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The Protector of Citizens has requested Bucko Preschool Institution in Sokobanja to urgently enroll a child from that town, who was not vaccinated since birth and whose inoculation was postponed for a certain period following the doctor’s opinion, in the preschool preparatory program in accordance with the Law in order to enable the child to exercise the right to education.

In the investigation to control legality and regularity of the competent authorities’ work, which was launched further to the complaint of the child’s parents, the Protector of Citizens identified omissions in the work of Bucko Preschool Institution and the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development that violated child’s right to education.

According to the Opinion of the Protector of Citizens, the preschool institution, made an omission in its work as it rejected, contrary to the Law, a request to enroll an unvaccinated child whose vaccination, according to a report from November 2021, was postponed for additional three months following a recommendation of immunologist, whereas the line ministry made omission because it failed to take measures to rectify the omission of the preschool institution upon learning that the child was not enrolled in the preschool institution.

The Protector of Citizens states that the Law on Protecting the Population from Infectious Diseases and Rulebook on Immunization and Protection Using Medicines do not specify that it is necessary for the parent or guardian to submit a separate document when enrolling the child in a preschool institution, but it is emphasized that a certificate by the chosen pediatrician proving the vaccination status is needed for the stay of the child in the group.

In the Recommendations for rectifying the omissions, paired with a request to notify the Protector of Citizens within 15 days on acting upon Recommendations, the Protector of Citizens requested the preschool institution to enroll a child without further delay and to contact the Ministry of Health immediately upon enrollment in order to determine whether the certificate submitted by the child’s parents represents a suitable document for the child’s stay in the institution.

The Protector of Citizens requested the line ministry to carry out inspection of Bucko Preschool Institution in order to determine whether the enrollment of the child was completed pursuant to the Law on the Fundamentals of Education System and to notify the Protector of Citizens on the outcomes within 30 days.