TikTok’s ‘slap a teacher’ challenge sets schools on edge

TikTokers have officially gone rogue in the “slap a teacher” challenge. 

The new trend got viral traction in October when students began smacking their teachers and school staff on the backside as a prank. This isn’t the first time students have run amok on TikTok. The “devious licks” trend was recently under fire for encouraging teens to steal from their schools. Now teachers are reacting to the questionable new challenge. 

The “slap a teacher” challenge

WCNC reporter Sarah French posted a tip she received from teachers about TikTok challenges students allegedly planned to participate in each month. 

The list included monthly objectives that mostly centered around vandalism and harassment. In October, students planned to smack their teachers, in December to expose themselves, in January to “jab a breast” and February to “mess up school signs.”

Teachers and parents react to the “slap a teacher” challenge

A teacher, @2kute4wordz, responded to a video of a student smacking her band teacher in the head from behind. 

“I understand that in the month of October, you’re supposed to go to school and slap a staff member. But what TikTok is not explaining to you is that the adults in your building grew up on ‘Knuck If You Buck,’ Lil Boosie and all of a Lil Jon. The only thing professional about us is these little outfits we wear all day,” the teacher joked

“I just want to remind my students why I got the nickname ‘John Cena’ two years ago. Just remember that. I am not afraid,” teacher @mrstewes said in a TikTok

“That has got to be the dumbest freaking thing you could possibly do. You will have felony charges,” parent @joelleg2020 said after receiving a notice from her son’s schools about the “slap a teacher” challenge. 

Officials react to the “slap a teacher” challenge

“TikTok fails to control the spread of dangerous content. In CT, vandalism closed schools and the new ‘Slap a Teacher’ challenge may put educators at risk. I am urging TikTok to come to CT to meet with educators and parents and commit to reforms that stop this reckless content,” Connecticut Attorney General William Tong tweeted.

Meanwhile, a South Carolina school district warned parents about the challenge following an incident.

“Unfortunately, the challenge that has been put out for this month is to slap or hit a staff member from behind,” Lancaster Schools wrote in a letter to parents. “Sadly, we actually had an elementary student assault a teacher by striking her in the back of the head.”

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