High school student finds "deal with the devil" assignment an affront to her faith


FAYETTEVILLE, NC — A high school student in North Carolina refused to write an essay on the Devil saying that it violated her faith.

Tieanna Trough is willing to sacrifice her honor-roll status at Gray Creek High School by failing to complete the essay assignment on making a deal with the Devil.

"I believe you don't write about how to sell your soul to the devil," Trough told CBN news.

The assignment was for Trough's English class that was studying a short story by Washington Irving, "The Devil and Tom Walker," about a miser who sold his soul to the devil to get rich.

Trough told WTVD-TV news that the teacher told students to write an essay on how they would sell their souls — or what trade they would make with the Devil — and that she refused, saying the assignment compromised her Christian values and her parents agreed.

Trough was to do the assignment or get a zero.

Trough's parents believe that their daughter's rights were violated and complained to school officials after the teacher's second assignment still conflicted with her faith.

"We can't allow God into the classrooms, but yet they are going to allow the devil in the classroom. That's the way I felt," Trough's mother, Monice McLean, told CBN news.

Principal John Gibbs said the story is textbook curriculum and he didn't think it's anything wrong. "I mean parents are going to do what they think is correct and I respect that; we can sit down and talk about what we think is right."

Eventually the school and Trough agreed upon an essay topic on how and why money is important.

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