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Posts posted by InquisitiveScouter

  1. 6 hours ago, TAHAWK said:

    patrol medallion

    position patch ?

    troop numerals

    rank patch

    event patch (temprary insignia)

    shulder loops?

    council patch

    international patch

    possibly plus  2-3 more patches



    knots, interpreter strip, service stars, trail and other medals, jamboree patches, honor patrol stars, troop veteran number strips, OA flap, Powderhorn emblem, JTE patch, Trained emblem, Emergency Preparedness pins (retiring)...

    Now we are talking, BLING!!

    But wait!!!  Doesn't the G2AI say

    "Excess Insignia With the exception of the Cub Scout badges of rank, members wear only the insignia that show their present status in the movement. Members should make every effort to keep their uniforms neat and uncluttered." (emphasis added)

    And didn't BP say,

    "A Scout should not use a showy uniform, because it would attract attention; but Scouts in a patrol, should as far as possible, dress alike, especially as regards hats, or caps, and neckerchief."

    Hmmmm.... Scout Life magazine...






  2. 13 hours ago, BlueandSilverBear said:

    Are these the current uniform pants?


    I'm formally registering as an adult leader and plan to have a uniform ready for when my Lion puts on the Cub Scout uniform.

    Yes, and official pants come in three different materials, each with advantages and disadvantages, as @KYScouterbegins to point out.

    Canvas, polyester microfiber, and polyester/wool blend are your choices.  Each material has its devotees.

    I am a devotee of polyester microfiber.  Light, quick dry, converts to shorts, cargo pockets, does not fade as quickly as the canvas stuff.  Disadvantages of poly microfiber?  Wind whistles right through it in winter (you need good under-layers), it snags on brush and threads get pulled out (canvas is more heavy-duty), and even small sparks from the fire burn right through.

    Enjoy the adventure!

    • Like 1
  3. 7 hours ago, sunshinescout said:

    I still might be denied

    Hi @sunshinescout,

    An Eagle Board of Review cannot really "deny" your rank.  The can only "recommend" approval or disapproval to National.  Only the National office may decide that.  There is a specific process your EBOR must follow if, when they meet, they come to a conclusion that you did not meet the requirement, and make that recommendation.  The first step is that they must present to you IN WRITING what they believe to be the issue.  If you do not agree, you may appeal.  National prefers these matters be solved at the local level, so council should first review.  There is specific guidance for councils in GTA, but, from your posts, it sounds as though you may have read through GTA already.

    As to fundraising:

    GTA (from your OP)

    "Fundraising for an Eagle Scout service project shall not be required of any candidate. Whether or not fundraising takes place is the Scout’s decision based on project needs. The BSA prefers, in fact, that Scouts choose projects that can be done at little or no cost. Fundraising—especially on a larger scale—has tax, accounting, and other legal implications, in which minors should not be involved."

    My advice, should you choose to take it, is to not do a fundraiser, if it is not needed.  Stand firm.  You are automatically in the right should you choose not to do a fundraiser.

    GTA (from your OP)

    "At the board of review, if an approved proposal and any subsequent effort represents planning and development that was adequate to the project, and the project was well led and carried out to the satisfaction of the unit leader and project beneficiary, only in a very rare case would rejection result. It would have to be clearly established that Eagle Scout requirement 5—as written— was not completed. Under no circumstances shall project approval at any point in the process be withheld for reasons that have nothing to do with the project."

    Work through your project and get your unit leader's and beneficiary's signature on the approval page.  You will be fine.

    Even if the EBOR makes some written non-recommendation, the appeals process is designed to safeguard your (and other Scouts') interests.  Maybe your case is the one that National needs to crack down on your council/district for imposing requirements that aren't there!  Maybe you will be the one who brings unfair and inappropriate practices to National's attention.

    Or maybe, just maybe, you are imagining resistance that isn't there.  (Don't fight dragons that aren't there.)  Meet the issue head on IF and when it arises.


  4. 1 minute ago, qwazse said:

    Sorry @Bowsprit, DE&I (the concept, not patch, not political mantra) is interesting. For example, to @Eagledad's point:

    A cultural issue, a broken family issue, and a drug and alcohol and tobacco issue. Plus, a negative feedback loop where educators in certain districts have expected less of my scouts. It's the latter that has to be defeated as it was for me about a century ago:

    The day that the school superintendent walked across town and explained to my grandfather why his kids should continue into middle and through high school ... is the day that rewrote history for eight children, dozens of grandchildren and great grandchildren, and who-knows-how-many citizens of this country. Wars were won, freedom was secured, and death was forestalled.

    Frankly, the reason DE&I mantras seem to go nowhere is that it pushes solutions before giving someone a problem to solve. Instead, we train a scout to find a disparity (e.g., a swimmer is showing signs of fatigue while others are not) offer some manageable solutions (e.g., Reach, Throw, Row, Go with support) and enable the scout implement the solution (i.e., rescue the swimmer so that he/she can swim like everyone else).

    Frankly, I think the MB would get traction if were named "Disparities", stripped of that bookwork and ridiculous pledge stuff, and boiled down to: a. find a disparity, b. fix it a little, c. reflect on your experience.

    @qwazse, There you go trying to impose some common sense again.  Stop it, at once, you devil!

    • Haha 1
  5. 23 minutes ago, BQZip said:

    System automatically merged my reply...didn't want it to

    Anyone dare email the Office of the Chief Diversity Officer  :)  and point them to this discussion thread for input?


    I do not email National any more.  They have skewered me more than once for my questions, and it has been a factor in reprisals by my local SE, I believe.

    • Like 1
  6. 3 hours ago, Eagledad said:

    Then I led into the problem that many adults aren't willing to let scouts make the harder lesson-learning-decisions because they are afraid of what a wrong decision will do.

    How do you learn to make good decisions?  By making some bad ones and learning from your mistakes!

    Or, as a good commander of mine once said..."Every truly good soldier has dents in his helmet."

    Best to let them make some bad decisions now, while the consequences are small ;)


    • Upvote 1
  7. 6 minutes ago, CynicalScouter said:

    I cannot imagine they will rescind it; THAT would look horrible. "Yes, we publicly committed to a DEI merit badge, but now we aren't."

    I suspect it will be retooled, revised, and put in place end of 2021.

    @CynicalScouter, Agreed, that bridge is burnt...they cannot go back :)

    Revised requirements, and possibly a name change for the badge (Human Rights Merit Badge) is the compromise we could see. 

    But, knowing some of the history of BSA's poorly implemented changes, I am doubtful of the product they will deliver.

    Yet, I will remain the optimist, since they have delayed the release.  I think it is a good sign of internal wrestling and compromise.

    • Upvote 2
  8. 6 minutes ago, Bowsprit said:

    No, but your enrollment numbers tell the same story. That's a 9 percent gap, before actually doing any higher schooling. It was 50/50 for a long time, and heavily weighted male prior to that for well known reasons of cultural disuasion for girls to attend college.

    These seem to support your numbers...



    Side note...In 1984, I went to a four year school  (enrollment about 15K students) that was traditionally a teacher's college...female to male ratio was 3:1.  I really enjoyed my college years ;)

    • Thanks 1
  9. National Center for Education Statistics  data thru 2018...


    Females completing HS:  1.598M, of which, 45.2% go on to a 4-year institution, so overall, 772.3K

    Males: 1.614M, of which, 42.0% go on to a 4-year....so overall, 667.9K

    So female % of total enrollees is 53.6%

    Male % of enrollees is 46.4%

    Close approximation of enrollees, female to male is 55:45

    Now I'm off to find graduation rates...


    • Upvote 1
  10. 15 minutes ago, Eagledad said:

    I actually created an adult leadership course on how to get past fears that restrict scouts from doing their activities and making decisions. Motivation to create the course come from a new troop I was asked to help. The adults  were all new and they wouldn't even let their scouts (all first year scouts) lead a flag ceremony because they believed the scouts didn't have the maturity to recite the Pledge of Elegance, Law, or oath without messing up.

    The steps to get past our fears are simple really, identify the fear and then train the adults or scouts how to deal with the situation of the fear. In one class we used an example of a patrol doing a five mile hike without an adult. One participant got pretty aggravated and loud with the idea as we discussed the steps to alleviate the fears restricting the scouts from the hike.. But a couple years later he was a participant at a WB course I was staffing and he found me to say, that while he was skeptical, he tried the suggestions and they worked. 

    Really, working past our fears is a process we all go through a lot. The real problem is that fear which stop us from trying to get past. Depending our our experiences of life, adults have different fears that hold them from letting the scouts mature and grow. We just have to be willing to try.



    Was one of your sessions on "How to Bite Your Lip?"

    Or, "Recite this phrase from memory, "Did you ask your Patrol Leader?""???

    It is amazing how many adults are unwilling to let them struggle sometimes.

    I even had a Scout show up to a trip once, and he said, "I forgot to buy the stuff we need for dinner tonight!"

    Me: "Well, you'll have to figure out a solution with your Patrol Leader, or skip the meal."

    His mother had a huge problem with that.  She wanted to rush off to the store and buy the items he needed.  I pulled her aside for a discussion.

    1.  Does your son have a medical issue such that skipping a meal would hurt him?  No

    2. Was it his responsibility to bring the items?  Yes

    3.  Do you know that the grocery store is only 10 minutes from our campsite? No, but OK, I understand.

    4.  Do you know that there are other patrols with food who may be able to share? Oh, OK...

    5.  Do you know that I always have a few extra items for Scouts, if needed?  Oh, OK...

    etc, etc, etc...

    What it really came down to was that she didn't want her son to be viewed badly by the other Scouts for forgetting his responsibility.

    "How else is he going to learn?"

    That was about four years ago, and he is still with us, and is one of our best... he will probably be elected SPL next week :)


    ....Sorry...post script...They worked it out with the other Patrols who had brought enough to share...


    • Upvote 1
  11. 1 minute ago, mashmaster said:

    The reason I used to tell people in YPT training was that a 12 year old is a horrible witness.  Always have another adult at least in ear shot of a conversation with a single scout.  YPT protects both the youth and the adult.

    Yes, it does...most of the time you just need to have those conversations in view of someone else, as the are not supposed to be overheard.

    Once in a while, a Scout comes along who, for some reason or another, changes the words you say into something they think they heard, with a different meaning entirely.  We have one in our unit now, who must have Scoutmaster conferences with another adult listening.  It was quite eye opening to the parents that their son was hearing something vastly different than what was said, after the second adult corroborated the first adult's message.

  12. 8 hours ago, mashmaster said:

    They told us they like the fact that we are still doing things.

    Same here...we have still been camping and doing day trips. We rechartered 41.  Lost only one due to COVID issues affecting participation.

    We did an historic trail hike just before Christmas, and we are camping next weekend...winter camping!! Sweet!!

    • Like 1
  13. 35 minutes ago, walk in the woods said:

    2. No scout anywhere, ever, should hear the letters JTE uttered by an adult.  The only exception I might make to that rule is when the SM works with the SPL on planning ideas.  Even then it shouldn't be "JTE requires us to perform X service projects" rather, "Hey, we should consider putting together a service projects."  JTE is some management consultant's wet dream.  No scout should be exposed to that.

    Agreed, SPL (and therefore ASPLs?) is prob only one to hear of this before the Annual Planning Conference.

    I simply tell our SPLs that JTE are a set of guidelines (not requirements) which help us design a quality program for our Scouts.  Leave it at that...no metrics, no numbers, no percentages

    We have distilled it down to these planning guidelines ...

    1.  Plan a camping trip for every month of the year.  July is a week long Summer Camp.  August is high adventure week. (or you can swap those)  (If we have one Scout sign up for any event, we will go.  We have had a camping trip with with as few as four Scouts, and it was awesome.)

    2.  Plan a day trip/event for every month of the year.  Hikes, climbing, museum, rafting, canoeing, cycling, mountain biking, fishing, Paul Bunyan....whatever you want, as long as it is not a prohibited activity. and one of those should be a Webelos recruiting event (kind of like our own Scout show :) ) 

    3.  Plan a service project for every other month.  (Not for any other reason than that is what Scouts do, and who we are ;) )  Two of those are our adopt-a-highway.  So, they really only have to plan four. (Oh, by the way...PLC, do you want to still do the adopt-a-highway?)

    4.  Plan for a Court of Honor every quarter.  One of them is upon our return on Saturday from Summer Camp. (Yes, the leaders stay up half the night making sure all advancement is recorded and approved in Scoutbook.  Saturday morning our Advancement Chair back home purchases all items.  We all arrive home at once, around noon, and the parents have brought some refreshments.  We bang out a recognition ceremony, and everyone is happy.)  Rain date is our next meeting.

    5.  Plan for SPL and PL elections every six months.  Plan for a PLC once per month (and expect a short one after every meeting.) Plan for an OA election once per year.

    6.  A minimum of two of your camping trips, and two of your day trips must be Patrol-only focused.  That is, patrols spread out and do whatever the heck they want, wherever the heck they want (as long as it is not a prohibited activity.)

    7.  Plan to conduct an ILST after each election, and after the SPL has chosen his "cabinet."

    You do this, and advancement, recruitment, and retention just happen...

    All the rest of JTE is up to adults to monitor and finesse...

    • Thanks 1
  14. 18 minutes ago, elitts said:

    Well, I have to preface my point by saying I despise the overuse of the term "racism" as it is often used incorrectly simply to make someone's argument sound more important/persuasive/dramatic. (and I'm not pinning that on InquisitiveScouter)  A more appropriate phrase for what is actually being discussed is "Systemic Discrimination or Bias".

    That said, while there are certainly people who believe the systemic racism in our society was built in on purpose, "intent" isn't actually a necessary component for an overall system to be considered discriminatory.  Take for example; states where the sole funding of public schools is through local property taxes (no state appropriation).  These systems were designed to allow for local control of schools by giving local districts the ability to raise or lower property taxes as they see fit.  However, a side effect of this system is that school districts in poor urban areas and core cities (typically with a high percentage minority population) end up with both older facilities (requiring increased maintenance) also end up having significantly lower funding per pupil because the value of the property (on a per capita basis) is much lower than suburbs.  And while levying a higher millage rate is an option to increase funds, this will tend to drive businesses out of the inner city areas and into the suburbs where the millage rates are lower because the overall tax base is higher.

    Another example is what happened consistently around the country from the 1940s through the 2000s with municipal water and sewer systems.  The general mentality of water/sewer system operators was "expansion is good, so it should be subsidized".  And from the general business perspective, this makes complete sense.  However the net effect of those policies was that in order to make connecting to the water system attractive for developers, water authorities only charged developers a small fraction of the true cost of extending service into new areas and simply raised rates on the existing rate payers in the existing core cities, which because of red-lining laws with lenders and realtors (they were barred from moving), means minorities were/are disproportionately affected.

    Yes, these are effectively the impact of economic policies.  That it affects anyone negatively, I believe, was never the intent.  I'm with you...build a better mousetrap, but don't call it racism.

  15. Just spoke with our District Advancement guy...

    It's news to him...no announcements through any Advancement channels, and he is well-plugged-in.

    He is digesting the new form now.

    His position is, until National or council makes a formal announcement, continue to use the older workbook if you have started with that.

    Also, since our workbooks do not leave the district, if a Scout has already started with the older version, they may continue with it, unless there is a strict policy prohibition issued. 

    • Upvote 1
  16. Just now, TAHAWK said:

    He had taken no training" "All you need is to like kids." 


    Every Scout who stayed to 18 got Eagle.  That was his promise to the parents  (I heard it made three times.) - even if that meant the SM signing him off for half a dozen Merit Bages the last day and Let's pretend holding POR.    I must say, he seemed to be enjoying himself.  😐

    "All you need is to like kids." to have a camping club, or Webelos III.

    Sad that so many missed out on the real treasure...

  17. 38 minutes ago, TAHAWK said:

    I have related here my experuience with the local troop run by the "Scoutmaster of the Year" whose "patrol leaders" could not: 1)  give the name of the patrol each was leading on paper; 2) name the Scouts who were members of "their" patrol; 3) describe even vaguely any issue on which any one of them had voted in the "SPL conferences" run by the Scoutmaster ( who sat at the head of the table).  They had been awarded the PL patches for purposes of "positions of Responsibility" to facilitate the Eagle mill that the troop emphatically was.  ("Scoutinf for fun.  Eagle for Life.") I soldiered on as an SA for five years before not renewing.  In that time, the troop had two outdoor weekend campouts, and received "Gold" JTE each year, despite a 50% loss of registered Scouts each year that it was not worse. 

    The Troop Committee of thsi troop,, having been carefully kept away from all training - all training - by the Scoutmaster,  felt the SM was the beau ideal of a Scoutmaster.  They retested every advancement candidate on each rank requirement at his Board-of -Review (THAT was why the CC was hauling all that rope into the BOR room.).  The blind being led by the blind.   The UC for the troop was the same Scouter for all those years and appeared only at the semi-annual mass Eagle courts-of-honor to bask in the reflected glory.  As the troop led the district in fund-raising for council, there was no point in seeking help for reform. 

    Change is needed for such a trevesty to be appluaded by an awartd for "Excellence."

    Hey, I know some Troops like that around here! xp

    Sad, and thanks for giving us that picture of how badly things can be run...

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