Jump to content

Recommended Posts

In another thread the topic arose about the use of commissioners, specifically, the need for an overhaul of the role of the commissioners. a poster, twocubdad, suggested thinking outside the box. there was also comment about mentoring as a role.

Here are couple of questions.

What is the commissioner's Role in your unit?

Is the UC only there for charter, FOS and "referying" adults?

Is there something missing from the commissioners? If so, what?

How do you feel about the UC making housecalls?

If district intervention/help has occured in your district, what was the outcome?

For cub units: What are your thoughts on having the UC bring the RT commish out for a meeting?

For cub units: Does the RT program reach leaders of the pack?


Thoughts outside the box: What about a commissioner led "cracker barrel" for scouters at camporees?


For all scout units: What topics should be covered at RT, that specifically deal with a commissioners role?

Link to post
Share on other sites

Seems to me that there is a lot of material to play with here.

Does the role of the Commissioner need to be overhauled ?

When the right person is matched with the right unit. Commissioner Service is a great asset to the unit. He or She also has a vital role within the District, updating the key 3 about the unit, and keeping them informed about what is happening and maybe what needs to happen. The Unit Commissioner is the advocate for the unit.

The plan of action for what, and when is laid out in the Commissioner Handbook, and this is also something that helps to ensure the delivery of the program.

The only way a unit commissioner can really understand what is going on in a unit is by being there.

I have no idea why a unit would want a Round Table Commissioner to attend a meeting. His or her job is to plan and present Round Tables - What would he or she do at a pack/den/ troop meeting ?

As a rule in our district the Cub Scout round table staff follow the Round Table Planning Guide and work on the themes that are there.

The Boy Scouts tend to go with bringing in presenters who are good at what ever it is that they are good at.

To my way of thinking Camporees are held for the good of the Scouts, when we start adding Adult activities, we are cheating them.

The relationship between a Unit Commissioner and the Unit is very much a one on one.

He or she is their Commissioner, their friend and someone that they can turn to. Filling them with cheese and crackers will do little to improve that.

Some of the problems that there are with Commissioners are due to the recruitment of Commisssioners.

They tend to be "Old Timers". Where a lot of our Adult Leaders are in the program, because they have a child in the program, Commissioners have "Been there - Done that"

At times this makes Commissioner Training really hard.

There has at times been people who just didn't fit in any where, so they got "Moved" into Commissioner service. Then we wonder why it isn't working ?

There used to be an unwritten life term of office, for Commissioners. Which was and is wrong. Their term of office is from year to year.

To my way of thinking the best Commissioners start out not knowing too much about the unit and do act as a friendly outsider.

As to what topics at a round table deal with the role of a commissioner ?

If the Commissioner is doing the job, why bother ?


Link to post
Share on other sites

My first year with the pack our current Cubmaster was our UC. He quit after a year because he never had anything to do and thought the commissioner service was a waste of time. This guy is a very committed and passionate Scouter, by the way. For the past three years, we have not had a UC. I know our ADC is supposed to "cover" our unit, but until we were assigned a new ADC last month, I never new who the old one was.


All of which is all well and good. We are one of the old-time stalwarts in the district and don't really have dire need of a commissioners services, thank you very much.


I would like to comment on the idea of commissioner house calls. I think the whole idea of the commissioners -- or anyone else from BSA -- waiting for an invitation from a unit is a little silly. Do you think McDonald's Corp. waits for an invitation before visiting one of their franchises? Any time our District Commissioner gives his schpiel about "inviting your commissioner for a visit" I always raise my hand and tell him that he and any of the commissioners or district Scouters have a standing invitation to visit any of our pack functions. Bring your own chair.


If the unit leaders are upset that they are being "checked-up on," then perhaps they need to examine their program and the possible causes of their paranoia. If a commissioner is causing his unit leaders to be resentful of him visiting their unit, perhaps he needs to re-examine his methods.


Anyone who wants to come to our pack meetings and help out, offer suggestions and or bring new ideas to the table is more than welcome, regardless of the color of their shoulder tabs.


It's a matter of expectation. We've created a system where we have a Chinese wall between units and the district- and council-level commissioners and Scouters, so much so that it is a faux pax for them to show up uninvited. We need to reverse that expectation so that unit leaders should expect and welcome a visit. It's like training: for years training has been voluntary. We are now having to change the mindset so that everyone is expected to be trained.


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nothing in training has changed other than methods. It is still voluntary. We still say that every scout deserves a trained leader. We have tried to be more flexible to meet a variety of time availabilities. We have taken a rifle like aim with job specifc training rather the shotgun sim of the previous Basic Training. But othe than that it is no less voluntary than it has been in the past. Conscientious leaders take training, others do not.

Bob White

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...


At PTC, the national staff while presenting the promotion part of cub scout round table, had as there number three point: Go out and visit the units that are not coming to RT! It was in black and white and the idea is to bring RT on the road to a troubled unit or a unit that has a gate keeper. There might not be a reason for a boy scout round table commissioner to visit, but National has said it is entirely appropriate for a CSRTC to go out and meet and greet and bring the program.

Link to post
Share on other sites

While I have all the time in the world for the wise and learned staff at PTC. (I'm not pulling your leg - Honest.)

I do have a few problems with what might be called The Traveling Round Table Road Show.

Yes the idea of the R/T Commish. Asking for an invite to a Leaders meeting and going over the joys of Round Table, is not only good but very commendable.

But the idea of presenting the R/T program? I'm not so sure.

When would you do it?

A pack meeting? Most packs only meet once a month and that meeting is for the boys.

A committee meeting ? This ought to be a management meeting, not the time to go over the stuff covered at a R/T.

The Leaders meeting? This seems like the best bet, but when I was Cubmaster, this is the meeting where we planned the pack meeting and got everyone on the same page. Of course I had been to the R/T. So maybe, this is where I got a lot of the information, that we were putting to good use.

I have never been a R/T Commish. I have been the District Commish. and as such, roundtables came under me. For the Cubscout R/T,we followed the Round Table Guide, with the themes in. In order to do so we had a fairly large staff. Trying to get them on the road would be hard, most took the job because they no longer had time to be an active Cubscouter, and much as I hate to admit it some were too old to be with young Scouts.

I have always looked on r/t as a time when we pass on program ideas to the leaders, so they can take them back to their unit.

While the Boy Scouters tend to be a fairly sedate bunch, the Cub Scouters are a wild bunch, playing games, Singing songs and yells.

This is not the place to discuss the role of the unit commissioner.

Where is the place ?

Again if the Unit Commissioner is doing the job as it ought to be done. Is there a need?

If there is a need I think that the ADC, could ask for an invite to the committee meeting and explain, what commissioner service really is.

And if the Round Table Staff want to go and sell the round table to the unit that is great.

But I don't see how or when they could present the program.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I believe that is what jbroganjr was relating the staff said (Since it was a part of the 'promotion' presentation). The PTC CRT faculty was suggesting that RT Staff members deliver a personal invite to leaders who have been absent.


Is that right jbroganjr? By the way, glad to hear you enjoyed PTC.


Bob White(This message has been edited by Bob White)

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...