Turks in Serbia to introduce Turkish in primary schools
BELGRADE – Anadolu AgencyThe Association of Turks in Serbia has launched an initiative to introduce the Turkish language as an elective subject, starting in the country’s elementary schools’ fifth grade classes.
Ali Sahovic, the president of the association, said there was a huge level of interest, primarily in the Novi Pazar region in southwest Serbia and the surrounding municipalities. Sahovic added that his association had held discussions with members and directors of a number of schools already.
The Association of Turks in Serbia is headquartered in Novi Pazar, a city in the Raska district, which is the cultural center of the Bosniaks in Serbia’s historical region of Sandzak. Sahovic said the association would also launch the initiative in other parts of Serbia.
“The town of Tutin in the Raska district is an example of where this initiative has already been implemented, and this will trigger the Turkish language’s becoming an elective subject in schools,” he said.
The association is conducting a survey with students and parents. If a sufficient number of students show interest, the schools’ directorates will notify the Ministry of Education on the need for the Turkish language to be offered as an elective subject.
In Serbia, elementary school is divided into two stages: lower grades (grades 1-4), and higher grades (grades 5-8). Starting from lower grade 1, it is compulsory for children to learn English as a foreign language.