Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
ps56k

OA election - 50% of troop

Recommended Posts

I was in the OA as a scout, chapter chief, newsletter editor, summer camp coord, etc... and also awarded Vigil when I turned 21. I was proud, and it meant something to be part of the OA.

 

What does it mean today ?

 

I don't see our OA chapter/lodge at the District and Council events. I don't recall the old election reqs, but today, it seems that basically 50% of the Troop can be elected into the OA - for what ?? It's almost guaranteed that all First Class scouts will eventually get elected.

 

Must be another dumbing down of Scouting, so no Scout's self-esteem will be impacted -

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Actually 100% of the troop can be elected if 100% of the troop is qualified. I have seen elections where 12 were qualified and 9 got elected, and other times when 12 were qualified and only two got elected.

 

The method hasn't changed much that I aware of in many years.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The requirements for a scout to be on the ballot haven't changed, it's the number per troop that's been changed. The previous system was based on troop size, the larger the troop, the more scouts could be elected. I'm afraid I don't recall the ratios exactly, but, for example, if the troop had 15 or fewer members, only one scout could be elected, no matter how many were eligible. Now, all an eligible scout has to do is get 50% of the votes cast. So, yes, 100% of the scouts on the ballot can be elected. I don't know when this change went into effect.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

tnx - I thought it seemed odd. And, each vote can be cast for any number of candidates.. right ?

So, if you have say 12 eligible Scouts, and the Troop size is maybe 50 -

1 - the meeting/election has to have 25 scouts.

2 - 12 scouts may be elected

 

The Troop is told to ??? "vote for all you think are qualified" ? So, all 25 present could each write down the names of all 12 eligible scouts - and they all would be "elected" -

 

And exactly what does this accomplish for the OA; increase their membership, but dilute the actual meaning of the Order.... nice change -

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So in other words you are saying Scouts, members and members alike, cannot be trusted with the important job of electing candidates for the Order?

 

If they cannot be trusted to discern who is and who is not qualified, placing a limmit on how many they select will not help the situation.

 

The troop isn't supposed to select the most qualifed. It isn't based on be more or less qualified.

 

Scouts are either qualified to be elected, or they are not. It is up to their fellow scouts to determine if they posses the qualifications to become a candidate.

 

Now there are ways we can help Scouts make a better descision.

 

Arrowmen should strive to set a better example at all times. This will provide a living, breathing demonstration of the qualities they should seek in their fellow Scouts.

 

The election team should be well prepared and make a forceful, passionate, and inspiring presentation that enphasises the qualities they should seek in the Order.

 

The unit leader should strictly follow the eligibility rules and only approve those Scouts who are fully eligible under the rules.

 

The unit leaders, both youth and adults, arrowmen and non-arrowmen, should emphasise the importance of the election process.

 

Finally, the integrity of the election process itself must be maintained so that no one feels any unecessary pressure.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

ps56k and Proud Eagle,

both of you make points that I agree with.

 

I do believe that the Order has been diluted. I was inducted in 1979 as a 12 year old scout and was active for the next 10 years or so. During those years, as opposed to now, we had a greater number of active arrowmen in my lodge to whom membership in the Order actually meant something. Under the previous election quota system it was harder to be elected, the Order was more exclusive and therefore had at least some degree of meaning built in. I know Scouters who never were elected as scouts, they didn't become members of the Order until they were adults. One is my chapter's advisor, an Eagle Scout and Vigil Honor member.

 

Proud Eagle's observations are also right on. It is incumbent upon us as Arrowmen to set the example, to let non-members know what the Order is all about, that it is an honor, but it is also a responsibility. They are being elected for what they have done, that is true, but also what they are expected to do after induction, continue living and growing in Scout spirit, leadership and service.

 

Scouts can be trusted to make the right decision when voting on their peers for induction into the Order. But, as stated by Proud Eagle, they must have seen the proper example and be adequately informed on just what the Order is.

 

Unfortunately, we know that doesn't always happen. Experience tells me that too many unit leaders don't care about the Order, view it as competition for their scout's time, see it as a once a year nuisance, have a negative view of the Order and won't support the lodge. Most of the blame for these attitudes are ours. But, this also adds to the attitude that being inducted into the Order is no big deal.

 

But we all know that no matter the election method, the quality of the Ordeal experience or how informed a Scout is about the Order before induction, some Scouts just don't care and we will never see them again after they get the flap and the sash.

 

I must say I prefer the previous system, but I am doing what I can to help my lodge, which is in a bit of a rebuilding stage, to get stronger using the current system. Whining about it won't help, doing our best to live the three W's will.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I do not understand how you can come to the conclusion that the OA has been diluted. The scouts are required to have the same qulafications as before, and they still nedd to recieve votes from have of the voting members. If you have 8 eligable candidates and all 8 are good scouts, and all 8 are selected, how is that diluting anything? What if all 8 were 8 and only 5 got elected. How has the OA benefitted more from this?

 

It seems to me that the key is not the mechanics of the election itself but how the troop is educated in the importance of their decision before they cast their ballot.

 

When the adult leaders do not take an interest in explaining to scouts the importance of a vote and the responsibility that goes with voting then the OA gets diluted, regardless of how many are elected for candidacy.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Something to ponder regardless of where on the fence you sit on this issue - How come the election process for adults (limited number, not just qualifications) is different for than what it is for the youth (meet qualifications, unlimited number)?

 

One thing that I stress with the troop before our OA election each year is that the OA is primarily a service organization, not an honor society. I know that that belief is not held by all but a Scout should strive for membership so that he may provide service, not for recognition.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

its my understanding that the reason the OA limits adults members is because its supposed to be a youth organization with adults only in supporting roles so it limits adults to assure its run by the youth.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

BW,

it's quite easy to conclude that the Order has been diluted. It is now easier to be elected, more scouts are being elected who before would not have been. Not all that hard to understand.

 

It's very similar to expansion in professional sports. The fewer teams, the fewer players, the better the players have to be to earn a spot on a team's roster. As more teams are added, more players are needed to fill all the rosters, players that before weren't skilled enough to make the league are now playing. Thus, dilution of the league has occured.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not easier to get elected. It still takes 50% or more of the scouts to vote for you. They simply have the option of recognizing more scouts who are worthy.

 

Whether you have a room of ten good scouts or forty good scouts it is still a room of good scouts.

 

 

(This message has been edited by Bob White)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Count the number who get tapped out each year while you are at summer camp. Then attend an OA function in your lodge. Do the numbers at these functions increase dramatically?

 

Ed Mori

Troop 1 Peter 4:10

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

yeah - interesting ratio of those Called Out vs the attendance and participation within the chapter/lodge... So - if OA attendance is low, just increase the number getting elected, and hopefully then the number of OA in attendance will increase - hmmm - did it work ?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't think its fair to say the OA has been diluted by allowing more members and I think the sports analogy of expansion teams doesnt work.

 

When a sport expands, it opens up slots on team rosters that have to be filled therefore players not good enough to have a roster slot the previous year get a slot in the expansion year because the position has to be filled. The OA situation is different, there is no quota of scouts who have to be elected. The membership requirements have not changed, you still have to be first class, you still need the nights of camping and you have to be selected by your troop as the type of scout who they want to camp with. Now more scouts who meet the requirements are allowed an opportunity of membership. To dilute the OA, the nights of camping would have to be reduced, or the minimum rank reduced, to date that has'nt happened. When I was a scout (lo many years ago) the troop could only select a specific number of scouts to be members although certainly many more were qualified, today those who are qualified get a chance, and I think thats overall a better way to run things.

Share this post


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
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...