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Questions and answers for parents and leaders new to Scouting.

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  1. Unit Commissioner

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  2. Two Deep Leadership

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  3. Troop meetings

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  4. Transferring Troops

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  5. Training new folks

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  6. Time between rank

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  7. Tiger Cub Question

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  8. The boy scout uniform

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  • LATEST POSTS

    • I note with interest the centrality of JTE in the UC's assessment role.    "Patrol method" is one category for  JTE scoring points.  Yet JTE gives no points for actually using the Patrol Method.  You can score "Gold" if the PLC plans nothing and the patrols do nothing.  One "Gold'""winner" for 2016 with which I am familiar, had PLs  (wearing the patch) who could not say which patrol they were in.  They had no actual leadership responsibility - apparently wore the patch for POR purposes so the troop could churn out "Eagles."  Even troop games ("Time for recess," the SM would announce.) were 1s vs 2s.  The UC for that unit only attended Eagle courts of "honor."   Scoutmaster is also the defacto unit CC.  He was council "Scoutmaster of the Year' for 2011.   Down the road in the next town was a "Scout-run troop," whose Scouts, I was told, had "no time" for any patrol activities whatsoever.  At least the PLC was given a menu of adult-choices for campouts and really got to pick from those choices - except summer camp ("Too important for kids to choose.").  They had patrol contests. SPL ran the meetings.  PLs or ASPLs were assigned by the SM to run piece-parts of meetings, , although the SM would  regularly interject emphatically if things got messy .  ("We have our standards," he related.)  I saw six meetings.  Each was the same sequence of elements: opening; half hour of adult announcements; Scoutcraft instruction by an adult; game; more announcements; closing; PLC run by SM or ASM. JTE could actually encourage use of the Patrol Method.
    • Thanks for the insights, @HashTagScouts.  I've always felt that the proposed bankruptcy/sunny days ahead was more or less pie in the sky. Right now the BSA, as an organization, is like that person with a low credit rating that needs to buy a car, but is going to have to accept whatever interest rate and conditions from wherever they can get the loan.  Long term grim.  
    • In agreement that the cub program has become overbearing.  I lamented that my son had no interest at cub age, thought he was missing out.  Got interested in W2 age, but ultimately heard that the DL was not organized, and the kids/parents were just sticking it out to get to crossover so I held him off until he could do troop.  As he got into troop, and I learned what was involved in cubs (was it two fingers now, or three? Law of the Pack isn't a thing anymore? And AoL is a program year itself now?), I didn't regret he didn't join.  I've thrown it out in other threads- the BSA seems to care more now about cubs than 'Scouts BSA' sadly.   I'm also greatly concerned on those posting that "we'll go through bankruptcy, and all will be fine". Uh, my actuary co-workers would beg to differ on any interpretation that risk mitigation is greater because of a bankruptcy.  The future insurance costs are going to be based on the risk to underwrite the program based off the sins of the past, regardless of how much $$$ BSA ends up having to pay in settlements.  This new background check process is absolutely an attempt to stave off risk costs.  I won't at all be surprised if we see greater age restrictions coming in the next year on shooting sports, climbing, and high adventure.  I fear immensely that BSA is going to do what it feels it has to do to keep risk related factors in check to help with costs.
    • The solution to that is, don't do 4 fundraisers. Do one and do it right.  Plan big, hit your goal and be done with it.  
    • Vintage uniforms are allowed.   My youngest was in Blue after the June 1, 2015 date. Only reason he switch over to tan and green prior to Cross Over was his older brother outgrew his uniform and sold it to him. As for slides, one thing we did as a pack was  give them paracord Turks' Head woggles. For the price of 1 metal BSA slide, I could make 25-30 slides.
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