TikTok trend takes over school


Janie Akers, Editor-in-Chief

Recently, a new TikTok trend has surfaced where students all over the country are stealing items from their schools, referring to them as “devious licks”. I have seen these videos myself. Kids have taken everything home from toilet paper rolls to desks, from schools around the nation, and many of the videos go viral.

The trend is hilarious. Each day the items students are stealing grow more and more creative. For example, last week I saw a viral video of someone stealing an entire water fountain from their school. I’m not sure if they made it home with their “lick”, but it made me and millions of other people on TikTok laugh, which is the ultimate goal of the trend.

At this point last week I had not heard of any “licks” happening at North Central, which is why I found them so funny on TikTok. However, when I went to the bathroom before lunch and discovered that all of the soap had been stolen, my views on the trend began to shift. 

Post pandemic, one of the last things I want to be stolen from school is soap. I want to wash my hands now more than ever. Thankfully, there were still hand sanitizer dispensers mounted on the wall nearby that I used as an insufficient alternative. Lo and behold, the hand sanitizer had also been stolen by the time I went back to the same restroom the next day.

Once the “licks” started to affect me at school, the trend became less funny and more annoying. Selfishly, it was fun to see things get stolen at other schools, but irritating when it started to happen at North Central. I began to realize the consequences of the trend, and it’s impact that goes beyond likes and shares on social media.

The reality is, the “devious licks” trend has got to go. Not only is it upsetting to not have basic items like soap, but the students who are participating in the trend are getting in serious trouble with administration and risking suspension from school.

“It’s really disappointing and frustrating that there are those who take so little pride in themselves and their school that they find vandalism, theft and destruction to be humorous or appropriate,” Principal Evans Branigan III said.  

Branigan and the other administrators are cracking down on students who are participating in the trend. Among other consequences, students and their families are required to pay for the damage they caused or items they stole.

The “devious licks” trend will fade out soon like all TikTok trends do. My prediction is that it will take no longer than three weeks for the world to move on to the next thing, and this trend will be in the past. I am looking forward to having soap back in the bathrooms and hope it stays that way.