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CM overstepping his authority?

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jhankins, I think I know where you're coming from, in that the CM "reports to" the committee. But I don't know anywhere that the BSA literature says that the committee sets the standards.


The official answer, I think, is that BSA sets the standard. Now, sometimes some interpretation is required to know whether a Scout has met the requirement, but the Cubmaster is in charge of the program, so he or she would normally be the authoritative voice in the pack on interpretation questions. The official answer, though, in Cub Scouts, is that it's up to the person signing off on the requirement to do any interpretation. So that would be the parent for Tigers through Bears, and the den leaders for Webelos Scouts.


Why do you think the committee should be setting the standard?

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The committee of a pack is supported and chosen by the charter organization in order to supply a program tailored to their needs and desires. The committee then enacts the vision of the charter in all manner of behavior: finances, service, meetings, leadership. The Cubmaster enacts the program designated by the wishes of the committee and the COR.


The Cubmaster may run the program in your unit with complete autonomy, but the relationship between committee and cubmaster is clearly defined and should be run accordingly. Who has your committee designated to sign the rank advancement? It's not totally in the hands of the den leaders for Webelos, it's also the responsibility of the committee to ensure the awards are given appropriately.



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Who has your committee designated to sign the rank advancement?


Umm, our committee hasn't designated anyone. The Cub Scout books pretty much do that for us. I'm looking at a Webelos book (slightly out of date), and it says "When a Wolf or Bear Cub Scout passes requirements, he goes to a parent or guardian who signs his book. When a Webelos Scout passes requirements, he takes his book to the Webelos den leader..."


From scouting.org: When a boy has done the requirements for an activity badge, the Webelos den leader or activity badge counselor, rather than a parent, approves most of the activity badges.


From the 2005 Cub Scout Leader Book: In the Tiger Cub, Wolf, and Bear programs, the adult partner or a family member must approve completion of the requirements by signing the boy's book. It is important that the family understands the correct interpretation of the advancement program because when a parent or guardian signs the boy's book, the requirement is approved and should not be questioned." and The situation changes when boys become Webelos Scouts. [...] actual completion is approved by den leaders


It's not totally in the hands of the den leaders for Webelos, it's also the responsibility of the committee to ensure the awards are given appropriately.


Ok, sure - I can imagine the committee reacting to some den leader going totally loopy - but can you show any basis in BSA literature for your position? The books appear to say explicitly the opposite - that it is in fact totally in the hands of the den leaders.

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One of the responsibilities of a Charter Organization is to conduct the Scouting program according to the policies and guidelines of the BSA.


The Cub Scout program is flexible. The Charter Org can shape it somewhat to reflect it's own policies, and the needs of it's members. However, ultimately, the program is BSA's, and BSA sets the standards. The Cub Scout Leader Book states, in a shaded box so it stands out - All aspects of Cub Scouting and its activities must comply with the policies and procedures of the BSA.


Nothing in any BSA literature suggests that the Pack Committee dictates it's own (or it's CO's) program, and advancement standards to the Cubmaster, who then dictates them to the rest of the members of the Pack.

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I suggest that there is only one standard in Cub Scouting: Do Your Best.


Apparently the Cubmaster in question may have memorized many things, but not the motto.


I approach the Bobcat requirement as a discussion about what the things mean, rather than rote memorization. The memorization comes with our (notice I didnt say my) Pack and Den Meeting Opening Ceremonies where the Promise and Law are recited. They learn quickly through that venue. So it should be with the Webelos badge. Emphasize understanding for the Webelos Badge and practice at the den meeting until it is learned for the AOL as required.


Isnt the meaning more important than just memorizing a bunch of words?





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The CM is clearly overstepping his authority. CNY, IMHO, is in the perfect position to clear this up. He simply needs to take the book, and show the requirements. Mention to the CM that it is a requirement to know those for AOL, but not at this time. IF that doesn't work, the Webelos Den Leader needs to take it up with the district scout exec. Rules are rules. If you're going to be by the book, you truly need to be by the book.


I'm a WDL, and thankfully I haven't had to deal with such things (I've been a den leader longer than my CM's been in the Pack, so I pretty much tell him how it should be done :-) )

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