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Questions and answers for parents and leaders new to Scouting.

223 topics in this forum

  1. The boy scout uniform 1 2

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  2. Tiger Cub Question

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  3. Time between rank 1 2

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  4. Training new folks

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  5. Transferring Troops

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  6. Troop meetings

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  7. Two Deep Leadership 1 2 3

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  8. Unit Commissioner

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  9. Unit Scouter Reserve

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  • LATEST POSTS

    • You're welcome. I sincerely hope neither my comments nor presence will inhibit the conversation. If so, I apologize. 
    • @ThenNow, I understand what you’re saying.  Something serious, sexually, happened to you as a youth member.     I was lucky.  My Pack, Troop and Post were led by good people, and my parents were involved.  I can only have sorrow for your experience. As for your personal pain, I pray you are or were in counseling to help it.  In my own life pains (wholly different from sexual abuse) my doc has helped me.    thank you for opening up. 
    • @ThenNow on behalf of scouter.com moderators welcome. @MattR @John-in-KC @RememberSchiff
    • I still question if admitting girls was a response to the LDS leaving.  The LDS had to be working on their alternate program for years and I expect informed the BSA of their decision well ahead of any public announcements.  Giving the timing, it seems like the BSA added girls as they knew they would be losing LDS membership.  Would be interesting to hear the details once they all come out.   Covid has devastated our Pack.  Our Troop shrank by 24% but our Pack will shrink by 80%+.  I expect we will recover some next fall when we can return to normal … but it will take 2 -  3 years to get back to our original membership, if at all possible.   That said, Covid & the lawsuits while massive impacts, may simply be pulling in the end date of the BSA.  If BSA was healthy going in, I'm sure it could survive both.  The real issue is that BSA has been in decline for decades. In my area, the groups that seem to be expanding have hired staff.  Travel sports have paid coaches.  After school programs have paid staff.  Non BSA overnight week long summer camps cost $800+ but have well compensated staff, cabins and nice equipment.  Their commonality …. no or limited time commitment from parents. Volunteer organizations that thrived in the 1900s are dying in the 2000s.  I wonder if this is a symptom of 2 income households.  Moms and dads both working and then are expected to both share in household activities after work.  Neither have time/energy to spend with volunteer organizations (like Boy Scouts, youth sports, etc.).  This isn't true 100%, but finding good volunteers is tough these days. I wonder if it was a model that worked well in the past but doesn't work well going forward and also explains the decline of the fraternal orders. Look at the rise in dual income households since 1960.  While BSA membership has other causes & effects, I expect this was a huge headwind.        
    • There have always been girls who have been interested in the same things as boys.  We used to call them tom-boys.  BSA's insistence on staying focused on single-sex operations was not to deny these girls outdoor experiences.  It was because there weren't enough of them to justify taking on the additional costs and logistical burdens of incorporating them into the program.  A lot of camps were built with little to no privacy in hygienic facilities.  I remember the back-to-back latrines at Black Mountain Camp down in Philmont -- being back-to-back was the only privacy you got. The more variables you add (adult/youth, male/female, etc.) in terms of privacy/youth protection factors, the more complex the logistical planning. I still maintain that instructing the boys, whether it was for safety briefings or must merit badges, was more effective without girls around.  This isn't the girls' fault, it's just a fact of life.  Teenage boys are easily distracted.  A lot of males, particularly in the teenage and 20-something years, are focused on one of two things and you know which of the two it is if they just ate. I remember hiking through a Girl Scout camp on our way uphill to the Boy Scout camp.  We took them up on their offer of a tour of the camp.  They showed us the standard tent and then the one they called "roughing it".  We laughed a little since it had cots with mattresses and pillows and even electric outlets and lighting!  As I recall, one of the girls also laughed and said she would prefer camping like we did but that's what the GSA offered.  Later, as an adult Scouter, I dug into this more with some moms who volunteered in both programs and was told that GSA didn't really allow the youth-led program like BSA did so while modern girls were more into the outdoors, the troops offered the same handicrafts and other programs the mothers had grown up with and wouldn't consider incorporating the outdoor programs.  Water under the bridge but I felt this was a wasted opportunity for a number of reasons -- seems like the Girl Rangers are another example of a wasted opportunity.
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