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Uniform Inspections

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In the parent thread, Eagle92 said that custom patrol patches would "hurt the patrol if they have uniform inspections as part of events, like district and council camporees."

 

Our district has never had uniform inspections at a camporee. We don't always go to the council camporees, but I don't ever remember seeing one there, either. Nor at summer camp, nor from a unit commissioner. The only inspections we've ever had have been done within the unit.

 

Is it common for there to be uniform inspections at events in other places?

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Generally at camporees. Typically at summer camp it is an honor system, "Was your unit in 100% uniform at evening flag 4 days this week?"

 

At camporee they have scouters inspect a patrol in another unit. Points are deducted for things that are wrong. I'm not sure how consistent people are.

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I've never seen or experienced it at any camporee.

 

At summer camp, full uniforms were required daily for the retreat ceremony and dinner in the dining hall. But no one ever did a by-the-book inspection. There were a lot of swim trunks worn with those Class A's...

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In my neck of the woods, uniform inspections are part of the overall scoring at camporees. I've been told that in some instances,the uniform inspection is what gave a patrol an advantage over another patrol.

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Uniform inspections haven't been a part of our district camporees to the best of my knowledge. But perhaps they would be a good activity for a troop or OA chapter to have as part of the camporee competitions.

 

 

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I'm opposed to uniform inspections as part of a camporee scoring system. Seems to me these kinds of inspections are more punitive that inspiring and I don't believe that punitive uniform inspections helps Scouts want to wear the uniform at all, much less with pride. These kinds of inspections lead to the temptation to leave Scouts behind in a campsite because they aren't in full uniform. Do we really want to penalize a patrol because Bobby, who is properly wearing a Scout shirt but is wearing blue jeans or khaki cargos because his family can't afford to buy him a pair of scout pants, and the unit doesn't have a uniform closet to outfit him up (and not every unit does have one)? As much as I would hope that the lads in the Patrol would speak up and defend Bobby, that's not how lads that age think. They're more likely to blame Bobby for them losing points because he's not wearing a full uniform.

 

Frankly, I think a Troop from an economically depressed area all appearing in Scout shirts and neckerchiefs, and all wearing similar colored jeans or pants, even if they aren't scout issued, is showing as much, if not more, Scout Spirit than a Troop with everyone in full uniform polished to a T.

 

Uniform inspections should be quiet affairs where we're not looking for fault but looking for ways to praise a Scout. A good Commissioner can find something good to say about every Scout - even the ones not wearing the uniform. A good uniform inspection is the Commissioner (or other leader) inspecting the lads, filling out the form, sharing something good with the Scout, not giving negative feedback to the Scout, and giving the forms to the Scoutmaster to let him follow-up on. Chances are pretty good a Scoutmaster, knowing that Bobby can't afford scout pants, will simply ignore the negative marks on the inspection form in that case.

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CP,

 

Understand your concerns, and they are valid. The only units that have had major problems with the uniform inspections at camporee are the SCOUTREACH ones in my neck of the woods, and quite honestly even they are working on that, to the point that you cannot find used scout uniforms in my county at any of the thrift stores. The SCOUTREACH volunteer has contacted every single manager, given them his number and he gets weekly calls form them.

 

When we do the inspections at district camporee, it is done as soon as they report in, and turn in their list of scouts. So the inspectors do know everyone who is suppose to be there, and does inspect them. I've seen patrols work together to scrounge up uniforms prior to arriving, and at the camporing to make sure, workign as a team. In fact one patrol got creative when a few of their scouts didn't have the socks: they got together as a patrol, and everyone had a sock on their right foot to show the inpectors :) Almost worked too, but one of the judges saw whatthey were doing, and had them show their other sock. They did get something for creativity or teamwork if memory serves.

 

EDITED: Sometimes I get long winded and digress, point is patrols and troop tend to look out for each other and make sure that everyone has a compelte uniform, at least for those weekends.(This message has been edited by eagle92)

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We have uniform and campsite inspections at our District Camporee, but it typically is a pair of easy grades. This year they just went and let it be self reported by the units, rather than sending inspectors through. This let the boys go through the entire day just focusing on the events.

 

We tend to have brand new Scouts at Camporee. This year we bridged them on Thursday and they left on Friday for Camporee. Of COURSE some of those boys were not in full, correct uniform yet. They had received their new neckers, patrol patches and unit numbers the night before. To nail the patrol because a just bridged Webelos is not quite ready is wrong, in my opinion. Yes, a great patrol leader might take care of it all that night after tents are up - but I think we would also run the risk of boys glaring at a new Scout for killing the Patrol's chances of earning honors at Camporee.

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I've seen both schools of thought--inspect or not--and I prefer the "no inspection."

 

Even if the scout has a full uniform, I can understand a parent's reluctance to let their son take it camping, only to have it come home ripped or soiled beyond repair, for the sake of an extra point or two for competition.

 

Best practice: small council that encouraged scouts to wear whatever the troop decided throughout the weekend, and then wear full uniform Sunday morning for final flag ceremony and chapel.

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