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The DAC should have removed him/her self from the BOR.


Technicalities suck. This is a great lesson for all! Including the Scout. It appears his only fault was not getting the DAC's signature prior to starting even though he has an e-mail & verbal approval. If it was up to me, I would appeal to Council.


Hey Beav, can I get a few whacks in?


Ed Mori

Troop 1

1 Peter 4:10

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The EBOR is required to explain in writing the reason for denial and explain the appeal procedures. You could contact Council and have them explain the appeal procedures.


I would start an appeal of this decision. IMHO the DAC should not have sat on the EBOR as he was told to convene the EBOR by Council. What happened to this Scout is a shame, he proceeded on the project based on what he thought was an approval. E-mail and verbal approvals are not that unheard of.


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Don't give up - appeal - right away - you can wait for the written document if you want but you already know why the rank was denied. I doubt it will need to go any farther than Council - the Council has already made itself pretty clear - denial based on this lack of signature won't stand - its too bad the DAC didn't "get it". Call whomever it is in Council who made the original decision to have a BOR held and tell him the Board denied the rank for the reason you appealed in the first place.


Then - and there is more to do - get your COR to call the District Chairman, explain the issue and request the immediate replacement of the ADC. Why the COR? Because s/he is a voting member of the District and Council. If the District Chairman won't act, the COR can take the issue up with Council. The folks in the office do listen to the COR's because they know that's where there numbers come from.



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I apologize in advance if this comes off as harsh, but here goes:


First, I wholeheartedly endorse CalicoPenn's advice: if there's been a BOR, appeal right away. The circumstances of the BOR weren't optimal, but at least you have something to appeal.


Second, get a copy of the BSA Advancement Committee Guidelines. It's a full size booklet, meant to be snapped into a 3-ring binder. Your council service center should have them on hand, but probably not in the Scout Shop -- go back in the office and ask; they cost a few bucks.


Now, consider yourself tongue-lashed. I've been a Scoutmaster twice, in addition to other positions at the unit, District, and Council levels. I paid attention to everybody's advancement, but the most important ones were Life-to-Eagle, and First Class-First year, in that order. And, in the Life-to-Eagle advancement process, I watched the projects most closely. Why? The projects were the most difficult, the most time consuming, and perhaps most importantly, so many of the required elements of the project took place away from Troop meetings and activities. Every adult leader we had was an Eagle advisor, but there were really only two: the Scout's parent/guardian and the Scoutmaster. I know we walk a tightrope regarding "how much help is too much?". There's no one right answer to that, but I do know this: checking the workbook for a signature before project work starts is definitely not too much help. Moreover, when our District Advancement Chairs turned over, I made it a point to speak with them at a Roundtable to establish a relationship, and find out their philosophies on advancement, particularly Eagle advancement -- it's that important. By doing so, I discovered their idiosyncracies, preferences, likes/dislikes, and so on. Now, I'll admit that doing so may not make an unreasonable advancement chair more reasonable, but at least you'll know they're unreasonable and you have absolutely no "wiggle room" with them. That, in turn, will shape how you deal with them. It'd be great if every Scouter was a reincarnation of Fred MacMurray, but they're not.


I feel terrible for what's happening to your son, who seems to be a fine young man from your description of him. Again, I urge you to appeal immediately, and I hope and pray that it turns out in your son's favor. As a follow on, I also urge you to silently promise yourself that this will not happen again on your watch -- I think you know how.


For what its worth, my son is an Eagle Scout, and I was a registered leader for all but a year of his entire time in Scouting so far. He didn't get any more help from me than any of the other Scouts got, but he didn't get any less either. It was all his work, but I reviewed it, and gave him advice and pointers along the way.





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You were not too harsh, and I agree with your comments.


It appears I'm one of those 1960's Scouts who did have Fred McMurray as a Scoutmaster. His example was a key factor in me becoming a Scoutmaster. It might also be why I have such high expectations for my fellow Scouters. He actually allowed me to make a few mistakes, learn from them, and I still received my Eagle.


As a father and relatively new Scoutmaster, I've learned a great deal through this experience and, not all of it is positive. YOU CAN BE SURE THAT I WILL NEVER LET SOMETHING LIKE THIS HAPPEN AGAIN TO A MEMBER OF OUR TROOP. I think it's sad, however, my focus has to turn to protecting my Scouts from unreasonable adults who appear to view their roles as gatekeepers, aren't there for the prupose of assisting Scouts, and have self-appointed themselves as "protectors" of their personal vision of Scouting. I guess I expected more, but I have learned.


I have been very encouraged, however, by the support we have received from the good people at the Council. They are moving to schedule a Council level BOR and we are optimistic the situation will be resolved favorably. I also appreciate everyone's support on this forum. I also look forward to continuing as SM and to future involvement in bringing needed change to our district.











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I'm going to respectfully disagree with one clause of your post:


"my focus has to turn to protecting my Scouts from unreasonable adults who appear to view their roles as gatekeepers,"


Here is a small laundry list of places where the "i" must be dotted and the "t" crossed, lest something not happen:


- Business licenses (suppose the young man wants to open a garage out of HS)

- College application

- Financial Aid Application

- AP exam application (or even the writing on the AP exam?)

- Honors program application


If the world ran on handshakes and "our word" still, we'd have a far better world. It doesn't.


Believe it or not, you are teaching a life lesson when "Get the job done" means "Get it done right the first time." How many times have you or I worked overtime because we did not have time to do the job right, and we found there was plenty of time (our own) to do it over?



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Yah, don't knock da gatekeepers, eh? Gatekeepers are good people. They make sure the doc doin' your surgery might do well enough for you to walk away, or the bridge you drive on to work actually might hold your car. Absence of gatekeepers gets us cars that can't make it to 100K miles without huge repair expenses, or FEMA executives who couldn't manage a corner grocery let alone a hurricane response.


We want to teach kids that honor demands not just workin' hard or puttin' in time, but doing it right.


This isn't a gatekeeper problem, except perhaps the district committee not bein' a good enough gatekeeper on who gets the DAC job. ;)






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Sorry, I didn't intend to get into a debate about gatekeepers. But, here we are.


I believe that our role as Scouters is to help as many Scouts as possible reach the gates, and then limit only those that shouldn't for "good reason" pass through. I think there are some in our organization that have things reversed. They establish gates and then help only those that they have allowed through. Help then limit, or limit then help? I think we should try and get as many Scouts through the gates as possible.


John-in-KC's list of gatekeepers is correct, but I hope that our organization would be more tolerant and be more willing to help people overcome mistakes. I sure hope we don't need to add another point to the Scout Law, "A Scout is Perfect"???


Just my opinion.




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  • 2 weeks later...

There are still happy endings. And my faith in the greater BSA Organization is renewed.


A Council BOR was held last night for my son. The Council Advancement Chair along with 4 veteran Scouters sat on the board. The board unanimously over-ruled the DAC and awarded my son the rank of Eagle Scout.


We have received some wonderful feedback from those attending, and are extremely proud of the way our Scout handled the unfortunate mess. The board members asked the tough questions, but as my son said, "I felt like an Eagle Scout when I was answering them". The BOR did a great job in turning around an ugly situation and making a young man feel great about his many accomplishments.


Hats off to these folks!


And thanks to all of you for your feedback and support.





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One Eagle Dad to another,


CONGRATULATIONS to your son. Yes, it was a harder trail for him, but that can be leveraged for the good! :)


May I offer the suggestion that later in your Scoutering career, you might want to consider service in the District and/or Council Advancement Committee???

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MINNSM: Add my congrats to all the rest. You and your son both deserve the 'Perserverance' MB.


At the boys Eagle COH, have someone read B-Ps "final letter to Scouts", you know, the one about 'being happy'...


Now, what can we do for the poor DAC? Does he deserve any sympathy? A remedial WB? A boot in the pants? Where does HE go from here? (another thread?)

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