An Award in Excellence

The National Teacher of the Year is a nationally recognized professional award in the United States. The program began in 1952, as a project by the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), and aims to reward excellence in teaching. Every year, nominations are made by students, principals, teachers and administrators for the School, County and State Teacher of the Year awards.

The profiles of the winners from 33 Paulding County Schools are submitted to a selection committee made up of school district personnel, Foundation board members and community leaders. The committee then reviews the data for each candidate and selects the one winner. The winner is chosen based on their biography, nominations and other supporting references. The award is traditionally presented at the Annual Star Banquet on the first Tuesday in May each year. At this banquet, we recognize all 33 school based teacher of the year nominees and reveal the District Teacher of the Year winner.

Although there are no clearly defined requirements the committee looks for:

  • The ability to inspire children from all backgrounds and abilities
  • The respect of colleagues, students, and parents.
  • Activity In The Community
  • The ability to fulfill the duties of the award

The District Wide teacher of the year is then submitted to the State wide selection committee with the opportunity to represent our school district on a state wide platform. Paulding County has traditional been known for having finalist in the State wide selection and our very own Marc Petersen from Paulding County High school was selected as the Georgia Teacher of the Year for 2017. If you would like to sponsor this amazing banquet or contribute to the winner bags, please contact us.


Congratulations to the Paulding County School District Teachers & Employees of the Year! Recipients were announced on March 4, 2019.  The Annual Star Banquet was held on May 7th to recognize all of these amazing people and reveal the District Teacher of the Year for 2019.  Please help us congratulate each of these wonderful superstars and their work and dedication.

Congratulations to Chelsea Sell for being selected as the 2019 Paulding County School District Teacher of The Year.  Chelsea is a 6th grade science teacher at Austin Middle School.  Among the reasons she was selected was her strong STEM program focus and the impact it is having on her students and the school.  Chelsea is pictured here after receiving the award with State of Georgia Teacher of the Year, Allison Townsend, District Superintendent, Brian Otott, and Paulding Education Foundation’s Executive Director, Jim McMichen.

School Based Teachers of The Year:

Katie McAllister – Abney Elementary, Lisa Carson – Allgood Elementary, Chelsea Sell – Austin Middle, Kristen Cook – Baggett Elementary, Alisha Collins – Burnt Hickory Elementary, Stephanie Atkinson – Dallas Elementary, Rosemary Dixon – Dobbins Middle, Kim Leonard – Dugan Elementary, Barbara Miller – East Paulding High, Breanne Wood – East Paulding Middle, Dana Head – Herschel Jones Middle, Beth Gandy – Hiram Elementary, Ashley Poole – Hiram High, Marie Owen – Hutchens Elementary, Gretchen Curl – McClure Middle, Liza Norman – McGarity Elementary, Scott Collier – Moses Middle, Andrea DeRamus – Nebo Elementary, Michelle Raveneau – New Georgia Elementary, MSG Monte Briggs Sr. – North Paulding High, Morgan Gordon – Northside Elementary, Kimberly Ramsey – P.B. Ritch Middle, Rachael Irle – Panter Elementary, Jayson Hart – Paulding County High, Sarah Hatzileris – Poole Elementary, Heather Musgrove – Ragsdale Elementary, Shannon Mohammed – Roberts Elementary, Meredith Lowe – Russom Elementary, Billy Fountain – Scoggins Middle, Melodie Whatley – Shelton Elementary, DJ McConnell – South Paulding High, Stephanie Foreman – South Paulding Middle, Mary Beth Munoz – Union Elementary

Employees of The Year:

Amanda Hicks – School Nutrition, Joel Davis – Maintenance, Operations and Facilities, Melanie Ackerson – School Support Services, Stephen Cochran – School Instructional Support, Katie Anderson – District Support Services, Maxi Johnston – Transportation, Tiffany Frachiseur – School Leadership


Congratulations to the Paulding County School District Teachers & Employees of the Year! Recipients were announced on March 6, 2018, District Teacher of the Year was announced at the 2018 Teacher of the Year Awards Ceremony.

Paulding Education Foundation is pleased to congratulate Mrs. Susan Merchant from Dobbins Middle School as Paulding County School District’s Teacher of the Year! What an amazing teacher! If you haven’t had the opportunity to meet Susan, please take a moment to read the following article.

“Dedication Helps Susan Merchant win Paulding Teacher of the Year”
– West Georgia Neighbor

2017 - 2018 TOTY Recipients

Congratulations to our 2018 Teacher of the Year recipients.

2016 - 2017 TOTY Recipients

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