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Showing content with the highest reputation since 08/30/20 in Posts

  1. 8 points
    As I said previously: HIPAA is the most misunderstood law and it has gotten worse since COVID. The HIPAA Rules apply to covered entities and business associates. What is defined as covered entities and business associates? Only three entities A Health Care Provider A Health Plan A Health Care Clearinghouse Are you a health care provider? Are you a health plan? Are you a health care clearinghouse? Here's a handy chart to walk you through it. No? Are you the business associate of any of the above 3? No? Then So, your IT guy MIGHT MAYBE be covered if he is providing IT support services to a doctor, hospital, or a health plan. But if Boy Scouts of America and/or your local Council and/or your local Troop decided to broadcast your medical records, it does NOT violate HIPAA. Might violate other state/local laws and might also be the basis for lawsuit (breach of duty to keep private) but it is NOT a HIPAA issue.
  2. 7 points
    Old Eagle Scout and new Lion Dad here... I’m jumping back into scouting with a kindergarten daughter. That’s not something I would have ever dreamed of when I was a scout, and I couldn’t be more excited. Scouting absolutely prepared me for life... and the Air Force Academy, 7 years on active duty, 4 (and counting) in the reserves, Wall Street, and everything in between. What else provides kids an opportunity to camp, hike, shoot, swim, sail, ride... and learn to lead and be good people along the way? If that’s what you’re looking for, you’re in the right place. It’s only been a few weeks, but I haven’t seen any national issues affecting our Pack, just people passionate about developing our kids into leaders and citizens of character.
  3. 7 points
    Don't fall for it. The council doesn't have the authority. The council can't force a Chartered Organization to accept anyone in their unit. If the parent doesn't like your unit, invite them to go elsewhere.
  4. 6 points
    IMHO. There have been way too many scouters who think every Eagle project should be something more than a scout and his buddies slapping together a nice looking bench in a public location. I have more trouble with projects that are barn-raisers that take thousands of man-hours where the scout’s hand on the tiller seemed incredibly light.
  5. 6 points
    I flip back and forth on this. My experience is that scouting units (packs, troops) need relatively light policy and procedure documents. Document habits. When do you meet? How much are dues and when? How do you share fundraiser profits? ... A new parent guide ... Beyond that, I find little need to document policies and procedures. RECOMMENDATION: Resolve the situation first. Then, outside the situation, discuss whether a policy is needed. I've sat in too many committee meetings where hours are spent debating a well written policy that is driven by one or two situations. Then, after the incident is done, we never touch the policy again. It's never published. It's never communicated again. It really turns out it was a policy for this one incident. My conclusion: Don't create policy during problem situations. You will often end up with policy that you don't want to live with and that others won't follow. Queue a policy discussion for later, but don't create the new policy during the situation. Policies written during situations often become bad policy. Sometimes I wonder if discussing policy is the passive aggressive way to handle bad situations that are really best handled clean and upfront.
  6. 6 points
    Yes. The prime reason scouting is in such a dire place is because of deep rooted, long term internal problems. BSA should never have allowed a single religion to run a shadow program within a program the way it did with LDS. BSA should never have limited its managerial talent pool largely to people within the organization. BSA should never have shifted its focus to marketing and membership instead of remembering that it is a movement focused on service, citizenship and character first. And the out of doors. BSA should have never allowed its organizational components -- national, council, unit -- to become so distinct from each other so incapable of collaboration on a common mission. Stuff like that.
  7. 6 points
    I think discussion would be fine. However, I'm not seeing discussion. Minds are already made up. We may be polite-ish about speaking our minds but I'm not sure anyone has ever changed their mind reading the I&P threads. The first example I find looking up the page: Does this sound like discussion? Not to me. It sounds like someone has made up their mind and no amount of discussion will change anything. So why get everyone's blood pressure up? How does this help the scouts? I come to this forum to get away from the near constant tribalism I see in politics today. Really complex problems are simplified based on tribal affiliation. Until we appreciate that we're all in this together we're just going to keep arguing. But that's all easy to talk about in vague terms. How about a concrete example. Tahawk said he's unsure what it's like to be a minority. I have an idea about that. When I hear about vigilantes with rifles I'm worried. So I'm interested in Kyle Rittenhouse. He has become a poster boy of sorts. On the left, he's an example of how white supremacists are encouraging violence. On the right he's an example of self defense. So you just know that if we started discussing this it would devolve into an argument about gun control. The same old arguments will come out. Liberals are this, the GOP is that, blah blah. But all of this arguing misses the real tragedy. Why was a 17 year old kid, who could be a scout by the way, at a protest with a gun? That's a great point of discussion. What forces pushed this kid into the street with a gun? People? Social media? I don't know. But I'm guessing there would probably be very little discussion about how some kid's life was just ruined, along with the 2 people that died from bullet wounds. This is a tragedy. It is a failure of our culture. It's also an example of what some minorities are afraid of. These minorities all know that when things turn violent they get the worst of it. Now, if you read all that and you really disagree and just want to let me know how wrong I really am, then there's the proof that we should stick to scout related subjects. it's at least something we can agree on. If you absolutely agree with me then that proves nothing. The question is how many of you are thinking this is a really complex issue? I just don't think there are many people in that category. Go ahead, try and prove me wrong. So, yes, a real discussion could help scouts. It could put some meat on the ideas behind the Scout Emblem. That would be good. I just don't see how it will happen on this forum.
  8. 5 points
    This is the part of the forum to welcome new members. Coming into this forum and telling a new, enthusiastic parent that: Is just picking on a new member. You want to have that conversation, go over to Issues and Politics and we can hash that out again. I think we've had that conversation there 10 or 20 times now. I'm not even going to get into the merits of your argument here because the "New to the Forum" section where someone else is introducing themselves isn't the place for that.
  9. 5 points
    Some good news from my neck of the woods, son's Eagle Court of Honor was today. Weather held up and we had more people attending than anticipated. I think this COVID mess had a ltoto do with it because it gave an excuse to see friends, even if wearing masks and being socially distant. Ceremony went well, and lots of stories shared about him after the ceremony. He plans to stick around until he hopefully moves to college next fall, or turns 18 and becomes an ASM. Life is good.
  10. 4 points
    Actually wrote a article for my district newsletter about this topic. Encouraging Troops to get out, use the patrol method, and follow council and local guidelines. I've copied it here: "As our units start up fall programing during COVID 19, we are faced with a great opportunity to embrace a core aspect of the Scouting program: The Patrol Method. Robert Baden Powell was once quoted “The patrol method is not a way to operate a Boy Scout Troop, it is the only way. Unless the patrol method is in operation you don’t really have a Boy Scout Troop.” A patrol, a group of eight or so Scouts, is not just a method for organizing our Scouts. It is a place where youth can learn new skills, practice leadership, and make new friendships. Dan Beard Council has outlined COVID 19 safety guidelines for Ohio and Kentucky under the “Restart Scouting Safely Plan.” For the full document please visit http://www.danbeard.org/scouting-restart-safely-guide-now-available/. It details what restrictions are in place for Scouting activities based on Ohio and Kentucky Health Department regulations. At present, Scouting activities are to be limited to groups of no more than 10 people, including two-deep adult leadership. Scouts and leaders should also social distance and wear face masks when unable to maintain distancing. This may make meeting as a whole Troop challenging, but is the perfect number for patrols to meet. The patrol method is even more useful if your traditional meeting location is still closed to groups or has occupancy limits. Patrols can meet independently of the Troop at different locations or different days for activities, assuming proper two-deep leadership can be maintained. Meeting by patrol has the benefit of pushing decision making and planning down from Troop level youth leadership down to the Patrol leaders. For some Troops, this level of responsibility for Patrol Leaders is normal. For other Troops, this would be a new developmental challenge. Troop level youth leaders such as Senior Patrol Leaders or Troop Guides still have a role in assisting Patrol leaders to prepare their patrol activities and make sure each patrol has the necessary resources available. When your unit camps this fall, the Patrol method helps ensure your Scouts maintain groups of 10 or less and keeps them from congregating under common spaces like dining flies or picnic pavilions. Smaller cooking groups also have the added bonus of giving Scouts more opportunities to practice their cooking skills. It’s important for adults attending Troop or Patrol campouts to ensure safe dining practices are practiced such as eliminating self-serve buffet style meals and common water coolers. For a complete list of suggestions for dining, food prep, camping and transportation, please reference the “Restart Scouting Safely Plan.” As we enter the middle of the fall camping season, each Scouts BSA unit has a chance to utilize the Patrol method, not just to keep Scouts and Scouters safe, but also to provide a great small group program for our Scouts."
  11. 4 points
    I have a number of thoughts on this, and like the rule they're not going to be completely crystallized. First, in all of this discussion the thing to keep in mind is that the enforcement mechanism for any of this, or said differently, the benefit conferred for compliance with any of this, is continued membership in BSA and to a lesser extent coverage by their insurers for things that may go wrong. BSA is not the only organization that does this. My religion has provisions for excommunication for certain acts, even if those acts occur outside of church or church functions. Lots of employers either explicitly or implicitly have rules that govern your behavior outside the workplace, and the enforcement mechanism is the same, dismissal from membership, ie fired. So this is a question of degree not kind. If you actually go read the details of the instances of abuse that have occurred over the years, both in scouting and in the Catholic Church, what you'll see is that much, maybe even most of the abuse occurs outside actual sanctioned events. Contact and trust is built through scouting, and then the worst acts occur when the victim is with the predator away from organized events. This is exactly the situation this rule is trying to prevent, so the rule mostly makes sense. To the original question, where's the line for family members?, there's no way BSA could define that. You would have to spend pages and pages defining who is and isn't a family member --- adult step siblings? the second cousin's wife? dad's girlfriend who has lived with Johnny scout for a decade but hasn't married his father? grandmom's third husband? --- and even then you'd have situations unaddressed. It makes more sense to leave that up to you: where do you want the risk line to be drawn for your child, where do you want the risk line to be drawn for your BSA membership. Then there's the question of liability and insurance. Set aside abuse and think about that sleepover, maybe it's your kid and his or her patrol mates, and something bad happens, maybe a terrible injury to a kid, maybe they burn down your garage and part of your house. The scout's lawyer in the case of injury or your lawyer in the case of property damage, is going to rightfully look for parties who can share the loss. A patrol sleepover is going to look like, and maybe treated like, a scouting event. If BSA can say hey, we have a rule that this is prohibited behavior, they have a better chance of not being on the hook. This is probably a minor consideration on their part, the amount of money they might save on insurance for having this rule is pennies at best, but it is prudence on their part, and therefore Thrifty. So exercise common sense and prudence, these rules and their enforcement inescapably have a component where judgment and not blind adherence has to be used by both sides, and if BSA is going to foolishly interpret its own rules such that they would dismiss you from membership for sleeping in the same tent as your kid, then you haven't lost much when you lose that membership.
  12. 4 points
    I struggle though with how to reconcile the gains and successes we've had as a country in the last 50 years. Even in my lifetime, I see a noticeable difference in the amount of racism and increase in the amount of equality in our social structures. I applaud that we continue to focus on rooting out discrimination and racism. Yet, to listen to my teenage kids talk, our country is an awful place full of racists. I don't know how to communicate to my kids with any credibility that we've come so far as a country from what it was 50, 100, or more years ago.
  13. 4 points
    We're talking different things here. I started my comments in this thread saying that national needs to reduce fees. I believe that $15-$20 a month for dues is too much - but mostly because there are many people we try to bring into the program who don't have the disposable income that others do. But, I think we have to be careful to not say it simply too expensive because in 2020 in the US, $15-$20 a month is pretty cheap compared to much of what we spend money on. $15 to $20 a month is a bargain to some, to others a fortune. When we decry Scouting as simply too expense, we run the risk of loosing credibility because many people involved in the program do not believe it is. I make no light of the expense here. Scouting from the BSA is quickly becoming a middle class (if not upper middle class) activity.
  14. 4 points
    Bear behavior during the supposedly dormant months doesn't have much to do with locale but rather other factors such as ambient temperatures and the health of the bear. Black bears are not true hibernators but enter a state of torpor from which they can readily awaken. A January thaw, ill health, or stimulation can entice many bears to wake up randomly and seek food. We all have that image in our head of bears snug in a deep cave during winter months but in reality a black bear den can simply be a depression under a fallen log or thicket. Even slight human activity in the immediate vicinity can awaken them. As bear populations increase, increased caution is a useful consideration.
  15. 4 points
    Hi Nathan. I'm a teacher. Sure, I know of many ways, other than merit badge work, to teach a topic. One could argue that school provides a better learning experience than a merit badge. But that's school work, not scouting. A merit badge pamphlet is deliberately brief. It's not a textbook. Yes, we could design an online textbook to teach merit badge topics. We could even have on-line classes with pre-recorded lectures and labs. I'm sure there would be some learning value in having a distance education class, but it wouldn't be scouting. I have seen merit badge mills that "teach" merit badges in a school-like setting. We should avoid that. We should also avoid turning merit badge counseling into an on-line distance education program. Scouting shouldn't be like school.
  16. 4 points
    For a female scout who joined right at the beginning (February 2019), the timing is possible. The ranks with “time in grade” require 14 months, plus the time required to attain First Class. Since the beginning of February 2019 there have been approx. 19 months. So, assuming completion of First Class in 5 months, the timing is possible for an very advancement-focused scout. Particularly if the scout involved joined at an older age, and so was motivated by the deadline of aging out (setting aside the potential for extensions), it doesn’t surprise me that there are scouts who have either completed Eagle at this point or are near completion — even with the limitations of COVID on program in some areas. While there can be a legit discussion (and has been other places on the site) about speed to Eagle, etc. and whether the scout gets everything they could or should from the scouting program with that fast progress/focus on advancement, I can’t say I am disappointed with BSA and female scouts in BSA getting what I assume will be some positive national-level press and attention.
  17. 4 points
    This can be the rebirth of the patrol method. My unit tried 1 Troop zoom meeting. It was a wreck. We have, however, seen patrols going hiking, fishing, biking, etc. Our SM and SPL have, in effect, "given up" on troop level activities and plan on patrol level events indefinitely (the only exception being a possible Court of Honor). I say "given up" in quotes because they are looking at this as a really positive thing; you have PLs who have to step up and patrols with weak leadership or shiftless scouts being put on the spot and embarrassed/shamed. Our new unit patrol/crossover AoLs have just dug into this and they look at it as a blessing ("We get to do what we want? Cool! Let's hike!"). The troop guide has just tossed out an idea here and there and the ASM is sitting there slack jawed that these scouts are raring to go and all he has to do is check for permits and double check they are following COVID safety guidance. Meanwhile, I've got a senior patrol that has basically checked out and it is getting embarrassed because every other patrol has done something and they are sitting there like lumps.
  18. 3 points
    @heres_a_llama, don’t let the curmudgeons get on your nerves. Yes some of us are dealing with national issues and cultural shifts, and that can be discouraging. BSA isn’t some up-front investment of thousands. Were it to fold next year, hopefully you’ll have got out what you put in this year. Positive attitudes year by year ... that’s what shapes the worlds largest youth movement.
  19. 3 points
    I actually thought the Inaugural Class concept was an elegant way to defuse the potential for a subset of the new female scouts (of which my daughter was one [Edit: though she was advancement focused she isn’t going to be in the inaugural class]) racing against one another to be the Eagle with the earliest BOR date and therefore the recognized as the very first female Eagle Scout. There are not that many opportunities in life to be the first of something, and for some people that possibility would be very.... motivating. As has been discussed in other posts, possibly for some parents who really really wanted their daughter to be that trailblazer... that high stakes motivation could create some very non-scoutlike incentives. The class concept took away the possibility of a single “winner” of that race by having a range of dates where everyone would be treated as part of that “group of trailblazers.” Personally, I thought it was a pretty deft way to actually reduce a pressure that could have reinforced some of the very things folks here on the forum lament about how there is too great a focus on accumulation of badges and less on the rest of what makes the program beneficial to the youth.
  20. 3 points
    @SemperParatus you've got quite the tenure here! Thanks for your service to Scouting, past or present. That being said, you clearly aren't happy with the BSA for untold reasons. So why are you still participating here? Don't you have something better to do?
  21. 3 points
    I've seen no COs disassociate from the BSA in the past few years. This is simply not true. Everyone involved knows that the bankruptcy is related to actions many years ago and is not representative of actions of the BSA today.
  22. 3 points
    As one who spent a career writing and interpreting safety and health laws and regulations, these BSA rules clearly smack of "CYA" on the part of the BSA. They are there in case anything happens, then the BSA can say, "well, we told them not to do it." The BSA has NO authority over me and my interactions with my own family.
  23. 3 points
    Yes. Really. No one-on-one contact. That is about as clear a line as can be drawn. Now, in order to more fully answer your question, I have to venture into the area of opinion, which you asked me not to do. BSA intentionally made YP rules knowing that the adult leaders could not and would not follow them. The rules were made to be broken. No scouters in their right minds would forbid their son from ever having his friends over to the house to play. Does it violate the YP rules? Yes. Do it anyway. Will BSA ever say it's ok for your son to have his friends over to the house? No. Do it any way. If you are a teacher (like me), it is necessary for you to have one-on-one contact with students. Can't be avoided. Will BSA ever say that it's ok? Nope. Do it any way. School classrooms don't have two deep leadership. Will BSA say it's ok? Nope. Do it any way. I think you should stop looking for BSA documentation and just use common sense. If BSA doesn't want you to use common sense, do it anyway.
  24. 3 points
    How about a section with ideas for helping patrols? I have yet to see a scout oriented site that has anything like that. So, just like menus and activity ideas are concrete examples that scouts can try out, how about specific examples of making duty rosters or solving people problems or just being afraid of screwing up as a new pl. Call it Patrol Life.
  25. 3 points
    I agree — I did some event photography over the years semi officially and the key is what Parkman said about being “purposeful and dignified.” As I got better equipment, I generally went to longer/telephoto lenses to record ceremonies so I could still get good photos from the periphery of the event to limit how intrusive I was being as much as I could, but the key is how your behavior and body language convey that you are recording the event and the participants versus the now caricature of the cell-camera wielding parent blocking everyone’s view to get a snapshot of junior...
  26. 3 points
    Another pro tip... Carry a few copies of the BSA Health and Supplemental Insurance Form (or other form if you have a different insurance) in your medical binder. If you give those to the provider and explain it is supplemental, you can save parents aome headaches and bucks down the road. Our supplemental insurance through our council covers any co-pays... https://www.hsri.com/forms/claim forms-approved/Boy Scouts of America/Boy Scouts of America - Council & Unit.pdf You will still need to fill out and get a form signed at your council office when you return home, though, in order for the claim to be processed. Uber-pro tip... If you have any Scouts or Scouters who are covered by TRICARE (health insurance for military members, retirees, and their dependents), then BSA Health and Supplemental, by federal law, becomes primary, and provides full coverage. No claims should be filed with TRICARE. Again, if this applies, it could save some headaches. Providers will need the same form as above, or your whoever your insurer is...
  27. 3 points
  28. 3 points
    I'm not sure how long you've been at this game known as scouts, but hard earned experience is that if you do this: "One form (call it "Scout copy") is kept at the scouts house, by the scout, and one form is kept at the "Form Keepers" location ("master copy"). " you will spend a lot of time every Friday before pulling out of the parking lot ensuring that each scout has a form, and then you'll spend some more time as one or two scramble because they forgot it. If you're just going to have the scouts responsible for their form what is the point of having a master file that never gets used? In our troop we keep a master file of all forms in a sturdy, water resistant, zippered binder. That binder stays at our Chartered Organization with all our other equipment, and it goes on every outing. One committee person is responsible for maintaining it and ensuring everybody's forms are up to date. We do not try to put together a folder that has just the forms for those attending an event, we just take the "medical binder" with us everywhere. On the rare occasion that we have to turn a physical copy in at check-in, which for us happens only at summer camp and one other camporee type event, we make a copy of those attending ahead of time, turn it in, and then when we get them back either shred them or give them to the parent. We urge everybody to make and keep a copy of their form before they turn it in, just in case something happens. In practice that means the scout or parent brings it to the meeting and we make a copy for them. Generally the big push for this is the run up to summer camp and so everyone is pretty much on the same renewal cycle. The forms are important, but what is important about them is that they alert the leaders to any underlying conditions a scout might have. I have been at this game a while now, and in many trips to the ER and one serious air medi-evac, no medical professional has ever asked to see a health form. They do ask if we know of any conditions they should know about, but with rare exception folks don't wander this world with their own medical form in their back pocket, and every emergency protocol just assumes that dearth of information. I have mixed feelings about the prohibition on digitizing forms. It would make things easier, but it is also true that whenever you make a digital copy of something that copy lasts forever on every computer, server, phone, etc. that ever accesses it. There is actually no such thing as deleting. Lastly, what you refer to as a loop hole isn't one. If the unit leaders are deciding to have someone digitize the forms then the unit leaders are digitizing the forms, it doesn't matter who actually is running the scanner.
  29. 3 points
    Same reason why adult applications and 90% of the registration process is paper: institutional inertia and (most recently) the mass layoff at National crippled their ability to anything new.
  30. 3 points
    The BSA's guidance on whether you should or shouldn't store the AHMR electronically (you shouldn't): The forms should be maintained by a designated leader. To assure privacy, the forms should be carefully stored and used only as needed to provide for planning and rendering care. The AHMR should not be scanned, stored, or sent electronically except as specifically directed for a BSA national event such as the national jamboree or NOAC.
  31. 3 points
    The way to recruit new Scouts is to build a program they want to join. Currently that is on local units and the district/council. Local units need energetic and active programs. Training with knowledgeable volunteer willing to work with and mentor new Scouters is key. Online training does not allow for the interaction and explanation on why things are done a certain way. I have seen Scouters take online training, think they know better, and do their own thing which hurts the program, and retention. Districts and Council need to have support mechanisms to promote program; training, camps, specialized equipment for rent, activities, etc. More later.
  32. 3 points
    Also Owls...some public information that most SE's don't want to see the light of day...salary info. But, as 501 c 3's, they receive a public benefit of not having to pay taxes, so the IRS requires certain info to be made public in their IRS Form 990 filings...easily obtainable... For example, I see you live in Montana...a quick search yielded the 2018 IRS 990 for Montana Council, and, at the time, Interim Scout Executive was paid $150,208, while the retiring SE was paid $143,691...you can add up to total salary paid... that's where much of your council fees are going. If you dared, you could ask your council office for their current IRS 990, which they are required, by law, to provide to the public upon request. Fair warning...in doing so, you will quickly become persona non grata...
  33. 3 points
    This is the dirty little secret... The other piece of this that many council professionals want to remain hidden, is that the Chartered Organization Reps are voting members of the Council Board, and a grass roots movement among them is the scariest thing in the world to the SE, as they hold a great deal of power that they never wield...
  34. 3 points
    My main concern is that it seems (and I could be misunderstanding your vision) is that the app is an attempt to be a digital mB counselor. My concern is that scouts is already too hyperfocused on advancement to the point it has become the de facto aim in many places. The app, as I see it, would make the problem worse by decreasing time spent with a mB counselor denying the scout the opportunity to grow via the adult association method. With any idea presented in scouts I ask myself "Will this help or hinder us in achieving the aims of scouting?"
  35. 3 points
    Thanks to @HICO_Eagle’s nods, I just realized, we were just two weeks to lockdown when I wrote this. The moral of the story: if your 1st years ask to mix, let them do so ASAP. You never know when the next wave will come.
  36. 3 points
    From the Troop 11 History, Houston, Texas (1990), sponsored by First Presbyterian Church. "OSCAR HIBLER BECOMES SCOUTMASTER The troop committee recruited church member Oscar Hibler to become scoutmaster in January 1949. Mr. Hibler had been ASM of Troop 16 at Sutton School. Troop 11 had been without a scoutmaster for three months. When Mr. Hibler took over, Troop 11 had fifteen active scouts and two active visitors. As Mr. Hibler recalls, the boys refused to wear uniforms and only wanted to play. His strong emphasis on scouting principles caused many to leave. Recruitment became a priority. Recruiting from within the church, Mr. Hibler increased enrollment to 32 members (4 patrols). Mr. Hibler is still grateful to the national scout office for lowering the enrollment age to 11. This really helped his recruitment efforts! At first, the boys thought cooking to be too much work and brought junk food on camp-outs. Mr. Hibler soon decided that each scout could bring along only six soft drinks per camp-out. To test this new rule, young Robert Blaine brought along six quart bottles, not exactly what Mr. Hibler had intended." The age limit changed in 1949.
  37. 3 points
    I stand corrected. My comment had nothing to do with male/female only timing. I messed up the timing. This year has had me all messed up.
  38. 3 points
    I'm really disappointed that the discussion immediately went to the legitimacy of this Eagle candidate's advancement. Unless @sri_oa161 has some other info we don't have based on the episode preview, we don't know that the scout did anything questionable whatsoever. The program has allowed for girls to be in long enough at this point to have completed all requirements by the book. We should trust that they did exactly that unless presented with anything to the contrary. Even more so in this case, considering the scout in question was shown in the episode preview with what i assume is her family, dad (Eagle scout), brother (Eagle scout), and mom (volunteer). Makes it even more likely (in my opinion) that her family traditions in scouting would make her inclined to follow proper procedure. But because she's a girl it immediately calls her integrity into question? Ridiculous. Let me do what we all should have done and just say congrats to this Eagle candidate, we applaud all of your hard work and dedication.
  39. 3 points
    I think you've identified an effect but might be missing the cause. I was never "taught" those things either. Growing up my mother, and every mother in town, kicked their progeny out of the house by 9am all summer weather permitting. We met up at the ball park, played baseball, or whatever we decided to do. There wasn't an adult in sight, no structured rules, so we figured it out on our own. Older kids looked out for the younger because their dad said look out for your kid brother. I'd argue we've taught kids to be dependent on adults and we tend to ostracize the natural leaders instead of letting the kids figure it out. We adults have come to prefer compliant kids rather than the energetic and we've taught them to be meek.
  40. 3 points
    Is it possible? I have said many times over the years on this forum that adult run programs are usually advancement programs because they are so easy to follow. They don't require much personal guidance or coaching because the results of the scouts actions are obvious to everyone, especially the scout. The uniform is the same, most Eagle Mills are the best dressed programs because a uniform is basically a check list. Patrol method program are more ambiguous because counseling is deeper into how to make right decisions based on the Scout Law. Uniforming a patrol method troops is less tidy because the dictates making right decisions based on his growth and maturity. By the end of my Scoutmastering, I could identify a boys level of maturity or general attitude of life just by how he wore the uniform. Allowing a scouts to grow in the decision making process requires a lot of patience because that process takes years. And maybe that style of adult guidance isn't piratical in this culture. But I wonder what growth comes from following instructions to Eagle. The largest Troop in our district is a bragging 200 scouts strong program that promises Eagle by age 14 if they follow the Troop advancement map. The troop sets a goal of at least 80 new scouts a year, and usually reaches that goal. I used to wonder why the troop wasn't bigger. 80 new scouts a year is a lot. 80 new scouts a year every year and only 200 scouts total. I learned the troop also looses at least 80 scouts a year by age 14. Scouts aren't asked to leave at age 14, but the program is so structured to reach Eagle by age 14, that there is nothing much for those who stay. I can go on and on, but the troop is truly an adult run program. Walk in and follow an adult to the next stop on the map to Eagle. Finish that step and follow an adult to the next stop to Eagle. I once had an Eagle Scout from that troop lead our NYLT course. He was impressive and I asked him how he manage to stay in the program so long after age 14. He said, a few of us actually liked other parts of scouting. I realized he is one of those special rare scouts that is a natural leader and can't get enough of it. He loved our NYLT because it truely was the first time he was the leader of the program. No adult telling him what to do. I don't know what to say Matt. Our troop was half the size of that troop and had the 2nd most Eagles in the district. We were the opposite of an adult run troop. We were certainly not an advancement program. The difference between our programs was our average Eagle was almost 17 years old. Almost half of our scouts where 14 and older, and we had the largest group of older scouts in the council. That includes all the Venture Crews and whatever else. I believe there are two paths being discussed here: one is your suggestion of a planned out step by step program where the scouts check a box and move to the next step. Same as the Eagle Mill I described. The other is plan of personal development by putting a patrol in situations where they have to decide how to go forward. I agree the Eagle Mill is easier for the adults. The Patrol Method route develops more personal growth. I've seen it and understand the two paths. But, the future of scouting appears to require inexperienced adults who need a step by step plan to know when the scouts actions are successful, so they know when their own actions of managing the program are successful. I believe adults have a role, but their role in the traditional program was limited with the intention to guide young adults to grow in adult skills. That requires the adults to grow as much as the scouts to be successful, and maybe that is asking too much of adults anymore. As I've claimed before, the changes folks in this forum seem to want for scouting leads to a more after school type program where the adults know exactly where the scouts are in location and can measure where they are in the program at all times. Maybe that is all this culture will allow now. I'm settled with that, but it's not scouting for me. Barry
  41. 3 points
    Could be, but this seems to be more optimistic. I mean, right now it is raining ash in my town and it's supposed to snow tonight. The tomatoes are history. I guess you're saying people do, in fact, enjoy the outdoors. That and the fact that the BSA is hurting is quite a paradox. My neighbor has scout aged kids and they go camping every few weeks in the summer. And yet they have zero interest in scouts. While I agree, I'm starting to think there's more to it. Is it possible they're so hands on because the advancement side of the program is so well defined? There are requirements and stages and a sequence that is clearly described in the scout handbook that explains how to develop an eagle scout. It's easy for the adults to follow that, so they do. It becomes the program because there's nothing else described. There is no such program for developing an independent patrol. No equivalent to tenderfoot through eagle for a patrol or a troop. There is a vague description of patrol method but even if it were given to everyone it certainly doesn't have a 3 to 5 year sequence of more challenging levels to conquer. No requirements for improving teamwork like there is for sharpening a knife. No requirements to organize so many events as a patrol like there are requirements for numbers of nights camping for a merit badge. There's a lot of bling for skill advancement and barely anything for patrol advancement. I think that's the type of idea that a troop could just do on their own. It would be interesting to see what it might look like, though.
  42. 3 points
    Exactly my point. The car wash is used as a fig leaf to cover up the fact that the unit is soliciting for donations. They are not selling a product or service for fair market value. They are not earning their own way.
  43. 3 points
    @OLDRIFLE...I'm assuming you are the scout in question. I assume you have been a Life Scout for more than 6 months. I sat on an Eagle appeal board where the unit wanted the scout to do exactly what your SM wanted and we overturned the unit. Does your troop have written expectations for the active time? Was your POR completed already or is it also in dispute? Formally send your SM an email request for SM Conference and info the world. Ask to have a response in 7 days. If you get nothing, write up all your Eagle paperwork and submit it to council requesting an EBOR under disputed circumstances. GTA based on your belief you have met all the BSA requirements. JMHO.
  44. 3 points
    There's one thing missing in this idea that scouting excels at relative to other youth activities. I think it's magic when older scouts teach and help the younger scouts. It could still work in a goal oriented approach. I noticed that a lot of older scouts that stuck around until they aged out really responded to the younger scouts looking up to them. Some didn't, but that's okay. For those that like it, service to younger scouts could certainly be part of their challenge. I think some sort of service should be part of every Scout's plan. Another point is could this work within the context of a regular troop? I don't see why not but that could be changed. Finally, someone mentioned summer camp as the culmination of a patrol. I like that, but not at a summer camp strongly based in merit badges. I'd think the merit badges would need to be done or mostly completed before camp because that would be the emphasis of camp.
  45. 2 points
    It's not that it's not needed. There is a hole. I don't see a youth targeted scouting web site that helps youth do scouting. Many sites exist, but NONE sites are youth oriented. I agree that a WikiHow or a Wikipedia site would be useful. I do NOT think it would be useful to create new content. But a well organized presentation of scouting topics targeting youth would be very helpful. Then, leverage links to outside youtube and other content. Site could have Ideas for: Meals, outings, games, objectives Resources for: Planning a camp out, working on merit badges, etc My only personal request ... don't make it a "here's a checklist for ..." type of site. We're trying to trigger ideas and make leaders; not award MBAs.
  46. 2 points
    Photographing the color guard: cool. Photographing players and audience: not cool.
  47. 2 points
    Here's what I found. https://www.scouting.org/about/annual-report/ 2019 2010 Accounts payable and accrued liabilities 105,536,000 51,587,000 Gift annuities 7,099,000 Unearned fees and subscriptions 42,799,000 38,240,000 Notes payable including line of credit 224,517,000 112,203,000 Insurance reserves 234,845,000 70,050,000 Payable upon return of securities loaned 1,881,000 55,232,000
  48. 2 points
    Scouter.com? Oh, sorry. But, to answer seriously, I suspect that if it's a phone company style breakup then the councils will have to agree on any changes. It will be bureaucratic to some extent but the bigger councils may end up with more say. Some councils might just split off. They might want to adapt it so different councils can make changes.
  49. 2 points
    Is that the case here? I saw the preview for the episode at the end of the last episode and it didn't say anything about that.
  50. 2 points
    The Topic Drift Police may arrive directly. Yes, more could be done than what BSA effectively advocates by misstatements and omissions, but not easily. All the good words about Scouting methods are still there - scattered about - if one knows what they mean taken together. However, decades have passed since they were combined in any coherent message - no chapter, no article, no check-list. And the descriptions of methods are routinely contradicted by BSA statements by the unknowing "professionals": "Patrols are one component of what we call youth-run, or youth-led, troop." No, in Scouting, the youth-run troop is a component of the Patrol Method, and not the most important component at that. BSA, as a bureaucracy, has done almost nothing in decades to encourage use of The Patrol Method and nothing to discourage ignoring that method. Conclusion: ignorance or lack of interest. My first "roundtable" when I again became a Scoutmaster was a council affair. My DE, whom I had just met, saw me talking to a west-side SM, a Mr. Watkins, now deceased, and took me aside to warn: "Be careful of listening to him. He lets his boys elect their leaders." Those few words told me much about the changes in BSA Scouting since 1967, about my new (soon to be gone) DE (Who did not know I already had six times as many years in Scouting as he did.), and about Mr. Watkins, my neighbor at Summer Camp a few months later (His kids really knew their stuff!). The newer adults - say who came on board in the last twenty years - have no reason to know what The Patrol Method is. Reread the BSA Quote above, please. Recall that for almost fifteen years, starting in 2000, Scoutmaster Specific Training, as set out in the syllabus section "Working with Youth, The patrol method", did not devote a single sentence to The Patrol Method. In fact that section only used the word "patrol" once. (It is somewhat better since, but the National Scouter responsible for the 2014 partial corrections did not get what he wanted in terms of change and was promoted out of that job. He made people nervous. He required his reportees to communicate with mere volunteers!!!) Basic youth leader training on the district level ("J.L.O.W.") was eliminated when "Leadership Skills" and outdoor skills instruction left Wood Badge, nearly twenty years ago. Thereafter, the new Scoutmaster, whose own SM [average tenure < 1 year] was likely mostly clueless, has only his experience and no coherent literature to help guide him, unless he has access to BSA literature from before 1971. He is slightly urged to teach "Leadership Skills for Troops" when what is needed is "Leadership Skills for Patrol Leaders. The old district training began "Welcome to Scouting's Toughest Job," speaking of the Patrol Leader (now "patrol leader" vs "Senior Patrol Leader.") 11/12th of the time in this long-gone training was about the PL's job. The BSA model Troop Meeting Plan (none for patrol meetings) since at least 1983 models devoting 75 minutes to troop activities and 15 minutes to the patrol . "Troop," "troop," "troop. " BSA has urged on its website that the "bulk" of a patrol meeting should be devoted to planning - a dismal failure to understand youth and a downgrading of the importance of the patrol. Skills instruction is to primarily take place in a patrol context, not a troop context as incorrectly shown on the BSA model Troop Meeting Plan.. Skills instruction in a troop context takes place "sometimes" ("[The patrol is] the place where boys learn skills together. . . . ” B.S.A. Scoutingmagazine.org., (currently posted); Patrols will sometimes join with other patrols to learn skills and complete advancement requirements.” B.S.A., Scouting.org (2019)[emphasis added]) The typical Scoutmaster in this century, and I taught them on the district, council, and area levels for over thirty years, thinks in terms of the "troop method," as do so many of the young folks at BSA : Troops are "divided into patrols," rather than patrols combined into troops for administrative and support purposes. Patrols "may" have their own activities, but only if they do not conflict with the far less important troop activities. As of 35 years ago, the vast majority of Scoutmasters in my current council appointed all Patrol Leaders and SPLs. Why? "The boys will almost always pick the wrong Scout, based on popularity." The Journey to Mediocrity program does not require in any measurable way more than merely "having" "patrols." They need not function in any way as patrols under The Patrol Method - for example they need plan nothing, they need have zero separate activities of any kind, Scouts need not lead anything, no leaders need be elected. And this is a "primary tool" to track unit improvement. 0___0 A BSA goal - now a separate goal - is leadership development. It is generally understood that this goal requires allowing Scouts to actually lead, however stressful. The adults' role is not to lead but to train, coach, and be a resource or pathways to resources. Every time an adult takes the "ball" from the Scout and toes the "rubber" to "pitch," they are defeating a important goal of the program. Scouting, the magazine, said a few years ago, that youth leadership should await the youth becoming competent leaders, showing, once again, how clueless "professionals" can be. The first requirement of leadership development is allowing the putative leaders to lead. Yet unit after unit, with BSA encouragement, says its goal is youth leading - if they can just find the right circumstances. And the years pass. BSA says it prohibits the advancement mills, enforces nothing, and gives recognition to successful millery. But, BSA, says many things it honors in the breach. My former council - divided and rolled into two others three years ago - made a Scoutmaster "Scoutmaster of the Year" despite the troop having only two weekend campouts a year - one a electronics game "lock in" and one a stay in cabins with meals at MacDonald's and Burger King. The Journey to Mediocrity program counts indoor meetings as "weekend campouts." (Shockingly, This honored Scoutmaster's Patrol Leaders, who wore no patrol medallions, could not tell me the names of the respective patrols of which they were theoretically the "leaders." That troop's patrols did absolutely nothing as patrols - even games were "ones" vs "twos.") So The Patrol Method is largely dead, the outdoor program made some sort of sick joke by "outdoor" being defined as indoor, and advancement scandals are regularly tolerated. Even in a decentralized program, leadership at the national and local levels is important. The "tougher" the times, the more inept leadership hurts.
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