s funny also not funny, it’s like messed up," said Student Kalani Griffin. "It’s a lot of waste of money cause you have to buy new stuff."
Azenith Smith is a reporter for KTVU. Email Azenith at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow her on Twitter and Instagram @AzenithKTVU or Facebook or ktvu.com.