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Everything posted by acco40

  1. acco40

    Eagle Board of Review (Appeal)

    "We" don't show leadership. The Eagle candidate should show leadership. If the Scoutmaster signed off on his requirements - to the Scoutmaster your son has shown leadership in his POR (Position of Responsibility) and has give leadership to others in a service project according to his Scoutmaster. You may suggest to your son to confer with the BOR and Scoutmaster and see why there appears to be a disagreement on his "leadership." I've seen issues when a Troop Committee has issues with a Scoutmaster and Scouts get caught in the middle. I have no idea if your son's case falls into this category but the remedy is to find a new Scoutmaster or Troop Committee or both, not to have a Scout get stuck in the middle. How old is your Scout? It he has some distance between today and aging out, I'd ask for a little more clarity from the BoR members other than "do another project" about the leadership component. Ask you son if he feels he demonstrated leadership and if he feels he has, articulate how to the BoR. If he feels he did not, investigate further. It sounds to me, from what little I know, the Scoutmaster (who may or may not have been his Eagle advisor) and the BoR team are not on the same page. Sometimes that is an issue. Per chance was the Scoutmaster the father of the Scout? Keep in mind the Scoutmaster is in control of advancement in a Troop. Maybe he (or she) should have a heart to heart with the committee?
  2. acco40

    Scouting ties in the Trump Administration

    I respect Tillerson - who distanced himself from Donnie.
  3. acco40

    Fitness Goals for Scouters

    I think it matters more what the position the Scouter holds than what are the activities of the troop. If a Scouter is the advancement chair and really only interfaces with the boys at BORs and COHs - the level of physical activity is not high. Keep in mind "personal fitness" is what is the priority in Scouts. Physical fitness is just one component of personal fitness.
  4. acco40

    Properly wearing the OA sash on the uniform

    I usually only wore my OA sash at Trooping meetings when the boys voted on new members and during OA events - ordeals for new members. As an adult OA member but not an OA advisor, I really didn't attend more than one or two OA meetings. It was the one "honor" I was glad my older son received before his dad. He still remembers a year later when his dad forgot the OA "password" during his Brotherhood ceremony - okay, I've said too much already.
  5. acco40

    Properly wearing the OA sash on the uniform

    In my council, the youth made fun of OA sash "condoms" "protective plastic sleeves to keep the sash clean while doing service - usually some sort of dirty work". In my council, a clean sash is the sign of an inactive OA member - one who doesn't provide much service. There was usually a clash with mothers (they hated to see the white sash get soiled) but I liked the fact that the kids were proud of their service. A clean sash showed an OA member was a "virgin" wrt service. ;-) FYI, our council (dating myself - about 10 years ago) had probably the best OA lodge in the country.
  6. acco40

    I HATE the new YPT rules

    No, blanket announcements of "I need a volunteer to . . ." don't work very well. Conversely, putting people on the spot is not my favorite technique either. One has to be a little devious but if you know the adults you should have a good idea of who may or may not be a good candidate for the position you are seeking to fill (or task to be accomplished). It takes some skill but get with that person one-on-one, talk sincerely about the need and how you think that person would be a great asset and nine times out of ten you close the deal - no public shaming required.
  7. acco40

    Patrol Method and new G2SS rules

    G2SS May 2018 All Scouts registered in troops are eligible to participate in troop or patrol overnight campouts, camporees, and resident camps. Patrol Activities—A Scout patrol may participate in patrol activities. Two-deep adult leadership is required. Patrol Leaders Handbook (2010) Most patrol activities take place within the framework of the troop. However, patrols may also set out on day hikes, service projects, and overnighters independent of the troop and free of adult leadership as long as they follow two rules: • The Scoutmaster approves the patrol activity. • The patrol activity does not interfere with any troop function. So yes, the rules have changed (didn't find a 2017 Patrol Leader's Handbook on-line). Now, when I was a Scoutmaster I had the boys ask to do an outing that wasn't necessarily allowed by the G2SS. No, not rob a bank but things like laser tag or paintball. What I told the boys was that those activities were not sanctioned by the BSA but if they wanted to plan it out and even invite me, I'd be game but I made it clearly understood to them and their parents that it wasn't a Scout activity. Would I do that today for an overnight activity? Probably not. But a few years ago, I had one patrol (older boys) do a "patrol outing" of sorts where they camped out of earshot and sight line from the remainder of the troop, we were hosting Webelos Scouts, and the boys absolutely loved it. I made the mile walk around 9:30 PM to see if everything was kosher and then again around 7:30 AM just as a check. It really fostered youth leadership and they talked about that outing for years as one of their favorites. You have to know your boys and I'm a believer that the more you put trust in them, the more they will reward you for that trust. I'm sure it was a liability issue for the BSA but it's sad they took the patrol option away.
  8. acco40

    Qualities of an Eagle

    I'm very direct so . . . The Scoutmaster is in charge of the advancement in a troop. The CO is in charge of selecting/approving a Scoutmaster. So . . . It really is that simple.
  9. acco40

    Qualities of an Eagle

    These type of posts always amuse me. What are the requirements to earn the Eagle rank? What requirement do you feel the Scout has not meant by getting a girlfriend pregnant?
  10. acco40

    Lawnmower Parents

    You must live in a very arid region. My grass never gets dry enough to cut until after 10:00 AM!
  11. acco40

    Lawnmower Parents

    What adult requirements are we (BSA) forcing on children?
  12. acco40

    GoFundMe for Eagle Projects

    What is the purpose of an Eagle Scout Project? What does the Life Scout learn from a GoFundMe page? What does a Scout learn from asking companies to fund or provide raw materials for his project? What does a Scout learn from asking private citizens for donations? These topics should be discussion between the Life Scout and his Eagle Project Adviser.
  13. acco40

    Polar Bear Camping

    When you're underground, the weather is irrelevant. From a temperature perspective - yes. But I'd say that rain is of dire importance if one is underground.
  14. Last week I travelled to West Lafayette to see the Mizzou / Purdue football game. Along for the trip was my family and my brother's family and my sister. Well, during the tailgate I got a kick out of the fact that my boys (ages 27 and 26) used their old Patrol cooler and stove for the tail gate. My oldest was in charge of the grill - burgers for all (he had a steak!) and they cleaned up everything. Their aunts & uncles and cousins were impressed. Their Scout training came in very useful. It brought back a flood of memories of when we were all about 10 years or more younger and the numerous Scouting trips we had - memories that will last a lifetime. I can honestly say the program had a very positive affect on both of my boys - and I think me too!
  15. Positions of Responsibility “Serve actively in your unit for a period of … months in one or more … positions of responsibility” is an accomplishment every candidate for Star, Life, or Eagle must achieve. The following will help to determine whether a Scout has fulfilled the requirement. Positions Must Be Chosen From AmongThose Listed. The position must be listed in the position of responsibility requirement shown in the most current edition of Boy Scout Requirements. Since more than one member may hold some positions—“instructor,” for example—it is expected that even very large units are able to provide sufficient opportunities within the list. The only exception involves Lone Scouts, who may use positions in school, in their religious organization, in a club, or elsewhere in the community. Units do not have authority to require specific positions of responsibility for a rank. For example, they must not require a Scout to be senior patrol leader to obtain the Eagle rank. Service in positions of responsibility in provisional units, such as a jamboree troop or Philmont trek crew, do not count toward this requirement. For Star and Life ranks only, a unit leader may assign, as a substitute for the position of responsibility, a leadership project that helps the unit. If this is done, the unit leader should consult the unit committee and unit advancement coordinator to arrive at suitable standards. The experience should provide lessons similar to those of the listed positions, but it must not be confused with, or compared to, the scope of an Eagle Scout service project. It may be productive in many cases for the Scout to propose a leadership project that is discussed with the unit leader and then “assigned.” Meeting the Time Test May Involve Any Number of Positions. The requirement calls for a period of months. Any number of positions may be held as long as total service time equals at least the number of months required. Holding simultaneous positions does not shorten the required number of months. Positions need not flow from one to the other; there may be gaps between them. This applies to all qualified members including Lone Scouts. When a Scout assumes a position of responsibility, something related to the desired results must happen. Meeting Unit Expectations. If a unit has established expectations for positions of responsibility, and if, within reason (see the note under “Rank Requirements Overview,”, based on his personal skill set, the Scout meets them, he fulfills the requirement. When a Scout assumes a position, something related to the desired results must happen. It is a disservice to the Scout and to the unit to reward work that has not been done. Holding a position and doing nothing, producing no results, is unacceptable. Some degree of responsibility must be practiced, taken, or accepted. Meeting the Requirement in the Absence of Unit Expectations. It is best when a Scout’s leaders provide him position descriptions, and then direction, coaching, and support. Where this occurs, and is done well, the young man will likely succeed. When this support, for whatever reason, is unavailable or otherwise not provided—or when there are no clearly established expectations—then an adult leader or the Scout, or both, should work out the responsibilities to fulfill. In doing so, neither the position’s purpose nor degree of difficulty may be altered significantly or diminished. Consult the current BSA literature published for leaders in Boy Scouting, Varsity Scouting, Venturing, or Sea Scouts for guidelines on the responsibilities that might be fulfilled in the various positions of responsibility. Under the above scenario, if it is left to the Scout to determine what should be done, and he makes a reasonable effort to perform accordingly for the time specified, then he fulfills this requirement. Even if his results are not necessarily what the unit leader, members of a board of review, or others involved may want to see, he must not be held to unestablished expectations.
  16. I'm getting to the point where I don't remember much! I used to be very, very active on this site (with the old format) but I've been fairly inactive for almost 10 years. Back then too much posting was about girls and God. ;-)
  17. I'll defer to John-in-KC - I've probably got outdated sources. From John's referenced material: The purpose of Star, Life, and Eagle Scout requirements calling for Scouts to be active for a period of months involves impact. Since we prepare young people to go forth, and essentially, make a positive difference in our American society, we judge that a member is “active” when his level of activity in Scouting, whether high or minimal, has had a sufficiently positive influence toward this end. Use the following three sequential tests to determine whether the requirement has been met. The first and second are required, along with either the third or its alternative. 1. The Scout is registered. The youth is registered in his unit for at least the time period indicated in the requirement, and he has indicated in some way, through word or action, that he considers himself a member. If a boy was supposed to have been registered, but for whatever reason was not, discuss with the local council registrar the possibility of back-registering him. 2. The Scout is in good standing. A Scout is considered in “good standing” with his unit as long as he has not been dismissed for disciplinary reasons. He must also be in good standing with the local council and the Boy Scouts of America. (In the rare case he is not, communications will have been delivered.) 3. The Scout meets the unit’s reasonable expectations; or, if not, a lesser level of activity is explained. If, for the time period required, a Scout or qualifying Venturer or Sea Scout meets those aspects of his unit’s pre-established expectations that refer to a level of activity, then he is considered active and the requirement is met. Time counted as “active” need not be consecutive. A boy may piece together any times he has been active and still qualify. If he does not meet his unit’s reasonable expectations, then he must be offered the alternative that follows. So a discipline issue or not meeting a reasonable expectation could be an issue. Of course, a good Scoutmaster should not put undue burden on a Scout who may be on the football or wrestling team at school, be employed or have other commitments outside of Scouting.
  18. Be active in your troop for at least four months as a First Class Scout. So what exactly does this mean and who determines what this means? Let me start with the "who." The Scoutmaster is in charge of advancement within the troop. BSA sets the requirements for the ranks. As a former Scoutmaster, I knew that "active" meant "registered" - nothing more nothing less. The unit leaders are responsible for maintaining contact with the Scout on a regular basis. The Scout is not required to attend any certain percentage of activities or outings. However, unit leaders must ensure that he is fulfilling the obligations of his assigned leadership position. If he is not, then they should remove the Scout from that position. Now, is it best for the Scout (or his parents) to be confrontational with the Scoutmaster, Patrol Leader, Advancement Chair or whomever? No. I'd suggest talking with your son and asking him to discuss the issue with the Scoutmaster (not sure "is being told" is in reference to). If you feel he has hit a brick wall, I'd suggest a talk with the Scoutmaster (as a last resort) at a time of his (or her) choosing - not during a Scout Meeting or Committee Meeting. Also keep in mind he has to have a POR (Position of Responsibility - Patrol leader, assistant senior patrol leader, senior patrol leader, troop guide, Order of the Arrow troop representative, den chief, scribe, librarian, historian, quartermaster, bugler, junior assistant Scoutmaster, chaplain aide, instructor, webmaster, or outdoor ethics guide) and many, but not all, require him to be present at meetings and many times at other events (outings, etc.).
  19. Eagle Requirement 2: "Demonstrate that you live by the principles of the Scout Oath and Scout Law in your daily life...." Who signs off on that requirement?
  20. How can you deny a Scout a SMC or BOR if they've completed all the other requirements for rank advancement? That's just plain out wrong. I had a case where a Life Scout completed all of the requirements for his Eagle rank/award except for the BOR. One was scheduled and during the time after his SMC but before his BOR he got in trouble at school and was suspended. The troop committee would not hold a BOR for him. I told them they couldn't do that - they had to give him a BOR. They didn't need to have him "pass" but they couldn't deny him a review (somebody tell the Republicans for me please). Anyway, they refused to hold a BOR for him. Well the Scout arranged a BOR with the district Advancement Chair and was awarded his Eagle. To this day, I still think the troop committee was gutless.
  21. Yes, if one was 5'4" and 330 lb when they started working on the MB and showed improvement when finished. When is a boy in a troop - ages 12 to 17. How many boys don't improve their strength during this time?
  22. That's why, as a Scoutmaster, if I see a Life scout in our troop that can't tie a bowline - guess who I ask the SPL to assign to teach the Tenderfoots (Tenderfeet?)? No one should be trying to play the accountable game - we should all be trying to help the boys learn. One of the biggest beefs against me from the parents was their perceived notion that didn't see "Scout skills" (in their eyes camping skills) as important. I did seem them as important but not as an end to themselves. The mission of scouting isn't to make skilled outdoorsmen. The mission is to help them make moral and ethical decisions - the outdoors and the patrol method (and advancement) are methods (tools) to do so. There are other ways to teach them moral and ethical decisions that are just as effective - but it isn't scouting which as leaders, we are suppose to be dispensing.
  23. acco40

    Talking politics around the campfire

    Depending on their age and maturity - I tend to play devil's advocate with the boys if they have a very strident political position. Kind of a bastardization of the Socratic method - just to get them to think and challenge themselves. But rarely is it the boys who start a political discussion. When the adults start it, I usually decline participation if the boys are around.
  24. I was a personal fitness merit badge instructor for many years. The first thing most folks screw up is equating personal fitness with physical fitness. I suggest you read the personal fitness merit badge book.
  25. Again, the purpose of BSA Scouting, is not to retain the core scouting skill like hiking or swimming. I remember back in the day, parents would have their kids join Scouts to learn to swim. The purpose is to develop character, citizenship and personal fitness. Now, if we sold that to the boys, nobody would sign up voluntarily. So, we use the Outdoor Program to lure the kids and Advancement to lure the parents (my opinion only and stated somewhat tongue in cheek). It is highly beneficial that the boys learn orienteering, pioneering, hiking, first aid, camping and a host of other skills - but that is only the means to develop character, citizenship and personal fitness. Can these aims be achieved by different methods? Of course they can but as Scouters, we've pledged to deliver the Scout program as constructed by the BSA which uses the Outdoor program and other methods such as Advancement, Personal Growth, Association with Adults, Patrols, the Uniform, and Leadership Development, Ideals (Oath, Law, Motto, Slogan, etc.) to obtain the purpose. So don't get your undies in a knot if an Eagle Scout can't remember exactly how to tie a clove hitch. But do raise your eyebrow if they lie about being able to tie a clove hitch.