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Tami the Mom

Requirements for Den Chief?

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Actually, no the Scoutmaster may NOT impose a local rule. If he chooses not to accept a Scout as a Den Chief there has to be an actual reason. Local Rules do Not exist in Scouting. National Policy is the end all be all Policy. Local Rules start Urban Myths which lead to all kind of stupid stuff. The Rule is there is NO Rank Requirement. If a Scoutmaster sets up a rule and a Cubmaster request a particular non-First Class Scout, then what? Now this fabricated rule must be enforced or bent. Controversy and anarchy follows. Just follow the rules as they are written. Do not embellish. And in all reality I have a Tenderfoot older than one of my First Class'.

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SMB,

In referecne to local rules, councils and units can in some instances make stricter requirements. One example is that no sheath knives are allowed on my council's properties, which is a policy of my council but not national's 9 remember a sheath knife is offically 'discouraged". Another council has a no camoflage allowed policy at its camp. What's ironic is the no camo council sells a... camoflaged hat with the council's name on it!

 

Now in reference to DCs, I've seen both good and bad ones. I've seen good younger ones, and bad older ones. I've seen younger DCs who acted like Cubs themselves, and I've seen older ones who couldn't lead a den without the DL.

 

In my opinion a combination of factors come into play in making a good DC: scouting experience and knowledge, maturity, ability to work with the kids, etc. If any scout or Venturer, regardless of age or rank, doesn't have the skills, maturity, or temperament to be a DC, the SPL or SM needs to talk about it to him about it.

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Actually, no they can't. According to the Scoutmaster's Handbook, Scoutmaster Training Syllabus and the Merit Badge Books nobody has the right to change any requirement without the approval of the National Council. Even alternate requirements for rank when dealing with disable scouts must come from National.

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I think you may be overthinking this a bit.

 

Scoutmasters have incredible latitude and flexibility in appointing den chiefs. If they don't want to appoint anyone, that's their choice. If they only want to appoint Star Scouts, that's their choice. If they only want to appoint First Class Scouts and above, that's their choice.

 

You say that SMs have to have a "reason" to reject a potential DC. Why couldn't one of those reasons be that the Scout in question needs more seasoning on skills? That's certainly as valid as anything.

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Ok. Simply put Rank may not be used as a condition for DC. It is not fair to say all Tenderfoots are unworthy because whatever and you are prepared as a First Class is unfair. I have seen Tenderfoots who are more mature and studious that Star Scouts. Instead of a blanket rule it should be determined on a per Scout basis. That is why the Rules and Requirements should not be changed or embellished.

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SMB,

I also think that you are confusing rank requirements, which as you pointed out can NOT be changed without national's approval, with non advancement policies that local councils and units, do have some liberty of modifying, as long as it doesn't violate BSA policy. One example I gave is the sheath knives at council owned camps my council has, and another is no camo at all policy another council has. No where in any national literature are sheath knives prohibited. Strongly not recommneded yes, but not prohibited. Ditto with camo; no offical policy prohibiting the use of camo gear, and in fact Supply was sellign a camo backpack a few years back.

 

If you read the fine print on charters, units (actually the chartering organization) do have the right to make stricter policies in some areas. That's why CO can say no females as leaders, only adults with scouting experience as a youth can fill a leadership role, etc.

 

But I agree with you that people need to go to the sources of rules, both written by national as well local ones by the SPL and SM. It may be that the SM wants folks to concentrate on their basic scout skills before moving on to a POR. It may be that the SM wants the younger scout to focus on working with his patrol, using the DC POR as a way to keep older scouts involved in scouting if they may have conflicts with patrol and troop activities.

 

So want to ask why the policy/restriction is around, when why there are no national restrictions on being a DC?

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I'm not sure why ANY SM would be cool to the idea of having more den chiefs. Den chiefs are invaluable to a troop's recruiting efforts, as it helps build relationships between troops and packs. If any of my Scouts indicated an interest in working as den chief, I would find a pack for him to work with and get him trained ASAP.

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Eagle Pete- first this not the National Website. Only that website can be taken as gospel. Second, Den Chief is a Position of Leadership that can be used as a requirement for rank. I have already spoke with National and any entity that is modifying this position's requirements is doing so wrongly. The regulations are in place so that every scout has an equal opportunity to be trained and to be part of the boy lead movement.

 

Sorry, this is the National Policy. Requirements are what they are and cannot be modified, restricted or changed without the permission of National. The reason there are local policies like this is because somewhere along the line somebody thought they new better and wanted to do it there way.

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MythBuster,

 

If we use your rational then the Scoutmaster's assesment of maturity could not be used as well.

 

The national requirements do not mention anything about maturity. That means, according to you, that considering the maturity of the scout would be "adding to the requirements".

 

The only requirement mentioned is an "older scout". It does not even say what an "older scout" is.

 

That gives a lot of latitude to the Scoutmaster.

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ScoutMythBuster wrote:

 

"I have already spoke with National and any entity that is modifying this position's requirements is doing so wrongly."

 

Be careful, this is how many Scouting myths begin. A statement like that has no credibility. We know nothing about your source or the context of your conversation we cannot make any assumptions. We can only rely on written documents on anything pertaining to "rules".

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SMB,

 

This was an old thread and EaglePete's accoutn is closed. Did you confuse me, Eagle92 with him? If so then I think we may have some miscommunication here. I'm asking some questions for clarification so please bear with me.

 

1)Are you saying that you were told by the powers that be in your council that Den Chief cannot be used as a POR? if that is the case, then you are correct. DC is an acceptable POR for advancement purposes and no one can deny it's use for advancement.

 

2)Are you saying that because DC is a POR that can be used for advancement, then unit leaders cannot place restrictions on who can be a DC? If that is the case then you are incorrect. According to

 

http://www.scouting.org/scoutsource/CubScouts/AboutCubScouts/ThePack/csdcf.aspx

 

a den chief Is an older Boy Scout, Varsity Scout, or Venturer. Selected by the Senior Patrol Leader and Scoutmaster, Varsity Scout Coach, or Venturing Advisor at the request of the Cubmaster. Approved by the Cubmaster and pack committee for recommendation to the den leader. Registered as a youth member of a troop, team, or crew.

 

In the paragraph above, while it does not say that rank and age requirements are used, it does say the DC has to be "Selected by the Senior Patrol Leader and Scoutmaster..." and "Approved by the Cubmaster and pack committee ...." So if a SPL or SM doesn't want to select someone based on their age and/or rank, they can do it. Ditto for CM and pack committee.

 

I agree that blanket rules and policies shouldn't be used, but units can make some modifications to the program to a degree as outlined in the charter agreement. I also think that any SM who doesn't want to employ DCs needs to reconsider.

 

 

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in ref to the "I talked to national line," having worked for national supply, I cna tell you that not everyone working for national knows all the ins and outs of scouting. People at national tend to focus on their own individual specialty, and may not realize what they are doing is incorrect. Best example, and one of the priciest for collectors, is when national supply issued an OA Lodge Chief POR emblem in 1993 or 1994, without the authorization to do so by the OA's National Committee. Someone in supply thought that since OA lodge advisors have their own patch, so should the lodge chief. Oh well, I guess lodge chief's have to keep on wearing Council Executive Board patches instead.(This message has been edited by eagle92)

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Ok. Eagle 92, I think you are starting to see my point. If you use rank as criteria it is a blanket decision. Yes, the youth must be selected but really what does rank prove? That the youth demonstrated a skill correctly 1 time. What if you had a 14 year old 2nd class?

 

The argument is crazy, a Scout is chosen and approved. If the youth is going to be a disturbance, then you don't want to approve him you should make it a positive growing experience. After all it is a leadership position. Maturity is a relative thing, it is not required but something to be considered.

 

Now as for "National Said", I spoke to the person who chairs the Youth Development Team, so since that is there job, I think they know the ins and outs.

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SMB,

Got ya. Never said I agreed with blanket policies.

 

As for the 1 time and you get the badge, that's why I like older scouts teching hte younger ones. Including DCs teaching their cubs. It forces them to keep practicing and mastering the skills.

 

Now in ref to the chair of the development team, it depends. Sometimes one area of scouting doesn't know what the other area is doing. For example, the national venturing folks were saying there would be no changes to the uniform shirts, and it happened.

 

Also sometimes one group of folks in a department or division don't know what another department is doing. Best case for inter departmental miscommunication came with the Centennial Uniform. Some folks in supply were saying that everyone in the new uniforms had to switch to green numbers and trained strips, AND had literature printed with this information. BUT when the insignia guide was published 8-9 months after the new uniforms came out, those invovled in Cub Scouts still wear red and white numbers and a tan and red trained strip. So now I see Webelos and cub leaders in both styles of numbers.

 

Best advice I can give is show me the citation and let me look at the document.(This message has been edited by eagle92)

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Thought I would come back and update, since this thread has gotten so much attention this week.

 

My son went to DC training. His troop refused to acknowledge it, and gave him no credit or appreciation for his efforts. He continued to help at pack meetings for another year or so. We finally gave up on that troop and started going to a troop about 45 minutes from home, but getting him there every week proved to be too difficult, and when he missed a meeting he felt like he didn't know what was going on. After about 4 months of that, he stopped going to meetings and didn't recharter with any troops by 7th grade.

 

He has continued to be a valuable member of my Daycamp staff. In his time he has run program areas, organized the other Youth Staffers in getting garbage picked up, program materials distributed, run the hazard walks on Mondays, and pretty much anything asked of him by anyone on the property, from the District Director to the youngest pre-Tiger camper. He arrives with me an hour before the campers and stays two hours after they leave, and always with a smile.

 

He hasn't been a Boy Scout in more than 2 years, but he lives every day of his life by the Boy Scout Law. Any SM would be proud to have him in their troop, except the ones who did. That might account for why that troop has gone from 45 members to 12 in the past 5 years.

 

Oh, and the troop still refuses to send any scouts to the pack as den chiefs.

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