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fred8033

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About fred8033

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    Fred Johnson 2

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    Software Engineer

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  1. fred8033

    Lost Eagle Scout Project Proposal

    Ask for it to be re-signed using the original dates of review and signature. Scouter's should be friendly and help. It's a whoops, not a circumventing processes. If you don't get help, take it to the next level. Even if not signed, I'd still submit it with an explanation. ANOTHER VIEW comes from BSA Nov/Dec 2017 Advancement News talked about signatures on the proposal. The topic is "Jumping the gun." https://filestore.scouting.org/filestore/advancement_news/2017_Nov-Dec.pdf Their view is the advancement requirement is to develop, plan and lead a project. Paperwork and signatures are NOT part of the requirement. They are enablers to ensure a better path toward success. Without signatures, you could have issues. Signatures make a smoother path. But strictly speaking, they are NOT the requirement. So if you lost the signatures, it's a mistake but not circumventing the process. Ask to see how is best to remedy the situation.
  2. $20,000 !!!! Are you sure that's not the cost for a NEW version? Old boats lose value quickly. If it is worth $20,000, that is a ridiculous asset for a troop to carry. It sounds like this is a nebulous position on whether it's a personal vehicle (titled to a individual, used mostly for personal use) or a troop owned asset (not titled to charter org, used once a year). New motor boat engines for a 20+ foot boat is worth more than $4000. Often, the engine is worth the same as the boat. Perhaps this is an in-board motor that is really a car engine mounted in a boat. See if you can smile and let this go. If you rented a boat, you'd be paying $1000 per day for such a vehicle. Boats are expensive period ... to buy, to operate, to repair.
  3. Good comments so far. Here are a few of my thoughts. It's hard to judge this sort of thing from the outside. A 21' motor boat is a big luxury for a troop to use once or twice a year. Depending the age and features, a $4000 repair could be 20% of the value or 120% of the value. I strongly question continuing to hold that asset. Broke due to misuse? ... How? It would help to have context ? Boats are pretty durable generally and hard to break. On the flip side, using boats have common accidents like running into docks, losing anchors, hitting rocks with propellers. So it really makes me wonder what is misuse ? Lots of experience in the troop committee and what they've achieved over the years probably attracted you and your scouts. Strictly speaking, scoutmasters and the ASMs are intentionally supposed to NOT have a vote. That's the rule. But, most troops allow it as most troops are run by a set of friends that work in friendly agreements. Votes happen, but usually the votes don't happen on controversial issues where there are huge differences of opinion. If that is normally an issue, then troops tend to fall apart because of internal differences. My questions though are ... Do the committee members know some of the parents are upset ? Do the committee members know that parents are chatting that this money is misused ? Is there a chance for the troop to sell the boat? IMHO, it seems like that is the best option. If the boat was donated to the troop, then the troop can sell it. As for the spent money, it's in the past. Now, you really need to make a choice of whether you can leave the issue in the past? If not, move on. KEY POINT - The time our children have in scouts is short. It might seem long now, but the time goes quick. I'd focus much less on this incident and much more on providing him the best scouting experience possible. Don't let this issue damage his (or her now) experience. Though you might disagree with the decision of the troop committee, it roughly sounds like they followed the right procedure and came to a reasonable decision. The "misuse" issue is a distraction. The boat is a troop asset that requires cost to maintain and run. If you want to make a difference, then build friendships with the committee members AND build an understanding and discussion with the committee members. Get to know each other.
  4. fred8033

    Juvenile Offenses and Ethics

    I may have missed some posts from the original scoutmaster that may influence my view. It's the challenge when the facts come out a bit at a time. I am one who always wants to make the mistake in the scout's favor. But, it is the scoutmasters discretion and there is a threshold where you do say no. It's in the scoutmaster's discretion and boards will hold it up in those cases. I wish this scoutmaster the best.
  5. fred8033

    Juvenile Offenses and Ethics

    Experiencing repercussions is natural. We just don't need to pile on more. The scout already has repercussions at school and home. He will have probably some minor follow-on in the court system with a juvenile diversion program. He did not commit an offense in camp, at meetings or at a scout activity. My view is that we should not penalize him anymore than the school would if he shop lifted from the local Walmart. I was not inferring either. I was just confirming it's the exact reason the Scout Spirit requirement exists. It's the catch all. You can't use the scoutmaster conference as a blocker for the scout. But honestly, you could use the scout spirit. It's a unit's call. If the scout had committed a serious offense, yes I would use it without hesitation. But ... in my opinion ..., I would not use it for this.
  6. fred8033

    Juvenile Offenses and Ethics

    Scout spirit is the one scouters can use as a fallback when the scout misbehaves. It's why many scoutmasters keep it for the end and reserve the signature right on that requirement to themselves.
  7. fred8033

    Juvenile Offenses and Ethics

    We need to be careful with labels. "Criminal behavior" may be accurate but it is also strongly biased. In Illinois, the penalty he faces is about the same as a large speeding offense. I suspect most of us at one time or other was speeding at least 10 miles over the speed limit. Probably in our lives, at least once significantly more than that whether intentional or by accident. That is also criminal activity. We are also definitely at a point where we are discussing whether it should be treated as criminal. It is easy to for impressionable youth to get caught up in those discussions and surrounding glamorization. I'd think about showing compassion and understanding before adding more headaches to the scout's life. If you can't for whatever reason, then he should not be in your troop.
  8. Great question ... For the unit to approve, the scout needs to fill out the "Proposal" section of the workbook. If it ain't written, it ain't a proposal. Otherwise, it's like someone asking you to sign a check without them filling in the receiver and the amount. https://www.scouting.org/programs/boy-scouts/advancement-and-awards/eagle-scout-workbook/ The approver can be one person. You don't need the committee to review. We often just use the committee chair. Other troops assign a person. Some troops do have the scout present to the committee. As for criteria to sign, the BSA signature line is fairly good ... "This Eagle Scout candidate is a Life Scout, and registered in our unit. I have reviewed this proposal, I am comfortable the project is feasible, and I will do everything I can to see that our unit measures up to the level of support we have agreed to provide (if any). I certify that I have been authorized by our unit committee to provide its approval for this proposal." When I sign, I look for ... What is the scout committing to do ? What is in scope ? What is out of scope ? How many ? What defines done ? Does it meet the criteria for a legitimate Eagle project ? Non-profit or public institution or ... Does it give scout a chance for leadership ? Is he developing a concept ? is it his project ? Does the scout have a good chance at success ? Will the scout have a good experience ? Does the scout understand his own project such that he can drive the development of the idea, plan the execution and be a driving force ? There is no requirement for detailed planning or diagrams. But there is an expectation that the scout can communicate in his proposal enough to establish an agreement of what is his project is. If it's not there, it is reasonable to help him flush it right then, out on-the-spot or ask for him to go back and come back when the concept is communicated better. It is important to remember the project is about service, leadership and the scout making a difference. Paperwork and signatures are just enablers.
  9. For me ... The good Patrol mates and refreshing fellowship of being with other scouters who wanted to be there. It helped rebuild my energy for the program. Watching how they ran the program. Marching. Songs. Competitions. Service patrols. PLC. Blue and Gold. etc. I was not a scout in my youth. It helped show me an "ideal" program. The meh... I won't say bad because none of it was bad. Classwork and individual topics. I've been through so so many leadership, management and team development programs that I saw little new and much of it was done very lightly. As such, it was a good introduction, but I don't think I benefited from this part as I had seen it previously many times. The annoying Woodbadge volunteer badgering. ... Happened to me. Happens to many. You are made to feel like you are not well trailed if you have not taken it. I have a friend who has been in scouts for 50+ years through parents, himself, kids and his grand kids. Eagle scout. Retired military officer. He just took the class to stop the badgering from woodbadge locals.
  10. fred8033

    Juvenile Offenses and Ethics

    These days this violation is relatively minor. Plus, youth are affected by societal changes. States are legalizing. Current culture openly shows contempt. Youth are bound to be caught up in these changes. I find it hard to blame him any more than a 1950s youth that experimented with smoking when he comes from a home where a mom and dad smoke. Generally, I think your focus is wrong. If he is a member of your troop, he deserves the right to have an advancement path forward. That's part of being a member and one of the core scouting tools. We as leaders do not lay in the weeds waiting for the youth to reach a milestone that we will not let them pass. Either address the issue now or let it go. Like all good discipline, timeliness is key. If you don't feel like you can handle it now, then I'd question if it really is an issue to be handled in scouting. For me and mine, I think this is more a membership question and a question of the health of the troop. Will he bring this into the troop? Will he expose this other kids? Will other kids avoid the troop? Will other parents view the troop as a risk for their kids?
  11. I've seen this happen too. Event time is not possible without prep time. We've had our prep time taken and had to re-scope and re-plan. It's not fun to take three hours of prep and do it all in 20 minutes. I feel sorry for the troop. Once the visitors and vendors are burnt by the experience, I doubt they'll invest the time and cost to go again. The troop just lost an event forever.
  12. fred8033

    Each Patrol Member Needs a Job

    I hugely agree. We focus so much on teaching leadership, but we often don't do as well teaching what it means to be a team member or to support the leader. It's one thing that our troop historically did well. We often had the attitude that when one scout is working, then other scouts should be working too. You don't get to just sit and watch because your own job is done. I remember being on a camp out with another troop and having an epiphany that it was not the example I wanted my son to learn. My son and I arrived two hours late because of conflicts. My son and his tent mate started setting up their tent. I was sad because none of his patrol mates had helped his tent mate setup the tent earlier. And, none helped now. They just sat around because their work was done. While I was setting up my tent, none of the adults helped. They just sat around talking. In my main troop, it was a conscious practice that we had. If someone is working, you get up and ask how you can help. The patrol or senior scouts would have helped the lone scout setup the tent for him and his late arriving buddy. In addition, the other adults would have stopped gabbing and at least one or two would have come over to help setup my tent. It's friendly, helpful and part of building fellowship. While setting up my tent by myself, I was thinking to recent campouts with my main troop. The SPL would have encouraged the scouts to help. The SM would have encouraged the adults to set an example by helping instead of just sitting and chatting. When done and someone is still working, you find a way to help. And I've even had the scouts come over to ask if they could help. We'd all chat and laugh while working. But we had made a conscious decision that we wanted to emphasize in our troop that we help each other at all times. You don't get to rest just because your individual job is done. I'm strongly in favor of that. IMHO, it's less a job and more a duty roster.
  13. fred8033

    Each Patrol Member Needs a Job

    This sounds more like I'm accustomed too seeing. Within a patrol, one guy has a title: the patrol leader. Maybe the APL too ... maybe. But the rest of jobs and responsibility. In advance of events and activities, someone is developing the menu and buying the food. Someone is also getting special gear needed for the camp out. For during activities and events, the PL makes sure the patrol work is spread out and shared. Assignments for cooking, getting water, etc etc etc. I always fear when I hear things such that everyone needs a job that it will get too formalized such that we are teaching middle-management instead of teaching leadership; that we start teaching bureaucracy instead of teaching taking care of your people and being a member of a team.
  14. fred8033

    Each Patrol Member Needs a Job

    I briefly remember that from Woodbadge and I remember having a hard time matching that Woodbadge example with BSA teaching materials and past habits I've seen from my troops. I fear this is one of those where BSA teaching is not consistent and probably reflects internal differences of opinion of the BSA professional staff. At some point, we just need to make a program that works for our own troops. My troops don't publish a scout published newsletter for use by the scouts. Scouts text each other or chat face-to-face. The newsletters have been for parent consumption and are for coordination. Also, the patrols mainly follow the troop schedule with troop camp outs and troop activities. The "patrol" organized camp out or activity is the exception. From what I've seen in my troops, I would NOT encourage our patrols to have patrol scribes. I just don't think there is that much work. But then again, if there is a true troop published newsletter and each patrol has separate activities then we maybe I would. Ultimately, it is their choice, but the adult leaders do strongly influence the scouts.
  15. fred8033

    Each Patrol Member Needs a Job

    I agree. I've seen troops that have multiple ASPLs as those ASPLs were assigned different responsibilities. But sometimes it seems like titles are being created to give people a patch. For example, eight quartermasters ? Do you then have a senior quartermaster patch and then patrol quartermaster patches? At some point we are teaching the bureaucracy of middle management instead of leadership. It's scouting. It's supposed to be simple and structured around outings.
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