The awards have been given to the fifth generation of the Best Educators of Serbia

On Thursday, December 27th, 2018 in the Moskva Hotel awards were given to the Best Educators of Serbia of 2018.

The year 2018 has been a great jubilee of both the Association and this project. Five years have passed since the foundation of the Association for the Promotion of Entrepreneurship Živojin Mišić and this is the fifth generation of the Best Educators of Serbia which we awarded.

At the celebration on the occasion of giving awards to the best teachers which our country has, numerous guests from the sphere of education, the best teachers of Serbia and numerous co-workers and colleagues of the Association of Živojin Mišić assembled.

The programme was opened by Mila Đačić and Tara Đačić with the composition “Horovod” after which the students of Danijela Rakić, Jovan Tomić and Luka Simović introduced themselves to us with the compositions “Kaćuša” and “Tarantela”. We would like to thank Mila Đačić and Danijela Rakić again, music teachers and the awarded educators of the year 2017, for their help in the organization of this celebration. The musical part of this programme made a special impression on this day.

During the opening of the ceremony, the coordinator of the Association Ivona Jovanović welcomed all guests, having emphasized the pride of the Association in their celebrating this day and being in the company of the best in Serbia. “Today, one more time, we are giving acknowledgement to the best among us, the people contributing most to it that our country has a bright future. Five years for us is not a small thing, but a kind of a jubilee. The first in a row and we believe and we will work on having many more of them”.

We looked back even on the very beginning when the Association was founded in 2013, wishing to enhance society and support entrepreneurship, because we believed then that it was a formula for economic progress and recovery of the country. We believe in it even today and this is why we reminded ourselves, in the year which marks 100 years since the end of the First World War, of it why our association bears the name just after Živojin Mišić, the largest Serbian army leader and strategist.

Lela Đokić, who was the coordinator of the Association in its early years and led the project The Best Educators of Serbia, also addressed all attendees. “When I look back, I think that this action was very brave and at times terrifying – two people who had not had any contact with education and teaching so far decided to change things for the sake of their own idealism. Some people will say that this is half-crazy and I will say that today the Association Živojin Mišić has been giving the only such comprehensive award to teachers in Serbia for five years in a row. If you ask me if we have succeeded, I will tell you that we have a lot of things to do. But, I also think that we have moved a ball of wool which is unravelling unstoppably nowadays and is embroidering the threads of new successes and accomplishments. This hall is overcrowded with people appreciating education and our work. It was not so five years ago. I would like each of you in this room to stop for a moment and realize how great success and progress are, borne by this project and this award, because little of this existed five years ago.”

Vladimir Prelovac, the founder and chairman of the Association, was not able to attend this celebration, but he had written a speech, read on his behalf by Ivona Jovanović, the coordinator of the Association. We have singled out part of this address “The awarded educators, I would like to thank you from the bottom of my heart for your unselfish help and all made effort and energy in setting children in Serbia on the right track. From my own personal experience I know that your own personal example of dedication will be a guiding star for many children and, later, mature people at difficult moments in life which will come inevitably. Although they never say it to you, bear in mind that they will think many times in their life about you and about your deeds.”

Vladimir Prelovac had expressed deep gratitude towards the members of the jury, awarded educators and all fellow workers for unselfish help for this project since its beginning. “By your own experience and integrity you have made this project possible and we owe you very much as the Association. Our civic duty is to shape our society and environment in a way that we want them to be for our children. It is not reasonable to expect from any country to take care of everything, of us either. We ourselves are responsible for our own destiny and our decisions. This is the reason why the Association Živojin Mišić was founded and we have focused just on the area which can produce the largest change in society over the long term, and this is education. Educated youth will have power in their hands to change the world. How much good one idea in the head of one child can bring to the world and to all of us. We are here to thank all educators who are expanding vistas to our children and making it possible for such an idea to be born one day”!

Srđan Verbić is one of the people who support the work of the Association since its very beginning. He has pointed out that “It’s a great honour to be part of this project and a large Association who concurrently pushes several projects for which it is not known which will blossom first and which will be the most successful.” Srđan has taken part in almost all projects of the Association so far in some way, and when we look back on the project of the Best Educators of Serbia, Srđan says “As soon as I received the invitation and the opportunity to take part in the first award presentation ceremony for the Best Educators, I accepted it, of course. All the more so that there are more equal awards. This is an exceptionally important moment. Today we have 69 best teachers, and there are even more of them. There are always more candidates for whom we are sorry that they have not been chosen for the award than those for whom we think that they do not deserve to be here.” One more time he gave his sincere congratulations to all the awarded.

Another lady who has been with us since the beginning of the implementation of the project the Best Educators of Serbia and a long-standing board member is also Dragica Pavlović Babić, the coordinator of the PISA research in Serbia. She has pointed out that one of the largest benefits of this project is the expansion of good practices among educators, because they are those who have shown initiative, originality and creativity, and that after all those years it seems to her natural that this project lasts even for a longer period of time.

At the end of the celebration, we could see and hear our ten most magnificent, best educators of Serbia for the year 2018. These are:

  • Aleksa Popadić, geography teacher from Kraljevo
  • Aleksandar Mijalković, Serbian teacher from Inđija
  • Ivana Kovačević, Serbian language and literature teacher from Belgrade
  • Jelena Babić, general education teacher from Prokuplje
  • Lidija Videnović, general education teacher from Sopot
  • Milica Andonović, English language teacher from Pirot
  • Mladen Šljivović, physics teacher from Zaječar
  • Slađana Radojlović, teacher of the basics of economy and banker training from Niš
  • Vera Isailović, history teacher from Arilje
  • Zoran Ilić, general education teacher from Leskovac

You can read more about them here.

After the award presentation ceremony five generations of the Best Educators of Serbia took part in the workshops which the educators had organized for their colleagues.

Boško Petrović, the awarded educator of the year 2017, held the workshop “Znanjem bez granica“[With knowledge there are no boundaries] where he talked about the possibility of networking the best educators of Serbia via various projects and about the spread of educational mission. The headteacher of Boško’s school Snežana Tanić also addresssed us, expressing deep gratitude because he was among the best and talking about big influence of this project on the schools of Paraćin.

Katarina Veljković, awarded in 2016 and one of the 50 best teachers of the world in 2018 within the competition The Global Teacher Prize, shared her experience with her colleagues. We wish Katarina success and we are happy that our education is with our teachers who are placed high on the ladder in the world!

Katarina Ivanović and Danilo Borovnica held the workshop “Erasmus +”. Zorica Ivanović shared her experience with her colleagues at the workshop “Frequency dictionaries” and Velimir Radlovački talked about “Teachers on the Internet in 2019” and informed his colleagues about safety on the Internet at first hand.

Besides this, Violeta Miletić held the workshop “The First Step of Successful Entrepreneurship” and Marinko Petković talked about “Great Myths about Small Places”.

A big thanks to all our educators who shared their knowledge with their colleagues and showed once more that they are open for cooperation and that knowledge is the most valuable when it is shared.  

In the end, Vera Mijović, the instructor of business and development skills, held the workshop for the Best Educators of Serbia, named “The Strategy of a Successful Public Appearance”, aiming at helping the educators in coping with cameras and enhancing their appearance as much as possible.

One more time a big thanks to all friends of education who celebrated the huge day for the Association with us yesterday and lent solemnity to it by their attendance!

The photos from the award presentation ceremony can be seen here.

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