Carlos sweeping the art hallway. Photo by Sarah Longmire

Who is your unsung hero?

There is a constellation of people—oftentimes behind the shadows—who help make students’ lives possible. It could be the bus driver who wakes up at 4am to make sure you get to school on time in Los Angeles, or the snow plow drivers who mobilize at the first sign of weather to keep the doors open in Burlington, Vermont. Unsung Heroes is a tribute to the many women and men who tirelessly, and sometimes with little thanks, work to make our lives possible.


We want you to identify someone at your school who helps make your life possible. We love teachers, but do not want you to profile a teacher. We want you to profile someone who you might not interact with every day. Need ideas? Ask your teacher, coach, administrator.

We want these profiles to be powerful, multi-media portraits. Therefore, we want you to embed yourself with the person you choose to profile. That means instead of simply sitting down and interviewing the person, we want you to spend a few hours in their shoes. Ask the school police officer if you can make the rounds with him one day. Ask the bus driver if you can ride along on their route. Ask the custodial staff member if you can help them during a daily shift. Be a fly on the wall.

A few ideas and examples:

  • Custodial (who keeps the bathrooms clean?)
  • Groundskeeping (who cuts the grass or prepares athletic fields?)
  • Bus driver (who drives you to school?)
  • Crossing guard (who makes sure you safely get to school?)
  • Snow plow driver (who makes sure you can actually open the doors to school if weather strikes?)
  • School police (who keeps you physically safe at school?)
  • Kitchen staff member (who cooks your lunch?)


We want you to have support as you tackle these profiles. Before you begin working, please fill out the google form below. Once you submit, we will connect you with a HS Insider student leader, who will help advise you on your story pitch all the way through publication.

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