Districts Warn Of TikTok Challenge, Dodge County Sheriff Says “No Known Threats”
A popular social media platform that has been home to many viral challenges, is now putting schools districts and law enforcement agencies on alert today (12/17/21).
The latest challenge promotes violence or threats of violence at schools across the country on Friday. The challenge also does not appear to target any specific school or state.
Most school districts and law enforcement agencies have elected to issue “precautionary” statements to staff, but KFIZ News has not been able to confirm whether parents or students have received any such statements from local school districts.
Aaron Sadoff, Superintendent for the North Fond du Lac School District, told KFIZ News Friday morning that they are “Continuing to do what we can to keep our students and staff safe everyday.”
Fond du Lac County Sheriff Ryan Waldschmidt made a social media post Thursday evening, saying “Please know that there is no specific threat that law enforcement is aware of in Fond du Lac County, but you may notice an added law enforcement presence at the schools. We cannot assume this is “just another widespread TikTok prank,” and work proactively to prevent a school tragedy here in our community.
Each school has a crisis plan developed in collaboration with law enforcement and a mechanism in place to notify parents of an event. Law enforcement across Fond du Lac County remains vigilant, will continue to assess and share information as we receive it, and will maintain our proactive approach to keeping students and staff safe.”
Sheriff Waldschmidt also told KFIZ News Friday morning, ” We had nearly all of dayshift patrol assigned to monitor schools across the county this morning, and there were no issues (as of 8:10am). This was in addition to our school resource deputies in the schools. Deputies will also randomly be stopping in the schools throughout the day, and we continue to encourage anyone who hears of a threat to report it to a school staff member or law enforcement. That applies anytime and any day, not just on a day like today with a heightened threat.”
The Dodge County Sheriff’s Department also issued a statement late Thursday afternoon, in which it said “The Dodge County Sheriff’s Office was made aware of a trend on TikTok, a popular social media platform, regarding a “national threat” to schools across the country tomorrow, December 17, 2021. These threats include the potential for gun violence. The sheriff’s office and all police departments in Dodge County are taking these threats very seriously. Our school districts are also taking this threat seriously. Steps are being taken to mitigate any risk to our children and we will certainly step up our efforts tomorrow and in the following days.
Please understand that there are NO KNOWN THREATS TO DODGE COUNTY SCHOOLS at this time.”
The Sheriff’s Department went to ask that parents talk to their children about this threat and any others that may emerge in the future. Make sure that your children are prepared for any kind of emergency that may occur. Remind them that if there is ever any kind of suspicious activity, that it be reported to a teacher or other authority figures. The statement also said “We all pray that a school threat is never carried out in one of our schools, but we must always be prepared should it happen.”