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ParkMan

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Everything posted by ParkMan

  1. ParkMan

    What our the BSA priorities??

    These sound like good things for a pack to use. Can you not do this now?
  2. ParkMan

    What our the BSA priorities??

    I like a good rant as much as anyone, but how does this impact prioritizing an outdoor program? If anything, providing more facilities for advanced outdoor programming is a good thing. The location is within a day car drive for a very large percentage of the US population. That would be good for encouraging more outdoor use.
  3. ParkMan

    What our the BSA priorities??

    The challenge with all the information available in our society today is that it's really difficult to make sense of questions like priorities. The BSA's priorities are different depending on who you talk to. If you're the Chief Scout Executive or the national board, what's more important - fostering an outdoor program that already exists or trying to stave off financial disaster, continual declines in membership, or abuse lawsuits? If you're a local Scout Executive, is it outdoor program or keeping your council camp open and stopping membership losses? If you're a Scoutmaster is it outdoor program, patrol method, or something else? I think it's part of our culture today that we all get online and discuss the topic of the day. Hopefully most Scouters are with it enough that they put all this in proper context.
  4. ParkMan

    Where would you go?

    Ok - then we should start preparing for $100.
  5. ParkMan

    Where would you go?

    @gpurlee & @Cubmaster Pete, I have absolutely no idea what the increase will be. Like everyone I hear it is significant. Perhaps going with an estimate of $60 a year for now would be a good estimate. National may come back with less. If they come back with more, then you're maybe a little closer?
  6. ParkMan

    Jamboree on the Air

    I love the picture! As a Scout, I served as a Den Chief. The den leader was a big ham radio fan - he had all kinds of equipment. Every so often he'd break it out and we'd get to hear messages from around the world. I was a life long memory. You experience looks so much like that. Thanks for refreshing a wonderful memory!
  7. I don't disagree with any of what you just said. Just not sure what I can do with it. As a local volunteer, I have three choices: ignore the rules and run a program like in the old days follow the rules, but try to find solutions to the obstacles they present. blindly follow the rules, decide I can't do what I want, and run a crappy program I like choice two. So while I agree with your premise (and most often others on this forum) I find myself saying "yeah, these new rules are a pain, but how can I make them work."
  8. Thanks for sharing this. I think it is well said. Given recent G2SS decisions this is more difficult to accomplish. What does it take for youth & adults to develop a working relationship such that it becomes possible for the adults to still be present and achieve the same results? If adults make it clear to the Scouts that the Scouts are really in charge or certain decisions does that then provide the starting point for a more capable youth leadership team?
  9. ParkMan

    Advice for a new wood badger

    Only because you'll be asking them
  10. ParkMan

    possible fee increase coming

    I think it's very common knowledge that the national organization of the BSA is the midst of 600 sexual abuse lawsuits and active bankruptcy planning. I'm sure they'd love to manage these as common occurrences, but I can accept that they are not common occurrences.
  11. ParkMan

    possible fee increase coming

    I'd encourage you to look at it from the other side. The BSA has worked very hard to establish itself as an organization that takes youth protection very seriously at all times. That means we have to embrace youth protection rules even when it's inconvenient. Yes, I grant that having to provide two deep registered adult leadership for Eagle projects is difficult, but protecting youth is more important.
  12. Sorry to append to my own post. From the article, I think she's a member of Suffolk County Council. On their website, they have an Eagle Scout Preparation Guide. It's at: https://www.sccbsa.org/files/21999/Eagle-Scout-Preparation-Guide In there, the only reference to Eagle Boards of Review says: So I have to imagine that she properly filed the application. Wither the council isn't forwarding the application or their district advancement committee is following instructions and not scheduling the board of review. I wasn't aware of rule 8.0.0.2 quoted in the article. It says: Later in 8.0.3.0 Particulars for the Eagle Scout Rank Her argument appears technically correct. If the BSA wanted a special exception for girls, then they should have rewritten all of this.
  13. Agreed. It would strike me that these are the key passages: I have to imagine that the valid ways to delay a EBOR are: 1. The council advancement committee declares the process is that they schedule them and then decide not to schedule one for girls who request them. 2. The council does not verify the application because she is a girl From the rules I see, these are the only valid ways I could find.
  14. ParkMan

    possible fee increase coming

    Fully agree and well said. I think National's been pretty consistent on this. If it looks like a Scout activity, two deep registered adult leadership over 21.
  15. ParkMan

    possible fee increase coming

    FWIW - I only mentioned it because I had to really work as a pack & troop break the cycle of our other volunteers constantly bashing district, council, national, OA, Wood Badge, etc... It was like whatever happened, we liked to blame someone. Guess I'm a little more tuned into it.
  16. ParkMan

    possible fee increase coming

    Thanks - I asked for a reason and this is a valid one. i.e. - if National had created a different culture, then benefactors would have helped us out of this situation. That's very fair. Personally, my gut tells me that the change in giving is more due to a general trend against faith in organized institutions. I've always thought it's due to the combination of Watergate and the rise in myriad news/analysis sources we have today. With countless TV, cable, and internet analysis channels, everyone is criticizing everything today. That has a net effect of eroding public support for most every institution. Just about every national level institution is less popular today than 40 years ago. We all see the mistakes they make today and those mistakes are magnified 1000x. When we were kids it was unusual to hear a story about a bad Scouting volunteer - and that was during the era when all that abuse was happening. Today, every misstep is reported over and over again.
  17. ParkMan

    possible fee increase coming

    For what it's worth. In this case I think we have two choices: Describe this all as some kind of colossal screw up and blame national. i.e., "clearly these guys at national were not paying attention and let this turn into a big mess." Be transparent as best possible and provide an honest update. i.e., "National is under tremendous financial uncertainty and pressure. While I don't know the specifics, it sure appears that something unusual is keeping them from setting the fee for 2020. National is aware how important it is and hopefully we'll get it soon." Myself, I try to do the second. In 10 years as a unit leader, it always seems to work for me.
  18. ParkMan

    possible fee increase coming

    How do you blame national for this fee increase? Everything I have read - here and in other places - clearly indicates that the reason for this fee increase is the increase in costs by the underwriters of our insurance program. The fees in this insurance program are growing because of lawsuits filed as the result of abuse cases that predate just about all of our involvement in Scouting. My understanding is that a significant reason for these current lawsuits is the extensions of state laws on the time frame upon which lawsuits needed to be filed. Further, it appears that many of these lawsuits are being organized by trial lawyers who are encouraging victims to file these lawsuits. I'm the first to support victims of abuse. What happened earlier in our history is reprehensible and beyond any defense. BSA leadership at the time only made things worse by being secretive with records. Abuse is a heinous crime. I cannot imagine what the current leadership of the organization could have done to prevent the abuse 20, 30, or more years ago and the current crop of lawsuits. As far as I can tell, they are instead working to do the proper thing to both keep the organization afloat and the respect the victims of abuse by our predecessors in the program.
  19. ParkMan

    possible fee increase coming

    I'm not for a moment suggesting I'm in favor of an increase. Merely that predictions of doom and gloom as a result simply strike me as a bit strong. You make a fair point. Again, we all have financial lines that we cannot cross. My gut tells me that if a family is that engaged in Scouting, they probably see a lot of value in ir. My gut tells me that a 10% increase in the cost of participating in something that spend that much time in is likely to be absorbed. I'd make a distinction here. Is the national organization of the BSA worth $200 a year for a family of four? No, I would argue that it is not. However, is participating in the Scouting program as implemented in the BSA worth $1,100? I'd suggest that yes it is.
  20. ParkMan

    possible fee increase coming

    To be fair to those families. When someone joins anything - be it simming, scouting, soccer, whatever - they do a little cost/budget/benefit analysis. When you start changing the costs, families inherently are going to re-do that analysis in their mind. For some they really can't afford the new amount. For some, they just dislike having to pay more and so have a lot of frustration when they are asked to pay more. Of others, they look at the new amount and think "no problem". As I mentioned in @Cubmaster Pete's thread - based on my back of the napkin calculations, this will increase the cost of Cub Scouts from $200 to $233 (17%) and Scouts BSA from $500 to $533 (7%). These kind of increases are certainly not something I enjoy, but seems absorbable based on the benefits I see from the BSA. My gut tells me that most people will be able to absorb the increase. In my opinion, the specific things you get from the National Council are not worth an additional $33 a year. But, the value I get from the Scouting program in the BSA system is easily worth a 7% to 17% increase. The program structure in the BSA is very good, the activities provided by leaders for my kids outstanding, the advancement program is terrific, the facilities maintained by the councils & national outstanding. The district & council level programming provided is a nice bonus to our unit activities. The adult leader support & training that comes from volunteers & professionals is pretty extensive. I'm sure I could easily name more. Is it worth it to me to move to a less developed program over a 7% to 17% increase - I really don't think so.
  21. ParkMan

    Supporting the Patrol Method - as Unit Commissioner

    What an awesome!!!! idea. What a brain dead decision by the SE - doh! From hearing these stories, I realize that I'm in a pretty decent council with empowered volunteers. There's got to be some kind of national advisory board that hears these stories and establishes policy for SEs. Here's hoping...
  22. ParkMan

    Supporting the Patrol Method - as Unit Commissioner

    Why not do this anyways? As a UC you're a district level Scouter. Invent the award locally and start promoting it. Honestly, in our district folks would care way more about a local award than JTE.
  23. ParkMan

    Where would you go?

    You are way too generous. Don't need a lawyer because everyone will like us. We don't need any of them new fangled high adventure bases. There's an old camp down by the river - give the boys some twine and a tarp. Merit badge updates - the ones we have are fine, we don't need updates Uniforms - we can get some American made military surplus stuff for real cheap. Ombudsman - don't need one of those - we'll just hire trustworthy folks. Someone to handle donations - nope, leave that to the units. Phone calls/emails - that's why we pay the SE. Someone to sweep the floors - again - that's why we pay the SE. So, I think all you really need is: 1 Boss to be in charge. SE 1 expert to answer local questions and augment real world experience into National best practice. Done.
  24. ParkMan

    Where would you go?

    Seems like this is the struggle though. Topics like this continually blame the BSA & professionals. Yet, they are the ones most actively pushing growth & membership. If we don't want to cede our roles to them, it seems me need to assert control of our own destinies. I suppose we could just back off all this talk of membership growth, scale way back on professionals, reduce Cub Scouts to three years, merge councils down to a few mega councils per state, and then keep only those camps that are needed. I'd be fine with that myself. However, I don't think it would address the root problem.
  25. ParkMan

    Where would you go?

    I think we're about 95% in agreement here. Yes - pros & volunteers alike need to be talking Yes - we need fewer bloated committees Yes - we really can get rid of much of the "corporate" scouting I think I've said this before in other topics. But, one of the best things for Scouting would be for our volunteers to assume more ownership for what is happening in their community. If you're pack isn't growing - then figure out why If you district doesn't have a camporee - then start one If you feel dis-empowered by the professionals, then buy them a cup of coffee and become friends. My suspicion is that the volunteer function in the BSA has so atrophied that people who are putting in 40 hours a week are just by virtue of the fact that they are there so much as assuming control of many functions. I don't think it's even deliberate. Unfortunately as it's been this way for 20 years (or more), we have a whole generation of professionals and volunteers who don't quite know how to relate to each other. @Eagle94-A1 - you and I have exchanged enough comments that I understand your plight. I guess all I can say is that if one's district is so far gone where the basic volunteer functions are not working, then you've got to start somewhere. It will take some time for the professionals to come around, but in most cases I think they will. After all, it's in their best interest for there to be a strong volunteer team. You
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