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Everything posted by DuctTape

  1. Having served on a jury where multiple charges were presented. This type of thinking was not present at all. What the multiple charges allowed us to do was to deliberate on the specifics of each charge to determine if the defendant was guilty of any of them. In our case, and I surmise in most others, the difference in the charges was the particulars in the law specific to each charge. The judge was excellent in providing instructions so we understood exactly what was needed to have been proven by the DA beyond a reasonable doubt to support each of the different charges. Some of them were unbel
  2. If she is in the position, it counts. If she is failing to perform, then she should no longer be in the position. My initial thought was also, 5 scouts and an SPL? Superfluous position. You have one patrol, and the PL.
  3. What I observe in the highest performing units: Patrols planning and executing outings independently (and sharing/advising via the PLC.) Scouts taking personal responsibilty for their own advancement (and encouraging/helping others in their Patrol) SM/ASMs using the Socratic Method to help a PL, SPL, etc. make decisions. (and recognizing the instances when these questioning techniques need to be at the SM request). Regular, ongoing SM conferences throughout the year, not just as an advancement check-off. (Every meeting conferences are happening.) Troop Committee has m
  4. Welcome! Having a a strong and functional Comm will make your job easier. You can focus on program as is your responsibility. Look forward to hearing your success stories.
  5. The "approval" as I have always believed is solely whether the Committee is able to provide the necessary logistical and financial support. ie, two-deep leadership, transportation, permits, etc. The only reason for "disapproval" IMO is b/c the troop committee is unable to facilitate providing e.g. enough drivers for the activity. The primary purpose of the Comm is to support the Scouts plan, not approve/disapprove their plan.
  6. IIRC BoRs were originally conducted by volunteer community members of high esteem with the primary purpose of helping scouts learn and grow in the interview process; to learn to sell themselves to prospective employers. It had little to do with actual rank, but was just another means, purposely created to which scouts would grow. It is beautiful to see how all the methods and processes when understood and used with fidelity underscore this basic tenet of Scouting; Growth. I try to remember this with all I do. Every conversation, every suggestion, every decision is predicated on whether it
  7. My first take on your latest post: It appears (please correct me if I am mistaken) the SM and PLC are not leading the program? It appears parents are making decisions. If the parents are ASMs, then they are to be following the direction of the SM. In their absence, a specific ASM should be the acting SM, and this person should be chosen beforehand by the SM. Other parents are "observers only" they should not be interacting with the scouts much at all. They should never be interferring with the program, which undermines the SM or the PLC. Troop committee members are also just observe
  8. If scouts and scouters are not following the Scout Law, and the associated behaviors are ignored then an additional code of conduct will just be another list of specific behaviors which are repeated and tolerated by inaction. IMO Focus on behaviors and the damage to relationships, not a piece of paper.
  9. Ugh!!!! Might as well begin folding up the tent now. There is no way in hades this promotes any of the aims utilizing any of the methods. IOW, it ain't Scoutung. I won't argue about it b/c any hypothethicals, "but if the scouts did..." would be pure hogwash. None of any potential hypotheticals would manifest in reality, except as an anomaly. Edit: and *I* worked in the computer gaming industry at one time.
  10. I guess I am used to a cub program which was 95% done at the den level. Dens met completely separately from the pack. The only interaction with otjer dens was pinewood derby and B&G. Pack meetings were rare and short, and we just stayed together as a den or with our parents.
  11. As far as procedures for the scenario. The GTA is intenionally vague about a specific process but provides descriptors to help a unit leader navigate how to be respectful to the other adults and scouts while ensuring the mB requirements were actually completed as written. The gta is not written in a step by step, must do list, process, but invokes the scout law through discussion. IMO, this is the way it should be; less legalistic, more scoutlike.
  12. I use a tarp quite a bit. I do not bring poles for it, and rarely need them. I pitch the tarp using available trees. For raising the center in a dining hall style pitch, I typically use a center tie out and raise it up from an overhanging branch, or a run a ridge line between trees to which the center gets tied onto. In the last 20 years, I have used a pole, but it was a dead branch I cut to length. I would encourage folks to have the scouts not bring tarp poles. For a variety of reasons: The rigging of the tarp itself is an exercise in problem solving and utlizing scout skills
  13. I remember when the world crest was given after attending an international event. Regarding neckerchiefs, when did they change from the cub scout yellow for all cubs, then a blue webelos? Having a different neckerchief for bobcat, wolf, etc... seems excessive. At the troop level, they have only one, except an Eagle Scout might wear an Eagle neckerchief.
  14. There is a problem when a newsletter and the GTA contradict, and worse when sections of the GTA contradict. In this case, I do not see a contradiction. The "should" is specific to "before starting", but the conversation is still required and the SM signature acknowledges said conversation.
  15. Based on your description, I am assuming the camp has been having photogrphs taken and then the scouts then make a sketch from the photographs? While I would not deny the scout, I would expect better from the camp and the mbc. It is apparent they are trying to do things as quickly as they can without the primary focus to the scout's growth. IMO, the camp is denying the scout a real opportunity to go out and watch the moon while making a sketch of it. The purpose is more than a sketch of the phases. It is to provide the scout a real opportunity to engage in astronomy. The reason for a sk
  16. I would disagree that simply pointing to something held up is the same; that would indeed be a circumvention. In the scenario with the blind scout, the mbc recreated the night sky with a tactile means to observe it and the blind scout had to find the correct constellations by touch. One might argue this would be even more difficult for a sighted scout. Had the mbc just held up a tactile version of the constellation, that would not suffice. Just as if the mbc held up a printed paper with the constellation and a sighted scout pointed to it. In the example of the blind scout the term observe was
  17. Unless the mB -counselor did in fact take liberties and the scout did not complete the requirements as written. Creative means is not license to modify/ignore the requirements. I remember the article in which you reference. The mbc basically made a braille version of the sky for the scout to observe via touch. The scout did indeed observe in the night sky and identify the required constellations.
  18. This section is not for requirement interpretation, but for those circumstances where it is plainly evident the scout could not have completed the requirements as written. Such as Astronomy merit badge signed off when the the night sky was unobserveable. This situation also highlights a common complaint I have of using these "camp reports" instead of blue cards, alienating scouts from the advancement process.
  19. I am no Luddite, but if any process change in scouts eliminates a scout's responsibility and puts it solely on adults is a disservice to the scout and takes away from them an opportunity for growth. So SB, or other digital record keeping should either supplement the blue card process, or the scout needs to be able to access the digital record to submit records.
  20. Yes. Adults are most often the problem, and summer camps often facilitate the problems. Ultimately when the process is not followed it is the scout who loses not just because of lost paperwork, but often being shortchanged from a growth opportunity that should have been a robust mB experience.
  21. Ultimately it is the scouts responsibility to have their blue card signed, and to keep it. The mB counselor is responsible for testing each scout on each requirement and then signing off on the blue cards. Attending a class may or may not have included the individual testing of the scout. MB counselors, even at camp, may not just count attendance at a class as fulfilling the requirements as written. Thus without a specific record of each requirement being completed as written, the camp director nor any other adult can wave a wand to waive the sign-off on the blue card.
  22. A thrifty way to find a place to camp which we use regularly is contacting local parks which do not allow camping in general. We have had good success asking if we could do a "park clean-up and camp overnight". The town parks are very amenable to the arrangement. They will often send someone down with a truck to provide bags and then collects them when we are done. The scouts do about an hour or so of dedicated cleanup in the parking area, and then continually pick stuff up while hiking and playing. Edit: having the scouts call to ask (on speakerphone) is a fantastic growth opportuni
  23. With a larger troop that is able to have enough adults for separate outings, you could also encourage the patrols to plan their outings instead of the troop. The PLC time could then be to see if there is overlap and then patrols could do outings together. But first, the ideas come from each patrol. IMO the best part of individual patrol outings are the reporting out to the troop about the outing, bragging on the activity and recognizing patrol members for jobs well done purposely excluding advancement, although the reporting might have involved something for advancement. Example.
  24. What are these "spendy" outings? Knowing these might help us see the type of activities which interest the scouts. Then we could provide some thrifty alternatives which might also capture their attention.
  25. Barry, I do not think we disagree, except for the judgement that their decision is actually in error. I completely agree with having a worthwhile discussion with them, but I withold judging their behavior. The judgement should come from them.
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