The Ministry of Education sent a request to all schools to have their students, faculty and staff line up in front of a Brazilian flag and sing the country's national anthem. The document also asks that for the event to be filmed and the footage sent to the federal government.
Education minister Ricardo Vélez Rodríguez signs the letter, writing that the act is meant to salute “the new Brazil," and quoting Bolsonaro's campaign slogan.
"Brazilians! Let's salute the new Brazil and celebrate the responsible and quality education to be developed in our schools by our teachers to benefit you, students, who will be the new generation. Brazil above everything. God above everyone!"
The letter was sent by email to principals from public and private schools all over the country and requested that the ministers' message should be read out loud before playing the hymn - which would make principals to quote Bolsonaro's "Brazil above everything" motto. It stirred an immediate negative reaction among educators.
The ministry released a statement saying that the e-mail is a request for the first day of school (Brazil's school year is about to begin), and it's part of a "policy to encourage the appreciation of national symbols."
"The principals who wish to grant the minister's request, the message also says that someone from the school's staff or faculty should film, with a cellphone, a few moments from the letter's reading and the national anthem's execution," says the statement.