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Posts posted by Proudeagle

  1. We have a Scout that has prepared their Eagle Scout Proposal (attached with names removed).  There is mixed reviews and wanted to see if anyone on here may have some thoughts.  

    The main questions are:

    1) Is this a feasible project?

    2) Does the Proposal contain the necessary information to show that the project is going to pass the "test"?


    Thank you as always for your time and wisdom.


  2. I took over as SM in Jan 2019, Eagle Scout myself.  The troop was not a boy-led troop as well as being a young troop.  Since then there have been many comments from Scouts that is much more boy-led now.  Before starting, I spoke with the outgoing SM, 3 former SPL's who left as Eagles, and a few of the experienced Scouts about changing the Troop election policy.  The change was making the SPL 12 months and the other positions 6 months.  There was no hesitation that was a good idea for the above.  The policy then went to Committee to verify it was within BSA policy. All agreed and election held.  Now 5 months later 1 scout semi-active with 2 years of Scouting went to NYLT and feels he should be SPL and his parents want the policy changed for the election in 3 weeks.  Mind you they have had 5 months to air any grievances.  This would cut the current SPL to 6 months instead of the intended 12.  There has been no complaints on the current SPL's performance.  Any thoughts?

  3. 1 hour ago, mrkstvns said:

    As John-in-KC mentioned, practices like fire rings and clearing earth leave permanent scars in a camp area. I've been to scout reservations where some sites would have more than 10 obviously visible fire scars, despite the presence of an iron fire ring or even a stone fire pit in the site. These were made by scouts who were never properly trained in Leave No Trace (or who never really internalized the wisdom).

    Today, it's becoming environmentally insensitive to even build campfires using wood that you brought with you. 

    Again, the Scouts need training and if they are not getting it then the adult leaders are not doing their job.  You are lumping everyone into the "bad boy" category.

    As far as wood, it is ok to use downed, dead wood.  I was talking about cooking fires, which those that have them know they should not be raging bonfires!

  4. On 1/15/2019 at 9:36 PM, John-in-KC said:

    Part of it is Leave No Trace. It discourages fire rings, clearing to mineral earth, using downfall wood for fires, ad infinitum. 

     Not quite sure what you are reading.  Leave No Trace says:

    "Use dead and downed wood that can be broken easily by hand."

    "Where fires are permitted, use established fire rings, fire pans, or mound fires"

    Many campsites not in the woods have firepits or grill you can start a fire in.  One of my troops have fire pans that can set onto rocks to raise off the ground. There are MANY options!

    As with anything, there are some that ruin it for others.  When I was a young Scout it was quite hard to cook a meal over the with plastic, maybe it is more durable now.


  5. 1 hour ago, qwazse said:

    With regard to camping nights for O/A, not much has changed since the 90s. Several stipulations that existed solely to exclude girls have been lifted. But, the quandary about boys who volunteer to camp with a pack would still be there.

    With regard to rank advancement, several requirements have been added. When you earned Eagle, Cooking wasn't required, you didn't have to explain pedagogy to anyone, and workbooks weren't nearly the leviathan contracts that they are today.

    What did change? More adults are advancement experts, and fewer boys are joining just for reasons other than advancement.

    Even though it is a different topic I can answer your question.  Your right, when I earned Eagle I did not have the cooking merit badge.  However, I cooked all the time at home, did try cooking on campouts etc so for me it would have been no more work!  We did not need Merit Badge workbooks to work on Merit Badges but still went through each requirement thoroughly.  Today I see many MB counselors and leaders "teaching" the material, say at a Troop meeting and signing off the requirement and NOT following the Learn, Test, Review method.  Too many adults are afraid to "fail" a Scout and ask them to study some more and retest.  I have recently seen Life Scouts that have never used flint and steel to start a fire, cannot tie lashings or knots, and cannot repeat the Outdoor code.  I just took over as SM and we had a Life Scout move to the troop in July last year and turns 18 this year.  He has not held 1 qualified Leadership position ever, but his dad signed it off for Star.  After talking with him to try and give him the opportunity to hold a qualified position as Life Scout (which he has not fulfilled properly) before turning 18, his dad wanted to argue.  Some might roll over but I will have not sign the Eagle Application and will be happy to explain all this to Council.

    The SM conference should involve some testing of the basic requirements, otherwise these Scouts are slipping through the cracks.  BSA has a hypocritical Uniform policy.  The Scouts need it, but cannot be required.  We ALWAYS had uniforms, and did not question it!  We are not able to require uniforms for SM Conference or BOR?  If we are following the 8 Methods of Scouting, Uniforms should be required.

    Today, many troop are more Glamping than camping.  They have gas stoves, benches, tables, plastic "mess kits", fancy dining fly's.  The parents are buying Taj Mahal tents for "backpacking" trips.  What happened to the basics, cooking over fire, enjoying the outdoors?  Luckily my son loves the basics and the cold weather camping and keeps asking when we are going to do it.  Well I am now SM so these ideals will be implemented to one degree or another.

    These are just a few of what has changed, maybe not on paper but how the Program is being run!

    • Upvote 2
  6. Thanks for the replies.  I feel that the BSA is getting lax on many rules and policies and that means the honors are becoming less meaningful.  I earned my Eagle in 1991 and worked hard.  It seems now the BSA basically says sign it off and do not question.  Have been an OA Brotherhood since 1990 and that meant something, as I was also on the dance team.  Again, OA has seemed to lighten the requirements for this year.  Not trying to be a Drill Sergeant but again these honors are becoming a dime a dozen. NOT every Scouts will earn/deserve Eagle nor will everyone earn/deserve to be an Arrowman. 

    I will have a chat with the Scouts as mentioned and gather the scope of their involvement in the family camp.


    • Upvote 2
  7. We have Troop OA elections coming up and as the Scoutmaster I am going through the Scouts' eligibility.  We have brothers who, as registered BSA Scouts, attended a Cub Scout Family camp with another brother.  Do these 2 nights count?

    Not to sound petty, but that does not sound like true "camping".  Thoughts?

    BTW, not that it should matter but I am OA Brotherhood from youth.

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