Part of our curriculum includes engaging with the multi-racial, multi-cultural composition of the city and the world surrounding us. In a distorted and hurting culture, Pittsburgh Urban Christian School is committed to not fleeing the culture or being swallowed by it, but to becoming redeeming agents of change in the midst of it all. That means looking at our culture squarely and humbly in the eye and discerning what living with a purpose means here and now.
While it is possible for city neighborhoods to provide a wealth of cultural resources unknown to the suburbs, they can also be a concentrated reminder of the brokenness of our world. PUCS recognizes that for all young people we must offer a path of dignity, hope,and wisdom. It is here that PUCS seeks to be a “light” in its own community and surrounding areas.
How We Got Here
In 1981, Pittsburgh Urban Christian School (PUCS) was organized to provide a quality Christian education to a diverse group of students within an urban setting. Our first kindergarten class of six students laid the foundation for the elementary and middle school that developed in the following decades.
PUCS rented space in Highland Park and Friendship before settling in Wilkinsburg in 1987. This location at the corner of South and Center has not only provided educational space for thousands of students, but has also been instrumental in shaping our school culture and approach to mission.
The 150 students we currently serve would recognize glimpses of their present school in that first kindergarten class. Our annual Spring Production combines our commitment to the arts with our all-school study of thematic units. Our treatment of the Bible, not as an academic subject, but as integral in everything we study and teach continues to guide our approach to “Christian” education. And our desire to integrate students and families across racial and economic lines informs our thought and action just as it did for our founders.
- 1981PUCS Organized, renting space in Shadyside and Friendship
- 1983PUCS hosts its first student-led Spring Production
- 1987PUCS rents space at Calvary Evangelical Lutheran Church in Wilkinsburg
- 2004PUCS purchases their current building from Calvary Evangelical Lutheran Church
- 2006PUCS celebrates 25 years of ministry
- 2017PUCS acquires the former Boys and Girls club building at 813 South Ave to expand middle school space
- 2019PUCS opens Preschool, PUCS Middle School moves to 813 South Avenue building
- 2021PUCS celebrates its 40th Anniversary and opens Pre-K Counts classroom
To be a model of excellence in education by affirming Biblical values in a diverse and urban setting.
Our goal is not to be a great Christian school; it’s to be a great school. We believe this is only possible by paying attention to God’s priorities, and viewing children and the world through His lens. And we want to do it here, in the city, where opportunity and need intersect.
To equip students to thrive academically, emotionally, and spiritually, in order to serve.
Our mission underscores two key distinctives. First is the belief that academic success is not worth pursuing at the expense of thriving emotionally and spiritually. Second is the ultimate goal, “in order to serve.” Our idea of a successful student is one who seeks excellence to bring glory to God and to serve others, rather than for individual reward.
The board and staff of PUCS are committed to the following:
- Christ-centered thought and action.
- Harmony in diverse community
- Integrated approach to education
- Nurturing environment that cultivates each child’s gifts
Our values create boundaries for us and force us to ask good questions about everything we do. An integrated approach is reflected not only in our education but also in our work together: we don’t uphold any one value at the expense of the others. Harmony will not be sought absent of Christ-centered action; our integrated approach.
The Sleeping Octopus Awakens in Wilkinsburg
Dean Bog (YouTube)
Neighborhoods of Pittsburgh – Wilkinsburg
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