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Everything posted by T2Eagle

  1. T2Eagle

    Leadership Challenge

    I enjoy singing, people near me may not enjoy that as much, but my WB experience was definitely on the misused end of the spectrum.
  2. T2Eagle

    Leadership Challenge

    Do I have to sing, or worry about silly totems, or pretend my shirt doesn't have a collar and have a uniform inspection? Because all the good leadership development programs I've attended contained none of those elements, and the in one that included them it seriously detracted from the program.
  3. T2Eagle


    What you can do with the grant money is most dependent on what the terms of accepting the grant are. It's important that you understand that your unit is not an entity, it's a subset of your Chartering organization. When you are making the application for the grant it will be the CO making the application for the grant to be given to the CO. My interpretation of "solicit contributions for unit program" is you're not supposed to go out and just ask for cash donations. As mentioned above, most grants have some sort of quid pro quo or otherwise limiting condition that makes them something other than just a straight cash donation. Work through your CO, if they're OK you're OK.
  4. DavidCO is right, there is no accusation to be made, but it's unusual and you can inquire about it. I would email the dadASM and scout and say I just received nine MB cards from Scout and they're all the same merit badge counselor and all signed the same day, this is really unusual, could you tell me more about this. Then see what they have to say. Maybe an uncle or cousin is actually a MBC for the badges in the other council, and maybe there's a half decent explanation for it all. The best way to approach it is to refrain from making any kind of accusation or insinuation that anybody did anything wrong, but rely on the BSA's rules that MBs can only be approved by a registered MBC. The MBC can be from another council, but you need to be able to verify that in order to represent them as completed in reporting them to your council for recording.
  5. T2Eagle

    Parents, Non-registered and YP awareness

    You weren't in violation of any rules. From the GTSS "In most cases, each youth member will be under the supervision of a parent or guardian. In all cases, each youth participant is responsible to a specific adult." Your son was responsible to a specific adult, your friend. There are plenty of times when neither of Jimmy's parents can go camping so Johnny's parent says "I'll be responsible for Jimmy." And of course you can have one adult responsible for more than one Cub or else siblings would almost always be out of luck.
  6. T2Eagle

    Parents, Non-registered and YP awareness

    it doesn't depend on where the event is being held. It does depend on whether it is a scouting event. Every Chartering Organization agrees to "Conduct the Scouting program consistent with BSA rules, regulations, and policies." BSA has specific YPT rules, they're not onerous, they're not unreasonable, and they're not hard to follow or enforce. If you are participating in a scouting event, or any event outside your own home, you are implicitly agreeing to follow the rules of the event or to forfeit whatever right you might have to be there. You can't walk across the basketball court or join the team huddle when you're at a kids' basketball game, and no one needs a prewritten agreement in order to enforce those rules. A CO's responsibility is to ensure that BSA's rules are followed at any scouting event they're conducting. If there's anyone who is not willing to follow those rules it is the CO's responsibility to enforce the rules and/or remove the offender from the event. That's not a violation of anyone's rights, including the CO's. If a CO can't or won't do that then they should end their BSA relationship.
  7. T2Eagle

    Standing up to adults

    Even in the military there is a distinction drawn between lawful and unlawful orders, and my understanding from close relatives who are officers is that there is a lot more questioning and give and take than you would expect if your image is the drill sergeant from boot camp or OCS.
  8. T2Eagle

    Standing up to adults

    Strongly disagree, I've raised my kids to do what they're told if it's a good thing, the right thing, and the smart thing. Neither rules nor authority are self justifying, they're means to accomplish ends, and if they're not accomplishing those ends they're due no great deference.
  9. T2Eagle

    Standing up to adults

    It's not your scouts, it's not the UK, and it's not just kids. Humans are social animals, much of our behavior is determined by the dynamics and perceived structures of the group we're in at the time --- how we see ourselves in it, how we see others and their status or position in the group, and how those others see themselves and us. Kids generally are in groups where there is a defined or assumed authority based on age, and they behave accordingly. In groups where the norm is to have some hierarchical structure it is more challenging than in a pure peer group to speak up and try to overcome instructions. Overcoming that deference to the structure is a learned behavior --- on the part of everyone, including the folks who see themselves as a natural leader or authority figure in the group. A great example of this and how it applies even to adults with a lot of expertise can be seen in the deliberate change in the "cockpit culture" of modern commercial aviation. Post WWII. as commercial air transport grew in size, an analysis of accidents and near misses revealed that many were due to over deference in the cockpit to the pilot's decisions. Other members of the cockpit team recognized when mistakes were being made or problems overlooked, but they were reluctant to point them out because the pilot was supposed to be in command and questioning his judgment was anti-social. In addition, even when errors or omissions were pointed out by subordinates, pilots routinely ignored them because of the same social dynamics. Today, every member of an aircrew is trained in overcoming the natural reluctance to speak up, and pilots are trained to ignore their own bias towards dismissing subordinate concerns and to take them seriously and respond appropriately to them. This has driven down human error accidents dramatically. What you saw at the motorcycle accident, and your scouts' reluctance to speak up, are the natural norms. You will be doing your scouts a great service if you continue to train and drill them in ways to overcome normal group dynamics, especially in an emergent or dangerous situation.
  10. T2Eagle

    Recharter & BSA IT

    I’ve been doing recharter now for 15 years, so I’m used to the inefficient, illogical, and kludgy systems that constitute BSA IT. But the new and different ways that the systems manage to be inefficient, illogical, and kludgy will never cease to amaze me. As part of recharter this year I needed to register two adults who are currently MCs with the pack as MCs in the troop, I needed to register one new scout, and I needed to clean up the registration of one scout who crossed over earlier this year but for a variety of reasons never got registered in the troop. Our unit opts in to online registration so I sent them all the instructions for how to do so. But, it turns out that during recharter time when presumably lots of units are straightening out their membership, BSA in its infinite wisdom turns off online registration --- don’t ask me why. OK, collect paper applications from everybody. But, lo and behold, when I actually go into recharter there is a feature there that I’m pretty sure was not present in past years, where you can simply promote youths and adults from one unit to another without any paperwork at all. This is a good thing, even if unadvertised, but I could have avoided getting the paper apps that I did if I had known about it. And, it is worth noting that my need to promote these three individuals at this time is a bit unusual; back in the spring at the height of crossover when I had eight scouts and two other adults I needed to move from the pack to the troop this feature wasn’t available, and the online registration system also could not be used for transfers --- once again, don’t ask me why. Finally, my favorite trick of this year’s recharter. I have a scout who turns 18 at the end of this month, he just had his EBOR and the last thing I want to do is mess with his registration status while his paperwork wends its way up to national and back. So I renew his registration just like all the other scouts. But the system says he’s too old he’ll need to be registered as an adult. Anyone want to guess what happened when I tried to register him as an adult? Of course he’s too young for that. My registrar assures me she can work some magic if I give her a paper application for him. Year in and year out these aren’t the hardest challenges I encounter as a scouter, but they may be the silliest.
  11. T2Eagle

    Hand Washing _ Winter

    That sounds cool and old school until you've got a troop full of kids with it coming out both ends because someone served or prepared food with dirty hands. I've been there, and do not want to return.
  12. T2Eagle

    Hand Washing _ Winter

    You want their hands clean before they eat. So have an adult stand at the line right before they receive their food, and squirt a BIG dollop of hand sanitizer froma big bottle onto each kids hand as they approach the serving area. Also, take a moment just before you start to have an adult demonstrate how they should use the sanitizer --- all over fronts and backs, in between fingers, etc. It should take about 20-30 seconds for them to do thoroughly before it dries.
  13. T2Eagle

    Rumblings of Time Ahead

    According to Linkedin the average salary for a DE is $40,000. At 55 hours a week that's under $14 an hour, which is a tad more than my kid gets at Best Buy part time.
  14. T2Eagle

    National Leadership, Surbaugh Leave of Absense

    I have long thought that any organization where virtually everyone in it has been in that organization and that organization alone since they were in their twenties is going to be weaker as a result. Every organization needs folks who have seen other challenges and other solutions, been exposed to different ideas, had to design and implement different organizational schema.. The BSA model's for selection of leaders is stuck in the seventies. There's probably no organization of comparable size that uses this model.
  15. T2Eagle

    Committee meeting ceremonies

    Your CC has a gavel? Man, I need to talk to my committee.
  16. T2Eagle

    Committee voting

    Pick a small number of people who either know or will learn quickly what will work best. If you really feel like the committee needs to vote make it an up or down vote on the proposed tents. After a lot of research and some missteps our troop has gone to ALPS Mountaineering 5 Person Outfitter tents. Three scouts and gear comfortably for weekends. One of the reasons we went with them was when were still researching and experimenting I had purchased a four man version, and after a wild thunderstorm mine was the only tent standing and dry . The less fortunates included a couple Timberline Outfitters. Hikerdirect.com (ALPS) sells to scouts at a deep discount.
  17. There are very good reasons for Statutes of Limitations. Some of them were previously too short regarding this issue. It's a close call to me whether a "window" law like NJ's is a good or bad idea. But, and I say this as a Catholic serving a Catholic unit, what's really going on here is all of us paying for the sins of the Church. For decades, and as near as we can tell universally throughout the Church, the leaders of the Church actively protected members of the clergy who they knew had raped and abused children. This isn't some modern view retroactively applied to past acts. These things were serious crimes when they happened, and people caught and convicted of them then, even 20, 30, 40 years ago, rightfully served decades in prison as punishment. And it wasn't a matter of ignorance, unless you want to call it some kind of willful ignorance, because not everyone was protected by the Church. The Church files that are coming to light aren't full of records of abuse by non priests. If you were a CYO coach, or a lay teacher, or a scout leader, and you committed these acts you were tossed out, and no one stood in the way of your being turned in to the authorities. They didn't cover it up, they didn't use the magistry of the faith to pressure victims and their parents to remain silent, and most of all they didn't transfer the perpetrators to another parish and assign them to be lay teachers, or CYO coaches, or scout leaders across town at St. Mike's instead of St. Pat's, where the parishioners didn't know and weren't told about your history. Maybe it's a bit unfair that some people today will share in the price paid by organizations we belong to now for misdeeds committed by people who belonged to our organizations then. But a lot of victims will have paid an even heavier price even if they are able to recover something today. I can't find it in me to begrudge them that. And I know for fact it was just luck and timing that I dodged that bullet back when i was a vulnerable adolescent. BSA, and the Church, will survive this, and come out the other side, maybe a bit poorer, but hopefully the message will be clear to anyone granted the privilege of caring for children that nothing like this can be tolerated, and we all have an affirmative obligation to make sure of that.
  18. There's nowhere on an Eagle Scout application for the MBC names, how do they check? And if the council's official records which are in scoutnet show the merit badge what argument would they have to change it?
  19. T2Eagle

    Chief Logan Scout Reservation to close

    Lazarus is located in the heart of the Columbus suburbs, and one of those camps where the area around it has become completely developed. If they have 60 acres that they really don't use it's likely they could get a very good price for that property, and stabilize the finances for Lazarus for the future. Our council did this with a very similar piece of one of our camps, and the endowment set up from the proceeds of that sale was a big part of what allowed us to opt out of the Michigan Mess. I've never been to CLR, but 1100 scouts at summer camp seems like a low number considering how big the council is. I doubt that a camp used only for weekend camping can bring in enough revenue to cover even its most basic operating costs. If you don't have enough summer camp revenue to cover the cost of summer camp, plus facilities, you're going to face some very hard choices.
  20. T2Eagle

    BREAKING - Fee Increase Numbers

    I doubt they can know the 2021 numbers yet. The big unknown is how many LDS scouts and scouters will stick around. It probably won't be a lot, but it doesn't have to be a really high percentage to make a significant difference. Does anyone know if councils are making any concerted effort to get those folks to rejoin? Of all the recruiting that could be done they would seem to be the most fruitful group to target.
  21. T2Eagle

    Supporting the Patrol Method - as Unit Commissioner

    I would be surprised if the percentage of 11 year olds who have EVER cut raw chicken at home exceeded the mid teens; I would not assume at all that they have any knowledge of how to handle raw chicken or any other fresh meat. Most of our younger scouts have never cooked anything more challenging than pancakes.
  22. You can't sue the same defendant for the same tort covering the same facts in two courts. Or I suppose you could but the defendant would be able to have the suits consolidated. If you could, people would have been doing that all along suing in both their home state and Texas. So, no, you couldn't sue the BSA in both PA and NJ for instance. You could sue the local Council in PA and also sue the national BSA in NJ, but you would be doubling your costs of litigation without changing what you could recover so there's no incentive to do that. If you can bring suit in your home state because the Statute of Limitations hasn't run out there's probably little reason to bring the suit anywhere besides your home state.
  23. T2Eagle

    Teaching basic overnight camp comfort - Suggestions?

    We do cold weather layering training by having one scout put on very oversized clothing in the wrong order and then have the other scouts have to tell him to transfer the clothing in proper order: (wicking, insulating, shell) to another scout. I use the most outlandish but still appropriate clothing I can find (I have a pair of neon purple ski pants from the 80s that I keep just for this purpose). Remember to include gloves/mittens and glove liners, hats and hoods, and insulated boots to show that the same layering technique works for every part of your clothing.. We use the same training to explain that the tent, sleeping bag, pad, and what you wear are also the same layering system: you wear wicking long underwear as the wicking layer, your sleeping bag and pad are the insulating, and the tent is the shell. If you want to include the tent and sleeping in the hands on-portion, start with the ridiculously dressed scout outside the tent under his bag. ETA: We also include in the initial dress things you shouldn't wear in the winter like cotton jeans and cotton socks, so the scouts also have to identify what articles to discard entirely.
  24. I would say it's zero tolerance of being unkind. One way we've helped scouts think about it is to say you don't have to be friends with everybody, but you do have to be friendly or nice to everybody. I'm not sure I agree that there is a line between innocent unintentional actions and real hurt. Rather it is a continuum. We want to prevent bullying, but as a component of that we want to stop other hurtful behavior. The lack of intent doesn't mean something didn't hurt. In the case you cite, it is possible for singing happy birthday to be embarrassing to someone because they don't want attention drawn to them in that way. If you're not sure, ask. If a scout is shy and has in other ways indicated that this might make him uncomfortable, ask first before you announce it's his birthday or ask everyone to sing. Just because most people would be OK with it doesn't mean everybody will be OK with it. It doesn't hurt you to ask or be more careful, but it might hurt someone else because you weren't. In our troop, the reason we have mixed age patrols is so we transmit this culture through succeeding years of scouts. If at the simplest level, something is said or done that falls into the poster's rude category, unintentional but nevertheless hurtful, we expect the older scouts especially to recognize this and speak up on behalf of the person and correct gently and appropriately the person who was rude. if an adult sees this kind of interaction they reward through some sort of attaboy the scout who speaks up, or again gently and discreetly, point out the missed opportunity if that's what occurred. The unintentionality deserves more discussion than I can give it here, other than to say that people sometimes mistakenly believe that because something was unintentional it means it was acceptable. My best example is if you accidentally step on someone's foot you apologize, even if you didn't mean to step on their foot and even if it didn't actually injure the person. The same applies to words and other actions, it's the affect of your actions on other people that governs whether your own behavior was OK.
  25. Building a long term explicit culture of zero tolerance, practiced by everyone adult and scout alike, is the best preventative.