I'm still intreguied by the new unit Commissioner part of @Ranman328's question.
I've always been of the understanding that the role of a UC is to provide guidance to the unit leaders to help them be successful. Advice can certainly sometimes be directive i.e. "you should allow the Scouts more time to individually finish ranks on their own timeline instead of rushing it."
But, generally I've always thouht of the UC as more of a trusted advisor or a consultant. If a new UC showed up and started telling me what I was doing wrong, I'd don't think I'd listen too much. "who is this UC person and why do they think they can just show up and tell me how to run my meeting?"
I wonder what other people thought in this instance. For the sake of discussion, assume for a minute that the Scoutmaster did the wrong thing here. Should a new UC to a new Scoutmaster critique the first meeting like this?
That sounds like a good approach.
The point isn't to have a car built to precision specs, it's to develop some pride in workmanship and to build a stronger relationship with a parent by working together. How good the car looks or how fast it runs is secondary to the experience of making something yourself. When my son was a Cub, the pack had a rule that whoever won the race --- that parent would be the PWD chair next year. It was a good rule.
I'm a little curious Buggie, you give the impression that you are the respected authority over all the adults and have little patience for not following strict enforcement of policies and rules. Are you a retired SM or something similar? Would a refresher training class be an option to bring your fellow adults up to speed?
Hmm. That's not quite the way most people think of the "buddy system" in scouting. We've always used the term to mean 2 scouts doing something together. *NEVER* before have I seen it defined as "parent or legal guardian or another registered adult". That language introduces confusion and dilutes the simple power of the buddy system.
The "girl scouts" thing is definitely justified in being picked apart. We all have a lot of adjusting to do to the new language of the BSA, so calling each other out on missteps I think is necessary and constructive.
Not just because of the lawsuit. I cringe every time we're at a Pack meeting with girls in attendance and a leader addresses the Pack saying "boys". At the Cub level we've been at this since last summer and we're still not getting it right. This needs to be picked apart.
In the late nineteen eighties my Scoutmaster was a rather jolly fat man with a curly beard and a chew-can ring in all his back pockets. He found laughter in most everything as I recall, appropriate or not. When I hear things at Scouting U like, "if you can't act like a 10 year-old, then you shouldn't be in scouting," well he comes right to mind.
He had a brown with tan stripe truck that hauled scouts and equipment every direction for a few years. Inside that 80's Chevy Scottsdale of his at all times was a cassette tape of Chuck Berry's greatest hits. The last song on the B side was My ding-a-ling (2 bells on a string). There wasn't a hike, camp-out, camparee, or outing where he didn't manage to squeeze in at least one play. And if one of the boys riding with him was quick enough to hit the repeat button on the tapedeck before his hand got smacked, we might hear it an extra time or two. It always started us off with a laugh or lolled us to sleep smiling on the drive home. I still sing it now and again when camping or flirting. Or showing off for my son.
Now the Scoutmaster was far from Santa and the song is equally distant from anything that could be called a carol, yet as the end of the year draws near and the holiday cheer comes around...some of the coincidental similarities have my brain humming that old Chuck Berry tune. Any time I hear a Salvation Army station outside store fronts ringing thier bells, or clanky bells on doors. Happy Holidays to all my friends in scouting, new and old.