Suvorov Military School

Saint Petersburg Suvorov Military School occupies the 18th-century Vorontsov Palace on Sadovaya Street

The Suvorov Military Schools are a type of boarding school in the former Soviet Union and in modern Russia and Belarus for boys of 14–18. Education in these schools focuses on military related subjects. The schools are named after Alexander Suvorov, the great 18th century general.

Their naval counterparts among Russian military schools for teenagers are the Nakhimov Naval Schools. They are named after Pavel Nakhimov, the 19th century admiral.


The Suvorov and Nakhimov school models were created during the Second World War in December 1943 to provide boys of school age, particularly those from families of military personnel, with a secondary education specializing in military (army, navy, intelligence, etc.) subjects and training. Boarding school aspect was particularly important at the time because many students were war orphans, who were either without parents or with only a surviving mother, unable to support them.

A number still exist in Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan. The Suvorov schools in Russia are now subordinate to the Commander-in-Chief of the Russian Ground Forces. There are schools still operating in Russia, including in Tambov, Ekaterinberg, and Kazan, and one each in Minsk (Belarus), and Uzbekistan. The Minsk Suvorov Military School was established in the former building of the United Belarusian Military School on 21 May 1952. The former Suvorov Military School in Kiev was reorganized in 1992 and named after Ivan Bohun in 1998.

Carey Schofield, a British journalist with close links to the Soviet Armed Forces, wrote in 1990–91, 'it is still generally accepted that the best way for an officer to start his career is to attend one of the very smart Suvorov or Nakhimov schools, the military boarding schools.'[1] She noted that at that time, several of the original schools had closed, leaving eight Suvorov schools and a single Nakhimov school across the whole of the Soviet Union.

Scott and Scott, in the Russian Military Directory 2004, listed Suvorov schools active at the time in Yekaterinburg, Kazan, Moscow, St.Petersburg, Vladikavkaz, Tver, Ulyanovsk, and Ussuriysk. Several Cadet Corps, a number of them recently formed, were also listed, each affiliated to a specific service branch such as the Space Forces, the Chief of Construction and Billeting, and the Signals Troops.

Starting 2016, the Defense Ministry plans to reopen the Tula SMS campus. Its new campus in Perm opened in 2014 and so is the youngest school to be opened, together with the Orenburg campus (2010) and Irtusk (also 2014). The school today offers to teenage boys preparing for service as officers in the Russian Army (or in the Russian Aerospace Defence Forces or the Ministry of Internal Affairs) secondary education and military style training in the military traditions of the nation and the spirit of its namesake.

See also


  1. Schofield, Carey (1991). Inside the Soviet Army. Headline Book Publishing. p. 41.
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