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imachristian13

New Twist To My Prior Topic - These Assistants Have Now Requested That Our Son Be Removed.

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Silver lining?  The 2 badmouthers are ruining their own reputation.  95% of the feedback you've gotten from this mixed bag of forum attitudes agrees with you. (Not knowing the other side.)  What do you believe the ASM's peers are thinking when they hear them demean a scout?

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I've been following both the original thread and this one and I'm still scratching my head wondering why anyone would go to the trouble to take the actions that these ASMs have taken. If it was me, I'd try to work with you using some of the suggestions I've read in these responses. These ASMs just don't make any sense.

So while I know this is going to be your version of the problem, Imachristian13, can you explain why they are so set on this path? What do you think has caused them to harden and behave like this? Do you know the reasons? I'm curious and if you could explain what you think their side is, that might be helpful.

Edit: This line struck me in the OP: "When our son is in scenarios under their direct leadership, he has a bad experience."

Can you elaborate on this? What is the nature of the 'direct leadership'? What are the bad experiences?

Edited by packsaddle

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Pack - If I'm not mistaken, it was mentioned in the postings that the two ASMs that are causing the problem don't want to follow the reasonable accomodations that have been worked out and are working when they aren't in charge.

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Silver lining?  The 2 badmouthers are ruining their own reputation.  95% of the feedback you've gotten from this mixed bag of forum attitudes agrees with you. (Not knowing the other side.)  What do you believe the ASM's peers are thinking when they hear them demean a scout?

 

Hopefully those associated with the troop see these 2 people the same way we do on here.  I don't care how bad the kid is, unless he's being intentionally disruptive, it's up to the adult leaders to find a way to make it work.  If a kid is doing his best (to borrow the cub motto), the adult leaders need to find a way.  I recognize it isn't always easy, but that's the responsibility adults assume when they sign up to lead youth (be it in scouts, sports, teaching, or anything else).

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Trying to answer some of the questions/comments since I was last on.

  • We have the DE coming to tonight's meeting. He is doing so not only at our request but, also, at the request of the SM and the CC.
  • Our SM is very strong in working with the boys. His gifts in doing the same with adults are not so much. We believe that he is trying very hard to tread lightly on both "sides" of this for fear of a bad overall outcome. I don't really blame him. 
  • Our CO is a bit hands-off. I'm going to leave them on the outside until after tonight's meeting because our final result is not going to be the Committee removing our son. It's going to be attempting a compromise which - however unlikely - doesn't rise to that next level in our minds yet.  
  • We will, most definitely, be "outing" these two ASMs along the way. And that's not a vengeful comment - although we are more than a bit upset. They just need to know that this is not the way to do things. Whether they ever understand it, is not our problem. As long as they hear it.  
  • We don't really get why they are being this way. This was a bit of a surprise to us. We knew that they were struggling with how to interact with him but didn't know to this extent. 
  • The "direct leadership" comment means this: There are occasions when the SM is unable to attend. On those occasions, one or both of these ASMs are de facto "in charge". When the SM is present, our son may have his issues but the SM properly diffuses them or seeks assistance from other ASMs. When he is not present, we can count on a call to come pick-up our son (if we are not onsite) or our son coming home upset after the fact. The worst part has always been that these folks don't share details with us unless we come to them - sometimes Asperger's kids don't remember details so we really don't know the truth.  Further, on those occasions that they do tell us anything, it's not the whole truth. 

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  • The "direct leadership" comment means this: There are occasions when the SM is unable to attend. On those occasions, one or both of these ASMs are de facto "in charge". When the SM is present, our son may have his issues but the SM properly diffuses them or seeks assistance from other ASMs. When he is not present, we can count on a call to come pick-up our son (if we are not onsite) or our son coming home upset after the fact. The worst part has always been that these folks don't share details with us unless we come to them - sometimes Asperger's kids don't remember details so we really don't know the truth.  Further, on those occasions that they do tell us anything, it's not the whole truth. 

 

My two cents is that any kid with a special need should have someone with whom he identifies on EVERY camp out. If that's mom or dad, so be it. If another leader can fill that role then great. But if no one that has a rapport with your son is going on the camp out, my suggestion would be for you or your husband to go or have him stay home.

 

I get the desire to "main stream" your son as much as possible, but if that safety net of a caring, trained adult is not there to guide him -- despite all the coping skills he may have learned -- the outcome may be too much for untrained adults to handle.

 

In 12 years I can only recall two times calling a parent to pick up their son. Both cases were scouts who packed like it was summer for a camp out where temps dropped below 20F. We've all had the home sick scout, the scout who was too scared to sleep for fear of bears, the "trouble-maker" you wanted to duct tape to your bumper, etc. But in all those cases we deal with it. When we get back we work with the parents on strategies to keep those situations from happening again. Only when the parents refuse or are reluctant to work with the unit would we ever take the drastic step of barring them from events.

Edited by Bad Wolf
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My two cents is that any kid with a special need should have someone with whom he identifies on EVERY camp out. If that's mom or dad, so be it. If another leader can fill that role then great. But if no one that has a rapport with your son is going on the camp out, my suggestion would be for you or your husband to go or have him stay home.

 

I get the desire to "main stream" your son as much as possible, but if that safety net of a caring, trained adult is not there to guide him -- despite all the coping skills he may have learned -- the outcome may be too much for untrained adults to handle.

 

In 12 years I can only recall two times calling a parent to pick up their son. Both cases were scouts who packed like it was summer for a camp out where temps dropped below 20F. We've all had the home sick scout, the scout who was too scared to sleep for fear of bears, the "trouble-maker" you wanted to duct tape to your bumper, etc. But in all those cases we deal with it. When we get back we work with the parents on strategies to keep those situations from happening again. Only when the parents refuse or are reluctant to work with the unit would we ever take the drastic step of barring them from events.

Camp Outs are not where these problems lie. We have been either personally in place or been cleared by the SM to take a trip off. Those have been just fine. The local outings and service projects are the issue.  

It's just a communication matter now.  

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imachristian, your post from last night reminded me of something a wise old(er) attorney once told me:

 

"If you're looking for justice, it's in the dictionary, under 'j'."

 

In other words, in any conflict, you may end up with a result that is satisfactory, it might be a compromise, but if you hold out for a result that is completely "fair", you're probably going to be disappointed. In this case, you may be able to have your son stay in this troop, or your son may find another troop to join. You also may be able to get district to take a look at the ASMs' behavior and maybe take some action. The first is a "win" for your son. Add the second and it might be a "win" for both your son and other peoples' sons. These are reasonable goals. But it sounds like you and/or your son are looking for more than that. If I interpret the "stuck" comment correctly, it sounds like your son wants an explanation for why he is being removed from the troop, if that's what happens. And probably not just any old explanation, but an explanation that seems fair and reasonable. You also want the ASMs to "recognize their error." Good luck with these goals, but I think you should consider taking what is possible and moving forward. Justice? It's in the dictionary.

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Obviously the troop may be in need of real leaders.

 

I teach my scouts who want to be leaders: "Take care of your boys."

 

Obviously the SM is coming up a bit short on this one and the two ASM's aren't even in the ballpark.

 

Sounds like a major adult-led program and that doesn't bode well for the effectiveness of the program.  In the hands of the boys, none of this would be at the level it is.  Boys are far more compassionate with special needs boys than adults who think they know how to fix everything.

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...

Sounds like a major adult-led program and that doesn't bode well for the effectiveness of the program.  In the hands of the boys, none of this would be at the level it is.  Boys are far more compassionate with special needs boys than adults who think they know how to fix everything.

That may be true. But with the autism spectrum kids it may not be enough. It takes a truly gifted patrol leader to help everyone keep it together. On the other hand, I have observed that if these kids can hold out through these orienting years, they can make stellar leaders. By ignoring emotional cues, they get their boys to focus on the tasks at hand.

 

The SM is not battle hardened. (For those of you who've never had anybody in your unit or district come after a youth of yours like this, consider yourselves lucky. All I have to say is that no kid should have to endure such perplexity.)  His position is not one of diplomacy. He needs to quickly be able to say, "These are my boys. I know their faults, and I'm keeping them all. You are too." Then the CC should tell everybody to step in line ... next order of business.

 

Any other course of action gratifies meddling adults with more time and attention than they deserve.

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Well...everyone can stay tuned. The meeting was a whole mess of "fun".  Totally not what we were expecting. 

The good news is that it is now over as far as our son's involvement with the troop. We will be moving on in that sense. (This was OUR decision I must add - not theirs)

 

I'll catch you all up tomorrow.  Thanks! 

 

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If he is 1st class and 14, join a venture crew, he can still work on rank. and for the most part, crews just go with the flow.

@venture24

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If I were the SM, the COR or the CC, I'd be looking for two new ASM's.  There is nothing that says these two with their personal vendetta against a handicapped child is fit to serve in the capacity they are presently.  If anyone should be asked to have their registration pulled, it would be these two.  There's no place in scouting for this kind of "leadership". 

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If I were the SM, the COR or the CC, I'd be looking for two new ASM's.  There is nothing that says these two with their personal vendetta against a handicapped child is fit to serve in the capacity they are presently.  If anyone should be asked to have their registration pulled, it would be these two.  There's no place in scouting for this kind of "leadership". 

 

Here, here!

 

They'd be out the door in my unit faster than they could text the district contacts.

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Weren't we up to Episode 3? This is back to Episode 2. Anakin hasn't turned to the Dark Side yet. Oh wait, that's a different series.

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