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About markrvp

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    Granbury, TX
  1. markrvp

    New advancement coordinator needs help!

    melissalb: Somehow when you registered this forum tied your account to my e-mail address. Now every time someone posts in this thread I get an e-mail saying "Hello melissalb, so and so has responded to a thread you are subscribed to..." Could you please check your account info and put your e-mail address so I don't get your e-mails? Thanks, Mark
  2. Apparently a new member signed up with a user ID of: melissalb I don't know why, but my e-mail address has been tied to her account and everytime someone posts in a thread she's been in I get an e-mail notification. I really would like this to stop. Who do I need to e-mail that can take care of this? Thanks, Mark
  3. markrvp

    What Would it Take to Change your mind on ...

    This thread is kind of like watching an Episode of American Chopper... people arguing due to boredom and/or ego.
  4. Let me ask for clarification, because this was an issue that delayed a scout from reaching 1st Class for a couple of months... when this scout had completed all the other First Class requirements he had attended 6 separate troop activites AND 5 campouts. The Scoutmaster believed that only 3 of those 5 campouts could count as troop activities since the requirement says, "three of which included camping out." So this scout was stuck at 9 troop activities during a two month period where the troop didn't have any other non-camping special activities. It is/was my belief that the "three of which included camping out" is a minimum requirement, and as such any additional camping activities should also count. Do you guys only count 3 campouts or do you allow additional campouts to count towards the 10 activities? PS... Please don't flame me or question my character/integrity (Beavah)... I am simply asking for clarification.
  5. markrvp

    What Would it Take to Change your mind on ...

    For a homosexual couple to naturally produce a baby.
  6. markrvp

    In Troop Merit Badge Counselors

    As our troop's "merit badge coordinator" it has been my job to try and recruit as many qualified counselors as possible for the badges where we didn't have someone in the district. The SM defers to me to help the boys find a merit badge counselor. Because my son has worked on a lot of merit badges I have been able to meet with these counselors and I have a good idea who to send the boys to and who is difficult to schedule. I encourage all of you to get as involved as you can with the merit badge counselors. Anytime I meet someone with a unique skill set that would be great for a counselor I tell them all about the particular merit badge and try and get them excited about the prospect of scouts learning something about what they do. Once you get them excited and talking about something they have a passion for, then it's much easier to get them to sign up to be a counselor. There is an 85-year-old man at our church (CO) who loves sailing, but is too old to go out by himself any more. He donated his sailboat to our troop. He wasn't able to be the counselor for SMALL BOAT SAILING, but he happily agreed to teach me how to sail. Once he got me up to speed I was able to become the MB counselor. This worked out great for everybody. Some merit badges are logistically difficult without outside resources... Horsemanship, motorboating, climbing, shooting, etc. These are great badges to work on at summer camp. However, I have worked very hard this past year to come up with a counselor/plan for these badges so that going to camp wasn't a limitation. One thing we did was get a local stable owner to become a Horsemanship merit badge counselor. Likewise, you could get a scuba shop owner to become a counselor for Scuba Diving. When I approach these people, I let them know that being a merit badge counselor can be a new revenue stream (albeit small) for the future. It helps their business and it helps the Scouts earn a badge they might otherwise have to do at camp or miss out on. Anyway, these are some of the things I've done and my thoughts on building a better merit badge program in a troop.
  7. markrvp

    In Troop Merit Badge Counselors

    My son is 13, a Star Scout, and has earned 42 merit badges so far. He is also making a run at earning all merit badges. Probably 2/3 of his counselors are in-town, but not necessarily in-troop. One thing I've noticed is that some of the merit badge counselors my son has called haven't worked with anybody in years. I get the impression that most troops are using in-troop counselors and some of these older counselors are no longer used. The YPT requirement for MB Counselors is fixing to cause our District MB counselor list to get cut in half.
  8. markrvp

    Scouter - Back In Business!

    I am unable to edit my profile information. In IE when I click continue it just refreshes the page. When I try it in Chrome I get this error: Microsoft OLE DB Provider for ODBC Drivers error '80040e14' [Microsoft][ODBC SQL Server Driver] Line 1: Incorrect syntax near ','. /members/modify/process2.asp, line 19
  9. I got the e-mail with these requirements from our District today. In bold letters they indicated that the YPT requirement also applies to MERIT BADGE COUNSELORS. If this is the case, I think it will be difficult recruiting new MB counselors that aren't already involved in Scouts some way. We'll see.
  10. markrvp

    Recommend GPS for Scouting

    One of the most accurate GPS units is the Garmin 60CSx. They are normally around $350, but Cabela's, REI, and Bass Pro have had them on sale for around $200 this past week. You can get free topo and driving maps here: http://www.gpsfiledepot.com/
  11. markrvp

    Life Rank requirement #6 EDGE method

    There has been a minor change effective January 1, 2010. It doesn't actually affect anything, but the nomenclature is different. For Star, Requirement 6e has changed... It now reads 1, 7a, and 7b (outoor skills) and NO LONGER includes 7c (requirements a & b were combined, and c was changed to b). Anyhoo... While a Star Scout, use the EDGE method to teach a younger Scout the skills from ONE of the following six choices, so that he is prepared to pass those requirements to his unit leader's satisfaction. Second Class - 7a and 7c (first aid) Second Class - 1a (outdoor skills) Second Class - 3c, 3d, 3e, and 3f (cooking/camping) First Class - 8a, 8b, 8c, and 8d (first aid) First Class - 1, 7a, and 7b (outdoor skills) First Class - 4a, 4b, and 4d (cooking/camping)
  12. markrvp

    Scout interest fading...causing conflict.

    I've discovered that my feelings on advancement are different from many of the people here. However, I think it's good to have a plan... one that is flexible and can be modified based on changing tastes and circumstances. My son read an article about a scout who earned ALL of the available merit badges. Now my son wants to earn at least 100. We sat down and talked about what he would need to do to make that happen. Then we made a plan. We looked at the requirements for all the merit badges and divided them into categories... badges to work on at camp, badges to work on during the summer (personal fitness, personal management, family life), badges that he needed to save money for, etc. Then he listed the first 50 badges he wanted to work on in an order that made sense based on what was needed for each badge. He started this plan at the first of March. At that time he had 4 merit badges. Since then, he has earned 14 more. He has them lined up 1-50 in the order he wants to work on them. When he finishes one, he goes onto the next one. When he reaches 50 he'll re-evaluate and create his list for 51-100. My only BIG input into his plan was where to place Eagle required badges so that he would have the badges he needs at the right time to advance in rank. The interesting thing is when he tells non-scouter types about this they think it's great. The scouter types all scream, "that's horrible, no scout should to that, that's not what scouting's about!" Well, why not? Isn't Scouting about learning new things? How many new things would you learn if you successfully completed 100 merit badges? HE HAS MY FULL PERMISSION to take a break any time he wants to. We agreed that if if stops being fun, then he'll lay off. No big deal. I don't agree, however, that you should NEVER push a scout. Some people in general are just not self-starters, but will happily do things you ask them to do. Every person is different, so thinking about the future and making a plan can definitely help someone get headed in the right direction.
  13. A lot of the conversation in this thread is discussing "when did the scouts join, who are the scouts, are you related to the scouts..." None of these are requirements for advancing in rank. I am a "by the rules" kind of guy (my father is a judge). If the rules say a Scout may advance after completing XYZ requirements, then I believe it is contrary to the BSA guidelines to make it harder to advance. A scout would not be in a position to advance to Star if he had not already demonstrated proficiency in camping, first aid, basic swimming, etc. All three of the scouts in question have a minimum of 18 nights campout experience. Two of them have over 20. Our troop is VERY active in scouting activities, just poor in the execution of Board of Reviews. I had an hour long talk with the CC last night and he has agreed that BORs should be handled by the Advancement Chair. That will be announced at the meeting Monday night. I've talked to the Advancement Chair and she believes BORs should be handled on an "as-needed" basis. I am thrilled with this outcome as I believe it conforms to BSA Guidelines and is fair to Scouts who want to advance. Keep in mind that not every Scout cares about advancing. I have a mother upset with me right now because I arranged for her two sons to cook on a campout this weekend to meet the requirements for their Camping merit badge they are taking at Summer Camp. For whatever reason, she's upset that her kids are being "forced" to cook. Whatever. If my legacy in this troop is making it possible for kids to advance who actually want to, then I'm okay with that.
  14. Vicki: I totally agree with your stance on "artificial hurdles" Monday night there is an "all adults" meeting to clear the air. The advancement chair and I both agree that it should be her call as to scheduling BORs and we will push to make it that way. She's said she doesn't have a problem with having two other committee members over to her house to do a Board of Review if one is needed outside of normal meetings. That's the kind of adult commitment that I was looking for. Having a new Scoutmaster and new CC in one year is hard. Too many personalities all trying to exert themselves at once.
  15. "What is your position in the Troop, as a registered Scouter?" I am an Assistant Scoutmaster, registered and trained. I will be attending Wood Badge this Fall. One of the interesting things about Scouting is the wide difference of opinions. I am of the opinion that Scouts should be allowed to advance as quickly as possible. I realize not everybody feels that way and some of those reasons may be valid. I will say that my son has earned 15 merit badges already and is definitely a go-getter. Thanks everybody for the information. I agree it is simply not worth the risk of losing an Eagle badge over trying to get the BOR done a few hours early. The fathers of the other two scouts talked to me today and they are also upset, but it is what it is.