Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Gold Winger

Blue Cards?

Recommended Posts

Bevah, in his infinite wisdom, proclaimed that Blue Cards are not necessary and states as evidence that many troops don't use them.

 

Let us assume that "blue card" is colloquial for "merit badge application" and isn't always blue. In a similar fashion, a foreigneer may have a "Green Card" but those haven't been green for years.

 

Given that, I offer from the merit badge counselor's training

 

"When a Scout has decided on a merit badge he would like to earn, he must follow these steps . . . Obtain from his Scoutmaster a signed merit badge application . . ."

 

According to this a Scout MUST obtain a merit badge application. BSA also states " The Scout turns in both sections of the Application for Merit Badge to his Scoutmaster so the merit badge can be secured."

 

Sounds like BSA thinks that the "blue card" is required, a three part blue card. Not a big sheet from camp or an email. A "blue card."

 

Hmmmm. . . interesting.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In a council near me the information as to who earned which MB at summer camp is entered into Scout Net directly from info received by council from the summer camp staff. No cards of any color, no SM prior approval, no SM oversight, no BOR checks and balances, no advancement form. You can search for John-in KC's post as to the difficulty in getting info in Scout Net out of Scout Net. We can also debate once again National's track record of decisions made on appeal for advancement refused even though a MBC certifies completion. MBC training and any training for that matter is worth the paper this message is printed on when it comes down to an appeal with National concerning advancement. Each individual Council does things according to how each individual Council decides it should be done. National only gets involved with advancement if there is an appeal and then the requirements book becomes the bench mark. Keep in mind that procedures do not a requirement make.

LH

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In my council, there are no fewer than three different merit badge applications:

- Blue trifold, whatever the BSA number is, for most "during the year" MBs.

- White singleton, used at our Scout Reservations during the summer season. The "Lodge Records" are the backup document, and are maintained at the Council office for I believe 5 years.

- A Merit Badge (shudder) college sponsored by an area college uses a two-part form. The Scoutmaster approval is the submission of the application and the fees.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No Gold Winger only National can make it a requirement and National has said that all that stuff in the requirements book on pages 22 & 23 and in the ACPP (last p is for procedures) are procedures and not requirements. Requirements are listed under the specific heading for each rank and merit badge respectively.

LH

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The word "must" makes it a requirement.

 

Nah, GW, yeh really need to understand da difference between a training document and a policy. It doesn't even require "infinite wisdom." :)

 

Lots of times in trainin' (or other program materials) we choose one good way to suggest to people, because givin' 'em all the variants is just too confusin' for beginners and takes too long. Supplementary modules were an outsourced project with a time limit of 1 hour per module. And nobody in da BSA is really doin' detailed cross-publication continuity/consistency editing on program materials at the individual word level da way you suggest.

 

When BSA wants a particular form to be required by a boy, they write it directly into the Boy Scout Requirements, just the way LongHaul describes. Like using the Eagle Project Workbook to complete the Eagle service project requirement ;).

 

I can say that I know thousands of boys and hundreds of Eagles with earned and recognized MB's that never were processed through a "Merit Badge Application" form.

 

Nuthin' stoppin' you from usin' Blue Cards in your troop if that's what you want and it works for yeh. That's what they're there for, convenience of recordkeeping. But only that.

 

Beavah

(This message has been edited by Beavah)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

From, "Introductory Guide for Merit Badge Counselors" at http://www.scouting.org/boyscouts/resources/mbc/

 

Most local councils (including summer camps) use the Application for Merit Badge, or blue card, although it is not required. This tool just makes the recordkeeping easier for the Scout, the merit badge counselor, and the unit leader. At summer camp, a Scout may receive partial credit for completion of a merit badge on the blue card, which goes to the Scoutmaster at week's end. Back home, the Scout would need to contact a merit badge counselor for assistance with completing the rest of the requirements.

(emphasis is mine)

 

SWScouter

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Do not know outside of our area, but many of our summer camps are now going to computerized printouts in duplicate to replace blue cards. They print out completed sheets and partial sheets which are given to the leadership at camp close. In our council, this caused a problem initially, as our registrar was not familiar with the process and balked. It took a bit of convincing to get the copies accepted, attached to the advancement report rather than separate cards for each scout. But frankly, the process is more efficient and makes review much easier at camp, as it is all in one place and can be secured in a file or notebook much more easily. Also, questions are more easily anwered after the fact, as the records are saved by the camp for easy access, rather than them having to dig through piles of cards. I hope to see this process in effect at all the camps soon, as it also allows preregistration for merit badges before coming to camp, which takes a lot of pressure off the first evening activities. The programs allow changes, but only by the leaders or the scout directly with the counselor, and only for the first couple of days. Also, leaders can go into on hand computers at some camps to check the accuracy of what their scouts say they are doing, and to check the troops records as well.

 

Isn't technology great sometimes?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't have a requirements book so I can't peek but is there anything in there about the need to register or charter a unit?

 

If there isn't, does that mean that units don't have to re-charter? According to you guys, it does. One only needs to follow requirements, not policies.

 

Beaver, you are comical. You pretend to know so much but you really know very little. BSA says "insurance may be invalid if.. . ." but the all knowing Beaver says "oh no, BSA is wrong." So if BSA doesn't mean what they say, how can we know what we should do? I know, Ask the Beaver, he knows everything.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't claim to be any sort of "Guru"!

Last time I checked the Staff at our summer camp were still using the Blue cards.

Most units are still using the blue cards, but this doesn't mean that these blue cards are the only way to go!

As we have seen with them pesky Tour Permits, there are times when a local option is acceptable.

Scoutnet when it was first used was almost usable. It has got a lot better and the BSA is or at least seems to be coping and using new technology a lot better than it did.

In the other thread that asked when is a MB earned? We looked at a lot of stuff.

I can't help thinking about a pay check!!

When it is earned is one thing.

But earning it and having the money in the bank is another.

The real final word about MB's is Scoutnet!!

Until the information is in the system, it kinda doesn't exist! The information is put in locally by the Council Registrar, his or her boss the SE has the final word as to what is and what isn't acceptable.

I'm sorry, I'm a little lost about what the question about "is there anything in there about the need to register or charter a unit?"

This of course would be covered by the BSA Bylaws that cover membership and the right to wear BSA Badges.

Eamonn.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

BSA says "insurance may be invalid if.. . .I know, Ask the Beaver, he knows everything."

 

Yah, thanks to SWS for lookin' up that bit and providin' GW with a direct publication quote indicating that blue cards are optional. I take the change of topic to be his form of apologizin' :).

 

GW, since yeh bring up insurance, when last we left this topic I had sent you to go have your COR set up a meeting with your council Scout Executive, so you could tell him that you were tellin' scouters and charter partners that BSA insurance wouldn't cover 'em and would leave them 'high and dry' whenever they screwed up by not followin' a G2SS provision like drivin' at night.

 

Have you made that appointment yet? No need to trust da Comical Beavah, after all. :) Set it up. Make sure he gets the regional office on conference call, just to double-check. We're all interested to hear your SE's reaction. :)

 

Beavah

(This message has been edited by Beavah)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"Yah, thanks to SWS for lookin' up that bit and providin' GW with a direct publication quote indicating that blue cards are optional. I take the change of topic to be his form of apologizin'"

 

Well Beav, one publication says that they MUST and another says that they are optional. I'll go with MUST but you do what you want as I know that you do anyway. Maybe I'll look in the bible, apparently all of the answers are in there.

 

As for the insurance thing, I'm just going with what BSA says. I know that you only like to go with what you believe but that's life.

 

Now, if only IGNORE USER would work. I could ignore you and you could ignore and you could continue to give bad info to all near and far without any interference.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

GW, not quite sure why this got so personal for you, but, in general, I've found Beavah's insurance advice sound - and I'll add I have quite a bit of experience in the insurance area, particularly big, scarey, corporate liability insurance and self-insurance (and the BSA is both). Lots of opinions, very little fact. That's largely because if you have to go there, each case is taken on its own merits and an insurance person or attorney would be an idiot to give an advance opinion based on a hypothetical situation (or even a non-hypothetical without access to all the facts). The general rule is insurance is for accidents and/or idiots. Then the BSA (and/or your CO) gets to decide if you get to keep your charter, based on how stupid you were. Laymen's language.

 

And hey, now yet another thread will come up if someone searches for insurance (referencing a thread on that topic going on elsewhere)! This is even wackier than a DO discussion turning into insurance - at least there we were discussing fire and heavy metal objects (not Led Zeppelin).

 

On the topic at hand, from the BSA side, I've also had the opportunity to learn how the way councils do things varies widely across the country, or even within the council. Sometimes you'd hardly think they're in the same organization:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

GW,

 

The requirement to charter is found in the Rules and Regulations of the Boy Scouts of America ...

 

This is one of those threads where I wish Bob White was still around.

 

Sign.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

GW...I am with Vicki on this. No need for the personal attack. In the past 2 years + , I have seen some great info from Beavah.

 

Keep it scout like...

 

Peace.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...