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What would be good to know for rechartering?

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  • What would be good to know for rechartering?

    I am a registrar with a council, and we are trying to get ready for rechartering. It's always a headache time of year as our council as a high rate of leader turn-over and it's rare to see the same leader and commissioner rechartering a unit two years in a row.

    So... part of my job is to come up with a lot of hopefully helpful information for rechartering.

    As leaders, what would you like to know (from the council) when you go about rechartering?

  • #2
    Tea and sympathy.

    Comment


    • #3

      This is the same problem that all public access organizations have.
      I often tell the org to pretend they are the person looking for them and try to find them. What's in the phone book? Are you "Boy Scouts" or are you "Muddy Cedar Swamp Council"? Which one is the citizen going to look for? Or online... What happens if the citizen googles... what? Cross reference is a good thing.

      So .... Do not look at the process as someone RECEIVING the information. Put yourself in the role of the person PROVIDING the information.

      Our Council provides (along with the charter contract) a paper copy of the latest charter list, and then a DETAILED booklet that details the Why and the How, and answers just about every question ("do Tiger Partners need to provide the Social Security Number?") you can imagine, and then literally goes from step one ("create a myscouting" account), on to the providing of the required signatures on the updated paper charter roster.

      The next thing that is VERY useful, is a trained and knowledgeable Commisher for the Scouter to call and provide the shoulder to cry on and acknowledge the teeth gnashing. Oh, and answer questions. And encourage deadline meeting.

      Realize that the rechartering process is a goodthing, if only because it insists that the CO realize that they do sponsor a Scout unit.
      Who was that masked man? Why that's the Lone Institution Head.....(music over and out)

      Comment


      • #4
        SSScout has excellent advice.

        Realize that the unit gets little benefit out of rechartering. It's really the council that wants to make sure the details are all correct. So make it as easy as possible. The more specific the steps, the better. Give them an FAQ, and/or a web site with answers to questions (and then update that with every question you get asked.) Provide them an email address and/or a phone number for questions.

        And I realize this one is out of your control, but if you could allow for electronic joining, that would aid things immensely.

        Comment


        • #5
          Needless to say, the process of rechartering has been burdened by additional training requirements such as YPT and requiring that leaders be "trained."

          This forces those doing rechartering, already a thankless task, to be the policeman of these policies and to run around in units giving people warnings that they have to9 do this, that or the other thing.

          Frankly, I've been right of the edge of chucking the whole thing because of the burdens imposed on me to complete rechartering.

          I wonder how many units fail to recharter because of burdensome requirements? I wonder how many units recharter with the minimum number of adult leaders in order to avoid the burden of getting more adults registered?

          My advice to BSA on this issue: Don't Push Your Luck by continuing to impose ever more restrictions on rechartering.

          Comment


          • #6
            My wish list is very short and very specific.

            Make sure that the charter information and registration information is up to date!

            I have dropped the same adult leader from my charter the last 3 years, never paid for him but he keeps showing up. . .

            Comment


            • #7
              SP is right about this. Our biggest headaches have been when the training records the Council had were not up to date and caused problems with adult recharters. So, I would first send the CC of the unit a list of training records for adults registered to that unit and work to get them updated. Do whatever you can to make that process easy.

              Beyond that, the next step would be to revamp the whole process, but that's outside your scope.

              I think the rechartering process is something of a joke in the modern world. But BSA needs to fix it's IT system before it can do much better.

              Comment


              • #8
                Training. You need to identify the units who have more than a couple leaders whose training will lapse soon, and start getting them caught up NOW!

                The leaders in question may need more prodding than their unit leaders can do. So a follow-up call with those units maybe even offering to call on the leaders behalf might help

                Can you tell that this advisor had an adult who, in spite of weekly calls from me and talking-to's from her kids, didn't know she was holding up our charter for two months?

                Comment


                • #9
                  The first time I did the rechartering I really had a bad experience because of lack of experience. The second time was bad, but not AS bad.

                  Experience is probably the best friend someone rechartering has.

                  New people need training and a Dutch Uncle who is experienced who can help work through the pitfalls. That ought to be the Unit Commissioner, but judging from the Unit Commissioner thread that's not there in a lot of cases.

                  The previous person who did the rechartering might be that Dutch Uncle if they are available. The District Executive would be the default Dutch Uncle.

                  Who might your unit call upon for advice in completing their recharter?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    It's not often that I can say this, but I agree with Seattle Pioneer 100 percent, if not more. National really needs to realize that in some units there are people ready to tell the council, if you want this paperwork done, you do it.

                    The person in our troop who has done the bulk of the paperwork for rechartering says he has done it for the last time, because he doesn't feel he signed up for a job that includes chasing around all the other leaders/committee members to make sure they renew their YP training. We almost had to find a new COR this year because the one we have couldn't understand why she had to take YP training when she is just doing the COR job as a favor because she is the only parent in the troop who is a member of the CO's governing body (and, I believe, her husband (who is already an ASM) is the only other adult member of the CO at all, who is involved with the troop.) Eventually she did it, but the guy who does the rechartering had to put up with a good bit of, to put it nicely, "grief" about it.

                    Who wants that job? Not me. Hopefully the CC can hoodwink, I mean rationally persuade, someone into doing it.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      1. Help them identify who needs to update their training asap. provide them a list of who, what they need to take and where to get that training. explain that without that training the person cannot be re-registered. give them this information 3 months out, a review 2 months out and a fix it or lose them list about a month out. send that information to the person identified as needing training directly, and provide the name of the contact person at council if training records are showing missing training to get it fixed (our council has an online survey you can complete to add missing training dates, but not sure how long it takes to get that fixed once entered).

                      2. Give them an accurate list of their roster. don't give them a list that was printed in July, when they are a cub scout pack that recruited heavily in August/september when recharter starts in October. they'll show a bunch of people on paper that aren't in there. process all the apps for fall registrations, and then print the unit paperwork. make sure all the units know how to sign on to internet advancement and print a copy of their roster right before they start their rechartering process.

                      3. explain in simple terms if you are a pack you have a cor, cc, 2 other committee members, cubmaster and a den leader for each rank kids you have and an assistant den leader for each rank. all tigers have a tiger partner listed. explain which positions can be duplicate(COR and CC--plus sort of scout unit parent coordinator). explain which positions are free. explain which positions are not necessary but encouraged (ACM, certain rank den leader and assistant if you don't have that level den)

                      4. explain to them the most important fields on each scout and adult to be sure are correct--addresses for boy's life magazine and council mailings, email addresses for leaders in the pack to do online tour plans, make sure the boy's date of birth and rank are correct.

                      5. how to pay--check or out of council account or what your options are

                      6. when they can expect this paperwork to be processed by council. we are supposed to turn ours in by nov 1st but it isnt' processed until february or march most years. what to do if you get new leaders in the meantime. also how to handle an eagle scout application if your unit leader or committee chair would change with recharter, but the new person starts doing their job jan 1st, and recharter isn't processed yet. Our council recommends any big changes of position you turn in an application immediately to the council and ask that it be processed, and include with the recharter packet a copy of the application with a note that it was already turned in at council.

                      of course there should be info on how to do a survey of your unit to ensure everyone is rechartering and in what positions. we have a little homemade form we use for each scout family. it includes check boxes for training that must be completed by the adult and how much is owed. it's explained if you don't do this you are not re-registered for 2013. the only person who didn't do his in a timely manner is the COR, who still never filled outt he updated scout information (contact phone numbers and email addresses for his scout). he thinks he's above filling out paperwork in his position.


                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Thanks, y'all!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          yep it would help if council training records are up to date. Once upon a time I had a very experienced and trained leader listed as "untrained." Very ticked off he made the comment, "Well I guess i shouldn't have taught my class at PTC."

                          Also it is aggrevating to keep seeing the names of leaders and youth that you have dropped 1,2,3 times already keep reappearing.

                          Also frustrating is missing the leaders who have submitted 4 applications and YPT card copies over the previous 4 years to get on the charter. Or the leader is listed in the incorrect position. Or worse the scouts who either are not listed on the charter or have the wrong rank listed. Kinda sad that someone going for Eagle is still listed as a First Class Scout despite advancement reports being turned in, and corretions to the charters being turned int.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Ummm. It's disappointing for me to read Eagle 92 list of complaints.

                            I really don't have ANY of them when I'm rechartering.

                            Once again I discover that I am blessed with a council that is effective and well organized.


                            I listed my complaints in an earlier post on this thread, but those are problems mostly imposed for reasons by the council or BSA, not because they are careless or inefficient.

                            Unfortunately, that probably means that Eagle 92's council really is screwed up and doing a poor job, since other councils don't have those kinds of issues.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              SP, we're in the same council, and it may be better than others, but it's not immune. I've had plenty of roster and records problems with the Pack I'm CC for.

                              -it took 4 tries to get YPT recorded for one of our DLs. Her original training actually expired before it was ever recorded.

                              -Another DL who was on the recharter two years ago was mysteriously missing when it came time to recharter last year. I hadn't dropped in the year before, he was just gone from the roster. Of course, getting him back on required filling out a triplicate form, printing and resubmitting YPT certificates, getting all the necessary signatures...

                              -on that same recharter, a Scout who's name nobody had ever heard of showed up on the roster at recharter time. He wasn't there the prior year, neither I nor the CM collected or signed an application from a youth with that name, he just showed up.

                              -Several other Youth and two Adults who had joined the Pack in the intervening year were not on the roster at recharter time, requiring another paper chase to get apps re-signed and re-submitted. I've gotten smarter about that - I make copies before submitting the originals and just re-submit the copies (er, copies of the copies) now, but it's still a hassle.

                              The whole system is antiquated and unreliable. Our district has nearly 60 units, and we're just one of about a dozen in Chief Seattle - I can't imaging the volume of paper getting shuffled around not having glitches.

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