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Aw, shucks, thanks Barry. I took your question as an honest inquiry - guess my answer must have sounded kinda stilted. What happens when I slip into expository mode:
For a few summers I camped with a dwarf, and his family. He was married, with a young child. He and his young daughter, also a dwarf, did everything that the rest of the group did.
After spending time with this very determined individual, I have to agree whole heartedly with Anarchist; Dont drop the bar too quickly! This young man has all the potential that every other boy has. Give him the opportunity to be like everyone else.
OK, I'll say it one more time, this time for your benefit Fotoscout - I have no intention of dropping any bars, nor am I in any position to drop any bars, nor would I even if I were in a position to drop any bars. I even said in my last post that it appeared no accommodations will be required for Eagle-required merit badges. Don't know how to be any clearer.
Whether accomodations are needed is up to the scoutmaster, a BOR, the scout's parents and the scout. My position in this entire operation is to inform.
With all due respect Vicki, your post indicates that you've come to the conclusion that this boy will need to recieve special treatment. You have even made this boy the focus of one of your tickets. In addtion, you want to have a preemptive counciling session with the boy and his parents.
Again I say, let this family decide at some later time, that they would like to persue some special treatment. Remember that "do your best" is not just the Cub Scout moto, it is much more than that in the BSA program.
I would think that the family is very knowledgeable, and sensitive to the potential for some type of special treatment. When they are ready, they will come to you, or the SM for guidance.
foto, what I've done is allay this scouts' parents concerns about the BSA program and their son's place in it. I've let them know that should the need arise, the BSA is there with a way to help them answer any further questions. I haven't prejudged anything and, if you think so, then possibly you haven't read my posts very carefully. I came seeking guidance and I appreciate those who have provided it.
You say "I would think that the family is very knowledgeable, and sensitive to the potential for some type of special treatment. When they are ready, they will come to you, or the SM for guidance."
What makes you think that? The majority of parents and scouts that join boy scouts are completely in the dark about what to expect (in spite of Webelos transition efforts, new parent/scout meetings). Why should this family be any different? They probably have no idea what all of the advancement requirements are, let alone how they may impact their son.
As Webelos, why should they be very knowledgable of 'special treatment' modifications. The majority of 'challenged' scouts and their parents that I have worked with had absolutely no idea that modifications could be made, until I broached the subject with them. In some cases, they were ready to 'call it quits' because of the advancement issues. I have found that many parents of significantly challenged scouts have far too much on their platter to become experts in the nuances of boy scout advancement issues and the labyrinth of procedures that Districts and Councils require for modifications. They need help with that, and the sooner such issues can be identified and addressed, the better for all concerned. Vicki is being proactive, and that is precisely what is needed in these cases. If you wait for 'a cry for help', it may come way to late and the frustration over advancement issues has taken over, diminishing their scouting experience.
Knowledge is the key. Vicki is just making sure that she shares her knowledge of the advancement requirements (and how to obtain modifications) with the scout and his parents so that they are not in the dark and will know that there are alternatives available should certain requirements prove insurmountable given this boy's physical limitations. While I agree that an adult dwarf may be able to do just about anything that a full-sized person can do, an adolescent dwarf may not be in a similar position.
Vicki...you go girl!
- Aug 2002
I was just gonna let this one go but there are some things dribbling about that I want to point out...
first Vicki, I was not shouting, I was emphasizing...
Re-read your first post, quoting here, "I came up with...how BSA might accomodate ...diaAbilities, for my diversity ticket...for example lifesaving would probably not be possible....I already have the technical path to get alternative merit badges worked out..." Seems to be lots of "I's" there for a boy who is not even a Boy Scout yet...
what i was trying to say is -slow down, don't take the low road first...(is that quiet enough for you) and see what he can do before you tell him there is a easier way...but you seem (by your post) to have the easier way worked out already...five years before it is needed...thats all. ALL dwarfs are not the same and if and maybes are not relevant. What is and what can be are what is important. Get the horse before the cart...
Do we need to assume that if the program can not be molded to accomodate an EAGLE outcome for this boy the program is a waste? seem like it...If he can do several great years of scouting and only make star or life..its a waste of his time??? Is that from his parents fears or yours???
This country is full of well meaning educators and parents who want everything dumbed down so that perfectly normal kids will all excell ...not do alright but excell!(at least in the i feel good department).
Many of us feel that is not in the best interests of scouting...so if we mis-read forgive us...but before you give the kid a break give him a real break...let him try to work it himself... you can help, if he needs it, but Boy Scouting is boy led and advancement is boy led and motivated...adults need to beware but also stand back a bit. Recall the admonition about the road to 'heck' and good intentions...
your hit on foto was also off base...being surrounded by teachers i see it almost daily...there is a difference between most 'parents' and parents of 'differently-abled' children. Most of the later are great advocates by necessity...for their children...if the question has come up a year plus out from boys scouts do you suppose it was dropped on vickie buy a driveby rabbit?
While I admire the intent, I am worried about the results of prejudging the boy before he has had a look at the course... Just look at what has happened in the inner city (and elsewhere) education system in this country...
know I stepped on toes here but it seems to need to be done sometimes....And the ticket punching love fest is just too sweet! (sorry, couldn't resist...but i did'nt shout!)
anarchist wrote "if the question has come up a year plus out from boys scouts do you suppose it was dropped on vickie buy a driveby rabbit? "
anarchist, I believe I've gotten what I needed on this topic from this forum, district, the boy's parents, other people involved with special needs, etc. Did need to respond to this however - it came up in a discussion with the boy's mother about two years ago at a Cub Pack function when she and I were working a game table together. She was anxious about how her son would fit in and what would happen if he got discouraged because he couldn't do the activities. He is an over-achiever, a good thing. She had no clue who to approach or that the BSA would even have any other avenue besides the published one applicable to totally-abled people (Semper, you were right on in your description). So when I went to Wood Badge, my TG and I agreed that it would be a good thing to try to alleviate her (and her husband's) anxieties through exploring the issue. End of story - no driveby rabbit.
Speaking of rabbits...
What do you call a row of 500 rabbits hopping backwards?(This message has been edited by SemperParatus)
- Apr 2013
The troop I serve has several disabled scouts, from the Cerebral Palsy SPL who always uses a walker, to the one with spina bifida who has the "arm crutches" to another who also uses a walker and many ADD/ADHD scouts we the leaders have learned every kid is disabled, or abled in ways we never considered. I need to remind readers our Committee chair is a pediatrician who thinks the world of scouting as therapy for many ills.
Making sure the family is aware of the BSA policies can only be a good thing.