“Dr Đorđe Natošević” Award
Establishment of the Award
The “Dr Đorđe Natošević” Award was established on 12th April 1996 pursuant to the Decision of the Assembly of AP Vojvodina. It was awarded to primary and secondary schools all over the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia as well as to their employees, for the achieved results and innovations in teaching. However, in the period of five years – from 1996 to 2000 – despite so many potential candidates (schools from the entire Federal Republic of Yugoslavia) only 19 participants applied and only five of them received the Award.
The Assembly of AP Vojvodina adopted a new decision pertaining to this Award on 11th July 2001 (“The Official Journal of AP Vojvodina”, no.8/01). The Assembly did so in order to promote this Award but also to encourage the educational institutions to improve and provide additional quality to their work. The Provincial Assembly designated it as an authentic provincial award for exceptional contribution and outstanding results to pre-school educational institutions, primary and secondary schools in AP Vojvodina as well as to pre-school teachers, teachers, psychologists and pedagogues working in the schools.
The Award includes a plaque, letter and the cash prize. A maximum of five Awards may be given each year.
Đorđe Natošević was born in Slankamen on 31st July 1821. Upon completing secondary education in the Sremski Karlovci Gymnasium, the young Natošević moved to Szeged and completed the two-year studies in philosophy in order to qualify to study law. In September 1840, he moved to Prešov to study law but a year later he enrolled in the Medical School in Budapest. Four years later he moved to Vienna where he completed his medical education.
As a son of a wealthy trader, while living in Vienna, Natošević „…had two rooms, where he nurtured and fed birds and provided shelter to poor students and occasionally gave them their clothes”. He was always ready to help his not so well-off friends as attested by his friend, the famous poet Branko Radičević. Natošević became interested in gymnastics in Vienna.
Shortly after graduation, Đorđe Natošević moved to Novi Sad and started his own practice where „…refused to charge poor people for his services.” That is when he became close to bishop Platon Atancković and became his personal physician. It was probably under the influence of Atanacković that Natošević decide to immerse himself in education.
In the 1853/54 academic year, he became the teacher and the principal of the Serbian Gymnasium in Novi Sad. From that moment on until his death in 1887 he was a tireless reformer of Serbian schools who held numerous positions in what was at that time the Habsburg Monarchy. He was the Supervisor off all Serbian schools in Hungary and the Head Officer for Serbian Schools in the Metropolitanate of Karlovci. He also served as Officer of the Ministry of Education of the Principality of Serbia (upon invitation of Prince Mihajlo Obrenović) and as the President of Matica Srpska.
Activities of the Award Committee
The Award is presented by the Committee appointed by the Provincial Government Decision. The members of the Committee are persons who are able, to the best of their knowledge and expertise in the field of education, to asses the quality of the work of persons to whom the Award is presented.