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Citrus Slices

Top teacher no slouch when it comes to funny

By Times staff
© St. Petersburg Times
published February 10, 2003

Burdines 2003 Florida Teacher of the Year Randy Scott is a middle school teacher from Gainesville, but he could easily be just as successful as a comedian. He illustrated this skill recently during the Citrus School District Teacher/Support Person of the Year dinner and celebration.

The event was held at the beautifully decorated St. Michael the Archangel Greek Orthodox Church hall. Scott said he has traveled the state and this was the nicest tribute he had seen.

"When I won district teacher of the year," he explained, "I got a phone call."

Later, though, at a dinner honoring the Teacher of the Year, Scott was excited to learn about his prize.

"I had won the $10,000," he said. "Let me change that: My wife won the $10,000. You guys know what I'm talking about."

CHANGE IS GOOD. FEAR IS BAD: During his talk at the Citrus County dinner, Scott was emphasizing the need to change, even when it is worrisome.

"Fear is not a factor," he said. He invited Forest Ridge Elementary School principal Terretta Charles to the stage to make that point.

He began to cover her with big plastic bags.

"What size bag do you wear?" he asked her. "I wear size 32, but when I go to the store, I buy a 42, because it feels better."

Charles was wearing plastic bags in case she made a wrong choice. Scott gave her two eggs, one raw and one cooked. He told her to choose one, remembering that "fear is not a factor," and crack it against her head.

There was a tense moment. A crack against the head. Charles had made a good choice.

IN CONCLUSION: Scott finished speaking and the evening progressed toward the announcement of the county teacher and support person of the year.

Jim Hughes, the school system's executive director for support services, explained to the crowd how busy superintendent David Hickey had been during that past week.

It seems Hickey's grandson was visiting and the child, using Hickey's special name, kept saying, "Let's go, Pop! Let's go, Pop!"

Now, Hughes said, "Mr. Hickey's too pooped to pop!"

-- Times correspondent Paulette Lash Ritchie compiled this report.

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