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  1. 6 points
    This part doesn't make any sense to me. Why would we need a separate membership category? Advancement is voluntary. If a scout doesn't want to advance, he doesn't have to. He doesn't need a special membership category.
  2. 6 points
    The real key is to accept the fact that First Class First Year is a lie. Assure a scout that if he doesn't want to complete that requirement now, you'll give him an opportunity next year, and the year after that, until he's ready to give it a try. Obviously that means he'll miss out on some activities and rank advancement will be delayed, but that's okay. He can focus on other activities including loading up on MBs that interest him and maybe figuring out something fun for his patrol or the whole troop to do.
  3. 5 points
    While @John-in-KC is likely right that this document is some internal document, this thread also contains the monthly how-to-fix-scouting comments. I'm not trying to berate anyone as it is nice to see people that like scouting. And I'm just about to pile on. Some observations: I look at that original document and I don't see anything about helping units succeed at scouting. I went to the churchill website and on their testimonials page I didn't find the words 'non profit.' Maybe there's another document out there that talks about this but I'm not holding my breath. @Jameson76 makes a good point: We should focus on the why of scouting. The document that started this thread is like fixing hail damage on the hood of a car when what is really needed is to take out the engine and put it into a newly rebuilt frame and chassis. The why is lost in a forest of hail dents. @David CO brought up the YMCA's approach of watering it all down to increase membership, which I agree is nothing I'm interested in. So, focus on the why. @dkurtenbach said we should focus on the moms and dads to put on a better program. That would be fine if the moms and dads were as invested in scouting as we on this forum are. Rather, think about your neighbor with scout aged kids. What do those moms and dads want. Better yet, think of the moms and dads of kids in free school lunch programs. I add that last part because our economy is a dumpster fire right now, has excluded a lot of lower income kids from participating in scouts for a long time and a huge number of kids don't have parents with the time or resources to learn how to make a program work for their kids. My take away from all of this is the program needs to work comfortably with a lot fewer parents. @Sentinel947 brought up the idea of using young adults as volunteers. This could help the lack of parent issue. To me, the why is simple: For the youth, the why is learning skills to have fun in the outdoors. Those skills are things like staying comfortable in bad weather, swimming, cooking and the like. For the parents it's also learning skills to have fun in the outdoors, but the skills include things like character, getting along with others while solving problems, responsibility and all those things that aren't covered by requirements but that we harp on. One group that's forgotten is the older youth. Again, it's learning skills to have fun in the outdoors. But this time the skills include being responsible that the younger scouts have a good experience. This group is really important and they barely get mentioned in any training. This is the solution to the lack of parent problem. I'd say tell scouts, from the day they join, that they will eventually be running the program. Forget the idea of eagle by 13. I'm not sure how to change the requirements but ensure that, to get eagle, older scouts need to be responsible for the younger scouts enjoying the program. For those scouts that say they don't want to babysit, they either learn how to do it right or they don't get eagle. This will greatly increase the value of eagle and reduce the need for so many adults. At the same time, using the 18-25 year olds could make it that much better. Some of those 18-25 year olds will have more fun working with cubs than scouts, use them to reduce parent burnout in cubs. Make the constant growth from 11 years old to 25 be more visible. Maybe have leadership ranks, I don't know. Next, think about the outdoors that's needed for scouts to have fun. The absolute best times scouts have is with what they find at hand: Mud, water, snow, rocks, sticks, .... Meanwhile, council camps are going out of their way to add more and more toys (dining halls, climbing walls, atvs, shooting ranges, etc) but that's just driving costs up. I'd say a lake front in the summer, a forest anytime and hiking trails are critical. It's more important to camp at new places than places with toys.
  4. 5 points
    So for Sea Scouts we already have this handled. Our uniforms are either Dickie or 5.11 brand navy blue shirts Patches are added for the names and Sea Scouts, BSA Our manuals are PDF's so people print them on demand Neckerchief is optional Pants are navy blue pants, Dickies or 5.11 or similar And, I might say, our uniforms look the sharpest of them all 🙂
  5. 4 points
    THey are missing "stakeholders" and "mission, vision and guiding principles"...
  6. 4 points
    Looks mostly like administrative tidying up -- much of which should have been done long ago. Innovative? Visionary? Well, they are combining the National Annual Business Meeting and the Top Hands Meeting. 🤪 It is quite a boring document, really. Not Churchillian. But, it is pure BSA. For example: "Create a membership executive position within councils focused on growth and paid on performance." How many hundreds of times has that been tried in councils all across the United States over the last forty years of declining membership? Maybe tens of thousands, if you count District Executives and Field Directors. Survival of the Boy Scouts of America is entirely dependent upon membership growth, but the folks from the National level all the way down to councils and even districts simply can't grasp the notion that they are powerless to do anything about membership growth,** despite more than forty years of contrary evidence. Retaining youth who are already Scouts and attracting youth who are not currently Scouts is entirely dependent upon how well the local moms and dads who are the unit adults execute an active, interesting, challenging Scouting program with a strong outdoor component. If BSA decided to create an executive position within councils focused on inspiring unit adults, then maybe they would be on to something. ** BSA National initiatives, policies, and program changes have caused significant membership losses over the years, however.
  7. 4 points
    William Boyce would be another. Back to the OP, whatever new literature (program or merit badges) comes, there should be an accurate historical account of the BSA in this regards. Discuss Negro scout troops, Interracial Service, Japanese-American scouts during WW2, how we can be a character building organization with flawed characters, ...There is bad but IMHO more good in our history, and the lessons to be learned support our mission - prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Law. A young boy when the attacks on Pearl Harbor occurred, Shishima has vivid memories of the dehumanizing treatment (internment camp) he endured. One of the things that helped him maintain his youth and humanity was his participation in the Boy Scouts at Heart Mountain Relocation Center in Wyoming, which had enough troops to have its own Boy Scout council. "Scouting," Shishima says in a short video filmed at JANM, "that was my life, actually." After World War II, he went on to serve in the military and later returned to become a scout leader. Today, Shishima travels across the United States sharing his story of survival and speaking out in favor of civil rights and against social injustice. https://americanhistory.si.edu/blog/boy-scouts-and-barracks-learning-about-japanese-american-incarceration-ahead-national-youth My $0.02,
  8. 3 points
    Probably isn't, but I found it online leaked by a high level National training staff person and thought I would share. And the graphic itself was later confirmed as accurate in a letter sent out by the National Commodore for Sea Scouts who linked to the Reddit item. How sad is it we are at the point that the only way to get information out of National is via leak?
  9. 3 points
    Been saying this for years....Allow units to go to the best provider. The franchise model we are locked into has failed.
  10. 3 points
    "Create a membership category for youth and families with no advancement program" You mean like how was Venturing was supposed to be? High Adventure emphasis with an OPTIONAL advancement program.
  11. 3 points
    Trying to find the LEAD part in this consultant produced PLAN. Members of this forum could do better than this but the folk in Texas wouldn't like what we came up with.
  12. 3 points
    Man, I filled out at least 3 buzzword bingo score cards on that one! Nimble and Flexible (uh, look at that process flow on the left!) Data-based decision making Value-based delivery Collaboration and teamwork World-class Shared accountability Areas of Focus Facilitate! Action Steps! Biggest red flag to me is this one: Hire a youth adolescence expert at the national level to guide program development. I have a sneaking suspicion it won't be Lenore Skenazy!
  13. 3 points
    And knowing what they are and how to use them are Sea Scout rank requirements 🙂 If they have a Safety at Sea program near you, take your unit it is a great time. They get to use flares including the pistol type. Learn how to use a real firehose, get in survival suits and swim in them, put out fires with fire extinguishers, and a bunch of other fun things.
  14. 3 points
    Badge Magic is the DEVIL!
  15. 3 points
  16. 3 points
    For the love of all things holy. Get rid of badge magic. I have seen multiple uniforms get tossed from the troop closet due to the badge magic all over the shirt. They had been stuffed in there with the patches removed and over time they stuck to themselves and was impossible to work with. Its not that hard to sew something on. And its not expensive. You can get a sewing kit at the Dollar Tree....
  17. 2 points
    Council Standards. There really isn't anything wrong with the notion that councils should possess certain financial, operational, membership and programmatic attributes in order to offer Scouting in a geographic territory. That's really the point of JTE and its predecessors as applied on a council basis. In the past, when a current executive board was unable to sustain a reasonable level of those attributes, they were encouraged to consider merging. The success and failure of those combinations usually depended on how well the personalities of the combining organizations were and whether they were then able to address the difficulties. It often takes years for these "merger of equals" to result in meaningful benefits to the youth participants, because resulting volunteer leadership (sometimes urged on by professionals) don't make the necessary changes and enhancements. I'm a supporter of withdrawing the chargers of such councils and forming fresh boards to replace them -- often in combination with other low-performing councils. The new board is not comprised of the under-performing past leadership but fresh folks that are willing to move on what needs to be done. In this manner, two or three underperforming previous council do not become a huge underperforming council with leaders and professionals who squabble over power and properties.
  18. 2 points
    Our pack had class B's that the scouts loved to wear and parents loved to see them wearing. They looked cool and often were a bragging point. Most importantly, they were very functional if we bought the right base materials. Many good suggestions so far. All docs online and via PDF. Get rid of gimmicky stuff. Simplify uniform. IMHO, the biggest problem with uniforms is that they are not functional. When I'm hiking, camping, swimming, etc ... the last thing I'd want to wear is a scout uniform. Heavy. Itchy. Catches on things. Expensive to replace. Painful to re-sew. My recommendations. Shut down the scout shops. Physical stores are a huge carrying cost. We're in the era of Amazon.com. Everything scouts and units need from BSA could be shipped as fast as needed. It would save the average scout leader time and money driving miles and miles. ... I'd also argue that the huge carrying costs of scout shops perverts decisions resulting in selling expensive books, gimmicky stuff and many piece parts to the uniform. ... I'd also argue the units should be the source of materials and parents should not experiencing the scout shop "sales pitch". Related BSA "in-person" sales should be focused on scout camps that have a trading post that sells a combination of property specific, BSA specific, quality outdoor stuff ... and candy. ... If parents want impress their kids, have them shop at a scout camp trading post. Units should stock advancements to enable awarding as soon as possible. Ideally, at the same meeting. ... This would support on-line sales. ... IMHO, I've rarely seen people wear ranks they did not earn. The real risk is probably units that go rogue and do not record advancements. ... but early awarding is much more important. .... So, let's save cost by not trying to correlated scout shop purchases with unit rank records.
  19. 2 points
    The Confederacy had many reasons for leaving the Union. Slavery was one of them. Do you disparage the rest of the organization and their goals for that? Sometimes one is enough.
  20. 2 points
    Especially those pull through gravel pads with 30A electrical, water and sewer hook ups.
  21. 2 points
    I disagree with your characterization of liberals. Almost all of them I know do defend the right for others to have contrary opinions. The idea that they all want these banned or criminalized , no. Regardless of ones right to express their opinion, however does not insulate them from others expressing their disagreement including protesting that opinion, or boycotting a place of business for example. Also to claim that they seek socialism, as defined in your terms is disingenuous. Most advocate for specific policies which their opponents then label as "socialism" as it invokes a fear response. Our current system is not socialism vs capitalism but a complex system of policies, etc... which have components of free enterprise, governmental services and regulations. We can disagree on policy and even specifics components within a policy, but the labeling of a policy as "socialism" for the sole purpose of then equating it with [your] definition does not promote dialogue to find solutions to complex problems faced by our society. Regarding AOC, I believe you have mis-characterized her response. At no point did she suggest hunger was the cause of folks killing each other. In fact she was explicit in stating the of crime of shoplifting. I may not agree with her, but IMO it is not right to state something she suggested when in fact she did not. Lastly, I have spent the last few weeks listening to my Black friends about their experiences. I have always known racism still exists, but thought it was relegated to the few extreme nut jobs. I am learning that there still exist residual effects of the overt racism which still are an obstacle to my Black friends; obstacles and other situations to which I am immune due to my pigmentation. At its core, BLM first asks that we just listen and not get so defensive. I ask everyone, is listening too much to ask?
  22. 2 points
    Well, in the context of what BLM is arguing for, I think that's measurably true. My grandmother's generation (Silent Generation) was "accidentally" racist enough to be horrifying sometimes (and that ignores any deliberate racism). My parent's generation (Boomers) were better, but if you look at the time period they've been "in power" they certainly haven't spent much time or effort to fix or work toward fixing the issue; but at least the Boomers started to be cognizant that there is actually a problem. Gen X is only just now getting to the high table of politics, so we don't really know what they'll manage once they can overcome the existing political inertia. The <40 folks (maybe even <30) are the ones that are fully engaged on the issue and energized about it, so from the viewpoint of "Who is most likely to drive us towards fixing this" standpoint, they are "the best hope".
  23. 2 points
    Well, it's not pornographic, but it is still pretty offensive. Maybe they could have delivered it to us in brown paper wrapping with warnings to keep it out of the eyesight of the scouts or sensitive scout leaders.
  24. 2 points
    Not to worry..National is going to hire another 6 figure exec as the national Chief Communications and Marketing Officer
  25. 2 points
    I have the feeling this graphic is not for public dissemination.
  26. 2 points
    I think that may be exactly what the executives at BSA have in mind. They want to turn their remaining boy scout camps into commercial camp grounds. They'll sell the ones they can and commercialize the rest. I'm not sure they are talking about adding new membership categories like exploring or venturing. I think it might be membership categories like the ones commercial health clubs have. Weekend memberships. Monthly memberships. Family memberships. This is what happened to the YMCA. They took an association of young Christian men, dropped its mission/purpose, and turned it into a commercial health club.
  27. 2 points
    In my son's crew most don't do advancement because they are tired of that grind. They practice the other methods of scouting and work together to plan and execute trips. reminder, Advancement is only one method of scouting.
  28. 2 points
    I mean original boy scout uniforms were basically surplus/copies of US Army uniforms from the time period. Rugged, cheap, practical, looked good. Now the uniforms are overpriced, lack durability, are considered tacky at best.
  29. 2 points
    You had me agreeing with you about practicality and comfort, but you lost me on this comment. The scout uniform is not at all paramilitary. Paramilitary stuff is far more practical, comfortable, and affordable than BSA products.
  30. 2 points
    I might suppose that BSA calls it the Churchill Project because never was so much owed by so many to so few.
  31. 2 points
    Whatever minimum you want but allow units to select their council service center. Councils become market driven to meet that minimum and service to customers (units) improves. Community strip (from back in the day) or CO patch replaces Council patch. My $0.02,
  32. 2 points
    " It's ironic that a country founded by rebels now has such a strong contingent of folks who think conformity is what we should be teaching in schools. I can't think this is really an isolated issue though, since pretty much EVERY generation in every country throughout history has thought their younger generations were full of silly liberal nonsense." I lived through "No freedom of speech for Communists," to see "No freedom of speech for anyone other than us [SBLM, Anarchists, and/or socialists.]" I think conformity to an authoritarian paradigm, right or left, or racial, should NOT be taught in schools. It should be THE place where opposing ideas are compared - not repressed. Now university professors are fired for expressing opinions as shocking as "All lives matter" or "captalism is not inherently evil." Berkeley was the center of the "Free Speech Movement" during the Vietnam blunder. Now any speech not conforming to the current PC is met with Molotov Cocktails and clubs. The current political silliness-de-jour is about as illiberal as possible. NOT " I disagree with what you say but defend your right to say it" INSTEAD: " I disagree with what you say, so you are not allowed to say it." And this obscenity is tacitly support by the American Civil Liberties Union. "LIberal,"like "progressive" and "blue,." is makeup on a pig. Woodrow Wilson, THE 'liberal" "progressive," imprisoned political opponents and encouraged mobs to attack those whose ideas he disliked. Sound familiar? Meanwhile, the Black-on-Black slaughter in the cities - run for decades on a one-party system - is merely background noise for the "Woke" and their political, media, and entertainment allies. The statute of Frederick Douglass is torn down by the "enlightened." FREDERICK DOUGLASS ! An ignorance so profound in the young is not "silly."
  33. 2 points
  34. 2 points
    Strangely enough, that stuff does actually matter to some people. Look at how many people want an eagle patch on their uniform even though they have very little enthusiasm for outdoor activities. I don't understand it, but it happens. My preference would be to eliminate the council patches entirely. Go back to the community patch. Better yet, have a Chartered Organization Patch.
  35. 2 points
    Define "support" because a) lots of CoRs are basically just passive see-you-at-recharter-for-signatures types and b) "support" may simply be a lack of willingness to disband what you have. Far too often "support" for an organization or anything really just means "too hard to disband and start over, so we'll limp along with what we have".
  36. 2 points
    I think two likely standards will be: (1) No debt; (2) summer camps consistently generate an operating surplus.
  37. 2 points
    This was a screen shot posted on another (non-official) BSA posting board. Poster is identified as verified as National Training Staff. Link is here: https://www.reddit.com/r/BSA/comments/ho9w9z/the_bsa_plan_announced_on_ceo_town_hall_today/
  38. 2 points
  39. 2 points
    Or you'll have a symphony of ripping Velcro during your meeting as all Scouts realize they have something extra to fidget with.
  40. 2 points
    Wilderness Survival . . . First thing to do.... take inventory of what you have after the "Accident" that resulted in one's worry about surviving. Anyone read "Hatchet" lately? My first Jamboree at Da Summit , we were issued ID necklaces with cards attached for different purposes: Admission to the campsite, meal tickets, personal ID , and a small (maybe 3" square) brown plastic thingy. This thingy, we were told, was "IN CASE" we got lost in the woods. It was , they said, an infra-red reflector, meant to make it easy for rescue copters to find us . "What if we are injured, fell down a ravine (there were such things at Da Summit) ? " No problem, just wave the brown plastic thingy and they will find you.... Infra-red reflector? The State Police use Infra-red detectors to zero in on human body heat..... The thingy is in my Jamboree souvenir book, ready to save me. I have never seen or heard of anything similar since. Flares? Road fusee? If you got'em, smoke, er, use'em at the proper time. A short instruction on their use would not be out of order. Decap, locate the two strikers, strike the long end on the short end so the striking goes AWAY from yourself. The thousand degree flame will melt metal, be careful where you point it. Flare gun? Sure, same thing. Hand phaser to heat a rock to radiative glow? Absolutely, go for it...... Tramp10 feet high "SOS " in the sand/dirt, how droll.
  41. 2 points
    Might not get many replies here in the sub category of equipment. When we did our trip we went, Moose, Sucker, Birch, Knife, then looped back through Kekekabic, Strup, Wisini(sp), Gerund, Fraser, Thomas,Hatchet, Ima, Jordan, Ashigan, Ensign, Sucker, Moose Ima lake was a highlight, there is an island with two camp sites, the eastern facing camp has a fantastic sunset vantage. Plus a great spot for star gazing.
  42. 2 points
    @Double Eagle makes a good point. If your pool is 25 feet, knocking the 2C req 5b at home is a good idea. More important, however, is making sure your non-swimmers know line rescues. They'll be the ones out of the water and more likely to notice a tired swimmer if you train them to be observant. They need to know how to tie off a line, and they need the practice throwing buoys. They seriously need to understand limitations (theirs and other friends and families) because odds are, on that dark day, they will be in a position to act the quickest.
  43. 2 points
    Oh noble SDW! You wander far from the battle. These are pictures of a couple of dozen scouts outdoors where exposure is minimal. It is extremely unlikely that any disease was transmitted through any behavior in this single-troop camp. These pictures are from a month ago. Leading up to camp from Jun 1st-14th, zero cases had been reported in Paulding Co (https://www.facebook.com/PauldingCountyHealthDept/). The bulk of new cases arose June 15-26 during and after the time these boys were in camp. If these cases were from community spread, it is just as likely that these boys camping at a fairground instead of roaming the streets in the evening curbed infection. We need to remind ourselves that ours is a big country and what needs to be done one way on the coast would make no sense in the heartland. Would a troop in NY,PA, or MA be able to do the same? I doubt it. Precious few of our counties have had zero cases for even a week at a time -- let alone two. Furthermore, since we encourage scouts to troop-shop rather than participate in the one closest to their home, scouts from multiple zones gather together -- a circumstance that favors transmission.
  44. 2 points
    OK. Now I get it. Throw him in the strait. At first, I thought it was a misspelling.
  45. 2 points
    On the speaking of Japanese BSA scouts. On ebay i bought a patrol leaders handbook from 1929. I found a name in the book and did some research. I reached out to the family and found out that it was his and they were very happy that I have it and will keep it safe. It was owned by Jiro Aratani. A little google sleuthing got me to this info about Mr. Aratani. Mr. Aratani was interned in a Japanese relocation camp in WW2.
  46. 2 points
    Some kids don't like to swim in anything but a filtered, chlorinated, tiled, heated swimming pool. They don't like the feel of nature. They can't stand having the weeds touching their feet. I tend to think that this is what scouting is all about. Getting outdoors. Learning to not be so squeamish about the natural world. Yes. I know. The rules allow the scout to be tested in a swimming pool, and I am not suggesting that we impose our own requirements on the scout. I just have the feeling that this scout, and many others just like him, are really missing out on the scouting experience.
  47. 2 points
    I talked to my wife who is a swim coach about this and does our swim tests. She says that most backyard pools aren't big enough to realistically conduct swim tests because on the amount of time spent in the turns. She suggest finding and open neighborhood pool or YMCA pool to conduct the tests in. You still need to abide by the Covid restrictions for your state so you might need to schedule times to keep it the scouts distanced.
  48. 1 point
    @CynicalScouter, this builds on the patrol method philosophy: "... a patrol is a group of friends ..." instead of an administrative unit of a troop. The minimum requirement of a council should be a group of civic organizations in and around a city/town enthused about scouting in their region. If a council is not that, it will merely be an administrative unit of BSA, and from a consumer perspective, nobody will care. Which means that a couple councils a year will fail to meet standards based on your so-called "LOT more important things". The "patch" example came from my council's Jambo patch, which depicted the French and Indian war ... censors removed the native's weapons from their hands. Turning the set into what one of my scouts decried as "least traded patch, ever." The point is, if council uses imagery, to use honest historically accurate imagery of local persons/events. If they can't settle on that, revert to the default. Do, I expect this to be in the minimum standards? Obviously not. But I expect all other minimum standards to miss their mark so long as it isn't.
  49. 1 point
    The key to WS, is resourcefulness with dual-use items. Flares may be a fun draw, maybe they make good fire starters. But... Can the spent tube be used to rig a trap? Can you cook with them? Do they make good mineral supplements to the ants that have raided your last pack of raisins?
  50. 1 point
    The style of ours is mainly to get the adults out of camp. Examples are do a polar plunge, go to an adult shoot, visit the canteen for coffee, do one of the hikes, do some adult meetings, go fishing and, while not getting out of camp, take a nap. I believe there's another patch for that, the Grinch Master. 😀 I enjoyed being childish around the scouts. It's the same reason that I'd kneel down to get at their height when talking to them about something serious.
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