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Minimum Age For Senior Patrol Leader?

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Is there a minimum age that should be set for Senior patrol leader?

 

Ours is only 13 and he's fairly short so theirs no way any of the boys his age or older are going to "lookup" so to speak to him. He has alot of trouble getting the boys to do things. The previous one was 15.

 

What do you all think?

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We have no minimum age or height ( :) ) requirements.

 

We try to guide the voting scouts that elections have consequences.  We also counsel candidates as to what is expected of them.

 

I would make sure my expectations of a 13 year old SPL are age appropriate.

 

My advice:  Work with him so he sees where he is having trouble and see if he can improve upon those situations.

Remember the end game of youth leaders is not to make the Scoutmaster's life easier, but to give responsibility to the boy.

 

If the troop is having trouble respecting his position, that would most likely be the time for the Scoutmaster to address the troop, (or the key older scouts, the younger ones emulate) on being respectful of others and working as a team.

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Sounds like your Senior Patrol Leader could use some help from the older scouts.  Might need to coach some of the key older scouts to "have the back" of the Senior Patrol Leader.

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...theirs no way any of the boys his age or older are going to "lookup" so to speak to him....

 

 

Was he elected the troop or appointed by an adult?

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After a term as PL at 10.5, my son was elected SPL at 11. A lot of srurpised looks from the older Scouts and adults. Including me. Immediate response after the election from the SM was that he will require First Class from then on.

 

Forward 6 months to the next election. The First Class requirement was not in effect. BUT having attended the ILS-T was a requirement. Son was complimented on the job, he did, and surprised the heck out of everyone.

 

Key was training and mentoring, and that goes for any age. As "Green Bar Bill" said: "Train 'em. Trust'em. LET THEM LEAD!"

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Obviously, you would like an experienced scout with some rank advancement under their belt to hold this position, but if you are starting a new troop from scratch, and all the scouts are brand new, that is obviously not possible.   Hence, no official age or rank requirements for the position.

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No requirements for SPL.

 

However, the expectations for SPL are different than in most troops.  

 

PL's run the patrol method.

 

APL's assist the PL in working with the patrol.

 

SPL assists/facilitates the PL with inter-patrol concerns.

 

SPL is selected by the PL's

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Is there a minimum age that should be set for Senior patrol leader?

 

Ours is only 13 and he's fairly short so theirs no way any of the boys his age or older are going to "lookup" so to speak to him. He has alot of trouble getting the boys to do things. The previous one was 15.

 

What do you all think?

How did he get elected? The responsibility itself should have a enough respect that the scouts choose someone they think can perform the job. Even if the scout doesn't  live up to expectations, the position should still carry enough respect that the scouts will follow to some degree. Not enough information to know why, but it sounds like this scout wasn't ready for the responsibility, or the scouts don't really respect the position.

 

Barry

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Which boys is he trying to "get to do things"?

 

All he should be worryng about is getting the PL's to communicate their agenda and divide responsibilities.

 

He then should publicly thank the PL's who own up their tasks.

 

Now sometimes older boys elect a younger SPL out of "no confidence" in whoever was their age. Sometimes they do this to get out of work. Regardless, it's on them to help this kid be the most successful SPL he can be. That means modelling utmost respect to him in front of the other boys. Just a little bit of that goes a long way.

 

Oh, take it from the tall guy. Height is no excuse for disrespect.

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Our boys have decided that nobody can run for SPL or PL unless they have earned the rank of Star.  The SPL selects his ASPL and the ASPL needs to be at least Star.  The PLs select their APLs and the requirement is at least First Class  That pretty much places the age at around 13 for minimum.  However, our elected SPLs have always been patrol leaders before running for SPL.  For the past two years and for next year our SPLs are 10th graders.  I would prefer 11th graders because the SPLs in our troop have their work cut out for them with four patrols of 12 scouts and monthly outings.

Edited by Hedgehog

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Our boys have decided that nobody can run for SPL or PL unless they have earned the rank of Star. 

That is too bad, our best SPL and scout was a natural leader that never made it past 1st Class. He hated advancement , but was one of those kind of leaders that even inspired the adults.  

 

As I matured and started to observe the different dreams and goals of each scout, I changed my approach of using rank and age as a measure for qualification in the program. I instead started encouraging the measure of maturity and experience. 

 

Barry

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Having had the opportunity to start a troop from scratch,  I can assure you, a scout at the rank of Scout or Tenderfoot can do very well if he's a natural leader.  Like @@Eagledad has mentioned, maturity and experience is a far better method of measurement, and with a brand new troop, even experience can take a back seat.

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I guess the minimum age is the age to be a Boy Scout. ;)

 

Same with the maximum age.

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No age, we require NYLT, which has a First Class and 13 stipulation so I guess that's a de facto minimum.

However, if there aren't enough NYLT-trained candidates, we waive that, which happens every couple years. In that case, the SM talks to guys who say they'd like to run to vet them.

We pay a portion of the NYLT fee from the troop treasury.

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