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    • I see both sides of this discussion. Nobody wants to volunteer if they're going to be tested and quizzed and have to fill out reports. The other side is we have little improvement in scouters, a few that bring horror stories to this forum, and a continual erosion of the methods of scouting. There is always a tension between a teacher and student. What one wants and needs is not always the same thing. The same thing applies to SM and scout. But there's no teacher for the SM as student. (I suppose it should be the commissioner but in reality it isn't.) But maybe the teacher-student dynamic is the wrong one for a volunteer organization. How about the ideal SM-scout dynamic? It has to be fun for the scout. It has to give the scout more responsibility as he can handle it - what someone called distancing or working oneself out of a job. The scout should also be given bigger challenges so things don't get stale. The SM should also have fun and be fulfilled while working with the scout, so he wants to keep volunteering.   So, how about showing the SM how to do this by putting him in the position of youth and having a mentor work with him? Keep it fun. Keep it challenging. Give the "youth" more responsibility as he's able and willing. Cheer him on. Celebrate the wins. Help them through failures. And, getting back to what @qwazse said, start with a giant carrot. (How to make round table fun?) Maybe the best way to remove the really bad apples is to worry less about them and work to improve those in the middle. Make it easier for scouts to walk to the better troops.
    • Scoutbook was in beta and has been a continuous improvement model.   It is now the official record of BSA, so if your scout looses his blue cards  he's not in jeopardy of loosing everything, it's now tracked virtually online and doesn't rely on the organizational and record keeping ability of a teenager.   We changed troops from one which used scoutbook to one which uses troopwebhost and 5 months later we still haven't been able to get everything over.  To give you the an idea of import issues my son completed 21 merit badges, TWH only had 14 import over successfully, so a success of around 66%. In addition he had several partially completed records which didn't come over.   Please be forward thinking, use the free web service that is your son's official record, otherwise anyone coming into the troop will not be able to move his accomplishments over, he will be in danger of loosing all of his progress because the other troops are going to ask for blue cards which troops using the official system aren't even doing any more or he simply lost them, and it will be a nightmare.   BSA has made a decision, we should abide by that, convert over to the one and only standard and move on.        
    • Personally, I'd rather see couples get engaged before they become parents. 
    • Might be kind for Scouts to send notes of appreciation  to Elder Nathan Philips.  Let him know those youth are not representative of  American youth.  https://www.omaha.com/news/nebraska/omaha-tribe-member-in-spotlight-in-face-of-taunting-teens/article_475ee455-cf4c-510a-a9a1-2d29b25eb0f2.html My $0.02  
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