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Scoutmaster denies 17 year old Life Scout Eagle

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This troop sounds so ueber-controlling they likely would not count such a worthwhile activity. They seem to what things done their way only.


A fiefdom has been built by these adults and they don't feel they've been given their tribute. Sounds like a unit near me. We were the recipient of one of their "cast offs". Kid made Eagle within the year, was SPL, JASM, ASM, went to staff Philmont, revamped our TLT, took over our first year program and then went away for the last few years of college. Top student, doesn't drink or smoke, says "Yes sir" and "No Sir". Is going in to the Navy after graduation. Nothing we (the unit) did to make him that way, we just got out of his way and let him lead.


hoping this young man gets the chance to move on.


I sure hope that wasn't a "self-fulfilling prophesy" dynamic working with that SM.  I wonder what happened with the boys he deemed weren't Eagle material?  Did they get the same attention from this guy?




We did this kind of thing all the time when I was in scouts.  Every time the SM told us we couldn't be going out camping at such 'n' such a place, we said, "Okay."  Then we went to the parents and asked them for a ride out to such 'n' such a place and told them when we needed to get picked up.  My Dad would be kinda upset with us when we did that because he was never invited.... :)  No adults allowed.  I mean, seriously!  What kind of trouble could we come up with other than over fish out daily limit and eat it before the ranger found out. 


If the SM said yes to any of these shenanigans, we got camping credit for it.  Otherwise, we didn't.  We didn't care.  Maybe that's why none of us ever got Eagle.  We did, however, camp right up into the summer after graduation before we all went our separate ways in life.  I can say the 7 of us got more nights of camping than any scout in the troop.  Those were good times.

I agree if a Patrol did their own campout--I would be doing backflips of happiness.

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@@CalicoPenn and @@Stosh are right, the Council will step in a fix.   As we discussed in another thread, in the Guide to Advancement there's a section ( the BSA strictly defines what "active

I'd like to think so. We also have a Scout who is in the situation @@perdidochas. He was sort of active during his first six months as Life. In reviewing his level of activity it fell below the establ

As a Scot, I admire anyone who attempts to defend the indefensible.     And I can imagine a situation where following a rule is the worse outcome.  This is not such a situation.   The "new" requir

I agree if a Patrol did their own campout--I would be doing backflips of happiness.

Who is to say these adults would give credit though? They'd likely argue it was not a troop activity. :)

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  • 3 weeks later...

It is not a worse outcome if the Scout gets his Eagle.


Yah, sure it is.


Case 1:  Scout gets his Eagle, can't/won't do an ECOH, sours on scouting, brother has to leave the troop and friends behind, relationships are damaged, etc.

Case 2:  Scout goes camping, gets his Eagle, has a super ECOH, brother stays in troop with friends, etc.


It is not a worse outcome if the troop leaders get in trouble for making up rules and have to change their way of doing things so that it complies with the BSA rules.


How exactly do yeh think the troop leaders are goin' to "get in trouble?".   Do yeh think da BSA is goin' to disband an active troop over an advancement kerfuffle?  Do yeh reckon the DE Scoutin' Police are goin' to be breakin' down their door and haulin' 'em off to Scouting prison?   BSA Agents!  Hands on your head! :confused:


That's not the way Scoutin' works, eh?   We're just a service organization.  If a unit doesn't want our service, it can tell us to go away.   As long as they're reregisterin' each year, nobody is goin' to "get in trouble."   Other than rollin' our eyes a bit if we see 'em at Round Table. :rolleyes:


As I mention, all they need to do to comply with "the BSA rules" is just drop inactive lads like this from da roster each year.  No need to "deny" him Eagle then, eh?  He isn't even eligible.  I'm not sure how yeh think that's better.



Again, it all depends what we care about, eh?


Do we care about bein' RIGHT in our book thumpin'?   I can quote more than you can?   Or do we care about da outcomes for the lad and his family and the unit?


I'd be doin' back flips of happiness along with @TampaTurtle if the lad had just decided to go campin'.  Even better with da support of his patrol.  That's the best lesson and outcomes for everybody. 


Keep your eyes on da prize, eh?  It's about the boy(s), not about bein' precisely right about da guidebooks, and not even about gettin' Eagle, eh?  Eagle Scout is just a tool, it ain't an outcome. 



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I like camping.  


I have no problem with urging a Scout to do more than the minimum.  I suggest that willingness to do more than the minimum is a good character lesson.  


Compromise is good - if no fundamental value is compromised.



What if the lesson learned is that power is all that matters?   It is so because I say so, and forget the law.   Following the law is mere book thumping, and my values trump the law.   How does that lesson work for the Scouts?  (How is that lesson working out for the U.S.A.?)  


"Outcome"?    A fundamental tenant of our society is supposed to be that we a society governed by law not by men, and good Citizenship is THE outcome we are supposed to strive for.



At this point, I see no happy outcome.  Fixing blame will not fix the problem.  Hopefully the Scouts come out of this undamaged.

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I thought I'd share a brief update. If nothing else it's somewhat, therapeutic, to share my thoughts here.



In short, my older son completed his one final partial for his one outstanding merit badge. The merit badge counselor signed the blue card, but when my son gave the card to the SM, the SM refused to sign it.


Made no sense, but I am no longer surprised by anything from this SM at this point. He's shirked all accountability up to this point. Why start doing the right thing now?


So, the merit badge partial is also something that is now technically, under dispute, although since my son has a blue card signed by a registered counselor and a copy of the work he did, I'm hopeful that this will not be an issue.



Also, a week after my son and I had that horrendous meeting with the SM, CC and UC, I was informed that I had been banned from any and all troop functions, activities or events. It was also emphasized that both of my sons would be immediately removed from the troop if I did not abide by this. 


I guess that when a father speak the truth and is unwilling to sit idly by while two grown men (SM and CC) throw all kinds of false accusations and barbs at your son and tell him that he’s not worthy of being an Eagle Scout, that you’re supposed to just sit there and let them do that.


And when you call them out on statements that are unfair or false, you’re labeled as a trouble maker, and then banned.



Beavah, as you predicted, it seems that my bridges have been burned.



The main issue that I’m now wrestling with is my younger son. He’s indicated that he wants to remain in the troop solely because this is where his friends are – but that is going to be virtually impossible if I’m banned from attending any and all functions. My younger son is not aware of the ban, but my older son is.



On the flip side, in a much as I want my younger son to be able to remain with his friends, I have to think of my son’s health and well being and put that first. The SM and CC have shown a level of contemptuousness that I didn't believe possible for scout leaders to possess.


They've hurt my older son and I have to believe that they would try to hurt (through advancement or other means) my younger son also.


Quick side note - my younger son had recently begun an Eagle required badge with the CC, but low and behold, sure enough I stopped getting any info on when they'd be meeting next...



I am at somewhat of a loss as to how the SM and CC have been allowed to remain in their current positions. 


Council is investigating but, at present, it seems that the self-serving interests of the scouters are being put ahead of what's fair and right for the scouts.


The joys of scouting, so much fun...

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Unfortunately, there are all kinds of individuals in scouting, some who have no clue what the scout oath or law is.   I have encountered a few myself.   Find a unit that gets it, and leave these sad individuals in your rearview mirror, as hard as it is to do.

I have had to chair an EBOR as the advancement chairman when the scoutmaster and CC refused to sign off on the Eagle App.

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The correct procedure is in the Guide to Advancement.


If the Scout is denied a Scoutmaster Conference, a "Disputed Circumstances" situation begins.  See pages 59-60 of the GTA:



A board of review under disputed circumstances is available only for the Eagle Scout rank. It is held at the district or council level. Volunteers from the candidate’s unit are not involved. It is indicated when a unit leader or committee chair does not sign the application, if a unit leader (Scoutmaster) conference is denied, if it is thought a unit will not provide a fair hearing, or if the unit leader or project beneficiary refuses to sign final approval for what might be considered a satisfactorily completed service project. See “Evaluating the Project After Completion,† The process outlined below, for a board of review under disputed circumstances, also applies in councils where Eagle boards of review are already held at the council or district level.
Edited by John-in-KC
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I make no comment about the Scout, his parents, and his participation or lack thereof.  I leave that to the people on the ground:   SM, Troop Committee, UC, District Advancement Chair, Council Advancement Adviser.

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B.S.A says:


"Lacking agreement [with the Scoutmaster as to a Counselor to work with], the Scout must be allowed to work with the counselor of his choice, so long as the counselor is registered and has been approved by the council advancement committee."


"A Scout who has earned a merit badge from a registered and approved counselor by actually and personally fulfilling the requirements as written will have met the purpose of the merit badge program and the contribution to the aims of Scouting. The badge is his to keep and count toward his advancement." [emphasis added regarding how a MB is earned]

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The SM and CC serve at the pleasure of the Chartered Organization.  


You may wonder why the SM and CC are allowed to remain in their positions.  The simple answer is that the Chartered Organization chooses to keep them.

Edited by David CO
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Would you really recommend that a parent take on a confrontational stance with the unit's Chartered Organization?


Parent? Depends. Council? You betcha!


If the SM and CC are so far off the reservation that they are doing the things noted here, I just might...but only after my kid makes Eagle.


If the CC and SM are this wrong, then BSA owes it to the other kids in the program to talk to the CO, show them what's being done wrong, give them a chance to make the CC/SM "get right" with the program or find replacements.


This simply cannot be allowed to continue. What they (CC/SM) are doing is not Scouting. 

Edited by Krampus
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