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  • LATEST POSTS

    • These are really great ideas.  Thank you for sharing! For 5th grade Scouts who recently bridged from a Cub Scout pack, if they hold an unexpired Cyber Chip card for the 5th grade, then all they need to do is demonstrate their knowledge to the Scoutmaster or other designated leader after joining the troop to fulfill this Scout rank requirement.  If, however, the Scout has not grasped these concepts, they may be reviewed (based on Cyber Chip requirements for the Scout's current grade) to ensure understanding. BSA Advancement News March-April 2016: Cyber Chip and the Scout Rank (page 4)   So what does your troop do with requirement #2 for older Scouts (grades 6+)?  That's the requirement where our Scouts typically get stuck, because the personalized contract is supposed to be done with a parent or guardian.
    • I’m just trying to start a discussion of raising the bar, 1 in 10 is an acceptable ratio. Ordeal should weed them out even farther. Still,  28 nights is only 12 camp outs and one summer camp. Not that 30 nights isn’t enough to be an outdoors expert, but most troops don’t even encourage high adventure until 14. Is 12 Car Camping campouts and one summer camp the definition of expert outdoorsmen? I really believe exceptional maturity is the goal along with exceptional expertise of the 8 Methods. You can pick the age, but I believe 13 would be minimum. honestly, I don’t believe this cultural will allow elitism in the program other than Eagles. That is why OA became what it is. This is the generation of mediocrity. Barry
    • I go back over 40 years in the OA. The voting procedure before this current unlimited voting was based on how many scouts were officially on the ballot (nominated). I could be wrong, but I remember something like: if you had 2 nominated, you had 1 vote; 3 nominated, 2 votes; 4 nominated, 2 votes; 5 nominated, 3 votes; or something like that. And is it still that a scout had to have at least a simple majority to become a candidate? Still 50% plus 1? In other words, half of the votes did NOT gain you a place as a candidate. And all of the scouts voting were supposed to be "active" scouts in their troop? I also remember the scoutmaster (me in this case) saying that you didn't have to vote for anyone if that was your choice. I reminded them that they saw all of these nominated scouts in action, not me, and had more knowledge of a scout's honor. Unless it has been changed, remember that the scoutmaster has to approve these scouts before their name goes on the ballot. I think it was listed as " scoutmaster's approval." I also made sure that a scout understood what the OA was about, and he needed to approve his own nomination. I've had some scouts over the years not want their name in nomination. I've also heard of parents having to approve the scout's nomination as they knew their son's busy schedule. I never went that far. sst3rd
    • That sounds like what the Pack in the original post did, essentially add time to the cars so that it becomes difficult for them to win. Cars still run, kids still get to see their car on the track and cheer on the races, and the only difference is that the end results will basically eliminate those cars either through disqualification or penalty time added.  Interesting that it seems to have 2 entirely different effects between Packs. Yours seems fine with it, while for @karunamom3 it caused a lot of distress.  What else I'd suggest beside what I already posted earlier here is just what I intend to do next year in my Den (and possibly Pack-wide): Make it abundantly clear that there are rules, they must be adhered to, and that there are some key things that could lead to absolute disqualification. I get feeling (from this forum and from what I observe in my own Pack) that far too many parents are aware of the rules but seem to think that they won't be enforced. This is something I want to make sure is clarified; there are rules, and ignoring them means your scout's car will be disqualified, without exception. In the case of karunamom3, I'd make it clear that a new car must be built every year. Not a disassembled car from last year. You have to open a new kit and use those new car parts to make the car. One of the things I'll say here that I definitely wouldn't say to the parents in my den or pack is that in reality, there's little chance we'll know if someone uses a pre-bought kit. If the parts are official BSA parts, how would we know that some guy on eBay made the car? But that doesn't mean I wouldn't still try to make people wonder if we can figure it out somehow. 😁 A parent's fear of getting their scout disqualified is often enough to keep them from doing something that is against the rules, even when they think they might be able to get away with it. As long as it is plain and clear that there are strict rules, and they will be enforced. 
    • 1 in 10 was the old ratio, if memory serves.  How about requiring the camping MB?  I'm not sure how many scouts could camp 30 to 45 nights in two years.
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