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About George

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  1. With apologies for resurrecting such a long-dormant thread, does anyone have the syllabi for any of the AOFS operations? I have Brownsea Double-Two but would be grateful to read the others, especially Flying Start and Go Silver Bars. Thanks in advance for any leads!
  2. Thanks for all your insights. I wanted to follow up on the above. Does your troop used mixed-age/traditional patrols? Assuming the answer is yes, when your patrols choose backpacking, do the young/small/inexperienced patrol members stay behind or do the older Scouts help them along? Thanks again!
  3. @Eagledad Sorry to ping you, but I've seen you mention in other posts that you're associated with a backpacking troop. I would be grateful for your thoughts!
  4. For those of you who are or were volunteers with troops that describe themselves as a "backpacking troop," what best practices can you share? What defines a backpacking troop, anyway? How does your troop prepare recent crossovers and other young/small/inexperienced Scouts for backpacking? How many backpacking trips does your troop typically do each year (and what do you do the rest of the year)? If you converted your troop to backpacking, what challenges did you have to overcome? In your experience, how does backpacking support the patrol method? Thanks in advance for your insights!
  5. Most of you are describing precisely the sort of emphasis on the PLs and PLC that I also support. Authorizing PLs to sign off on S-T-2-1 skill requirements is straightforward enough, but I would like to go further. I realize that, under current policies, I can't permit the PLs to sign off on requirements that expressly reference the Scoutmaster or "other adult leader" or let the PLC take the place of the Scoutmaster conference or the board of review. But it seemed to me that the PLC could handle the "Scout spirit" requirements (and maybe also the "[b]e active in your troop" and "serve actively
  6. In his 1954 book on the Court of Honour (i.e., the patrol leaders' council), John Thurman wrote (with my emphasis in bold): It goes without saying that the BSA's advancement method is quite different from B-P's traditional Scouting. Even so, perhaps an American Scoutmaster who desired to emulate this concept in their troop could, consistent with Guide to Advancement topic, authorize the patrol leaders' council (as a body) to sign off on the "Scout spirit" rank requirements (i.e., Tenderfoot requirement 9, Second Class requirement 10, First Class requirement 11, Star requirement
  7. Given that the BSA requires two registered adult leaders 21 years of age or over are at "all Scouting activities, including meetings," it seems that the old ideal of weekly Patrol meetings outside of the Troop meeting--at, for example, a Patrol member's house--is more unlikely than ever. As a result, is it time for Troops to reallocate more of their weekly meeting time and space to Patrols? @Kudu reprints some of Green Bar Bill's advice to Scoutmasters on this subject at http://inquiry.net/patrol/troop/index.htm: For those Troops who wish to be especially faithful to the Patrol m
  8. I would also like to read the draft. Thank you!
  9. Fair point. I'm especially interested in criteria for day hikes in the 5-10 mile range. Thanks!
  10. As you all know, "[t]here are instances, such as patrol activities, when the presence of adult leaders is not required and adult leadership may be limited to patrol leadership training and guidance. With proper training, guidance, and approval by troop leaders, the patrol can conduct day hikes and service projects." In your units, what "training, guidance, and approval" do you require for no-adult patrol activities?
  11. Why not just recognize the already-existing Corps of Discovery?
  12. We have elected officers. We're hoping to have the Council VOA officers instruct ILSC (they previously did Crew Officers Orientation for us); we're just waiting for them to complete their changeover to schedule it. In the meantime, I have been introducing some of the key points at relevant moments. We're also waiting for the VOA meeting schedule to begin sending one or more crew representatives (the previous VOA officers met on the same night as our crew meeting night, so we have not previously sent representatives). Upon chartering, we elected officers, completed Crew Officers Orientat
  13. Thanks for your comment, qwazse. I should have mentioned this in my original post, but this possible discussion with the crew president about the patrol system will be broader than just a discussion about that one system. My intent is to pose questions about organization and whether what has worked for us as a small crew will continue to work as we become a larger crew, what adaptations or adjustments need to be made, how to make sure new Venturers are able to participate in the crew's decision-making, etc. If they want examples, I was going to suggest the current Venturing structure, th
  14. One additional data point: Melville Balsillie, Running a Senior Scout Troop: An Official Handbook for Scouters 23-24 (1964), available at http://www.thedump.scoutscan.com/runningsenior.pdf.
  15. I'm the Advisor for a new (6 months and counting) Venturing crew with 12 Venturers. To date, we have been following the organizational structure suggested in the Handbook for Venturers and Venturing Advisor Guidebook. As we continue steadily growing, I've begun to consider discussing with the crew president whether we should look into implementing the patrol system. But the BSA's Venturing publications make no mention of patrols. I can only assume this was an intentional decision; after all, the earlier Explorer Scout Manual organized Explorer Scout posts into patrols (called "crews").
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