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Novi Pazar school director after anthem scandal: Teacher played "God of Justice" during first class


First graders in the elementary school "Rifat Burdzovic - Trso" sang "I Am Your Son" during the second class, as their teacher claims

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Direktor Osnovne škole Rifat Burdžović Tršo Novi Pazar Nusret Zuković đaci deca himna

Illustration: Facebook/Enko Biska Gluhavicanin, Printscreen: Youtube/A1tvNet

First grade students in the elementary school "Rifat Burdzovic - Trso" in Novi Pazar played the anthem of Sandzak Bosniaks "I Am Your Son" at the initiative of their teacher, and the video from the classroom flooded the media and social networks. Minister of Education Branko Ruzic called this behavior of the teacher a scandal, while the director of the school, Nusret Zukovic, explained what happened in a conversation with Telegraf.rs.

He said that he spoke with the teacher, who stated that, just as ordered by the Ministry, she played "God of Justice" (Serbia's national anthem) for the students during the first class.

"The teacher followed the procedure and played the anthem "God of Justice" to first graders during the first class. Then, during the second class, she played the Bosniak anthem, as part of a program that we normally have every year to welcome first graders. Because of coronavirus, we did not have that big gathering, so she did it only with her class," the director said.

According to him, the whole case is still based on a "he-said-she-said" situation, and the teacher is under obligation to make a statement about the whole case within eight days, in writing.

"Unfortunately, I found out about everything through the media and informed the Ministry of Education. A procedure will be initiated to determine whether the teacher did everything according to protocol. The Ministry will send an inspector, and then we will determine the factual situation," said Zukovic.

He added that this is an individual case, that he does not want the school he manages to be publicly highlighted in this way, as well as that this educational institution has complied with all procedures.

"The greeting letter of the Minister was read during each first class and the anthem was played. I have no information that the anthem of the Sandzak Bosniaks was played in any other class," our interlocutor concluded.

We also reached out to the teacher who played "I Am Your Son" to her students, but have not heard back yet.


Ruzic: Disrespect of the state

In response to Telegraf.rs, First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Education, Science and Technological Development Branko Ruzic said that the case at the "Rifat Burdzovic - Trso" Elementary School in Novi Pazar represents a scandal and disrespect of the state and its symbols, and all the things that state provides to all its citizens.

"Such an act in Novi Pazar represents a devastation and undermining of the anthem and state symbols of the Republic of Serbia. Therefore, the educational inspection will act promptly and, in accordance with the law, determine the responsibility of both the teacher and the school director," Ruzic stressed.

Video: Anthem for our hero: Novak sings God of Justice


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