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    • [sarcasm on] You don't say! [sarcasm off].
    • During my SM conferences, I ask each Scout, "Other than you 😛 , who is the best Scout in this Troop, and why?"  And then I challenge them to emulate the successful behavior they see in others.  I also ask them, with a promise of anonymity, "Which Scout challenges you the most, in either a positive or negative way?"  In about 75%(?) of answers that they bring up a negative example.  Usually some bullying or poor behavior that goes on when adults aren't watching.  I take notes and I observe more closely to address the behavior.  Often, Scouts talk about how someone goes to merit badge colleges or summer camp and gets "free merit badges", where they do no work, but get the badge, or has their parents sign up as MBC's and gets them that way. (Our newest Eagle Scout candidate has completed four Eagle-required merit badges that way, and the Scouts often point to this as a negative.  I agree that it is bad optics, but ethical behavior starts in the home, and if his parents aren't modeling it, then we will have much less positive impact in the unit.) Scouts talk, and they have their own "pecking order" when it comes to evaluating who is a good Scout and who isn't.  We try to monitor this peer-perception system, and interject truth when needed, because, like most organizations, there is gossip and misinformation everywhere.  
    • Regarding BSA’s track record of surveys with forgone conclusions, a recent conversation with a pro who is active in O/A leads me to believe that we may add this questionnaire to that list.
    • With all do respect, this is an over generalization. More importantly, it reverses the causality. With few exceptions, everyone wants to have fun, but — even with the offering of an insanely fun troop — not everyone wants to be a scout.
    • Who’s wearing the patch, who’s working on their advancement, and who’s applying for the award? It’s time to educate them about this possible leeway in their program. Seriously, this is not an adult’s problem. We need to spend a lot of time arranging safe travels, training for all manner of hazards, and putting coffee on in a timely fashion. These little quirks that arise because the advancement method has become verbose and complicated 
 they won’t bother us one way or the other. It’s the youth who know what each of them as done who will feel the emotional damage if they think either a) one of their peers took a shortcut because the SM was permissive or b) one of their peers was blocked for a technicality because the SM was restrictive. Youth who know you respect their opinion will be youth who talk to you on weightier topics.
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