TikTok trend causing damage in Tri-State schools

Published: Sep. 16, 2021 at 7:06 PM CDT
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OWENSBORO, Ky. (WFIE) - It’s a trend on TikTok that has been impacting schools all over the country.

It’s been seen to influence students to steal bathroom supplies, like soap dispensers, toilet paper, and even sinks.

[READ MORE: TikTok pulls ‘devious licks’ videos of kids stealing from schools]

Owensboro Public School officials say they’ve had to keep a closer eye on their hallways.

It’s trending as the “damage your school challenge” and OPS spokesperson Jared Revlett says they’ve been seeing just that.

“Soap dispensers, or taking toilet paper off the rolls and streaming it all across the school,” Revlett said.

Revlett, and other administrators across the U.S. say schools have moved soap dispensers and other supplies into hallways where they can be supervised.

“It just sounds as ridiculous as it is, that this is something that teachers, staff, custodians are having to deal with on top of everything else that’s going on right now,” Revlett said.

He says the damage in their schools hasn’t been serious yet, but it raises concern.

“It’s certainly not funny,” Revlett said. “These types of things cause damage to property, it results in the district having to spend more money to replace certain things, it results in additional manpower being taken away from other tasks to help clean up these types of things.”

OPS schools have firewalls on their networks to restrict kids from sites like TikTok, but the firewalls only work on school Wi-Fi.

“I think it’s really just important that our families are doing all they can to monitor what their students are taking in content-wise on social media and on the internet,” Revlett said. “Our district does a good job of blocking out those sites from being accessed through the Wi-Fi and in our school buildings, but we can’t prevent that from happening when kids go home.”

Although Revlett says they haven’t seen extensive damage from this trend, if it escalates, there is potential for criminal charges.

TikTok officials announced they’re banning the challenge and will be taking down any related video.

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