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    Share tips and info for Scouting webmasters and discuss Scouting resources on the web

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    • @dkurtenbach, this is probably the closest to what I was thinking about. A bit vague but a place to start. The sad thing is I'm on the district committee and my sense is the commissioners are mostly fighting fires. Financial irregularities, people not getting recharters done in time, CO's enacting revenge on SM's. They don't have time to improve the quality of units and there aren't many of them. But I agree that there is no formal method to continuously improve quality. That's what JTE is supposed to be but it seems to miss the mark. @Chris1, while that's not the case in my district (SM's are not to be recruited for anything) I can see it happen. What is it about being an SM that can trash humility? Does every volunteer organization have this problem? Others that I'm involved in don't, but that's just my small sample. @David CO, good point, but most CO's I see know less about scouting than the SM. My guess is you are on the CO side of scouts and you're the only person I know of in that position that takes an interest in how scouts work. It seems to me that positive reinforcement for the SM would come better from someone that understands scouting. I hate to say this but for an organization that prides itself on leadership development, it doesn't really work for their own volunteers. The BSA tends to lean on training as opposed to on the job improvement. Training is one and done. Continuous improvement gets much less emphasis. Just to be clear, I have no dreams of changing anything at national but it would be nice to create a round table topic that I could get the bulk of SM's and ASM's to go to.        
    • I was a UC several times, several locations. The most common response I received from units was shock.  Shock that I actually showed up, visited with them, went camping with them (always offered, a few accepted), and that was a fan of their unit.  Some units responded to this, others didn't.  The latter usually had a longstanding, intense dislike for all commissioners in general, and nothing I did could shake them from that belief. Not that I blamed them.  Rather, I sympathized with them.   I recalled my days as an ASM and SM, and I felt the same way about most commissioners.  Some were gold, most were all show/no go.  Fancy uniforms, active in anything district or council related, pompous know it alls who had zero interest in unit level scouting. For the units that had challenges, I always drove away from each meeting with the thought "If I really wanted to make a difference for this unit, I'd resign as a UC and put in my app to be an ASM or committee member." All said, I believe in the commissioner concept.  But the BSA would be better off having 2 squared away commissioners in a district who really care about unit level scouting than 12 who don't.    
    • That would be up to the Chartered Organization to decide. I know of no rule that would prohibit a CO from having an election to choose the Scoutmaster.  Many CO's have elections to choose their IH.
    • Related, a story of preventative measures at a scout camp done by the Job Corps forestry program. Job Corps is the nation’s largest free education and job training program for young adults from ages 16 to 24.   
    • The teenager had been sawing off “widowmakers” for the past half hour — long branches periodically falling to the forest floor of Camp Baker (Oregon). He had just cut off a long one. However, instead of falling to the ground, the branch got caught in the lower tree limbs.... Bell is with the Yachats-based Angell Job Corps Civilian Conservation Center, which is working to clear an area so an ADA-accessible camp can be built at Camp Baker, considered one of the nation’s premier Boy Scouts of America camps. Job Corps is the nation’s largest free education and job training program for young adults from ages 16 to 24.  While Angell works with a variety of trades, the group at Camp Baker are in the forestry program, which takes them to different sites around the region to learn in the field. Here, they’re taking out dying trees, cutting down dangerous branches from the living ones and making the place safe for Scouts. “Absolutely it’s dangerous,” Crunkilton said. “Once in a while they’ll get cuts and scrapes, but nothing major. The main purpose of the program, the main priority, is always safety. We’re teaching them the right way. It’s one of the most dangerous fields out there. Learning how to do it the right way is really important. We teach them all of our industry safety standards. If they’re running a chainsaw up in the tree, they always have two separate tie ins. In the event they cut one, it’s still there. There are always two hands on the saw. Wrap your thumbs.” Very interesting read at source: https://thesiuslawnews.com/article/top-of-their-field
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