• SUBSTITUTE SERVICES
  • Frequently Asked Questions

      Substitute Pay

      • Substitute Pay

        How much do I get paid as a Substitute Employee?   

        There are various pay rates for Day-to-Day Substitute Professionals, Paraprofessionals, Nurses, and Full-Time Substitute Professionals.   

         

        Please see the Substitute Services “Pay and Payroll”  page for more information.  

         

        When do I get paid as a Substitute Employee?   

        All Substitute Employees are paid on the Semi-Monthly Non-Administrator Pay Schedule. All Substitute Employees are paid on the 15th and the last day of the month. If the 15th or the last day of the month falls on a weekend or holiday, you will be paid on the preceding weekday.  

         

        Day-to-Day Substitutes, Building Substitutes, and Full-Time Substitutes are paid differently. Please see the Substitute Services “Pay and Payroll”  page and navigate to “Payroll Schedules.”  

         

        As a Day-to-Day Substitute Professional (Teacher, Counselor, Social Worker), how does my pay increase from $120 to $136?   

        As a new Day-to-Day Substitute Professional, you will be paid at Step 1: $120/day when working in the absence of a school-based professional or paraprofessional in any school. After you have worked at least (40) days for each of two consecutive semesters,* your pay rate will change to Step 2: $136/day at the start of the third semester.  

         

        *Through an MOU with the PFT for the 2022-23 and 2023-24 school year, substitutes who work at least forty (40) days for one (1) semester will receive the pay rate change to step 2 at the start of the second semester. 

         

        For more information about Substitute Pay, see the “Pay and Payroll” page.   

         

        How are the days that I worked as a Day-to-Day Substitute calculated in my paycheck?  

        As a Day-to-Day Substitute, you will be paid for the workdays that fall within the Timekeeper Entry & HR Processing Period for each pay date.   

         

        For exact pay dates and processing periods, please see the Substitute Services “Pay and Payroll” page, and navigate to “Payroll Schedules.”  

         

        Will I get paid if I report to a school for an assignment and the school informs me that the assignment is no longer available?  

        If you report to a school for an assignment and the school informs you that the assignment is no longer available, you will receive half-day payment for that assignment.  

         

        Will I get paid if the school cancels the assignment?  

        If the school cancels the assignment before you report to the school, you will not be paid for that assignment.  

         

        If you report to a school for an assignment and the school informs you that the assignment is no longer available, you will receive half-day payment for that assignment.  

         

        How do I get paid if I only work a half-day or for a part-time employee?  

        If you work a half-day or if you substitute for a part-time employee, you will receive a half-day payment for that assignment.  

         

        How can I ensure that I am being paid correctly?  

        As a substitute, it is imperative that you keep a log of your days worked and the locations you have worked. It is YOUR responsibility to regularly check your paystub and Frontline to ensure that your days worked are properly recorded to guarantee correct payments.  

         

        Visit the "Pay and Payroll" webpage and review the Paystubs section for directions on how to login into Employee Self Service and review your paystubs to ensure that your days worked are accounted for.  

         

        What if my pay is incorrect? Who can I talk to?  

        As a Substitute employee, it is imperative that you keep a log of your days worked and the locations you have worked. It is YOUR responsibility to regularly check your paystub and Frontline to ensure that your days worked are properly recorded to guarantee correct payments.   

         

        Review your paystub alongside the Payroll Schedule section above. If you believe that you have been paid incorrectly, please follow these steps in order:  

        1. Check the Frontline Absence Management system to see if your days worked were recorded correctly. 
        2. If they were not recorded correctly, contact the school secretary/timekeeper to request that your days worked are corrected in the system before the next payroll cutoff. The secretary/timekeeper must notify payroll that they have changed your days worked.
        3. If the school secretary/timekeeper confirms that your days worked were recorded correctly, contact the Help Desk via Let's Talk. You may also email support@pghschools.org or call 412-529-HELP (4357) during business hours: Monday-Friday 6:30-4:30. The support team will direct your questions to the payroll department.  
        4. If your pay issue has not been solved after speaking to the school secretary/timekeeper and the payroll department, please contact Substitute Services at subservices@pghschools.org.   

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        Please see the Substitute Services “Pay and Payroll” page and navigate to “Pay Corrections.”

         

        Will I be eligible for unemployment during the summer if I am an active substitute?  

        Pittsburgh Public Schools does not determine unemployment eligibility. The Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry handles unemployment benefits and determines eligibility on a case-by-case basis. 

         

        How do I become a Building Substitute? 

        All new substitutes will apply for the Building Substitute position found at pghschools.org/careers. They will be assigned to a school based on a preference survey in the application. 

         

        All returning substitutes will have the building substitute sign up sent to their district email addresses in the summer. Returning substitutes will have five (5) business days to sign up as a building substitute 

         

        If the sign-up period is missed, returning substitutes will need to apply for the Building Substitute position found at pghschools.org/careers. They will be assigned to a school by Substitute Services based on the preference survey in the application. 

        Please see the Substitute Service “Building Substitute” webpage.  

         

        How do I become a Full-Time Substitute?  

        Please see the Substitute Services  "Full-Time Substitutes" page. You may also review Article 91 of the PFT Collective Bargaining Agreement.   

         

        As a Building Substitute, you may become a full-time substitute at your assigned school.

         

        While working towards my forty (40) consecutive days, can I acquire Full-Time Substitute status if I miss any days?  

         

        You can miss up to one (1) day due to an emergency and still acquire Full-Time Substitute status. An email notification must be sent to subservices@pghschools.org the school principal or secretary notifying Human Resources of your approved one-day absence. If you miss more than one (1) day, your forty (40) consecutive days count will be reset.   

         

        If you are serving in a Full-Time Substitute position and you miss days due to a COVID-19 leave, your eligibility will be paused. You will not receive credit for the days you are on COVID-19 leave, but your 40-day count will continue when you return.  

         

        Please see the Substitute Services "Full-Time Substitutes" page. You may also review Article 91 of the PFT Collective Bargaining Agreement.    

         

        Please see the Substitute Services “Pay and Payroll” page and navigate to “Full-Time Substitute Pay and Eligibility.” 

         

        Do School-Only Vacation Days, PPS Holidays, District Professional Development Days, and Clerical Days count towards my forty (40) consecutive days worked?  

        Clerical and District Professional Development Days will count towards your forty (40) days since you are required to work on those days. School-Only Vacation and All PPS Holidays will not count towards your forty (40) consecutive days.  

         

        Please see the Substitute Services "Full-Time Substitutes" page. You may also review Article 91 of the PFT Collective Bargaining Agreement.    

         

        Please see the Substitute Services “Pay and Payroll” page and navigate to “Full-Time Substitute Pay and Eligibility.” 

         

        How will I know that I’ve reached my forty (40) consecutive days and have acquired Full-Time status?  

        When you reach Full-Time Substitute status, Human Resources will send you, your secretary/timekeeper, and your principal, a notification informing you of the promotion. The dates in the promotion email will be based on your time entered in Frontline. If you believe that the promotion date is incorrect, respond to the email from subservices@pghschools.org immediately.

         

        Please see the Substitute Services "Full-Time Substitutes" page. You may also review Article 91 of the PFT Collective Bargaining Agreement.    

         

        Please see the Substitute Services “Pay and Payroll” page and navigate to “Full-Time Substitute Pay and Eligibility.” 

         

        How are the days that I work calculated in my paycheck once I become a Full-Time Substitute? 

        As a Full-Time Substitute, your pay dates are listed on the Non-Administrator Semi-Monthly Pay Schedule. You are paid a salary for the 1st of the month through the 15th, paid on the 15th, and for the 16th to the last day of the month, paid on the last day of the month. If the pay date falls on a weekend or holiday, you will be paid on the preceding weekday.   

         

        For example, on the September 15 Pay Date, you will be paid for the days that you worked from September 1-September 15. Since October 15 is a Saturday, you get paid on Friday, October 14 instead.  

         

        Please see the Substitute Services “Pay and Payroll” page and navigate to “Payroll Schedules.” 

         

        When do I receive my retroactive payment once I become a Full-Time Substitute?  

        You can expect retroactive payment for the difference between your day-to-day rate and your full-time salary for your first 40 days within 1-2 paychecks of your promotion date.   

         

        Please see the Substitute Services “Pay and Payroll” page and navigate to “Payroll Schedules.” 

         

        How is my retroactive payment as a Full-Time Substitute calculated?  

        Retro pay is calculated based on the first day worked of the forty (40) consecutive days. Payroll will review your previous payments as a day-to-day substitute and compare them to what you should have received as a salaried full-time substitute employee. You will be paid the difference between these amounts.  

         

        Please see the Substitute Services “Pay and Payroll” page and navigate to “Payroll Schedules.” 

         

        How will my pay be affected when my Full-Time Substitute assignment ends?  

        If you are a Full-Time Substitute being demoted to a Day-to-Day Substitute at the end of an assignment, your “demotion date” is the day after your last day in the assignment.   

         

        When you transition from your Full-Time salary to your Day-to-Day rate, you will want to review the Day-to-Day Substitute Payroll Schedule and the Full-Time Substitute Payroll Schedule carefully to understand which days are included in each pay date.  

         

        Your full-time substitute salary will be prorated for the days you worked as a Full-Time Substitute in the payroll period (the 1st through the 15th, or the 16th through the end of the month).   

         

        Then, you will receive your Day-to-Day Substitute rate for the days you worked as a Day-to-Day Substitute in the Timekeeper Entry and Payroll Processing period.   

         

        Please see the Substitute Services “Pay and Payroll” page and navigate to “Payroll Schedules.” 

         

        Why did I get overpaid when I was reverted from a Full-Time Substitute to a Day-to-Day substitute?  

        Even as a Full-Time Substitute, it is critical that you work with your timekeeper to ensure that your Frontline assignments are up to date. To identify your demotion date and change your pay, the HR department will search for Frontline assignments that are expected to end within each pay period.  The demotion must be identified and coded before the last day of the HR processing period. Last-minute changes or inaccurate reporting could result in overpayment.   

         

        If you are overpaid, there are two options that you are afforded to repay the funds; 

        1. Pay the amount that was overpaid back or 
        2. Have the overpayment amount taken out of your future paychecks.  

         

        Please see the Substitute Services “Pay and Payroll” page and navigate to “Payroll Schedules” for more information. See the section, “Pay Corrections” for where to direct questions about your pay. 

         

        What happens if I am overpaid?  

        If you are overpaid, there are two options that you are afforded to repay the funds; 

        1. Pay the amount that was overpaid back or 
        2. Have the overpayment amount taken out of your future paychecks.  
         

         

        Please see the Substitute Services “Pay and Payroll” page and navigate to “Payroll Schedules” for more information. See the section, “Pay Corrections” for where to direct questions about your pay. 

         

        If I am currently a Full-Time Substitute and my assignment is ending, and I have been offered a new assignment that will lead to me becoming a Full-Time Substitute, will I be able to maintain my Full-Time Substitute status or must I work another forty (40) consecutive days in the new assignment in order to become a Full-Time Substitute? 

        If your current Full-Time Substitute assignment is ending, and you have been offered a new assignment that will lead to becoming a Full-Time Substitute, you may be able to maintain your Full-Time Substitute status. The new assignment must begin within a week of the end of your previous full-time assignment. Your principal must send an email notification to subservices@pghschools.org as soon as possible to notify Human Resources that you are going to pick up a new assignment that will lead you to becoming a Full-Time Substitute. Extensions of Full-Time Substitute assignments are reviewed on a case-by-case basis.  

         

        Please see the Substitute Services “Pay and Payroll” page and navigate to “Full-Time Substitute Pay and Eligibility.”  

         

        How do I move steps as a Full-Time Substitute? 

        All Full-Time Substitutes begin on Step 1. In order to move to Step 2, you must work as a Full-Time Substitute for ten (10) non-consecutive months. Once you have reached Step 2, in order to move to step 3, you must work as a Full-Time Substitute for an additional ten (10) non-consecutive months.  

         

        Please see the Substitute Services "Full-Time Substitutes" page. You may also review Article 91 of the PFT Collective Bargaining Agreement.    

         

        Please see the Substitute Services “Pay and Payroll” page and navigate to to “Full-Time Substitute Pay and Eligibility.” 

         

        Please see the PFT Collective Bargaining Agreement, Article 91 for more information regarding Full-Time Substitute step placement. 

         

         

      Substitute Benefits

      • Substitute Benefits 

         

        Do I receive Health Benefits as a Day-to-Day Substitute or Building Substitute? 

        Day-to-Day Substitutes and Building Substitutes are not eligible for health benefits.  

         

        Please see the Substitute Services "Benefits" webpage for more information. 

         

        Do I receive Health Benefits as a Full-Time Substitute? 

        Full-Time Substitutes who have reached Step 2 of the Full-Time Substitute salary schedule are eligible for health benefits. Once you reach Step 2, you will receive an email from Human Resources informing you that you are now eligible to enroll in Health Benefits. For more information on how to move to Step 2 of the Full-Time Substitute salary schedule, please see the “Pay and Payroll Schedule” page.  

         

        Please see the Substitute Services "Benefits" webpage for more information. 

         

        If I become eligible, how do I enroll for Health Benefits? 

        Full-Time Substitutes on Step 2 must enroll online using the eBenefits system within 31 days of their eligibility date. An email with the eBenefits Enrollment guide will be sent to them if they become benefits eligible. They will be able to access the eBenefits online system within 7 days following your benefits eligible date.  

         

        Please see the Substitute Services "Benefits" webpage for more information. 

         

        When would my health benefits begin? 

        If they become eligible on or before the 15th of the month, benefits will be effective the first day of the next month. If you become eligible after the 15th of the month, benefits will be effective the first day of the 2nd month.  

         

        Please see the Substitute Services "Benefits" webpage for more information. 

         

        Once enrolled in Health Benefits, how long am I enrolled for? 

        You will be enrolled in benefits as long as you remain on Step 2 or 3 of the Full-Time Substitute salary schedule. For more information, please reference Article 91, Section 3 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement for Teachers and Other Professionals.  

         

        If you are a Step 2 or Step 3 Full-Time Substitute who is currently receiving Pittsburgh Public Schools benefits, your benefits will end approximately one month following your return to Day-to-Day Substitute status. 

         

        Please see the Substitute Services "Benefits" webpage for more information. 

         

        Do I receive vacation time as a Full-Time, Building Substitute or Day-to-Day Substitute? 

        Substitutes are not eligible for sick days or vacation days.  

         

        Please see the Substitute Services "Benefits" webpage for more information. 

         

        Do I receive sick time as a Full-Time, Building Substitute or Day-to-Day Substitute? 

        Day-to-Day Substitutes are not eligible for sick days.  

         

        Full-Time Substitutes and Building Substitutes are eligible for 6 noncumulative sick days. Sick days do not transfer to other semesters and are not paid out at the end of each semester. 

         

        Please see the Substitute Services "Benefits" webpage for more information. 

         

        How do I handle work related injuries? 

        Please review the Work-Related Injuries Procedures.  

         

        Do I receive travel reimbursement? 

        Please review the Travel and Expense Policy.  

      Substitute Training 

      • Substitute Training  

         

        Do I get paid for completing Substitute Orientation?  

        Please see the Substitute Services page “Professional Learning Platform” for more information. 

         

        Do I receive Act 48 credit for completing courses on the Professional Learning Platform?  

        Act 48 hours will be earned after successful completion of asynchronous courses.  

         

        Please see the Substitute Services page “Professional Learning Platform” for more information. 

         

      Other

      • OTHER  

         

        How can I contact Substitute Services? 

        Please carefully review the Substitute Services webpage before reaching out to the Substitute Services office. If you cannot find a solution to your problem on the Substitute Services webpage, you can submit a support request via Let's Talk. You may also email support@pghschools.org or call 412-529-HELP (4357) during business hours: Monday-Friday 6:30-4:30. You may also reach out to subservices@pghschools.org directly.   

         

        I am a PSERS Retiree, can I return to work as a Substitute?  

        Retirees can return to work in a substitute capacity without suspending collection of monthly pension benefits under the Shortage of Personnel emergency exception. This emergency exception extends only for the length of the school year or until the emergency no longer exists. Yearly, Pittsburgh Public Schools acquires approval from PSERS in order to allow PSERS Retirees to work as short-term substitutes. Please see the PSERS Request and School Year Approval for the current school year. For more information on all PSERS emergency exceptions, please review the PSERS Return to Service Exceptions Guide.  

         

        Please review the "PSER Retiree Guidelines" webpage in full.  

         

        When do I report to a school?  

        You are required to report thirty (30) minutes in advance of the school start time that is posted on Discover PPS; all substitutes are required to report to schools in advance of students. As a reminder, once you can access the Frontline Absence Management system, please use this to determine substitute start and end times; as the start times in the Frontline Absence Management system are already adjusted to reflect the previously mentioned 30-minute rule.  

         

        Please review the "Substitute Expectations" webpage for more information.  

         

        What should I wear?  

        Identifybusiness casual attire to wear.  Business casual attire is defined as slacks, khakis, or a dress/skirt that is knee-length or below paired with a dress shirt or blouse, to include an open collar or polo shirt. Remember, your first impression is a lasting impression with students and school-based employees.  

         

        Please review the "Substitute Expectations" webpage for more information.  

         

        What will I do as a Building Substitute? 

        As a building substitute, you will work anywhere that the school administration needs you for the dayThis may include teacher or paraprofessional absences or vacancies, playground duty, lunchroom monitor, or any other school-based absences that need to be covered. 

         

        Please review the "Building Substitutes" page for more information. 

         

        How do I access my PPS Email Address?  

        You will receive an email notification regarding the creation of your new PPS email account within 5 business days of your hire date. Once you have acquired technology access you can login into these systems by visiting www.pghschools.org/staff. If you do not receive email notification for your new PPS email account, please email support@pghschools.org for assistance.  

         

        Please review the "PPS Email and Technology" page for more information. 

         

        Can PPS just contact me at my personal email address? 

        No. Human Resources will not send formal communications to personal email addresses. 

         

        You can automatically forward or redirect your email messages by setting up Inbox rules in Outlook on the web.   

        1. At the top of the page, select Settings  

        1. Settings > View all Outlook settings.  

        1. Select Mail > Forwarding.  

        1. Select Enable forwarding, enter the forwarding email address, and select Save.  

        Note: If you want a copy of the original message to remain in your mailbox, select keep a copy of forwarded messages.  

         

        Please review the "PPS Email and Technology" page for more information. 

         

        How do I apply for other jobs at PPS?  

        Visit the PPS Careers Page.   

         

        How do I resign from my Substitute position?  

        In order to resign or retire as a substitute with Pittsburgh Public Schools please visit the Separation Notification pageand complete the Separation and Severance Notification Form.  

         

        Do I need a permit to Substitute?  

        If you are not currently certified as a teacher, counselor, or social worker with the state of Pennsylvania, then you will need to apply and be approved for an Emergency Permit. Please visit the TIMS Educator Online Certification System to apply for your permit.  

         

        What is reasonable assurance?  

        Reasonable Assurance is an offer of reasonable assurance that your services will again be needed for the upcoming school year. The Reasonable Assurance Notice is emailed to Substitutes in April and is due back on May 1st. 

         

        Where do I report personnel information changes?  

        In order to officially update your personal information (phone, address, email, etc) with the district, you must fill out the Pittsburgh Public Schools Personnel Information Change Request Form.  

         

        Where can I find information about snow days?  

        Substitute employees should adhere to the following Snow Day and Inclement Weather Guidelines. Substitute employees should follow the guidelines referenced under the “Teacher” category. District communication protocols and general inclement weather information is also available on www.pghschools.org/weather.  

         

        Where can I access any PPS website or resource?  

        Substitute employees can access My PPS, Microsoft Outlook, Frontline, and all other PPS resources and webpages using www.pghschools.org/staff.  

      Frontline Absence Management

      • Frontline Absence Management  

         

        How do I accept an assignment in Frontline?  

        When you log in to Frontline, you can review available jobs directly on the homepage. To accept an assignment, select, “Accept” beside the name of the employee the assignment is for.   

         

        Please visit the Frontline Substitute User page to access the “Substitute User Quick Start Guide.”   

         

        How do I cancel an assignment in Frontline?  

        To cancel an assignment, select “Scheduled Jobs” from the homepage. To cancel an assignment, select, “Cancel” beside the name of the employee the assignment is for.   

         

        Please visit the Frontline Substitute User page to access the “Substitute User Quick Start Guide.”  

         

        What do I do if my days worked are not in Frontline?  

        Please contact the timekeeper at the location that you worked. They will enter your hours and notify the payroll department.  

         

        Do I still have to use Frontline if I am a Building Substitute? 

        Even as a Building Substitute, it is critical that you work with your timekeeper to ensure that your Frontline assignments are entered every day. If you are not entered in Frontline before the payroll cutoff, you will not be paid for that day. 

         

        As a building substitute, you must be entered in the absence or vacancy you were assigned or the “Building Substitute Vacancy” if you did not serve in a direct absence or vacancy. 

         

        Please see the Substitute Services “Pay and Payroll” page and navigate to “Payroll Schedules” for more information. See the section, “Pay Corrections” for where to direct questions about your pay. 

         

        Do I still have to use Frontline if I am a full-time substitute?  

        Even as a Full-Time Substitute, it is critical that you work with your timekeeper to ensure that your Frontline assignments are up to date. To identify your promotion and demotion dates and change your pay, the HR department will search for Frontline assignments that are expected to reach 40 days or end within each pay period.  The promotions and demotions must be identified and coded before the last day of the HR processing period. Last-minute changes or inaccurate reporting could result in late promotions and overpayment.   

         

        If you are overpaid, there are two options that you are afforded to repay the funds;  

        1. Pay the amount that was overpaid back or 
        2. Have the overpayment amount taken out of your future paychecks.  

         

        Please see the Substitute Services “Pay and Payroll” page and navigate to “Payroll Schedules” for more information. See the section, “Pay Corrections” for where to direct questions about your pay. 

         

        How do I use the dial-in system to find jobs?  

        Please visit the Frontline Substitute User page to access the resources regarding the Dial-In system.   

         

        How do I use the mobile app to find jobs?  

        Please visit the Frontline Substitute User page to access the resources regarding the Mobile App.   

        I am a Full-Time Substitute or Building Substitute. Why do I have two Frontline accounts?  

        Full-Time Substitutes have two Frontline accounts. One is your normal substitute account, where you will be assigned to jobs. The second is your “employee” account. If you need to be absent while serving as a full-time substitute or a building substitute, entering your own absence to this account allows another substitute to be assigned to your job.   

         

        Please visit the Frontline Substitute User page to access the resources regarding how to toggle between two Frontline accounts.   

         

        How do I stop receiving the robocall through Frontline? 

        Log into Frontline on the computer and click the “specify call times” button in Preferences> Personal Info.   

         

        Where can I find, or change, my PIN for Frontline? 

        You find, or change, your current substitute phone PIN in Preferences> Phone Credentials.  

      • Substitute Services Homepage
      • Roles and Educational Requirements
      • PSERS Retiree Guidelines
      • Professional Learning Platform (Training)
      • Expectations
      • Building Substitutes
      • Full-Time Substitutes
      • ID Badges
      • Frontline Absence Management
      • Pay and Payroll
      • Benefits
      • Reasonable Assurance and Emergency Permits
      • Personnel Info Change and Discontinuing Employment
      • Careers
      • District Resources
      • PPS Email and Technology
      • Frequently Asked Questions