Each of Newton County's 20 schools has selected its candidate for the 2008 Teacher of the Year competition.
Nominees had to submit essay answers on several questions concerning their individual educational background, philosophy and style of teaching.
Monday and Tuesday a panel of six volunteer judges representing the school system, the chamber of commerce and local businesses and civic organizations will conduct 20-minute interviews with each of the nominees.
The names of the top three finalists will be announced on Oct. 25 after essay and interview scores are calculated.
Members of the selection committee will then observe the three finalists in their classrooms on Oct. 30.
The teacher with the highest combined score on the essay, interview and observation will be named as 2008 Teacher of the Year at 4:45 p.m. Nov. 8 at Newton High School.
The teacher of the year will receive a crystal vase, three-months free car rental from Covington Ford, a teacher of the year ring from Herrf-Jones and a check for $1,000.
This year's winner will represent Newton County in the Georgia Teacher of the Year competition.
All 20 school teachers of the year will be recognized at the reception, with the two runners-up receiving a crystal vase.
Chamber of Commerce sponsors of the 2008 Teacher of the Year program are The Covington News, Pattillo Construction, Snapping Shoals, Bank of North Georgia, Newton Federal, Georgia Directory Company, BB&T, Capes Property Management, Newton Medical, Newton Citizen, SteelCo Buildings Inc., United Community Bank, United Bank of Covington, The Community Bank, The Peoples Bank, Sunbelt Builders, Georgia Power Company, AT&T, DeKalb Tech, Bizzy Bee Exterminators, First Georgia Community Bank, Moseley Electric, Ginn Motor Company and Tread Technologies.