Middle School No.3 is one of five secondary schools in the abandoned city of Pripyat. It is located on Sportivnaya Street, right next door to the indoor swimming pool, and it houses the most photographed collection of gas masks in Pripyat. Hundreds are lying on the floor having been removed from storage by looters in search of small amounts of silver inside the filters.
The Soviet-made child-sized masks would have been kept on-site during the cold war era and were designed to provide protection against nuclear, biological and chemical (NBC) attack. When in use the school was modern and well equipped with extensive music and sports facilities.
Today the structure of the building remains in relatively good condition when compared to many of the - partly collapsed - other learning establishments of Pripyat. Water damage is not so extensive, especially on the lower floors. The predominantly wooden window frames all remain in place with many of them open. The cast iron radiators, however, are long gone.
Many stacks of exercise books offer an uncanny reminder of the hundreds of children who once ran through the corridors and sat in the classrooms.