Let me start out by saying I am a 15 year old scout who has been in the bsa since cub scouts. When I first joined my troop in 2010, my troop was smaller and more relaxed. Today, we have approximately 40 scouts. Over the years we have had many scoutmasters come and go. Overtime, rules became a lot more strict in my troop. It's getting to the point where my troop is not in anyway scout-led. The scoutmasters make ALL of the decions. It's gotten so out of control that many people in the troop just want to make eagle, and leave the troop as soon as possibly. However, I am a little different. I want to see my troop improve and become a truely scout-run troop again as it should be.
Here is a list of current issues in my troop:
-the SPL cannot even make decisions due to over controlling scoutmasters
-there is very little respect given to the scouts by certain scoutmasters (there's constant yelling such as "get in your lines! Hands out of your pockets! Tuck in your shirt!") I believe the yelling should be limited and command should be given by the SPL, not the scoutmasters, unless it's necessary.
-There is a hierarchy issue between the scoutmasters. Some scoutmasters make a decision on there own and others don't have a chance to speak.
- Although the scoutmasters are supposed to have the same position of authority, over controlling scoutmasters make decisions based on what THEY want to do, not what the scouts or other scoutmasters may want.
-it's almost as if some scoutmasters are scared to speak up to these controlling scoutmasters, because they are worried they will be kicked out of the troop if they question things (it's happen to scoutmasters in the past)
- Most importantly, the scouts are told BY THE SCOUTMASTERS who they will be in a tent with,(usually mixed ages), who they will be hiking next to,(We have assigned hiking groups by scoutmasters).
- There is a serious lack of communication between scouts and scoutmasters, and scoutmasters to each other.
The main issue that has pushed scouts over the edge and is causing scouts to leave the troop is over controlling adults. It's an obvious issue in my troop that never seems to get resolved. I, and many other scouts have tried reasoning with scoutmasters, trying to compromise with things like tent assignments. The scouts voice is never heard in my troop.(or at least not listened to). I've tried contacting my local bsa counsel, which requires me to send several emails before I even get an answer a month later, and the counsel doesn't seem to want to help with these issues.
I want the best for my troop and the scouts in it. I have learned so much through scouting and made friendships that will last I lifetime. Unfortunately, this bond between scouts is starting to break because of scouts feeling hopeless with this troop. I would like anyone's opinion on this situation. What do you think of the issues? Any ideas on how to handle them? I would like to keep my name anonymous. Thank you for reading.