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Everything posted by ParkMan

  1. This "Family Scouting" thing really isn't what it's being made out to be. The "Scouts BSA" isn't a family camping club - it never has been, it never will be. That just makes no sense for the BSA to even try that. Any units that are doing that are just misusing the term.
  2. Agreed - there surely will be mergers. Makes me think the BSA had too many eggs in one basket. Hopegully tbis will force them to try harder on recruiting and marketing.
  3. This clearly was in the works before the vote. I wouldn't just assume that the move to add girls was a reaction to lost revenue. Instead, I really wonder if this is simply what happened when the BSA leadership found itself free of the pressure of the LDS church. I wonder if we'll see some other, progressive changes in the next few years without the LDS influence.
  4. Yeah - have to imagine this was well known. While there will be a financial hit - this may actually be a blessing in disguise. The BSA will be less impacted by a single religious group going forward.
  5. We'll see a couple of units go in our district, but nothing dramatic.
  6. This is very similar to what we did. There was no ceremony for Webelos to AOL though. Sorry!
  7. While I'm sure important votes happen - always figured it was like watching CSPAN.
  8. We're starting to do this too. Right now it's the scouts when they join college - but it really could be anyone. My only hesitation is that it seems like a weird name.
  9. Thanks guys! It's 35 registered volunteers - not 35 ASMs. It's actually 15 ASMs and 20 Committee Members. The reason we have this many is because we make a point to ask. The adults pay their BSA fee, so it is no financial harm to have more. I presume they register to be able to help out. On the committee side, we do a pretty good job of getting folks specific jobs - so that number isn't crazy. In fact, we have had folks change from ASM to MC because of their committee job.
  10. Back from dinner. @scoutldr - it's not that we don't get involvement. We rarely have events canceled because of adults. What tends to happen though is that it's the SM and some parents. Maybe some of those parents are registered as ASMs maybe not. But, the list of really active, engaged ASMs is pretty small. The Scoutmaster likes to think of events by which adult is responsible for it. He constantly asks for more adults to '"step up". So it becomes a question of which adult is responsible for it. We have all kinds of events that don't happen because there isn't an adult willing to be responsible for it. I wouldn't say that the committee is trying to supervise the Scoutmaster. The Scoutmaster goes to the Committee and says "we don't have an adult to organize this trip". He then puts it on the committee to figure out who can help. If anything, it's that the Scoutmaster invites the Committee to get involved. Because we have a lot of registered adults, this kinda works. Committee members and some ASMs step up to serve as adult lead on the trips. But, just as often the SM ends up just doing it himself. I've never been terribly comfortable with this approach. It just feels like every time a new event comes up, we scrounge around to figure out who can organize it. That led me to thinking about - maybe I've got this all wrong. @qwazse - That's what we've done historically. Recruit ASMs from within the familes and get them registered. Get them connected with the SM so they can get going. But, as I mentioned earlier - we tend to get them signed up, but then not really give them a role. This has me thinking - maybe I'm just doing this wrong.
  11. Thanks guys - I appreciate the pointers. @sst3rd - I fully agree. I'm a big fan of letting folks do their jobs and I've got no interest in being involved in programming. My dilemma is that we don't really seem to leverage the ASMs all that much. I think what happens is that they sign up, go on a few trips, but don't really have a role. Eventually, they get bored of just being around and stop engaging. ** ADDING SOME MORE TEXT - SAVED TOO SOON **
  12. Thanks. A couple of followup questions. So you see the CC looking at the yearly calendar and then filling each of the trips with registered leaders? Or, do you see it as a more general thing where the CC simply recruits more adult and then they sort out amongst themselvs who is camping when? Im trying to figure out how involved the CC should be in figuring out who goes on what or organizes what. The SM do a good job - so they don't need the CC more involved in hs business than needs be. Looking for ideas on what's working for others.
  13. I've got a bit of a dilemma and I was hoping to get some advice. I'm the Committee Chair of a Troop. Scoutmaster has been involved for 20 years. We've got a Troop of about 80 boys. We've got lots of registered adults - 35 last I checked. Half the adults are asms The thing I've never quite figured out is how a troop gets adult participation at events. Whether it's a camping trip, service project, or other event, we struggle to get adults to step forward who will help out or even attend. I understand that it's the boy's troop and that they should shoulder much of the leadership. They themselves are lackluster about most events. As the CC, I've encouraged the SM to get the boys more engaged. But, he's just not comfortable with it. He's got a view that we present opportunities - if the boys go, they go. If they don't, the don't. My dillema is that this is presenting two problems: 1) the quality of our outdoor program suffers. The SM doesn't really guide the SPL to get trips planned, so it often falls on the adults. Because we get lackluster participation - there are not a lot of adults with the skills and desire to do this. As a result, we have lots of small, last minute trips. 2) our bench is pretty shallow. We got the SM and a very active ASM. But past that, our adults are less engaged in the program parts of things. It is not unusual to have a trip get cancelled because neither the SM or ASM available. My question is - how do you get folks more active? Is it a culture thing? Is it a CC that is finding adults for every task? Is it a SM that builds a group of active helpers? Something different?
  14. To me, this is the only real argument in favor of a boys only program. Would the scouting mission of developing youth be better accomplished by a separate program for boys (BSA) and a seperate one for girls (GSUSA). What BP thought 100 years about gender separation isn't really all that relevant. There are just too many other groups that started in that era with separate programs that are now unified. Its hard to accept the argument that BP was correct when others who did the same are were wrong.
  15. Welcome to the forum @plumchas! Removing extra tasks from the den leaders is a great idea. They indeed have the hardest job in Cub Scouting. We had a Committee Chair who led the meetings. We had a treasurer and advancement chair. We didn't fill the other pack committee roles. What I think I found is that our committee meeting really was a pack leadership meeting - probably 50% pack committee and 50% Cubmaster/den leader meeting. We didn't really ask them to do a lot extra, but they were generally involved in all the decisions about what was going on.
  16. I'm not going to continue the point. I'm not trying to stifle your freedom of expression. I do understand the fundamental disagreement you have with co-ed Scouting. In our troop we had a period of some "storming" within the adult leadership a while back. At one point one of the ASMs called me up and said something to the effect of: "There are precious few of us trying to keep the troop going. As leaders, we're all in this boat together. At some point, we've got to stop fighting with each other and focus on bringing the program to the boys."
  17. Right - they're more savvy than that. They may clean up some deployment issues and may even allow true coed for those that want it. But, I can't imagine they'd go any further than they are now.
  18. Thanks! The scouts will definitly benefit from that. I'm 100% with you that you do it by the book.
  19. The basis of my position is that coed scouting is inevitable. I'm suggesting that you put your fears aside and support the program you've supported for many years. Instead of giving up, help these kids succeed. How would you have me act differently?
  20. My challenge would be to give it a year after you go coed. During that time, embrace the coed dynamic and work to make it great. Your experience is the best protection against a watered down program. If after a year it's too weird, retire gracefully if you want.
  21. Our troop is not pulling the trigger on this yet. Not out of philosophical reasons, but because we have parents who so believe in Scouting that they all have daughters in the GSUSA and are telling us they don't see any reason to change that. We just don't have the interest yet. What we did reason is that a quasi-linked troop structure makes sense. We'll share equipment, merit badge counsellors, planning help, etc. We'd offer joint signups for things like Merit Badge colleges. When we think about week to week program, we felt we'd need a core group of leaders who focus just on the girls. We'd want a SM, a few ASMs, and a couple of committee members. The charge of the SM & ASMs is to make sure the girls are not a "me too" part of the troop. They need to have focused attention such that they have every bit as stong support. Meeting wise - we're not there yet. My gut says you open & close together. Depending on hte activities, some are joint, but some are seperate. Patrols seem like a good split for this.
  22. Funny - I was at a Scout meeting today. We got to talking about this topic. For as much as it sounds like the world is against it, we realized that just about every major pack in our area is planning to offer this. These are not paid employees of the BSA and no-one is twisting their arms. These are parents who have kids in the program. They've just looked at it and said "sounds good to us." The word from the troops so far is that they're likely to follow the pack's lead. The three biggest troops in the district have all said their open to it. I don't think folks are nearly as upset about this as some think.
  23. 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.
  24. 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.
  25. I wonder if he see's the path to growth for girls really being separate girls only units.
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