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How many Eagle MB should be done by parent?

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I suppose the first thing I'd do would be to meet with the parents and the Scout and get the Blue Card situation straightened out. If they have old BC's from one of your predecessors.... I would try to discern whether they are really honestly trying to catch up or cynically working the system. And, just another thought, if Scout Bobby is being homeschooled, Mom may be thinking, "Why not?" for most of those academic badges.


I would secondly strongly suggest that maybe it might be time to have Scout Bobby transfer his MB work to another MBC. (Line that up ahead of time.) I would be suspicious if I saw all of an Eagle candidate's required MB's were signed off by his mom unless I personally knew the situation in the troop or with the Scout.


Emphasize repeatedly to Mom, Dad, and Scout that you want to set him up to sail through the Eagle paperwork process at council as well as get him back into the swing of the troop, as much as any remaining medical issues allow. Getting back with the other adults is part of that process.


Lastly, beef up your MBC lists and get to know them as well as let the parents and committee know that from now on, parents will be strongly discouraged ( ie: you won't sign the card) from working with their own boys one on one unless it's a special case, like Dad's the only Metalworking MBC for three districts.


Treat this as a learning oppurtunity, not a stumbling block.

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For any of our parents to be a MB Counselor, they must go thru training first. We go over all the proceedures and policies. We emphasize that we don't want parents counseling just their son, and use this very issue as the reason. Once parents see this possibility, they understand. If we do have a situation where the parent is the only counselor available, we ask the Scout to find a buddy to earn the badge with him. This helps easy some of the legitimacy questions.


If you are a new SM, you might want to conduct a refresher training course. I have a powerpoint presentation for the training, if you would like a copy. PM me your email address and I will send it.

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Thanks again for your advice! As I said earlier the scout did not have prior approval from past or present (me) Scoutmaster for the MB's. When I sighned up for a MB counsler for Metalworking (good quess Nike) I just went to council filled out new leader ap. and a MB form. I didn't know that I was supposed to contact SM first although we are both in the same trade and I mentioned it to him that I wanted to do it just in conversation. I most certainly would have followed protocal had I known. This is a big learning experience for me and all you help is appreciated. I am going to PM you Brent for the training presentation and am glad that I am no longer a lurker on this forum. I will have that cup of coffee with parent and keep you informed. Also I am going to introduce the training at the next committee meeting and follow up on getting our MB counslers trained.

Thank you

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I try to make sure I'm not the MBC for my son but I'm the only councilor for astronomy, swimming, and livesaving in our troop... I made my son take swimming at summer camp - there was only 1 thing he didn't complete and that was the surface dives. I had him complete those when we were doing swim tests with the new scouts so other adults were witness. When he did astronomy at summer camp there were more things to do at home afterward, but no other boys were wanting to do that badge so he was the only one with me doing a few of this projects, but since it wasn't "eagle required" we didn't worry so much about it. If he decides to do livesaving then the same will apply, but not sure if he will since he already did Emergency Prep.



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Kathy......Merit badge councilors are district wide and most districts have a list available, so you being the only one in your troop is irrelevant and meaningless. It is my opinion and a growing number of scouters in our area that there should be ABSOLUTELY no Troop merit badge councilors. I will also go so far to say that No adult should act as a councilor for a boy from the same troop.


You are missing a very important aspect of the Merit badge.


The scout calls the councilor and arranges a visit.



I understand that you are trying to help.......resist the temptation. If you want to council, do so for other scouts who are not members of your troop.


I will argue the point that you are hurting the program in the long run. I would rather have fewer Eagles than have well meaning adults short change the scouts experience.


My points do not hinder advancement. It will weed out the helicopter parents and Eagle Factory Troops.

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You might want to tell the Scouts what your policy will be on this from now on. I had to institute a new policy that all BCs must be completely filled out and have a MBC name on it before I sign it. Any cards that were out there without a SM signature (either mine or the previous SM's) had to come back to me for a signature. Apparently before I became SM there was no policy. The only exception is summer camp BCs since we usually don't know in advance who the MBC will be. The Scouts can chose their MBC or I can give them a name but I have final approval of the choice by signing the card.


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Eagle 732

That is exactly what I am dealing with now there was no MB counselor training (like I said before I signed up to be a MB counselor turned in the forms and was on my way). I am not trying to stop the MB process I am just trying to learn the correct process and gain control of the situation. I did ask this boy to bring me his BC's to get my signature on them and I did let him know that my signature is required before he starts anymore. By the way has anybody tryed getting a current MB counselor district list? It took over 4 months to get and when we did get it it was 3 years out of date. With having to update every year who knows how good that list is.

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I see no advantage to the boy in the restrictions you mention. How is an adult who is the parent of another boy in the Troop any different from a parent from a boy in a different Troop? Also, there are other Troops that don't require any training to be a MBC, and don't even mention the YP training. District MBC training? Yeah, we had one about 3 years ago. I conduct training for our Troop MBCs once or twice a year. I required them to complete YP training.


We follow the Advancement Committee Policies and Procedures as outlined.


"As a practical approach to providing merit badge counselors, troop and team committees may establish their own lists of counselors, if necessary, at least for the required and more popular merit badges."


Sorry, but the Policies and Procedures carry more weight than your opinion.

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Brent not trying to start a fight




I became a believer in the NO TROOP Merit Badge councilors when having a fantastic discussion with some 40 year + scouters. I was a troop merit badge councilor guy, after all it is easier for everyone.


His points were


Eagle is one of the first things that make a resume stand out from the hordes. WHY?

The first point were the scout laws.

His second point was Scouting teaches team work.



Third point is people skills. He believes that these skills are developed by a scouts thru constant interaction with new people. He said that a scout should interact with no less than 100 individual adults on his trip to eagle. 21 of should be individual merit badge councilors.


So when you think of Eagle what do you think of easy? Think scout laws. Easy isn't one of them.


I ask everyone who participated in the thread. What is more important The Rank or the Experience? Remember Advancement is a natural occurrence in a well run program. Remember the boys also have 6 years to earn an eagle too.


There is far too much focus on Getting eagle by age 14 or 15 and then everyone wonders why the boys leave? They leave when they need scoutings guidance the most.

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Earning Eagle isn't easy. The percentage of Scouts who earn it is still very small. Most boys spend 5 or so years earning it, which is longer than they will spend in college. I don't see any need to make it harder by trying to find 21 different MB counselors.


Adult Association is a SIDE benefit to the MB program. The main benefit is the knowledge and skills gained and the experience from completing the requirements. Finding good counselors who understand the program is much more important than finding 21 different counselors, in my book.

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So a Troop parent teaching astronomy is better than a person who is a Hobbyist astronomer as merit badge counselor?


In our District we have a SM who is signing off all of his Grand sons Merit badges and advancement requirements. Yes I have seen the Merit badge cards first hand. I am very interested to see what the Eagle District Board of Review does with it.

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You must have missed the last sentence of my last post; I'll repeat it:


Finding good counselors who understand the program is much more important than finding 21 different counselors, in my book.


If there are really good MB counselors at the district level, we will use them. If a district level counselor is no better than the parent in our Troop, we'll use the parent. I see no advantage gained by just seeking out different counselors for the sake of being different, all other qualifications being equal.


If that SM is a registered and approved counselor for all the MBs, I don't see much the EBOR can do about it. They still meet the Policies and Procedures.

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I'm registered to work with any troop not just my son's... have yet to be contacted by anyone from another troop.


The registered MBC we have listed for our "troop" (may be registered with other troops too - don't know) many of them do not have an active scout and some don't have any - they just live in the city of the troop. A few more of the registered are parents of current scouts, but that are never at a meeting unless they are called to work on a badge.


To me asking a boy to contact a total stranger for every badge and then having their parent(s) shuttle to and from a few times and possibly several miles since we don't live in a major city is going beyond the requirements - just as it would be if someone said they had to do x,y,z above requirements for a rank or mb.

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Personally, I'm not a "things should always be..." kind of guy.


My son started Scouting in a rural area, not many people, not many MBCs. He was a Cub and I was an MBC for a fair number of MBs. For those who want to limit the number of MBs one person can register for, I say that's great - if there are counselors available. To say we should restrict Eagle from Scouts in the name of upholding the experience? Well, that sounds a little off to me.


As my son progressed in Scouting, I never removed myself from MBs I counseled. Again, usually in rural areas. I counseled many, many Scouts throughout this time - our Troop and others. (I do think "Troop only" MBC is very, very odd.) Some of the MBs I do are Eagle required, most are not.


The Scoutmaster is responsible for signing the BC BEFORE a Scout begins work on a MB. I don't know of any policy that says the SM ASSIGNS a MB counselor or allows the SM to restrict which MBC a Scout can use. I suppose I'd have to consider the situation before I made a decision as the SM. Certainly the SM can and SHOULD guide the Scout and ensure he has the best experience possible. I would think this includes getting the Scout exposed to many people of all ages that he will learn from. MBs are just another opportunity for that to happen. But, IMO, we adults are here to ensure that every Scout has the OPPORTUNITY to advance and learn and grow as much as the scout is willing to, as evidenced by their effort. OUR failure to ID/recruit MBCs should never be an obstacle for the youth.


I agree with BrentAllen that the QUALITY of the MBC is the first thing I consider when recommending thm, not their geneology.


Looking thorugh my son's notebook at his BCs, I see three with my signature: Wilderness Survival, Emergency Preparedness, and Cooking. All were earned with other Scouts.

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