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SMEagle819

Eagle Scout Project Approval

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FScouter...

From the NESA website:

As you plan and carry out your leadership service project, use the Eagle Scout Leadership Service Project Workbook to record your plans and progress.

 

The workbook may be downloaded the following formats:

 

WORD:

http://www.nesa.org/trail/18-936.doc

 

Rich Text:

http://www.nesa.org/trail/18-936.rtf

 

Portable Document Format:

http://www.nesa.org/trail/18-927.pdf

 

Why Word has 18-936 and pdf is 18-927E? You got me...

 

All have Mr Mazzuca's smiling face...

 

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Our District is responsible for ultimately approving Eagle projects. Our Advancment Chair has the responsibility and may appoint an appropriate person for the job or do it him/her self.

 

They, like others here, require enough information in the ELSP Workbook that if the Scout were abducted by aliens, another scout or adult for that matter, would be able to follow the plan. The Candidate must include drawings or plans if appropriate, before pictures, list of materials needed, tools needed, personell needed, along with a detailed list of how each would be used.

 

The level of detail they're looking for reminds me of what we teach in Wood Badge. Project planning really requires a great amount of detail. I believe we teach the same skills at NYLT, altough I could be wrong here, I'm not an NYLT expert by any means.

 

 

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"They, like others here, require enough information in the ELSP Workbook that if the Scout were abducted by aliens, another scout or adult for that matter,"

 

No council, district, unit, or individual has the authority to add such a requirement. That is not a requirement of the BSA's and it cannot be added by anyone. You can only use the requirements that the BSA has placed in the offical project work book.

 

As a side point it is a silly concept to include. Firstly, because if the scout is not there it doesn't count no matter if it is written to that great a detail or not.

 

Secondly, as long as the plan meets the BSA requirements and can be carried out by the scout then it is as detailed as it needs to be. To assume that a 13 year old and an 18 year olds planning ability will be at the same level is absurd. Two think that any two scouts abilities will be identical is absurd and not required by the BSA.

 

Lastly, to think that ANY scout can pick up anyone elses plan and carry it out no matter how well written would depend as much if not more on the abilities of the mystery scout or scouter as on the planning ability of the candidate.

 

Why can adults not follow the rules? Stick to the BSA requirements.

 

 

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Gotta agree with Bob on this! It seems DAC's want Eagle projects to meet their standards that they feel are important. 100 page write-up, minimum of 100 hours of work, gotta wear the uniform, not allowed to wear the uniform, project must be typed, etc. If they would just stick to the requirements laid out by National, there would be no problem!

 

Ed Mori

1 Peter 4:10

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Gentlemen,

 

While you are in your rare moment of agreement, I will invite you to Kansas City to explain the error of his ways to our District Advancement Chairman.

 

I'll even buy you a barbecue dinner... after all, the condemned deserve hearty meals.

 

As I said, there have been, to my knowledge, no local appeals of EBOR based on the District/Council advancement committee approval process. That to me is empirical evidence that our local advancement folks have shot inside the X ring.(This message has been edited by John-in-KC)

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Thanks for the invite, John. Just ask your DAC to show you where in the requirements what they want is stated. Bet they him & haw around & give ya few guffaws! Bet they don't find anything either.

 

Ed Mori

1 Peter 4:10

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Ed, I don't even need to call him for that...

 

He'll look me straight in the eye and point to:

 

ELSP Workbook 18-936 "and the council or district advancement committee"

 

ACP&P #33088 (I don't have it with me for the moment) ... where it says his committee has the duty and authority to review and approve ELPs before they begin.

 

He'll simply say, laser points in his eyeballs, that the standard is his way of assuring that his 10 approvers (our District averages 25 projects a month on initial presentation, and 90%+ get the go-ahead on the first pass) implement their training and work from a common perspective.

 

He won't even hem and haw.

 

As I said earlier, my own son made the bar on the first pass, and his was an out of the box ELSP. I have no problems with where the bar is locally.

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If that's what he does John, it's time to pull a Ted Koppel & tell him "You didn't answer my question, sir". because that isn't an answer to the question. Giving his committee the "duty and authority to review and approve ELPs before they begin" doesn't mean they can require anything they want! They still have to follow the requirements set for the ELSP and requiring what they do, in my opinion, would be adding to the requirements.

 

Ed Mori

1 Peter 4:10

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From Requirements #33215 (online version)...

 

"While a Life Scout, plan, develop, and give leadership to others "

 

Plan and develop, Ed. Black and white. When it's developed to the point where someone can take it and run with it is entirely reasonable. As I said, from a unit-serving perspective, I've bought in, as have numerous other local Scouters.

 

That said, we agree to respectfully disagree on this one.

 

It could be worse; we could go on for 10 pages, have sixteen of our comments deleted by a Mod, and still not have changed each others minds. ;)

 

BTW, I like Dutch Oven Cobbler and ice cream.

 

Do you want the last word? ;)

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Certainly you would want to make sure all the elements of the project had been met. If an element such as the scouts material list is missing this would be a reason to reject the project

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I hope this late reply won't be considered resuscitating a dead horse, but I found this thread while researching this precise subject.

 

I am currently living this nightmare. I won't bore you with a recitation of our council's Eagle project review process as it is largely an amalgam of all the worst-case processes described above. I could (and have) written long descriptions of the problems with our process, but there are basically three:

 

First, the expectations for the proposal are entirely out of line for the abilities of a 14-to-17-year-old boy. One of our ASMs described a recent Eagle proposal as worthy of a Six Sigma green belt. From the proposals I've helped with, a "good one" in the council's view is generally 50+ pages and requires anywhere from 30 to 50 hours to produce. Included in that is probably 10 to 15 hours of adult coaching/editing/ghost writing. In addition to a step-by-step descriptions ("using carpenter's glue and 8d galvanized nails, attach the sides of the birdhouse to the back...."), Scouts are expected to include photos, site maps, detailed drawings, detailed material lists, budgets, schedules including work days, number of volunteers needed and total manhours; yadda, yadda, yadda. One of our Scouts had his project denied because he didn't include the dimensions of a picnic table he was to build. WHO CARES! It's a picnic table! In terms of the leadership and benefits of the project does the size of the table matter?

 

And please understand that I make a clear distinction between the proposal and the project. It's the proposals which are crazy, not the projects. I'm all for Scouts who take on challenging projects which stretch their ability. In that regard, I would rate many of the projects which our council approves as marginal at best.

 

Secondly, the bureaucratic baloney the boys are required to navigate turns into a big "gottcha" game. In another post it was mentioned that a Scout was asked how pencils would be sharpened. Our guys haven't asked that, but I'm sure only because they haven't thought of it. A big frustration is that the board won't review projects at all if all the bureaucratic hurdles haven't been met. We had one kicked back because a locally required form wasn't attached. A month later, when the boy resubmitted the proposal with the form, it was rejected for lack of scope. So now we've wasted two months....

 

Third, many of the local committee's policies and requirements are above and beyond what is required by BSA and in some cases in outright contradiction to BSA policy. Project are required to be of at least 100 manhours where the BSA guidelines clearly state that there is no minimum time requirement for a project, only that the project be of sufficient scope for the Scout to demonstrate his leadership ability. The use of power tools are prohibited (a power tool being anything with a motor) in contradiction to the Guide to Safe Scouting which clearly allows the use of power tools. To my mind, the whole approval process is an added requirement.

 

So, how does one go about changing this? The friendly cup of coffee hasn't worked (I tried). The chairman was more than happy to "explain to me" the process, but wasn't interested in sitting down for a more substantive conversation. Do we just start appealing all denials to national? Someone mentioned an audit/review process. Is that national or was that just a local thing?

 

Bob White -- one thing which may help would be to have a reference for your list of six things the district/council SHOULD be looking for. Is that published somewhere? I've really gone to school on this the past year, taking the local Eagle project courses and reading all the locally-available literature, including the Advancement Policies and Procedures. But I know that sometimes BSA publishes more details in materials for more advanced training courses which aren't otherwise easily available. Any help is appreciated.

 

As you may tell, this is really frustrating me. It isn't like we can go out of council on this. We're stuck with this process and there seem to been no checks and counter balances.

 

 

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It is exceptionally sad when things like this happen. If the DAC's would simply follow the guidelines, there wouldn't be all this crap!

 

There are NO minimum number of hours required.

The Scout or his parents or his unit are NOT required to get reference letters.

The Scout is NOT required to wear his uniform when working on his project.

The project write up must be detailed but there is NO required number of pages.

The project write up DOESN'T need to be typed of fit into a form. It CAN be handwritten providing it is readable.

 

Ed Mori

1 Peter 4:10

 

 

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Twocubdad,

 

I will say this for my DAC and his Eagle project team: If a Scout is not approved for district sign-off at RT, he's given a phone number and an address. Our Advancement folk are expected to meet with the Scout and his parent when the Scout is ready to try again.

 

BTW: Try again only gets to cover specific objections from the approver. Our District does not string youth along.

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Random thoughts:

 

"No plan survives contact with the enemy" - I wonder what happens in these detailed instances when things change? In the 2 months since securing donation pledges, the donor changes their mind after waiting so long for DAC approval. Does the boy have to file a form 17-a-3 to indicate a new funding source?

 

These detailed plan requirements remind me once again why the military and I had a parting of the ways many years ago.

 

Are we going to require .ppt presentations to accompany the .doc document that is backed up by the MS Project file showing timelines and dependencies? Should our MBC for Family Life And Personal Management now require an equivalent planning document for the project related requirements?

 

When did leadership and service become the ability to file hundred page planning documents?

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My son is going through this now. He's been working on his project write-up and still isn't done. He thought he might be close, and showed it to a friend (and his mom) who went through this all about seven months ago. They gave him some pointers in hopes that it would "pass" the first time the district chair reviews it.

 

Stupid stuff like when he says "screw the screws into the wood" they added in pencil "with a screwdriver." Well, duh? What would someone think otherwise--with a hammer?

 

My son is three months away from turning 18, has wanted to be an Eagle since he was a Tiger, but the thought of all this bureaucratic hoop jumping is paralyzing him from even gettingthe workbook finished--much less the project (that will be a breeze).

 

It's very discouraging. My mom (who is anxious for her grandson to make Eagle, like my older brother and her brother before him) says "your brother didn't have to go through anything like this." Well, yeah, mom, but he earned his Eagle 35 years ago; things have changed, and not for the better.

 

Elizabeth

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