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ASM1

Oh My! Seeking advice on this one...

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As others have observed, the real focus at this moment should be your son's future in scouting. Finishing his eagle is too important. If there are other units available, then an immediate transfer might be the best solution for all. Chartering a new unit might also be a solution. You and your wife are entitled to be very angry and very hurt, but you need to set your personal grievance aside in the interest of your son. From your most recent posts it sounds like you have resources and relationships that you can draw on. You are not alone.

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I second what Eisely said. I'm not clear at all on what offense you could have possibly done to be kicked out of your troop (threaten to put ground glass in the SM's oatmeal?) but now would be a very good time to do some prioritizing and problem solving to get your son in a troop where he can meet his goals.

 

The SM of the troop we are now in started their own troop, due to the fact that they could not find a troop that would accomodate their sons' desire for a traditional Scouting program WITHOUT high adventure. Their kids were not physically able (bad asthma) nor was the family financially able to fund the high adventure trips their former troop favored (with three boys in Scouting and one income in the family, trips costing $300 - 400 in family contribution per boy - after fundraising efforts - were out of the question.) In their old troop, the troop fundraising moneys were all dedicated to these high adventure programs; these boys were asked to spend their Saturdays fundraising for programs that they could not attend. When they asked for alternate activities they were asked to leave the troop.

 

Now, I confess that I hope these boys will toughen up a little as I want to keep the Outing in Scouting for my own son. My husband and I have both volunteered as ASM's in this fledgling troop toward that end, and since my son also has a long history of bad asthma, I'm pretty good at making arrangements and emergency plans so that we can have normal fun anyway. But I'm still sort of shocked that a troop would summarily kick out an entire family for what amounts to a program dispute.

 

 

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Sager please take a look at http://www.asthmastory.com/

I met this man on the Appalachian Trail in the Smokies when he was finishing his 200 mile hike.

 

He was CURED of asthma. Many medical conditions are now being proved to be caused by viral infections. Ulcers for example. There is strong evidence to suppor that some forms of asthma are too. Might be something to look into for your son.

 

It is better to find a way to do an activity than to simply say you can't. I have many asthmatics that regularly attend our HA backpacking trips but indeed, every case is different.

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Mike,

 

I want to thank you for the link - I have had some very strange medical problems over the last several years (involving asthma, upper resp. infections and arthritis) and one of the doctors i went to mentioned clamidia, but since i only associated it with an STD, it was quickly ruled out. I didn't know there were other types of clamidia that were spread like the flu.

 

Thanks again - i'm forwarding to my doctor to review.

 

YIS

Quixote

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At the risk of throwing rocks at the education I received at BSLBT (and this is just one in a string of issues that were not discussed there) and my own district therefore....where do we go to find the written policy statement, bylaw, dictum, or whatever it is called that says that only charter organizations can remove a boy from scouting....I have seen lots of traffic on this net covering a wide range of subjects that gets to some of the discipline issues. I have read of suspensions, removal from troops for disciplinary problems, "three strikes you're out policies", letting the Troop Committee decide, etc., and this is the first I have read that it is the responsibility of the COR to remove someone from Scouts. At some level the adult leadership has to have the authority to discipline boys and establish policies relative to discipline. Where is found the official BSA rule? In this endeavor, like several others I have been involved with, I am discovering that the saying..."You don't know what you don't know" is appropriate here. Boy Scouts have been around for a long time but as a new Scoutmaster I am getting very frustrated having to do things in the "voyage of discovery" mode. Frankly if it weren't for this website I'd be a lost ball in high weeds. Maybe I need to take over BSLBT in the district.

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The behaviour guidelines of scouting are spelled out in the Scout Oath and Scout Law, I have never found the need for anything further.

 

The job of disciplining a scout is the parents not the unit leaders. The Guide to Safe Scouting sys that discipline problems are to be given to the parents to resolve. We give training on positive behaviour, we can give structure to help scouts learn good behaviour, BUT it is not our role to punish scouts.

 

The role of the troop committee is to give administrative support to the troop program. See the Troop Committee Guide book.

 

Youth and adult members are registered members of the BSA and of the youth program of scouting that is OWNED by the Chartering Organization. Because of that they can only have their membership removed by those two entities.

 

Committee members are responsible for Boards of Review and can certainly take that opportunity to help influence the attitude and behavior of a scout. They are responsible for bringing unwanted behaviour to the attention of the parents and working out an acceptable behaviour for the scout to display at scouting events. They can arrange periods of suspension if needed to resolve problems. But only the Charter Organization or the BSA can remove membership.

 

Why don't you see alot of material on this topic? Because that's not what scouting is about. We don't train leaders to be disciplinarians. They don't need to know how to punish anyone.

 

We say "here are the ideals of scouting, teach them every week through repitition, stories, activities, the patrol method". If a boy doesn't want to behave like a scout, send him home. Let his parent(s) fullfill their responsibility. When he is ready to act like a scout then he can participate in scouting.

 

Always remember that scoutmaster means a master of scouting skills, not a master of scouts. If their is someone "in charge" of the troop it's the Senior Patrol Leader, not the adults. A Scoutmaster or Assistant Scoutmaster has two primary responsibilities 1)Train junior leaders, and 2)know and understand the needs and characteristics of each boy.

 

Boys want leaders they can respect for their positive traits, not be in fear of.

 

Give scouts a fun, exciting, hands on, program so that having to miss even one meeting is the worst punishment they can imagine.

 

Bob White

 

 

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Dan,

 

Since the CO of any troop owns that troop, it is their duty to oversee membership of that troop. From SM, ASM, CC, CM, and Scout.

 

The entire troop can make recommendations, but only the COR can have the final say. He/She has the power to over rule any desicion.

 

Now, an update. Last night was our troop meeting, it went very well, with a few exceptions. The CC came to me and said there will be no removal of any member of the troop. But he also said there is a problem that the new SM refuses to have me on his staff as ASM, and he insist that my wife not be a member of the comiittee. (sounds like the same results without removal)

 

Now, I have received a reply from our COR. He said that I am the only member of the CO that is involved with the troop (besides himself) and he will not entertain any discussion of our removal from the troop. He said he need his eyes within the troop.

 

The SM was not pleasant in any shape or form. We had a First Aid class last night, and my son usually instructs that class. The SM refused to allow my son to instruct the class. I am surprised he allowed my son to attend the class.

 

I was busy with getting our Wood Badge registrations in order so I did not pay much attention to the meeting. I was working with most of the committee with this project and they seemed very happy that we were there as usual.

 

I have received great assistance from this forum and all who have donated unselfishly thier advice. I thank you all. You have given me new avenues to explore.

 

What I see for our choices at this point are: Now that I know I have full support from the COR, and questionable support from the CC, I think I have two choices. 1) is to just dive into this troop and work with the COR to rid it of this "affraid to act" mentality, and eliminate the SM. Or, 2) As suggested here, start a new troop. After the years we have put in to our district and council I think we could do it.

 

What I need know is the info I would need to accomplish this. Where do I start?

 

ASM1

 

 

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You first need to realize that unless you represent an organization capable of chartering a troop you cannot start a unit. If your intention is to be a scoutmaster of another troop then you should talk to your district executive and see if they are in the process of organizing a unit or if they know of a unit looking for new leadership.

 

If you have other troops in your area, the simpliest thing might be to vist them. Have your son select a troop to join and offer your help as an ASM or committee member.

 

Good Luck,

Bob White

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ASM1 - glad to hear the atmosphere is improving somewhat and that you have support where you need it.

 

Coming back to the technicalities of removal from membership, while I have enormous respect for Bob White's knowledge, I am not quite sure that he has got this right. It is my understanding that the SM has disciplinary authority over youth members, with a vague role for the committee in this function. Essentially the SM should not take any adverse action without at least talking to the committee. The committee does not appear to have any authority to initiate an action against a youth member on its own.

 

With respect to adult members, I agree with Bob White that the CO and the COR are responsible for this. Certainly the SM has no direct role here. Obviously any SM, as with any other parent or member, is free to raise issues with the COR about any adult member, but the SM has no authority to remove an adult.

 

Your input Bob?

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Bob White;

 

Your response, "You first need to realize that unless you represent an organization capable of chartering a troop you cannot start a unit." This is just not true. How could it be true? Our troop is CO'ed by the American Legion, that troop was started without any member of the legion being a member of the troop. In fact, at its inception, there were no legion members involved with the troop. Remember, most of these members have grandchildren older than our oldest adult leader. So, that does not hold water.

 

It is my understanding that an organization may wish to start a troop, but lack the Scout leadership to make it possible. I have such an orgnization in mind. But I lack the knowledge to know how to approach them with the correct documentation. That is what I am seeking, information to make it happen.

 

ASM1

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Parents punish, scoutmasters train junior leaders.

 

Scoutleaders develop positive character, parents deal with behaviour problems. Scouts who do not behave, endanger the safety and welfare of others. send them home until they agree to follow the Oath and Law.

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ASM1 -

 

"Your response, "You first need to realize that unless you represent an organization capable of chartering a troop you cannot start a unit." This is just not true. How could it be true? Our troop is CO'ed by the American Legion, that troop was started without any member of the legion being a member of the troop."

 

Bob White is perfectly correct. For a unit to be be chartered it is NOT necessary to have members of the CO be members of the unit beyond just a COR. What Bob White is saying is that YOU, personally, can not charter a unit. Units are chartered by an organization of some sort, not by one person. That organization then owns the unit and is responsible for finding volunteers, providing meeting space, etc.

 

If you know of another another organization that might be interested in chartering a BSA Unit, I would talk to your District Executive. He will be able to get you the information you need.

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ASM1

 

The previous response is correct. No member of the chartered organization has to have any prior connection to scouting, and only the COR has to register as an adult volunteer and member of scouting. If you are serious about forming a new troop and have a potential sponsor in mind, call the DE as soon as possible. Assisting in creating new units is one of the DE's principal duties and he or she should be able to answer all your questions.

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Please correct me if I didn't notice this but have you sat down one on one with the Scoutmaster and asked him point blank what his problem is with you? Exactly how heated did your post summer camp discussion get?

 

I would think that before this goes any deeper that you and he need to sit down and have a talk.

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