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tharrell12976

BSA policies regarding withholding advancement

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Wow. The cse wimped out and suported the troop in a case of physical contact with a scout? Glad my kid is not in that council.

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Sadly the lesson not learned by the SM will only continue the problem with future scouts in that unit.  As mentioned before, if a boy is experiencing any situation that concerns him, screaming, yelling, (and physical abuse in this case) will only drag the SM down to the level of a 12 year old.  Not a good reaction.

 

I had a boy who wanted to be the one to represent the troop in a firestarting competition.  His PL selected someone else to do it.  He lost it big time in front of the whole camporee.  I signaled him over to sit by me and he did.  I waited until he calmed himself down.  When the competition started in quietly told him to watch all the people starting fires (they weren't allowed to use matches) what they were doing and to be sure to keep an eye on what some were doing right and some were doing wrong.  Learn so that next time there's a competition your PL might choose you because you learned something.  All he needed was focus from his problem and it worked.  He sat there and watched intently.  With the inexperience of my boys, I knew that if we didn't come in last place, it would be a miracle.  Of course we lost, but my one boy now knows what it's going to take to win.  It's a start. 

 

I didn't need to discipline the boy, all I needed was for him to focus on something other than his perceived problem.  I didn't need anything other than silence and a quiet discussion to do it.

 

By the way, none of that has ever been taught in any of my BSA courses from Fundamentals to WB.  It's kinda too bad, the SM in this situation would have benefited from it  It's often hard to teach adults to be adults, but that's what I'm trying to do one scout at a time..

Edited by Stosh
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...My older son ran over to help, and saw the Scoutmaster grabbing my 12 year old by the neck and pushing him to the ground.  The Scoutmaster's explanation was that my younger son wasn't listening and doing what he was told...

 

This SM is out of control and needs to be removed from the Troop. How is Council not all over this? 

 

 

...So, as I said, we are most likely changing troops.  My oldest son refuses to be in the troop with this Scoutmaster (I don't blame him).  I want my boys to learn from and enjoy scouting, so it is best for them to move on.  However, I intend to continue to fight against what happened - There are too many other boys in that Troop that are going through similar issues... 

 

You're doing the right thing. I think your sons need to be in a different troop because they'll never be treated fairly. Certainly not if this SM remains, and even if he is removed from his position it sounds like too many people in the unit are sympathetic to the SM. At the very least, no one else is standing up to this SM as they should be. At least one other adult saw this incident. As well as your older son and I believe you mentioned camp staff witnessed it as well. 

 

But you're doing right by the other boys as well. They all deserve better than this SM. You could just have your boys transferred and move on with your lives, but you're also looking out for the interests and safety of the boys that remain in the troop, and I think it's great you're doing that. Even though it's obviously not easy to do. 

 

Stick with it. Someone needs to see this through. 

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Was it the Chief Scout Executive or the District Executive attending that Troop meeting.  I suspect it was the District Executive - CSE's don't generally meet with Troops for these types of issues, and they usually don't have that close of a relationship with Scoutmasters.

 

If it was the DE, then you need to make a phone call to the Chief Scout Executive and tell that person what you've just explained to us and ask that person point blank how one of his DE's can ignore the physical assault of a Scout by a Scoutmaster at his Summer Camp which was witnessed by multiple people, including camp staff (who, by the way, should have also reported it to the Camp Director who should have reported it to the CSE).  Do not let anyone try to shunt you on to anyone other than the CSE - if they try, tell them that you either speak with the CSE or you your next call will be to National to report that the Council is ignoring a Scoutmaster on Scout assault.

 

You also need to file that report with the Sheriff - even if "nothing comes of it".  You want to do that before talking to the CSE so you can tell them (without telling them that the Sheriff thinks nothing can be done) that you have filed an assault complaint against the Scoutmaster.

 

You should also contact the head of the institution - not the COR - let them know that you have filed an assault charge against the Scoutmaster of the unit they control for assaulting your son while at summer camp.

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Guys, can we drop the "C" from the "SE"? There's only one CSE, and as important as this issue is, I'm pretty sure Mike would direct it to the SE of the respective council. He never struck me as the "I've done my time" sort of guy, so it's not that the task would be beneath him. But, I can't imagine him overstepping the SE's authority on this one.

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Your profile says you are from Omaha.  So you are in Mid-America Council correct?  If so your Scout Executive is Chris Mehaffey.  Is this who was at your committee meeting?  I would doubt it since the council covers 58 counties.

 

Chris Mehaffey is who you need to contact.

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The council's response to this is so incredibly disappointing, and so wrong.

 

The troop committee and this district executive all just chose to look the other way and sweep this under the rug, as quietly as possible, so that everything could go back to normal...beyond shameful.

 

As Edmund Burke wrote: Evil triumphs when good men stand by and do nothing.

 

I'm sure that at least some of the committee members saw this for exactly what it was, but rather than put themselves (and their sons) on the chopping block for some kind of retaliation or retribution, they chose to look the other way, go with flow and say nothing...it's not right.

 

tharrell, I'm so sorry again that your sons and your family are going through this. I would encourage you to report this to the highest possible levels and if you can encourage other families to also vote with their feet and leave the troop, then that will definitely have an impact.

 

This is yet another case where two scouts and their family are ostracized and driven out of their troop, while a bully SM, who lacks self-control is permitted to carry on with no impunity.

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The council's response to this is so incredibly disappointing, and so wrong.

 

The troop committee and this district executive all just chose to look the other way and sweep this under the rug, as quietly as possible, so that everything could go back to normal...beyond shameful...

 

I don't get that mentality, that "let's just make this go away" notion. If someone is driven more by maintaining a terrible status quo than they are by protecting the boys, they need to seriously reassess whether scouting is the place for them. I don't care if the SM is some local big shot surgeon. People need to stand up and do the right thing, no matter how uncomfortable it makes things for them personally. 

 

Confrontation isn't easy. But I'd imagine that doing nothing and waiting until this SM seriously hurts a kid will result in a feeling of guilt that is way worse than however uncomfortable it would have been to just speak up earlier. 

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Didn't you as a kid, when given the task to sweep up, just lift the corner of the rug and hope Mom didn't check up on you?  It's a lesson we all learn and some of us never unlearn it when we finally grow up.

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Thanks again for all the information and recommendations.

 

To answer some of the questions above, the Council Scout Executive (CSE) was involved and was present when the Committee imposed the punishment that they did.  A District Executive was also there.  I'm still pretty amazed that they didn't do anything.  All I can surmise is that the Scoutmaster must have told them a much different story that the others did.  Since we've caught him in several lies about what happened already (saying something different than what he said in email, changing his story, etc.), I guess I'm not surprised.

 

Anyway, thanks for the info.  We are continuing the fight up to the national level, and we are in the process of changing troops.  I'm also gathering other examples of poor behavior by the Scoutmaster from other parents.  I am at least going to open up everyone's eyes as to what is really going on.  I have many examples of this Scoutmaster being degrading and demeaning to the boys.  Not necessarily yelling at them, but being degrading.  Always negative comments vice positive reinforcement.  Those things are a big part of why my son got upset like he did.  It doesn't make it okay to blow up, but when it builds and builds, it's difficult.

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Bullies and abusers who suffer no consequences will continue their behavior.  Pavlov's experiments prove this out.  As long as it doesn't garner pain, the activity will continue.

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I would transfer both my kids, obviously this environment is not good for them, sometimes we have to make hard decision. Regardless of the outcome of your investigation or whatnot with the SM, he will always have a cross hair on your child, eventually it will make your son quit scouting ...

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