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Everything posted by ParkMan

  1. ParkMan

    From National: Official Name

    I do respect your opinions. For months, I've read thread after thread about how girls don't belong in troops, about how the BSA lied to us. I've listened for months as people has defamed the BSA, denigrated girls, and the GSUSA. I think I've been beyond respectful of folks who want to vent. But, for the sake of the movement we all hold so dear, there comes a point where we need to start saying - can we please move on.
  2. ParkMan

    From National: Official Name

    I really think it's time to move on. The debate is really over - we can rehash it here, but the future of Scouting is co-ed. Yeah - maybe we weren't consulted - but it's done. The boys (and girls) will adjust just fine. The program will be just fine too. My recommendation is to move past rehashing this debate. Instead of fearing that girls are going to ruining Boy Scouting, work with the girls to create really strong co-ed troops.
  3. ParkMan

    How will you talk about girls troops and packs?

    I wonder if he see's the path to growth for girls really being separate girls only units.
  4. The endgame for the BSA is the end to the phrases "boy scouts" and "girl scouts" in conjunction with it's program. It's just "scouts" now. We don't say "girl venturers" and "boy venturers" - it's just venturers. I'd suggest that as a community, we ought to embrace the new term and own in. Like it or not, it is what the program is now. Seems like we ought to get the most mileage from it we can.
  5. Hah - didn't expect to see the thread get into discussion on being communist If anything the BSA is somewhere between a republic and an oligarchy
  6. I'd disagree. The BSA just co-opted the general term for it's 11-17 program. It's: Cub Scouts - "I'm a Cub Scout", "I participate in Cub Scouts", "I have a Cub Scout meeting" Scouts - "I'm a Scout", "I participate in Scouts", "I have a Scout meeting" Venturing - "I'm a Venturer", "I participate in Venturing", "I have a Venturing meeting" - OK, not sure about that last one
  7. That would be silly It's got to be: Cub Scouts are called Cub Scouts Sea Scouts are called Sea Scouts Scouts and called Scouts Venturers are called Venturers Explorers are called Explorers
  8. That's my guess as to what will happen here at some point. For the next 5-6 years, it will be separate. This will allow anyone who is in the program today to migrate through. Once that happens, we'll start to see the transition. That feels pretty fair to me too - if you join the BSA today, you kinda know where it's heading.
  9. ParkMan

    can a CO change the rules? if so, how far?

    Very fair. I do get that there are different styles out there in the world. Apologies if I seemed critical. What you describe is unusual me and I was just surprised enough that I kept thinking something was getting lost in our exchange. My abstraction would be this: - The COR and IH provide direction to the unit on how it should conduct the program. They also set the rules for how the unit interacts with the larger CO. - It is possible that the COR, IH, or even the IH's managers extend that authority to others in the organization of the CO. Basically, the IH could say - let every teacher have complete authority over every aspect of your program. I don't think that's typical - even in cases where there is an engaged CO. But, I don't doubt it happens. Within the way the BSA is setup, that is legitimate. However, if the CO begins to change the fundamentals of the program, and almost certainly if the CO does anything to contradict YPT or Guide to Safe Scouting rules - the council or national have the right to revoke the charter and to remove volunteers from the program.
  10. ParkMan

    can a CO change the rules? if so, how far?

    It's 15 minutes into the football game, and the art teacher (who is not the field supervisor) goes up to the football coach and says "for the rest of the game, I want you to run only these new plays I've created". The football coach is supposed to just obey?
  11. ParkMan

    How will you talk about girls troops and packs?

    If your troop committee is like mine, they're just hesitant to a new big project that doesn't help improve the program for their sons. The path in our troop is for some adults interested in doing this to spearhead it. 4-5 adults who are willing to work to make it happen. The rest of the committee will support it if they get it going. My recommendation: 1) figure out if you CO would be open to it. If no, then there is probably little point. 2) start talking about the possibility with folks. See if other parents are interested. If yes, develop a proposal and take it to the committee.
  12. ParkMan

    New Member - Leatherworking

    Welcome to the forum @BigDale!
  13. ParkMan

    can a CO change the rules? if so, how far?

    I'm not following your thinking. A good analogy is a sports team. If this were a high school, a teacher would not be allowed to go to the football team and start telling the coach how to run the team.
  14. ParkMan

    can a CO change the rules? if so, how far?

    If it seems that way - I'm sorry, but that's not my intent. The principal (as the IH) and COR asked us to run a scouting program at their facility. The 3rd grade teacher did not. Why would the principal and COR want me to start changing around the program because the 3rd grade teacher showed up at the scout meeting and started telling me how to run a scout troop? BTW - I'm not picking on 3rd grade teacher. My wife and mother are teachers.
  15. ParkMan

    can a CO change the rules? if so, how far?

    Ouch! Thats awful! It's tough to discuss situations without specifics. I'm gathering that it wasn't something ridiculous where the VP made a mistake and the student should have known better. If it was, that's a different case. But, assuming it really was a case where the student got caught between two adults who legitimatly disagreed... If I were the parent this would have resulted in a meeting between me and principal. "Your band VP told my son to do this and say no to the teacher. It is ridiculous that you are now suspending him because he was caught between two adults on your team. I need this corrected - who do you and I talk with to do that?" We're I the band VP I'd step down too. I wouldn't waste my time on an organization that did that to a student.
  16. ParkMan

    can a CO change the rules? if so, how far?

    Really - that's what the adults (probably just the SM or CC) are for. I wouldn't expect any scout to openly defy any adult. I would expect the more experienced scouts to be aware enough to call in an adult to help. If a teacher came along and said "boys quiet down", I'd expect a nice "Yes, absolutely." If the teacher said - stop playing and clean your cook kits, I'd expect the scout ic charge to say - "Thanks, but we've been told this is free time. Let me go grab my Scoutmaster for you." For the scouts, it doesn't need to come down to just obeying or defying - a leadership skill I expect these guys to develop is how to interact with other authority figures, but still work within the parameters of what he's supposed to do. The troop adults - (and again particularly the SM and CC) - should be able to navigate the politics of outside adults. Again, I'd expect them to be respectful - treat them like a distinguished guest. Thank you Mr. teacher for visiting with us tonight. But, I would also expect them to push back if appropriate. Again, if it's minor - no big deal - chalk it up to diplomacy. But, if it's something more significant, the adults need to respectfully say no. "Thank you so much for that recommendation. Given the way our program is structured this evening, we regrettably not in a position to do that today." If the teacher were really to push there is at some point a gut call - does the adult just do it to preserve harmony. But, if the adults said no - that would be fine. "Mr. Teacher, I do understand you'd very much like us to hold patrol elections tonight, but that isn't in our plans. We're here to deliver the best program we can for your school and in my judgement that's not the right call. I'd be happy to meet I with you and our COR to discuss it further at another time."
  17. ParkMan

    can a CO change the rules? if so, how far?

    I fully appreciate that there are different models for the CO/scouting unit relationship. A charge from the IH By the CO charging the unit leaders with implementing the program, he/she places them in a position of trust. Those individuals are charged with providing the Scouting program to the best of their abilities. Part of that responsibility is to advocate for their program. Say I were the IH or COR. When I create a scouting unit, I have in essence created a scouting department within my CO. I am a CC of a troop - so that makes me responsible to my organizational chain. I report to the COR and in turn the IH. If another department in the CO starts interfering with the Scouting program, it is my responsibility as CC to advocate for my department. Other members of the CO Since we're using schools as en example - I'll do the same. If I were chartered to a school, the IH would be the principal. The COR would be the representative of the school. As CC, I would report to the COR. - Say that a teacher at the school comes along and says "please be quieter during your meeting, your disturbing my students." Out of professional courtesy and being a good citizen of the school, I would do my best to honor the request. - Say that another teacher at the school comes to the troop meeting and starts telling the scouts how to do dishes or run the troop meeting. As CC, I would be right to speak with the teacher and say "thanks for the input, we have a different approach." I would be polite and courteous, but we do not need to simply obey. If the teacher persisted, I would simply say - let's setup a meeting next week with the COR, you, and I to work through this. Though the teacher works at the school, the teacher is outside of my organizational chain. By the teacher coming along and inserting them into the organizational chain, they are making it difficult and perhaps impossible for me to follow through on the charge of my "bosses" - the COR & IH. The teacher does not by default have direct authority over the scouting program. The only people who have authority over the program are the COR, the IH (principal), and the principal's management chain. Now, it's the real world and employees of the CO almost certainly have better political connections than my scout troop. As such, we need to be respectful. But, if we're doing the right thing (according to the charge given to us by the IH) - then we need to push back on the outside influence of the teacher.
  18. ParkMan

    can a CO change the rules? if so, how far?

    It would seem reasonable for the CO to add rules about how the troop operates when they don't compete with official BSA rules. Those rules could be more restrictive. For example: the troop can not plan an activity at a time that conflicts with other CO activities. The referenced rule that boy scouts should obey cub scout leaders feels like that category. A CO cannot change advancement rules. They cannot say - here's extra work a scout has to do. Beyond that, I believe they can make other changes they see fit. For example, they could say no patrols. The more they remove here, the less like a BSA troop they are.
  19. ParkMan

    New member with issue

    Good call - walking away is best. There are lots of packs out there that function very well. You only get a small window of time as a Cub Scout parent. It's one thing to try to change a few things. But, when it gets to this level, I really don't think it's worth your energy. You're right to put this on the door step of others who dig into the issues. For those of us that have been around for a while, the structure and behavior you describe of this unit are very unusual. A single combined pack/troop committee is odd. A committee that told the leaders not to come - very odd. The district getting involved this directly is also very unusual. Districts rarely get involved in internal unit operations like this - especially not field directors. They don't call special meetings to complain about the unit. There is a lot that is unusual here. That's why you're getting lots of questions. Best of luck!
  20. ParkMan

    New member with issue

    I've had scouts dual register. It's unusual - but it is allowed. I'm sure there are packs in your area that would love to have your son join. If you'd come to our pack, we'd have welcomed you to the group. When you approach a new pack, I'd just go over the dual registration approach at the beginning. As for pursuing the issue with the old pack. My recommendation would be to make a call to the helpline above. Give them a report of your concern. They'll follow up with the council and it will get investigated. I wouldn't think any more of it - I'd move on.
  21. ParkMan

    New member

    Welcome @thehavensgrey. Thanks for getting invovled with Scouting again!
  22. Instead of reading, I'd suggest internalizing the lessons contained within and developing an activity the scouts can do. They'll remember that more.
  23. ParkMan

    Would you say anything

    As a CC, I'd welcome a phone call from a parent. Here we have a concern from one parent about bullying by another patent. It may be something, it may be a misunderstanding. But, I would want to know. I have pretty good relationships with the SM and ASMs. It's easy for me to ask around and see what people think.
  24. ParkMan

    How Many ASMs per Troop

    I agree @WonderBoy. You've captured nicely what I've found. I definitely find we need to think about succession planning. We have a few ASMs who are newer and are learning the ropes. Some eventually get more active, some not. But, when we don't have those folks in the wings and someone leaves, we have to scramble. I used to convert less active ASMs to Committee Members. But, as I learned about Troop operations, I realized how important a strong Committee is. So, I started really focusing on building up the committee. Coming out of that - I only register Committee Members as those people who want to be Committee Members. So, we register folks for whatever position their heart desires. We try to then encourage them to get active. It's probably not ideal, but it seems to work. We're starting to experiment with the Unit Scouter Reserve position. The idea is to point those people to it that want to register, but not take training or take on a role. I'm not sure if it will fly - but we'll see.
  25. ParkMan

    Frequency of tiger den meetings

    @Kdl Welcome!!! Thanks for the dedication to your den. The scouts will definitely benefit from it.