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Stosh

Interesting topic came up....

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An interesting topic came up in another forum and I became very curious as to how other units handle the situation. 

 

I commented that as a youth, with parental permission, my buddies in the troop/patrol would often go camping on our own.   It was mentioned that if scouts were to do that today, they would be kicked out of the troop according to one comment.

 

Other than for legal issues, grand theft auto, bank robbery, etc. and gross non-adherence to the Scout Oath and Law, what issues would be grounds for removing a scout from the program?   

 

In light of government overreach in recent years, one right now where parents are under fire from school administrators for having a "Jesus Lunch" for high school students in a public park near the school, etc.   And yes, I have valid testimony that there are far worse intrusions than these by schools and governmental officials just about every day in the newspapers.  How long before draconian BSA policies draw a PR nightmare for the program?  Or is the BSA allowed to set parental standards for its youth membership?

Edited by Stosh

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You are not paraphrasing my comments accurately, Stosh.  Be fair.

 

You and your buddies willfully disobeyed your Scoutmaster.  Your Scoutmaster said no, and you did it anyway.

 

My unit has always allowed patrol activities, including hikes and campouts.  In fact, we encourage it.  We do require that the boys submit a brief summary of their planned activity and get Scoutmaster approval.  

 

With or without parental approval, this was an unapproved scouting activity.  It was willful disobedience.

 

Yes, if boys behaved that way in my unit, they would be booted out of the program.

Edited by David CO

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Interesting question, outside of the examples you gave I believe it would be inappropriate for me to second guess the decisions someone makes as a parent, and I would consider it hubristically presumptuous for someone to second guess mine.

 

David CO gives alcohol as an example.  In my, and most states, parents can allow a minor to consume alcohol in their presence.  My own sons have had an occasional champagne toast at a family wedding and a glass of beer or wine with dinner at our family reunions.  It would never dawn on me to think that was any business of anyone besides mine and my wife's.  I was part of a conversation once where this came up regarding the Jesuit school they attended and the priest/administrator there said they certainly wouldn't think anything of it.

 

Closer I think to the topic that was being discussed, I've told scouts and parents about the ban on laser tag and paintball.  If they get the same people that would have been a patrol together and go play laser tag as a non scout activity that's no business of mine.

Edited by T2Eagle

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You are not paraphrasing my comments accurately, Stosh.  Be fair.

 

You and your buddies willfully disobeyed your Scoutmaster.  Your Scoutmaster said no, and you did it anyway.

 

My unit has always allowed patrol activities, including hikes and campouts.  In fact, we encourage it.  We do require that the boys submit a brief summary of their planned activity and get Scoutmaster approval.  

 

With or without parental approval, this was an unapproved scouting activity.  It was willful disobedience.

 

Yes, if boys behaved that way in my unit, they would be booted out of the program.

 

Asking a SM if he will give credit for a campout as a patrol and he says no he will not give credit is not the same as willful disobedience.  One must remember that a SM's dictates do NOT over ride  parental consent.  .

 

"With or without parental approval, this was an unapproved scouting activity.  It was willful disobedience."  The minute the SM said no, it was no longer a scouting activity.  Since when does everything a boy does at this age having registered for scouts constitute an infringement into everything he does and it has to pass the SM's muster or he gets kicked out.

 

Please cite the G2SS or any other BSA policy to support this SM myth.

 

I asked my Mrs. about what she thought of this and having raised for kids of her own, she thought that the SM should mind his own business, that he had no authority to dictate family policy to any scout.

Edited by Stosh

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Other than for legal issues, grand theft auto, bank robbery, etc. and gross non-adherence to the Scout Oath and Law, what issues would be grounds for removing a scout from the program?   

 

 

Willful, physical harm to another Scout.

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Willful, physical harm to another Scout.

Again, we're talking about assault an illegal activity.  I've already agreed that grand theft auto and bank robbery would rank up there too as a no-no for Boy Scouts, but what about just going camping without adults but with parental permission?

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Unless there is illegal acts or rekless endangerment of others invoiced, I don't believe that we should be booting Scouts of of units.

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Again, we're talking about assault an illegal activity.  I've already agreed that grand theft auto and bank robbery would rank up there too as a no-no for Boy Scouts, but what about just going camping without adults but with parental permission?

That's between them & their parents.  It's not a Scouting event.  In fact, I encourage it. 

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You can't imagine how many times I have heard parents protest their kid's suspension using the very same words spoken in the posts on this thread.  It doesn't work.  The kid still gets suspended.

 

Is this over-reach?  It's an interesting question.  I'm glad you brought it up.

 

If it is, I can tell you that the trend in schools is moving toward ever-increasing over-reach.  The most recent example that comes to mind is that of social media bullying.

 

My school has recently adopted a policy making it an offense, punishable by the school, for one student to harass or bully another student on social media.  It doesn't matter if it occurs in-school or out-of-school.

 

Pre-existing policies have also been expanded to include more and more activities.  Rules that were designed just for sports teams are now being applied across the board to include all extracurricular activities, including scouting.

 

This is because many people feel it is unfair, even discriminatory, to impose strict zero-tolerance policies on athletes and give a pass to other clubs and activities.

 

If schools are going to have scout units, then people will have to accept the fact that they will have to comply with the same rules, policies, practices, and standards that all other school activities must follow.

 

Otherwise, there is only one alternative.  The schools must drop scouting.  Is that what you want?

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I understand that the CO's can set standards according to their own policies. 

 

My grandchildren are home-schooled for the reasons that have been identified, and if this is the trend with schools being CO's, then yes, I would not want my child or grandchild associated with a school sponsored Scout unit.

 

As a matter of fact, because of the harsh policies of the school near where my new troop is, my CO (a church) just took on the school's pack.  The school and church are two blocks apart.

 

So, I guess one isn't going to get much sympathy out of me when it comes to invasive and bullying tactics of the public school system.

Edited by Stosh

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BSA GTSS: "Patrol Activities—A Boy Scout patrol or Varsity Scout squad may participate in patrol activities with the permission of its Scoutmaster or Coach and parents/guardians. Appropriate adult leadership must be present for all overnight Scouting activities."  And if not a BSA activity... If I became aware of an overnight trip, I would say something to them and be sure their parents knew.  Probably not expel them for that alone.  As a practical matter... good luck to unaccompanied minors finding a legit place to camp.

 

Where more evaluation and lots of gray area... unaccompanied daytime Scout excursions trips. Where, how far, how long, who, ages, transportation involved,  etcetera.  In most cases an adult (18+) would accompany the patrol.  As often noted, in too many cases the adult leads, rather then staying in the background.

 

As a younger teenager I and friends were also Scouts would take a day trip without adults. Once got picked up by police as suspected runaway! As older teenagers we went camping... didn't occur to us if unaccompanied minors were allowed or not, but no one was at the trailhead. anyway.

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You can't imagine how many times I have heard parents protest their kid's suspension using the very same words spoken in the posts on this thread.  It doesn't work.  The kid still gets suspended.

 

Is this over-reach?  It's an interesting question.  I'm glad you brought it up.

 

If it is, I can tell you that the trend in schools is moving toward ever-increasing over-reach.  The most recent example that comes to mind is that of social media bullying.

 

My school has recently adopted a policy making it an offense, punishable by the school, for one student to harass or bully another student on social media.  It doesn't matter if it occurs in-school or out-of-school.

 

Pre-existing policies have also been expanded to include more and more activities.  Rules that were designed just for sports teams are now being applied across the board to include all extracurricular activities, including scouting.

 

This is because many people feel it is unfair, even discriminatory, to impose strict zero-tolerance policies on athletes and give a pass to other clubs and activities.

 

If schools are going to have scout units, then people will have to accept the fact that they will have to comply with the same rules, policies, practices, and standards that all other school activities must follow.

 

Otherwise, there is only one alternative.  The schools must drop scouting.  Is that what you want?

I'm curious David, is your scout organization made up entirely of students from your school?

 

The cyber bullying/social media issues I would put in the same category as physical assaults and similar wrong doing.

 

You mentioned earlier about your school/CO having a reputation to protect.  That's always been a curious concept to me; I've always been skeptical of the idea that institutions were deserving of that kind of deference.  My concern is always with the the people I encounter, and in any conflict I might see between the best interests of any person versus the best interests of any institution I'll pick the human every time. 

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Yes and no.  We allow home-school kids to participate in a limited selection of academic and extracurricular activities.  They must fill out a special form, which technically makes them part-time students.

 

It may be in the best interest of an individual student to be given straight A's regardless of actual academic progress, or at least some parents seem to think so, but we won't do that.

 

We do have a reputation to protect 

Edited by David CO

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It is my understanding in my state that home-schooled kids aren't allowed to participate, they must be able to participate if they wish.  It is not a privilege extended by the school district, but state law that says any home-schooled child can participate in any school activities they wish.  The home-school parents pay just as much property tax as the next person and our state does not discriminate against them my limiting paid for public education.   So I guess we come from differing backgrounds on that level.

 

As far as a reputation to protect, the public schools around here aren't even trying for any reputation.  Even I have sued the school system for violation of my child's civil rights and won.  There's a whole cadre of lawyers just chomping at the bit to get a piece of that action.

 

A pack, here and there, maybe 3 in our whole council are sponsored by a public school.  30 years ago that was WAY different.  A lot of schools did.  There is no one considering a school as a CO and would always pick some other institution first.  Within the past year I know of one pack that dropped a public school CO and went with a religious organization.

 

As far as a reputation to protect, the schools around here don't have any place to go but up.  If they would just quit doing stupid things that would go a long way to improve their reputation, but we don't see any change on the horizon.

 

Yes, my son was in a PTA pack held at a school, but school policy had no affect on the decisions of the Scouters.

 

No troop is sponsored by a school.

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Thanks for correcting me, Stosh.  

 

One of the things I deal with on a daily basis is athletic eligibility.  It has always been my understanding that a kid has to be a full-time registered student to be eligible to play.  

 

I have also always understood that I need to check student athletes' grades on a weekly basis, which would be impossible for a home-school kid.

 

I have also always been under the impression that extracurricular activities are considered a privilege, and not a right.

 

Thanks again for setting me straight. 

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