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Lips are locked as school's sealed up

Authorities ordered an emergency lock-down at Citrus High School last week, and a Citrus Times photographer who arrived at the school was eager to find out what was happening. As Inverness police officers and Citrus County sheriff's deputies passed back and forth, the photographer was able to stop one man and asked him whether he could talk. "I can talk," the officer replied, "but not about this."

As it turns out, the emergency reaction concerned a bogus student report of a stabbing.

I FEEL YOUR PAIN, SUSAN: Lecanto Primary School physical education teacher Dianna Bandhauer finally has been named the school's teacher of the year. Bandhauer has been nominated several times, but had never won. She says she felt just like Susan Lucci, the soap opera actor who was nominated 19 times for an Emmy before she finally won.

WELL, IF YOU INSIST: Citrus teachers and school administrators met at the bargaining table last week. Joining them was Superintendent Pete Kelly, who came to help hammer out a contract.

At one point, discussion turned to the touchy issue of how some teachers who handle extra duties should get paid. Now, some of those teachers get paid for working a set number of extra days. Others receive a supplement, which is a percentage of a base amount set through union negotiations. Some employees receive both.

Teachers union bargaining chairwoman Pat Allen wanted to know how the School Board was going to handle the issue. Kelly told her the union would have to give him some direction.

Allen said she would rather Kelly play the bad guy in the scenario.

"Everyone always wants me to be the bad guy," Kelly said.

"So when you write it up from now on, just call me the bad guy," the superintendent told a reporter.

_ Times staff writers Paulette Lash Ritchie and Barbara Behrendt contributed to this report.