New social media challenge encourages students to hit their teachers

CalSchoolNews recently covered the “Devious Licks” social media challenge, which encourages students to steal and vandalize school property. Now there’s a new dare making the rounds on TikTok and this one is far more serious.

“Smack a staff member” encourages students to hit school staff members from behind during the month of October. It hasn’t taken off the way Devious Licks has yet (there is one report of one teacher being hit in South Carolina), but school districts, police, and teachers unions are trying to get ahead of the challenge before it becomes a trend.

“Educators beware!” the California Teachers Assn. warned Tuesday. “As if widespread vandalism in our schools last month wasn’t enough, the same ‘challenge’ circulating on social media networks TikTok and Twitter is now calling for students to ‘slap a staff member.’ It is important to be aware that students here in California may be coerced by social media or their peers to participate.”

In a Tuesday memo, CTA President E. Toby Boyd added this:

“Slapping a teacher, regardless of whether it results in injury, is assault and battery, and is completely unacceptable. Recording in a classroom or on other school property without permission is illegal. In addition to potential serious harm to victims, a student perpetrator could face serious consequences, including expulsion or criminal prosecution.”

This is far from over. The Union Democrat reports that future social media challenges are in the works. These include dares to kiss a friend’s girlfriend and expose your genitals at school, "jab a breast," and give school administrators the middle finger.