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jeanvaljean

unfortunately we have to walk away

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How do they stop a Tenderfoot from taking First Aid at a local MB college?

Simply don't go.  Our troop doesn't promote it or even acknowledge its existence.  The Troop Committee finds qualified individuals to run such MB.

Fishing Merit Badge - Mark Rose (just an example) Lawyers, Flight Simulator designer and Pilot for FedEx (Aviation MB) Exec from Sedgwick for Personal Management.  Put the right people in place and there isn't any need for Eagle Required MB to be taken at a MB College.  Remember I am only speaking about Eagle Required MB's. 

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Simply don't go.  Our troop doesn't promote it or even acknowledge its existence.  The Troop Committee finds qualified individuals to run such MB.

Fishing Merit Badge - Mark Rose (just an example) Lawyers, Flight Simulator designer and Pilot for FedEx (Aviation MB) Exec from Sedgwick for Personal Management.  Put the right people in place and there isn't any need for Eagle Required MB to be taken at a MB College.  Remember I am only speaking about Eagle Required MB's.

 

I'm not clear. What happens IF a scout goes anyway and gets the badge? Does your troop ignore that?

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I'm not clear. What happens IF a scout goes anyway and gets the badge? Does your troop ignore that?

isn't the first step in the merit badge process getting a blue card from Advancement Chair or SM. 

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Telephonic communication is hard for some teens, true.   Face to face communication is hard.  As a sub teacher, I noticed that in the Mid School folks I sub taught. 

Even back in MY day, I remember how hard it was to raise my hand and TALK out loud.  Then there was that girl in French class....  

Our District Eagle Coordinators REQUIRE  candidates to telephone them for appointments. They will not accept emails or texts.  They politely respond, "here is/are my phone numbers, please call me."   

Leaving a message is even harder.   I have had Scouts call me and leave a message on the line of " Mr. Ssscout, please call me  about....   Thanks. Bye.  " and not leave a name or number or even WHY ....   TG for caller ID. 

Encouragement?  Instruction?   Example?    If we teach (?)  Nuclear Science at Summer Camp, why not Verbal Communication.     I encourage kids to read the Hornblower novels to learn how to communicate EXACTLY.  Nothing like British naval officers to example how to pass on information and instruction. 

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Posted (edited)

isn't the first step in the merit badge process getting a blue card from Advancement Chair or SM. 

 

Getting the blue card signed is not screening process.  BSA GTA 7.0.0.3 "The Scout, The Blue Card and The Unit Leader" clearly states the signature is more about a chance for a discussion and not to limit who the scout uses as a counselor.  Though the scout "should" let the scoutmaster know if he changes counselors, it is not required.  So the scoutmaster can sign the MB and then the scout can use a different counselor without penalty.  The only risk is if the scout uses someone who is not actually registered.  

Edited by fred johnson
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Like I mentioned before "To each their own" The troop puts qualified people in place so that a scout doesn't need to attend a MB college. 

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Like I mentioned before "To each their own" The troop puts qualified people in place so that a scout doesn't need to attend a MB college. 

 

But it's not "to each their own". You simply cannot deny a Scout the opportunity to begin a MB or go elsewhere because you want to keep it in the troop. No more than you can put age restrictions on MBs.

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Some troops are just really strict on WHO does these MB classes.  My son's troop is very much on top of providing "Quality" MD Councilors for the boys.   

 

This is NOT a race to see how many one can receive right?  Rules at our troop, no Eagle required MB (except for Swimming) are allowed by anyone under 1st class.  Troop also looks down on Merit Badge colleges (puppy mills if you will) To ea there on. 

 

National is very clear on this  - a Scout can start working on ANY merit badge he wants to earn at ANY time with no age or rank restrictions.  A newly crossed-over Scout can start working on any and every merit badge, including Eagle Scout required ones, the moment his membership is transferred from Cubs to Scouts. 

 

Isn't it rather arrogant of the leaders of your Troop to decide that "it knows better" than the BSA?  Its rules like your unit's rules that lead to posts like the original poster and other posts we've had of parents frustrated by their units inability to follow the rules laid out by the BSA and then making decisions to take their sons and leave Scouting.

 

Don't want to accept Merit Badge Colleges?  Great - they're a bad idea anyway and the BSA doesn't have any policy against your unit not accepting them.  But they do have a very specific policy against units adding rank requirements, or ANY pre-requisites of their own, when it comes to what merit badges a Scout may earn and when.

 

Don't bother trying to explain just how superior your Troop's way is, or try to make excuses for why your Troop is doing things the way it's doing.  If you folks really think you know best, then make that argument to the National BSA advancement folks.  A Scout is Obedient - if a Scout sees a rule he thinks should be changed, he works within the system to try to get the rule changed.  He doesn't just ignore it because "he knows better". 

 

That point of the Scout Law applies to your unit and your unit's leaders too.  What kind of message are you sending your Scouts when you disregard a clear policy directive because you don't like it.

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National is very clear on this  - a Scout can start working on ANY merit badge he wants to earn at ANY time with no age or rank restrictions.  A newly crossed-over Scout can start working on any and every merit badge, including Eagle Scout required ones, the moment his membership is transferred from Cubs to Scouts. 

 

Isn't it rather arrogant of the leaders of your Troop to decide that "it knows better" than the BSA?  Its rules like your unit's rules that lead to posts like the original poster and other posts we've had of parents frustrated by their units inability to follow the rules laid out by the BSA and then making decisions to take their sons and leave Scouting.

 

Don't want to accept Merit Badge Colleges?  Great - they're a bad idea anyway and the BSA doesn't have any policy against your unit not accepting them.  But they do have a very specific policy against units adding rank requirements, or ANY pre-requisites of their own, when it comes to what merit badges a Scout may earn and when.

 

Don't bother trying to explain just how superior your Troop's way is, or try to make excuses for why your Troop is doing things the way it's doing.  If you folks really think you know best, then make that argument to the National BSA advancement folks.  A Scout is Obedient - if a Scout sees a rule he thinks should be changed, he works within the system to try to get the rule changed.  He doesn't just ignore it because "he knows better". 

 

That point of the Scout Law applies to your unit and your unit's leaders too.  What kind of message are you sending your Scouts when you disregard a clear policy directive because you don't like it.

 

I have mixed feelings on MB fairs / colleges / large groups.  The benefit is when the size of the group allows the counselor to go above and beyond.  I've seen that happen several times.  And they have been some of the best MBs.  But I've as often seen the reverse yielding a shallow empty experience.  

 

So in my opinion, it's less about the venue and more about the counselor investing to see the scout gets something useful out of it.

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But it's not "to each their own". You simply cannot deny a Scout the opportunity to begin a MB or go elsewhere because you want to keep it in the troop. No more than you can put age restrictions on MBs.

Then if the scout and or Parents don't like the troops Policy they can find another troop (like the poster did)

 

Let me go on record and state I do not have a "formal" position with my son's Troop.  I am just a parent.

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Posted (edited)

Then if the scout and or Parents don't like the troops Policy they can find another troop (like the poster did)

 

Let me go on record and state I do not have a "formal" position with my son's Troop.  I am just a parent.

 

Even as a parent, at least you say it.  Many troops don't have the guts to just say they are running the program their own way.  Instead they depend on scouts and families not knowing what BSA says.  Sadly, most conflict happens when parents / scouts ask for the program to be delivered as documented.  

Edited by fred johnson
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I have seen Parents running their kid from one Merit Badge College to another, I have seen Merit Badge Class where the instructors have fallen asleep while youth just fill out paperwork. 

 

So while your concerns are legitimate, our concern Is what the youth take away from a MB.  We don't just pass them out like Tic Tac's around here.   

 

I might just be a parent (as I chose) in this situation.... For the most part I am a DC

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Then if the scout and or Parents don't like the troops Policy they can find another troop (like the poster did)

 

Let me go on record and state I do not have a "formal" position with my son's Troop.  I am just a parent.

 

Well, not sure what program the troop is running, but it's not Boy Scouts. One of the biggest problems in Scouting today is adults interfering with how the program should be run. Any time someone proposes a "rule", the PLC should be checking to see if it is allowed...and the SM and TC Chair should be doing the same. Otherwise they are not following the program.

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I have seen Parents running their kid from one Merit Badge College to another, I have seen Merit Badge Class where the instructors have fallen asleep while youth just fill out paperwork. 

 

So while your concerns are legitimate, our concern Is what the youth take away from a MB.  We don't just pass them out like Tic Tac's around here.   

 

I might just be a parent (as I chose) in this situation.... For the most part I am a DC

 

I see your point and it is debatable for sure. In my case, my kids wanted to do more, I did not push them for anything, they are the ones interested in working on such and such. My role as their dad to make sure they get the opportunity. Also, just my opinion, the MB goal is to introduce the scout into a topic they are not familiar with, so they can get a small taste of what it is and hopefully if they really like it, they can make it a career or a hobby. But if you don't try something or even learn about it how would you know what it is and if you like it .... the conclusion is not to give them out as Tic Tac, but to give them to scouts who really earned them. My 2 cents ...

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Posted (edited)

I have seen Parents running their kid from one Merit Badge College to another, I have seen Merit Badge Class where the instructors have fallen asleep while youth just fill out paperwork. 

 

So while your concerns are legitimate, our concern Is what the youth take away from a MB.  We don't just pass them out like Tic Tac's around here.   

 

I might just be a parent (as I chose) in this situation.... For the most part I am a DC

 

  • JasonG172 wrote --> I have seen Parents running their kid from one Merit Badge College to another.
    • Yeah.  It happens.  You can't save the scout from their parents.  But then again, it's not the troops job.  
  • JasonG172 wrote --> I have seen Merit Badge Class where the instructors have fallen asleep while youth just fill out paperwork.
    • Yeah.  Not every MB is great.  I've also seen troop MB counselors that are just bad or make scouts want to quit scouts.  
    • You can recommend a better instructor  
    • You can warn the scout that it might not be what he wants.  
    • You can provide feedback to the council that the MB counselor is not good.
    • You can let the MB counselor have feedback that you have concerns.  
    • Ultimately though ... the MB program is a council / district program ... not a troop program.  Give your scouts a great experience by running a great program and knowing good counselors.  But it is NOT your job to block the scout from using who they want.
    • Troop focuses on troop program.  MBs are NOT a troop program.
  • JasonG172 wrote --> So while your concerns are legitimate, our concern Is what the youth take away from a MB.  We don't just pass them out lie Tic Tac's around here.
    • Sure.  You can recommend good counselors, but ultimately the MB program is not a troop program element and not your concern.  

 

  • JasonG172 wrote --> I might just be a parent (as I chose) in this situation.... For the most part I am a DC
    • Like yourself, most of us here have lots of experience.  Glad to see you are invested in the program.  That's good.  Scouts value what their parents value.  And there are never enough good DCs.
Edited by fred johnson

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