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The student news site of Grover Cleveland High School in Ridgewood, Queens

The Cleveland Chronicles

The Cleveland Chronicles

The student news site of Grover Cleveland High School in Ridgewood, Queens

The student news site of Grover Cleveland High School in Ridgewood, Queens

The Cleveland Chronicles

The Cleveland Chronicles

The Cleveland Chronicles


Grover Has Been Chosen By A Family Of Red Tailed Hawks.


Grover has had the tiger mascot for some time now, but little to anyone’s knowledge or expectations, Grover is now home to a family of hawks. In March, a faculty member found a hawk on the edge of a window of the library, outside the southwest side of the building. This discovery prompted Mr.Wilk (a technology teacher in the school) to set up a camera above the nest as they built it (after getting approval by school administration) and has been keeping an eye on them with the camera since March 11th.  


The birds were first found over a year ago flying around the building. “I was very excited to see such a magnificent bird because it’s pretty big and beautiful…when I was told that there was a nest, I ran… I asked if I can install a camera on the top of the window ” said Mr Wilk. Since then the first video of the hawks was uploaded on April 4th and it showed the two parent birds building their nest more, and two of the eggs. The latest video on the channel is from may 1st.


The family of birds consists of two parents and three babies (5 total). The first two eggs were laid on March 25th and hatched April 29th and initially were named Wisdom and Courage by Mr. Wilk. The youngest was laid on April 5th and then hatched on April 30th.


“The mama hawk laid two eggs, and after eight days it laid the third one, so I wasn’t sure the third one would hatch… so I gave the third hawk the name Hope… but it hatched during spring break so then I changed the name to Perseverance.” said Mr Wilk.


Mr. Wilk was concerned that the construction around the school could negatively affect the hawks’ quality of living. With Dr. Tatay, Mr. Wilk talked with the construction manager. The construction manager proposed to start working around and above the nest but Mr. Wilk was firm in his stance which resulted with the manager going to The School Construction Authority and they postponed the projects. 


According to nyc.gov, Red Tailed Hawks are protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, dismissing concerns that the school or anyone could try to remove the hawks. This was a major concern for the students, because they did not want the family to be hurt or even removed in the process. On top of that, when asked if the hawks would be removed, Mr. Wilk said “they are birds that help to clean the rat population… and they are eating two rats per day”, additionally he said “I spoke yesterday with two neighbors and asked if they noticed the hawks in the nest and they said yes we do, and they pointed out that they have less pigeons in the neighborhood which is a good thing… hawks are not only beautiful but they also help to clean and maintain a more healthy environment for children in the park”.


Additionally, a lot of students have shown their support for a change in school mascot. “I think the mascot should be changed to a hawk because the school is changing. What I mean is a year ago we did not have lockers or a renovated lunch room. So, to give notice to that we should also change our mascot to a hawk” said a third year student. 


Additionally, Robert Gjoni, a junior student, had this to say when asked about the potential change.  “I do think we should change our mascot to the hawks because I feel like the tigers is a very common mascot and the hawks isn’t so I think it will be wonderful if we change it so we can be unique from the other schools.”


The amount of money that it would take to rebrand on such a scale would put the school in  financial jeopardy; from the changing of the interior design and all of the merch to changing all of the websites and logos, it would take a lot of time and effort. Even though this happened years ago when the school was changed from the Grover Cleveland Indians to the Grover Cleveland Tigers, that was more so a political change and was a necessary one to avoid any insensitive or provocative messages. 


“It is possible, however it may take some time to implement and implement completely as there would have to be extensive rebranding both physically and electronically, and though it may be a laborious task, and require financial means which we have, it is possible” said Mr Ambrosini.


As a result of these talks, when asked, Mr. Wilk said: “I was thinking about the Grover Cleveland hawks and how symbolic it is,” he then continued to say “this is a good reflection of how the school is evolving and changing for the better under the leadership of Mr. Pascente”. And as a final thought he added “We’ve been selected, we are special by nature, and that’s even more beautiful ”

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About the Contributor
Mike Mevkalo
Mike Mevkalo, Editor
Hi, I'm Mike. I run around the school always looking for a story and love to hear from the community. If you see me in the hallways, don't be scared to say hi; I'm always friendly and love to talk.
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