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New Eagle Palm Policy, August 2017

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So if I read this right, if you get Eagle after 8/1/17 you get all palms you've "earned" without any additional steps?

 

So besides a wholesale bling giveaway which now makes plans meaningless, what for plams do?

 

https://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2017/07/10/changes-to-eagle-palms/?utm_content=buffereac13&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer

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About the only positive it shows me is that it gives recognition for the extra work a boy does before reaching the rank of Eagle.  I guess I wouldn't be too upset if they changed it even further that for every MB earned beyond the ER 21, he gets a palm even before he gets Eagle.  This means that while he is doing POR work in the troop beyond the rank advancement requirements and showing good leadership along the way, and maintaining interest on a deeper level than just showing up while fulfilling rank, he gets recognized for it.  It may also help with those boys who "drop out of scouting" around 15 only to come back and blast through to get their Eagle before turning 18.  Maybe those two years of active participation can be recognized and even if the boy doesn't get Eagle, he gets recognized for the responsibility, activity, and leadership he puts into the program.  Otherwise he gets nada.  That doesn't really seem fair to me.  The journey is more important than the destination.  Palms could be a good indicator that even a Life scout did good things for his troop beyond the requisite POR/activity for rank advancement.  How many scouts get their 6 month POR for Eagle and then sit on his hands, takes a break, or succumbs to the "fumes" until he gets closer to 18.  

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I'm not sure of your question.

 

My thought - this greatly benefits the Scouts that have stayed in the program & earned Eagle in their last year.

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I have no idea why this is necessary. In the current requirements how is it extra work for no recognition? Scout gets colorful patches to deck out a sash for his ECoH.

 

Palms recognize that, above and beyond that, he worked intentionally with his troop or patrol to develop and practice more leadership. At least until August, that's what they recognize.

 

It doesn't benefit scouts. It makes all past Eagles think less of them.

 

I see this as being very divisive.

 

The only thing that I would have changed in the existing requirements is instead of starting the "palm clock" at EBoR, start it at the ESMC.

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I'm not sure of your question.

 

My thought - this greatly benefits the Scouts that have stayed in the program & earned Eagle in their last year.

No. It gives something for nothing. Make eagle today at 15 and eligible for 2 Palms? Get all three today. This rewards MB junkies.

 

The OLD program rewarded guys who stayed in the program AND continued to provide leadership.

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It doesn't benefit scouts. It makes all past Eagles think less of them.

 

I see this as being very divisive.

 

 

Awards for having received awards, now with express checkout.

 

Exactly! I live with an Eagle from 2016. Could have gotten 3 palms but in the end his own procrastination prevented earning them. It was a great life lesson for him that, despite holding leadership positions are earning MBs after finishing Eagle, he left something on the table. He realized his procrastination was a problem and is working to fix it. Why? Because he remembers the lesson he learned NOT getting his three Eagle Palms.

 

This is BSA's version of a participation trophy. Only BSA could make something like Eagle Palms worth less than the Scout rank.  :rolleyes:

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So the way I read this, the few MB overachievers who earn all 137 merit badges before Eagle would get Eagle AND 23 Palms at their COH??!?!

Edited by pchadbo

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So the way I read this, the few MB overachievers who earn all 137 merit badges before Eagle would get Eagle AND 23 Palms at their COH??!?!

 

Bingo!

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This will have no impact on anything of importance to me. So I guess I don't really care. Most scouts don't really care about merit badges, especially those that are close to 18 when they get Eagle. I hate saying this but MBs are mostly boring homework assignments. I would much rather see a push to make MBs more activity based than they are now (describe, discuss, explain, snore). The changes are orthogonal to what I would like to see.

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Hmm.  I liked it better the old way.  It provided at least some incentive for Scouts with "extra" MB's not to wait until the last minute, which in this case means having the EBOR after the 17-year-9-month mark, and that's for just one palm.  Not that I think any Scouts in my troop actually speeded up their Eagle journey just to get palms.  My son would have gotten at least one palm if he had moved faster, but as it turned out he completed his requirements two days before his birthday, and had his EBOR after his birthday.  If this new rule had been in effect back then, he would received the palm, maybe two.  The same is true for a number of other Eagles in the troop, and I suspect, many others across the country, probably including some members of this forum.  (Not me though, I'm a Life for Life.)

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Awards for having received awards, now with express checkout.

 

That's true.  I think a merit badge sash at an ECOH with (say) 60 MB's on it is impressive enough, without the extra little bits of metal.

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I wonder, but does BSA talk to anyone in the real world of Scouting before they make these changes? Do they talk to SMs and others to see how palms are earned and/or what impact the old system had on keeping Scouts around, versus this approach?

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I wonder, but does BSA talk to anyone in the real world of Scouting before they make these changes? Do they talk to SMs and others to see how palms are earned and/or what impact the old system had on keeping Scouts around, versus this approach?

 

Actually they sent out a survey 2 or 3 years ago on this topic. I participated in it. I was opposed to the proposed changes then, and I am opposed to the changes now. 

 

To quote the Second Doctor, aka "the Hobo," " I see you changed things...HHHMMM I don't like it."

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