• students first

    The PPS Experience  - Customer Service Standards

  • Pittsburgh Public Schools defines positive school culture as: an equitable teaching, learning, and working environment where students, families, employees, and communities feel welcomed, respected, supported, and engaged socially, emotionally, intellectually, and physically.
  • To ensure we all develop positive cultures districtwide, we will center our work on the five tenets of positive school culture that lead to a positive PPS Experience for all stakeholders:


    1. Culturally Relevant & Sustaining Teaching with Increased Achievement  
    2. Universal Expectations are Modeled, Experienced and Celebrated 
    3. Equitable Access for All Stakeholders 
    4. All Stakeholders are Valued and Included in the Decision-Making Process 
    5. Positive Relationships which Support Safe Environments
  • Customer Service is the deliberate act of taking care of the customer's needs by providing and delivering professional, helpful, high-quality service and assistance proactively (before), during, and after the customer's requirements are met.
  • Customer Service is:


    • An attitude NOT a department.
    • A personal responsibility of every employee at all levels.
    • A marketing and recruitment strategy. 

    In developing the PPS Experience, we seek to develop standard expectations so customer experience from person to person and building to building are consistent. 


    Customer Service Value Statement:  

    At Pittsburgh Public Schools, we put Students First Always, in all ways. We expect a districtwide environment where: 

    • High levels of achievement are possible for all students; 
    • Diversity in all forms is valued; and 
    • Dignity, respect, and consistency are the standards. 


    Always remember that students and Pittsburgh Public Schools employees are customers, too. By creating positive and supportive school cultures, all students will feel valued, families will feel welcomed, staff will feel supported, and community partners will feel engaged. 

  • Phone and Email Communications In the Pittsburgh Public Schools, we expect our staff to provide a high-level of service when communicating in person, answering the telephone, and responding to emails. We encourage all of our staff to adopt a customer service mindset because everyone (students, colleagues, families and community members) are all customers at PPS. Please use the following as a reference when supporting a customer in person, over the telephone or via email.
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  • PPS Logos for Download


      • Letterhead Template Downloads
      • District PowerPoint Template Click Here to Download
      • Long-Form Document Templates
      • PPS Online Store Click Here to go to the Online Store! Here you can find PPS Letterheads and other branded marketing materials.
      • Say hello and begin each engagement with warmth and promptness. Smile, use a pleasant voice, make eye contact and be aware of body language. Conduct yourself in a friendly and engaging manner. If you are busy, communicate and set clear expectations.
      • Treat everyone with dignity and respect.   Respect the views of others – their choices or decisions. See the value in everyone, regardless of their situation, status, or beliefs. Avoid generalizations and be mindful of your biases - respect diversity (linguistic, cultural, racial, disability, religious, gender and sexual orientation) Maintain the confidentiality and privacy of students and their families.
      • Understand the needs of your customers so that you may anticipate their needs and exceed their expectations. Every customer is calling or visiting because they need our assistance. Do not be afraid to recommend a new approach to an ongoing problem. If you begin to see a pattern of need, work with your leadership team to put strategies in place to address a common need. Utilize the School Culture Resource Hub, pghschools.org/scrh, for school culture practices that can be used within the classroom and school.
      • Demonstrate great customer service. Provide the results you have promised. If something happens that prevents your delivery of what you promised – be transparent – and explain how you will fix the situation. Respond to emails, voicemails, and “Let’s Talk” tickets within 24 hours. If you are not the right person to help, please ensure your customer connects with the staff members best positioned to help them. Do not be afraid to say you are not sure, but you will find out the answer.
      • Engage kindly and empathetically. Take time to listen and understand the customer’s needs and determine how best to assist. Be mindful of their history with PPS (i.e., you may be the third person they were transferred to). Acknowledge and validate their experiences.
      • Never pass up an opportunity to promote your school, department, or the District. Share the good news of your school with parents and families. Provide easy ways to make the news easy for them to share. Make sure your stakeholders know the efforts that are underway districtwide to ensure positive outcomes and experiences for students.
      • Thank and check back in. Make sure the need or concern has been addressed. You have the power to change someone’s day through making them feel heard and solving their problem. Take a moment to evaluate your interaction – did you provide the best customer service? If not, what can you improve for the next time?
      • Students First Always, in all ways.