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Curious

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Posts posted by Curious


  1. Our current problem is the person listed on the charter paperwork as the Executive Officer/COR recently made a claim that he and he alone owns the troop and we can't remove him until he decides to leave.
    And he would be correct. As far as the BSA is concerned, he is the owner of the pack. This is one of the reasons why self-chartered organizations are frowned upon.

     

    Many parents are ready to leave over this.
    You need to discuss the situation with your DE. Look into creating a new unit and then have all the parents fill out transfer apps. The whole thing will be a royal pain, with lots and lots of paperwork to create a new unit and transfer everybody, but it can be done. You might even be able to keep your same unit number ... maybe ....

     

    Good Luck!

     


  2. Personally, I don't think it matters one whit what the uniform police think. The only thing that matters is what your son thinks of his uniform. If he takes pride in wearing it, you've made a solid choice.

     

    "Obviously the blue trimmed one is for commie-democrats like me and the gold-trimmed one is for the Imperial New World Order wing of the BSA."

     

    Hmmmm .... I may need to switch mine out .... :p

     

     


  3. "I don't see anything in the US Flag code to support his teachings or yours. That's what I'm trying it find is what is right according to the US government."

     

    Keep in mind that a color guard is a military formation. You will not find military procedures in a set of civilian laws.

     

    Air Force Manual 50-14 (now known as 36-2203) and Army Field Manual 22-5 will both have information about color guards. There is also a Naval equivalent to the above publications, but since I'm not a Navy guy I have no clue what it is. Rest assured there will be differences between the Naval and A/AF traditions.

     

    To be honest, though, as long as the scouts are being respectful, I wouldn't worry about it too much. You do this 6 times a year and this is the first time someone has approached you? Sounds like the boys are doing a great job. Thank the gentleman and move on.


  4. "But the Scouting.org is the second absolute worse search engine ..."

     

    Unfortunately, the absolute worst one is at scoutstuff.org :(

     

    "For example if you are looking for Bear den plans, you would type in the following

     

    bear den plan and "scouting.org""

     

    Try the site keyword instead ...

     

    bear den plan site:scouting.org

     

    The site keyword will limit the search to that one and only website. Please note the colon following the keyword. And I would also omit the www and just use the domain name.


  5. When I'm doing district training, I usually like to ask the participants why they are there. Over the years, I've heard quite a few different answers. There are quite a number of leaders that decided to attended leader training because it was a requirement for the knot. I've never bothered to keep count, so I don't know the percentage.

     

    But if we get one more trained leader because there is a knot, then I say the program was a success!

     

     


  6. My experience is quite a bit different from those above, especially where the adult scouters are concerned.

     

    For the most part, youth members tend to wear the flap that was the current flap when they did their ordeal. But you will also see a variety of flaps, usually purchased from ebay, that are considered "cool" flaps. I've seen no consideration of having attended the event, nor of even being a scout at the time. Only the looks of the flap matter.

     

    Interestingly enough, this also seems to apply to council CSPs. On rare occasion, I've also seen scouts wearing a CSP from a neighboring council. I must admit, I don't care for this practice; but I would never say anything to a scout about it, either.

     

    This phenomenon is even more apparent with the adults. There is quite the variety of lodge flaps amongst the adults. Much more so than the youth. The flap issued to those staffing the 2010 jamboree is a particularly nice patch. But if believed, then my district had more than a disproportionate share of staffers.;)

     

    Issuing and selling lodge flaps is quite the fundraiser. Anyone can buy a flap for any event. Some more pricey than others. I'm not a collector, yet I own quite the assortment of flaps. The one I wear was the current flap when I became a scouter and transferred my membership. I assure you, my dues are paid. I just see no reason to change flaps.

     

    I was particularly impressed with the flap issued to commemorate the BSA 2010 anniversary. Hard to describe, but it is some sort of 3D relief effect. It really stands out. I bought one for each of my sons, even though none are yet eligible for membership. I plan to present it to them when they complete their own ordeal.

     

     

    A bit of a long and rambling post .... sorry about that. I say let your son choose one of your flaps. I've no doubt it will be a source of pride for the both of you!

     

    And if anyone questions it, ask to see their official uniform police patch. ;)


  7. "You must be a "leadership" word games expert."

     

    An ad hominem attack? ;)

     

    Let's look at it from another perspective. How many students, after attending driver's education, never again exceed the speed limit?

     

    1 in 1,000?

    1 in 10,000?

    1 in 100,000?

     

    Should we then do away with driver's education courses? Hardly, because even though they exceed the speed limit, the participants are still much safer drivers as a result.

     

    Just because WB doesn't meet someone's definition of perfect is no reason to condemn the whole course. The participants are in a position to be better scouters as a result of the course. Sadly, in the case of WB, for many scouters it is about earning a set of beads.

     

    Honestly Kudu, a lot of your ideas have merit. Your website is an excellent resource! Have you ever considered petitioning national about expanding this material on the syllabus? Or for that matter, even creating a separate course about the patrol method? In fact, you wouldn't even need national approval for a new course. That is something that can be done in-council or even taught at Univ of Scouting. Other councils will see it and it will eventually spread.

     

    Just a thought ...


  8. "The question is how many Wood Badge participants return from Wood Badge and train their Patrol Leaders to space their Patrols 300 feet apart, and lead their Patrols on separate Patrol Hikes (if only during Troop campouts)?"

     

    Apparently if you don't like the answer, then change the question? LOL Your new question really isn't a WB question. The problem with WB isn't the material, but rather the participants. Many participants attend not to learn, but to earn a set of beads.

     

    I think TAHAWK explains it quite well. The problems facing units has nothing to do with Wood Badge. I look around at the units in my area and am frustrated by the number of troops that do nothing but car camping. Some units are nothing more than adult camping clubs that just happen to allow the boys to tag along. There is an over emphasis on Trail to First Class that makes many units nothing more than glorified Webelos.

     

    These problems aren't caused by Wood Badge, nor will Wood Badge fix them. The leaders of these units are quite happy and no amount of training is going to dissuade them. They will hear what they want to hear regardless of what is taught in the syllabus.

     

    Unfortunately, I've no solution to the problem. What I end up doing is quietly speaking with my fellow scouters about what it was like when I was a scout. I get them to thinking about their own scouting experiences. Not sure if its having an impact ....

     


  9. Kudu writes:

     

    "Maybe he will be the first person in the history of the Internet to bring back to his unit Wood Badge Patrols spaced B-P's 300 feet apart, and adult-free WB Patrol Hikes."

     

    Can't speak for other WB courses, but that is the way mine was run. Each patrol was spaced and camped quite a distance apart, easily 300 feet apart. And the patrol hike was just that: just the members of our patrol.

     


  10. "Yes, if you google the term "first class first year", you come up with a handful of references from scouting sites, but not from BSA itself."

     

    http://www.google.com/search?q=first+class+first+year+site%3Ascouting.org

     

    I get 425 results when I google it ....

     

    "Again, from my own personal perspective, I just don't see or hear anything about it in my council."

     

    I guess that would make me envious. Around here, FCFY is all the rage and is considered a selling point when recruiting Webelos.

     

    From my perspective, I don't see how you can call yourself boy-led and have a well-oiled FCFY program.

    (This message has been edited by Curious)


  11. "Last year my council started requiring that parents agree to the following in order for their scout to participate in the sale:"

     

    The risk of loss is with the council.

     

    And I have serious doubts as to whether such an agreement would be enforceable. All the same, I would not sign that, or any other, agreement in order to participate.

     

     


  12. "Curious, I would be mad they wasted money on renting a movie theater....How are the condition of your camps?????? I wonder is your council in a rich suburban area??????

     

    Three of the council camps are in excellent condition, while the fourth one needs some work. It was built in the '20s ... a fact confirmed upon entering one of the latrines! 8-O

     

    The council services about a dozen counties encompassing close to 10,000 sq miles. Naturally, we have both suburban and rural areas. We have both rich areas, as well as inner-city and dirt-farmer poor.

     

    We volunteers get hit up for FOS and popcorn ... but never office supplies. Although lately they seem to be coming out with new collector CSPs and Lodge flaps on a regular basis.

     

    The bottom line is the units need to support the council in order for the council to support the units. It needs to be a 2-way street ... a partnership rather than an adversarial relationship.

     

     

    I too dread popcorn season ... for all the exact reasons in this thread. If my boys don't sell it, though, I'll have to pony up an even bigger check in the spring. Or be willing to let the program suffer ... Our units sell popcorn.

     


  13. "The kick off meeting normally happens at a local church hall. There is no cost to the Council. "

     

    Around here they rent out a local movie theatre (several actually) and put on quite the dog and pony show.

     

     

    ""I'm in a large council, so we have multiple warehouses throughout the area. There is also freight costs in getting all of that popcorn delivered to mine and your council."

    Trails End pays this."

     

    Trails End pays it? Well, sorta .... but they include the cost in that 70% number printed on the packaging. Which was my original point that you need to consider ALL costs when determining what a 50/50 split would look like.

     

     

    "Using a fax or email means you can do the Tour Permit without ever leaving your home office."

     

    And they had to buy a fax machine and computer just so you could do that. Add to that telephone, internet, and electricity costs ...

     

     

    "Hate to say it but in most Councils the Council makes money from District events and Camporees."

     

    If you include only the cost of the patch and program supplies ... maybe. If you include ALL of the costs of running a program ... maybe not.

     

    There is a reason CPA's get paid lots of money and the rest of us are left scratching our heads. Figuring out the true cost of a product (or Camporee) isn't as simple as adding up the raw material.

     

     

    "Have no idea what a Council might spend on a R/T meeting?"

     

    I find that I usually leave roundtable inundated with paper. Copies of everything seem to get passed out. Somebody had to pay for all of that Xerox time. More common with the cub side, but sometimes there are displays showing ideas or supplies used for a game being demonstrated. These materials are usually raffled off as door prizes before the evening is over.

     

     

    "Other than paying someone to enter the training's into Scoutnet the Council investment is about zero."

     

    No training materials are distributed? No handouts passed out?

     

     

    "Council budgets are great fun!

    You need to really read them and try(Yes try to understand them, as they use a booking keeping that is truly unique.)

    Don't be taken in by the pie chart, it covers a multitude of sins.

    Take a long hard look at what the SE and the other top guys are being paid, add a nice retirement and benefit package on and you will see where most of the money is going."

     

    No way around it .... people costs are a huge expense to any business or organization. Labor costs is why manufacturing in China is so popular.

     

    Granted, there are some real bonehead people around. And scouting seems to attract more than its fair share. But those council staff employees really do a lot to help out us volunteers. I don't always agree with them, but they do mean well. I can just imagine the chaos if we had no permanent staff at the council service centers.

     

    But lets face it, employee salaries are not the only expense in the budget. And not just the items I've outlined in this thread, but also a thousand other examples not even mentioned. Everything we do or touch costs somebody some money.

     

    It is short sighted to think that all these events and activities are being done at no cost or for a profit.

     

    Or ... maybe I'm wrong and its different in your council.

     

    Maybe I'm just lucky that I live in a well-funded council. ;)

     

     


  14. "my council doesn't take the 70% profit and split it 35%-35%. It is more like a 40%-30% split with the 40% going to the council. I would be more agreeable to get on board if this was reversed, with the 40% going to the unit."

     

    Is it really a 70% profit? Are you including ALL costs? There are prizes and incentives for selling, as well as different sales contests. There is all of those sample prizes that are passed out, as well as all of the marketing and promotional literature that is printed. Did you have a kickoff meeting somewhere? That building had to be rented. Where do you pick up your popcorn? At a warehouse ... that too was leased. I'm in a large council, so we have multiple warehouses throughout the area. There is also freight costs in getting all of that popcorn delivered to mine and your council.

     

    And those are just the costs that I can think of off the top of my head. Let's face it, though, a lot of these costs are covered by Trail's End. But they are including them in that 70% number. The cost of all those prizes and promotional material are included in the 70% printed on the packaging. The warehousing and other costs are covered by the council in their split.

     

    I think if you were to truly add up all of the costs, the resulting number would likely be closer to that 50/50 split.

     

     

    "because of the convienience of using a CC, but again, the charge for each transaction comes out of the unit's profit."

     

    My council doesn't have credit cards ... but in this instance, I would agree with you.

     

     

    "I have mixed feelings about supporting the professionals but have known some good ones."

     

    But its not just the professionals that you are supporting. Have a look at your council's financials. In my council, popcorn sales are a third of their budget. That means popcorn is funding our four council camps, rangers to maintain them, shooting and archery equipment, no fee camping, etc, etc. Not only that, we have multiple service centers so that volunteers don't have to drive a hundred miles to turn in a tour permit or attend a training class. Popcorn sales funds the districts so that we can have camporees, roundtables, district training, etc. There are many more things that councils must pay for besides professional salaries. You do realize that the council has a recharter fee to pay, as well?

     

     

    "Sorry, but all of the cheerleading in the world is not going to change my mind about how I feel about the popcorn sale.

     

    Sorry, but its not cheerleading. Its taking off the rose colored glasses.

     

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