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Everything posted by NDW5332

  1. I'm a terrible person at gussing the age of a kid. I flipped through my old highschool yearbook and saw my old SPL. My God, he looked 45 years old in 1991, and he had just turned 17. A couple o years ago, Our troop now had an SPL at 13 and our outgoing SPL just turned 18, so 5 years is a lot of time to mature and grow into Did you speak with the CO Troop's SM?to address your concerns? Regarding the lack of motivation on tasks, what kind of tasks. Was is a true lack of motivation, or was it a skill set gap and lack of training. Were the Scouts "Voluntold" they'd have to help, or was it
  2. A couple of questions: What do you mean by "lack of discipline" do you mean that the PLC/older scouts, and the adult leadership do not hold scouts accountable for their actions or behavior? Or do you mean self discipline among the scouts? "what is the average age of the troop, does it skew older or younger? How old is the SPL, and how long have they been in the position? Were they appointed by the adult leadership, or were they elected by their peers? Our troop has had some SPLs that started out young and "green" and they've grown into themselves and grown into the role. How are t
  3. On one hand, I do find it unfortunate that the school, in an attempt to be more equitable among those wishing to use the facilities gave a seemingly greater burden of cost to the Brownies and I hope something can be worked out. However the one thing I do take issue with is the Brownies notion that "we leave the place better than when we found it so we don't require any additional custodial services" Unless they are cleaning the bathroom too, taking the garbage out to the dumpster, there would still be some degree of custodial work required. My wife's a teacher and whenever any extracurric
  4. I like to call it "The ReasonTM" A Scout/youth is interested in Scouting and join Cub Scouts/Scouts BSA, but the parent doesn't want to be the bad guy and tell the kid "no", they need The ReasonTM so their child won't want to keep asking to join or keep attending. Some "Reasons" I've had to deal with: not safe enough; What do you mean this week's den meeting is at so-and-so's house?; it rained this weekend and you still kept camping; the Cub Adventure Day the pack went to served cheese pizza and my son only eats pepperoni. I've got a few more on the Troop side, but it was more far more pre
  5. About 10 years ago, I worked our Pack's recruitment table at a back-to-school night. One prospective parent said, "My son wants to do Cub Scouts, but I'm not sure it's safe enough for him." I explained explained that there are barriers to abuse, 2-deep leadership, no one on one contact with adults, everyone is trained, etc... She then gives me, "I don't just mean abuse, how are you going to keep my son safe." I added that as a parent of a Tiger, they would be present at everything and could see for themselves what goes on. Camping is family camping. The family never signed up, and despite
  6. Had an instance in our Cub Pack when I was CC. One Scout attacked another during a meeting and wouldn't get off until he was pulled off by his mother. A lot of people wanted him kicked out of the pack. We went to Council ask about it, being relatively inexperienced with these types of disciplinary matters. We scheduled a meeting with the boy's mom, myself, the DL, CM, the UC, The COR/IH, and our Roundtable commissioner for good measure. Time comes for the meeting, everyone from the pack is there. UC doesn't show up, RT Commish doesn't show up, Mom comes with her new boyfriend. He chews us o
  7. The problem with a lot of the other activities in our area, particularly athletics and marching band, is that it's an all or nothing proposition. The coaches and band directors demand 100% of their time outside of school. Kids feel the need to join travel ball, rec leagues, and local athletic associations, because they won't make the high school team without it. If they don't make that, then they aren't going to get seen by pro-scouts, or college scouts. A lot of these kids have delusions of grandeur and legitimately think NFL scouts are at their pop-warner games. When I was a mere Cub Den
  8. When my son started as a Tiger, there were 3 dens of 6 - one with kids from one school, one with kids from another close school, and the 3rd was homeschooled and "floaters". By the start of the Bear year, the three dens were down to 1. So, what happened. 8 of the original 18 had left because families moved. 2 left because they were diagnosed with learning disabilities, went to new schools with special programs, and the parents did not want their sons to be left behind because they hadn't finished Wolf. 3 more left because of travel sports - their coaches gave them ultimatums sport or scout
  9. Any chance you can get a parent in one of the other dens to be DL, at least on paper? In our Pack, we had a Bear Den with 6 scouts and a set Den Leader, but then he got a new job opportunity, but in taking the job, he quit as DL on the spot. His son stayed around, but due to the demands of the job (expanded hours, conflicting days & times, , he had to drop immediately. None of the other parents in the den would step up. I was CC and rechartering was coming up. I asked each parent individually, and had them lay out their concerns and reasoning. Some parents thought they already did "en
  10. I don't see it as a money grab, but when you do have some Eagle Factory troops in your council, with several leaders that are registered as counselors for literally every merit badge, and whose troop has a number of Scouts that have earned every merit badge, it does raise some eyebrows.
  11. Our council's office and shop used to be located at our camp, which was a good 2 hour+ drive during rush hour. Thankfully they opened a new office and shop much closer and centrally located to the units, so when I have to drop off paperwork or pick things up for our COH, I only have to drive 35 minutes.
  12. I've found that for cross-overs where parents have set up some Scouts' Scoutbook accounts, those permissions sometimes carry over. That's why a thorough review process always needs to be in place. We had one scout that "earned" himself the Chess Merit Badge by marking the requirements complete himself, independent of any Counselor or SM review. Scoutbook showed it as "earned" on his advancement report even though SM or Advancement Chair had not "approved" it.
  13. Scoutbook will allow a youth to mark items as "complete" and it would be up to the Scoutmaster, one of the designated ASM's, or the Advancement Chair to Approve the requirement.
  14. I'd bet that they'd be more than willing to sign off on any Eagle projects that would benefit the diocese or individual parishes.
  15. By "all stakeholders" do you mean 'unanimous' consensus, or just a majority? We had an SPL that wouldn't move forward on a decision unless everyone in the troop agreed to it. He really didn't want anyone to feel left out. But in doing that, a lot of meetings for a while just devolved into another game of kickball or practicing knots for an hour.
  16. A couple of years ago, when doing my taxes, my accountant said the only thing I could deduct from my Scouting volunteering was cash donations (like FOS) and mileage driven. Anything I did for myself, including uniforms, equipment, training (University of Scouting) and den activity costs, wasn't deductible.
  17. Fun story from my Troop before I took over as Advancement Chair. We had a Scout, through no fault of his own, do his Eagle BOR wearing his sweaty, muddy, grass stained high school lacrosse team uniform. So how did this happen? The Scout provided three dates and times he was available for his BOR. The District Advancement Chair said OK to the latest date. Scout makes plans for other days. However District Advancement Chair actually scheduled it for the wrong date and time. BOR is waiting for Scout and Scoutmaster, calls both, can't get a hold of either. Calls Scout's mom. Mom gives th
  18. I was in my local Walgreens, when I overheard one side of a very heated argument a woman was having with someone thru her ear pods: "I know that Scouts are supposed to be helpful, but there's no way in H**** I'm letting my son sleep in a tent that someone else helped him set up!" Not knowing the details, and not wanting a confrontation, I made my way through the check out and left. But what could I have offered in that moment?
  19. We've got a few parents that have their e-mail settings turned off for their sons' Scoutbook accounts. One parent claims it's a security issue. We also have a private Facebook group to communicate everything as well, but then there are plenty parents that aren't on Facebook either. All parents are invited to the Troop meetings at the end to hear the announcements, but still, only a handful of the same parents show up. I've also seen Scouts tell their parents picking them up after a meeting about upcoming campouts, events, etc.. and then the same parents claim they never heard anyth
  20. I'm against the "insta-Scout" for AOL crossovers as well. First, it starts teaching the Scouts the self reliance and self advocacy that are necessary in Scouting and in life. It's not the simple Cub Scouting rubber stamp anymore, you don't get sign-offs just for showing up. The Scout needs to seek out the older scouts (PLC members, Troop Guides, etc...) and to meet the adult leadership as well to demonstrate their skills and earn the sign-offs necessary for advancement. It goes a long way for the SM, ASM's, and others in getting to know them as individuals as well. Our troop may be un
  21. Just curious, where is the Troop's Advancement Chair in all of this?
  22. I don't know what kind of area you live in, if it's economically disadvantaged, blue collar, or affluent, but it looks like you've possibly set up a haves vs. have-nots type situation, where if you or your Scout don't sell the popcorn your Scout doesn't get the rewards for their achievements. Having served as a Pack Committee Chair and Cubmaster myself, I know the difficulties of dealing with families not paying dues and also not being able to sell popcorn and how it impacts overall Pack finances and relationships with Council. If only 19% of the shifts for selling popcorn were claimed, did y
  23. Are you (OP) the Advancement Chair? Have you brought this up to the Committee or the COR / IH? If it's a matter of the family not having the funds to continue in Scouting, perhaps some sweat equity might help offset some of the costs - helping set up for the derbies or Blue & Gold, flipping pancakes at the pancake breakfast. In our pack, we had left those types of decisions up to the Committee with input from the COR / IH. Sometimes you just can't sell any popcorn no matter how hard you try. But if your dues have no padding to them, that might be something else worth looki
  24. I realize now I should have been more clear. Your Charter Org may require parents be included in any communication between the Scout and any adult. Likewise, some parents may insist on being included in any communication involving their Scout. In both of those instances we have to honor those requests. I've seen it from both sides as Advancement Chair for our Troop, and as a MB Counselor for our Troop and Council.
  25. In some instances there will be four people: you may need to include the Scout's parent, cc'd on e-mails for YPT purposes, if the Scout needs to reach out to you to set up the initial meeting, or for completion of partials afterwards.
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