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Eagle94-A1

Dealing with Helicopter Parents

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1 hour ago, WisconsinMomma said:

Yes, I think there is a disconnect between AOL and Boy Scouts.  My den of AOL Scouts did all the Boy Scout Adventure requirements last year.   We basically did the book.  Throughout Cub Scouting we worked through the handbooks, and honestly I was not thinking at all about Boy Scout preparation until the AOL year, or 7 months, as it really is.  The boys in my den went through the Boy Scout prep but the parents weren't all there, it wasn't a parents intro to the BSA course.  My main motivation was to encourage interest in the boys crossing over and for the boys to pick a troop.  Their troop picking was easy, they had a good visit at the troop they went to, some of the boys knew other boys who were there, and another boy went to another troop where his brother was.  I think the boys were very basically prepared for Boy Scouts, but obviously they were not pre-working the Scout / Tenderfoot ranks or anything like that.  One troop adult met with parents while the boys visited the Troop and gave a little talk but it was more of a recruiting speech.

 

I think this is the major problem with separating Webelos into 2 groups: People lose focus of thepurpose of Webelos : WE'll BE LOyal Scouts. Yes it's mentioned, but it is not focused in the literature nor more importantly the training. While I did the old 5th grade Webelos only program, If the current 18-24 month program implements that transition FROM THE BEGINNING ( emphasis) none of the Scouts I've known are not fully ready to be completely integrated into existing patrols..

As for preworking requirements as Webelos., they should have.  If you look at Scout Rank and the Adventures a lot of the work SHOULD be done and the Scout should be abel to move up fast.

Scout Rank:            Arrow of Light Adventure: Scouting Adventure    Arrow of Light Adventure: Outdoorsman ( Camper in Handbook)

AOL Badge Requirement


A. Repeat from memory the Scout Oath, Scout Law, Scout motto, and Scout slogan. In your own words, explain their meaning.             

a. Repeat from memory the Scout Oath, Scout Law, Scout motto, and Scout slogan. In your own words, explain their meanings to your den leader, parent, or guardian.

B. Explain what Scout spirit is. Describe some ways you have shown Scout spirit by practicing the Scout Oath, Scout Law, Scout motto, and Scout slogan.

b. Explain what Scout spirit is. Describe for your den leader, parent, or guardian some ways you have shown Scout spirit by conducting yourself according to the Scout Oath, Scout Law, Scout motto, and Scout slogan.

C. Demonstrate the Boy Scout sign, salute, and handshake. Explain when they should be used.

c. Give the Boy Scout sign, salute, and handshake. Explain when to use each.

D.  Describe the First Class Scout badge and tell what each part stands for. Explain the significance of the First Class Scout badge.

d. Describe the First Class Scout badge, and tell what each part stands for. Explain the significance of the First Class Scout badge.

E. Repeat from memory the Outdoor Code. In your own words, explain what the Outdoor Code means to you.

Option A , 5 OR Option B, 4 

Recite the Outdoor Code and the Leave No Trace Principles for Kids from memory. Talk about how you can demonstrate them while you are working on your Arrow of Light. After one outing, list the things you did to follow the Outdoor Code and Leave No Trace.

F. Repeat from memory the Pledge of Allegiance. In your own words, explain its meaning.

e. Repeat from memory the Pledge of Allegiance. In your own words, explain its meaning

2. After attending at least one Boy Scout troop meeting, do the following:

2. Visit a Boy Scout troop meeting with your parent or guardian and, if possible, with your den members and leaders. After the meeting, do the following:

Describe how the Scouts in the troop provide its leadership.             Describe how the Scouts in the troop provide its leadership.

  1. Describe the four steps of Boy Scout advancement.                            Describe the four steps of Boy Scout advancement.
  2. Describe what the Boy Scout ranks are and how they are earned.     Describe ranks in Boy Scouting and how they are earned.
  3. Describe what merit badges are and how they are earned.                 Describe what merit badges are and how they are earned

3a Explain the patrol method. Describe the types of patrols that are used in your troop

3. Practice the patrol method in your den for one month by doing the following:

  1. Explain the patrol method. Describe the types of patrols that might be part of a Boy Scout troop

3b. Become familiar with your patrol name, emblem, flag, and yell. Explain how these items create patrol spirit.

3c Develop a patrol name and emblem (if your den does not already have one), as well as a patrol flag and yell. Explain how a patrol name, emblem, flag, and yell create patrol spirit.

4a. Show how to tie a square knot, two half-hitches, and a taut-line hitch. Explain how each knot is used.

5. Do the Following:

a. Show how to tie a square knot, two half-hitches, and a taut-line hitch. Explain how each knot is used.

b. Show the proper care of a rope by learning how to whip and fuse the ends of different kinds of rope.

b. Show the proper care of a rope by learning how to whip and fuse the ends of different kinds of rope.

5. Demonstrate your knowledge of pocketknife safety.

6. Demonstrate your knowledge of the pocketknife safety rules and the pocketknife pledge. If you have not already done so, earn your Whittling Chip card.

6. With your parent or guardian, complete the exercises in the pamphlet "How to Protect Your Children from Child Abuse: A Parents Guide" and earn the Cyber Chip Award for your grade. 1

5. Earn the Cyber Chip award for your age. (The Cyber Chip portion of this requirement may be waived by your parent or guardian if you do not have access to the internet.)

Can you see why some of us "Old Guard" have an expectation of Crossed Over Cub Scouts being able to jump right in? They should have been prepared already. Heck I remember earning AOL automatically earned a new Scout to wear the Scout Badge ( wasn't a rank back then), and waived the 2 month time requirement between Scout and Tenderfoot.

I hate to say it, but reflecting on this I'm glad we no longer allow automatic Scout with AOL because we have had challenges with new Scouts not knowing all this stuff despite earning the AOL.

 

 

1 hour ago, WisconsinMomma said:

My oldest is a scout who had a tough time when he started, and he is not the easiest.  He is the kid who wanders off to go look at rocks or bugs or frogs or whatnot, and that is a problem.  We managed to get around an adult who complained to us (he wanted us to constantly hover over our kid).  My husband goes to alleviate the burden on the patrol, but everyone kind of helps him get back to the task.  He takes medication and a social skills class, so we are working on things beyond boy scouts to help.  If the boy in your troop has any similar social or attention issues that make it difficult for him to fit in, I can see why the parents worry more.  I worry a ton.  We are 1.5 years in and now I'm more relaxed, but it took nearly the whole first year for me to get the hang of it, to see my son be successful (loosely) on campouts, and in that time, we have seen him get better at some small things.  One day he went up to talk to the SM on his own without prompting to get something signed off.  That is a big deal.  He's getting a lot better at things like packing for trips, etc.  But it's one baby step at a time.  Your relationship with the parents will build one baby step at a time too.   It takes repetition and experience to build those skills and confidence.

 

Trust me, we allow for medical conditions. We have had Scouts with severe ADD, autism, and other medical conditions. Currently we have 1 Scout who MUST  sleep with dad due to his documented medical condition. And we are not talking a note from the pediatrician, we are talking note from specialist who conducted multiple tests. As for the autistic Scout, I am so very glad Dad is there to help.

 

1 hour ago, WisconsinMomma said:

I remember badgering two ASMs because I really wanted to know if there would be opportunities for my son to get some cooking stuff checked off at a campout, because he needed some cooking stuff signed off, and there are only so many campouts, so if he wasn't able to cook and have the right opportunities at the camp in the spring, he might have to wait until summer camp or another time.  I hoped that he would get a chance to do the cooking stuff.   The first answer I got from the first ASM was vague.  He is a cooking MB counselor and he's been around forever and so he probably gave a glossed over answer when I was looking for reassurance on the details, so I asked another ASM more point-blank -- will these cooking skills be specifically covered because I'm worried about it.  The ASM said yes, and said that of course it's up to whether the scouts do the skills, and I said, yes, I just want to make sure the opportunity is there.  Note that an adult does all the grocery shopping for our Troop and it doesn't sound exactly like patrol cooking but I'm not there so I don' t know exactly whats' going on.  

 

Information seeking is one thing. While I would counsel that you should not worry and let your son work at his own pace, yes I would answer questions.

But when I talk about playing 2 ASMs against the SM, I am talking about Mom not taking the SM's " let me get back with you so I can find one available" to asking, then cajoling, then demanding from us a name for a MBC who could work with her son. Even when told, " Mr. X is the only MBC we know of, and we are not sending anyone to him due to his health ( this was a month or two before he "went home") she then tried to get one of us to sign off on the MB simply son is in a club that works on that topic.

 

 

1 hour ago, WisconsinMomma said:

So you could describe me as hyper-focused on advancement, and perhaps I was.  I don't get to see a lot of what's going on at Scouts but I can read the handbook and see where my sons are at on the requirements and talk to them about that. 

 

And that is the problem with a lot of new parents with little to no Scouting experience. They think the entire goal of Scouts is to "Get Eagle." Heck even folks who should know better have that ida. My uncle pressured both my cousin and I to get Eagle at 13, so we would be finished and move on to other things.  Yes, my cousin got Eagle at 13 and quit.While I was Life at 13 and on my way to Eagle at 14, I had some awesome opportunities my cousin never had, or didn't have until he was an adult, and a Scouter in his son's troop.

 

 

1 hour ago, WisconsinMomma said:

It sounds like you are very angry and so maybe you want to refer this scout family to a different adult to work with?  Would that help?  

 

I admit I and other are angry. Wouldn't you be if someone insulted your sons and yourself. And yes I am not working with this Scout and his family directly. part of it is they don't camp that much. Part of it is that another ASM is assigned to that patrol. And even those two ASMs are ticked off.

They have threatened to tansfer to another troop. We told them they need to do what is in the best interest of their Scout. At the moment they are still with us. Privately we think we really do not want to inflict them on anyone else.

 

 

1 hour ago, WisconsinMomma said:

You know they are right that an 11 year old is a child.  Anyone under 18 is legally a minor and that's their definition.  Growing up is a lot of baby steps.  They are worried over their precious child and to a degree it is totally understandable.  I know you care but no one cares more about that kid than his parents. 

Actually, it depends upon which federal law you read. Under one law, a child is anyone under 26 years of age.  

Bu the question is this, do you treat a 8 the same as a 11 year old, the same as a 14 year old the same as a 17 year old? The answer is no you do not. The comments by the dad insinuated the Scouts, as a whole irregardless of their age. In my experience, some of the 14 year old Scouts are more mature, more safety conscious, and more capable of being leaders than some college graduates. But then again that college grad is also considered a "child" under federal law.

 

1 hour ago, WisconsinMomma said:

If I were to tell an SM/ASM that my kid was losing interest, it would be like I was asking for help to keep the kid more engaged.  What are some good strategies for that?  Finding the kid a compatible buddy to work with,  making the program more interesting,  probably asking your PLC for ways they can make their meetings more fun... they are identifying a problem for the troop to help with.

 

In all honesty, the Scouts in question have not expressed any interest in being in Scouts since they crossed over. Heck I'd go do far as the first outdoor activity they did with the troop. And that is not just my impression, but also other adults and Scouts in their patrol and in the troop.

As for exciting activities and program,  well one of the helicopter dad's, who is a certified wilderness survival instructor with one of the outdoor schools, was asked to do a skills instruction. His program was so basic, to the point that what he taught the first nite is covered in teh Castaway AB, that the SPL asked last year's instructor to come back and finish the remaining classes. But the damage was done, as few of the older Scouts attended that camp out. 

The parents wanted a MB type set of meetings, and the old SPL gave in when he taught them. The meetings were dry, boring, and still didn't meet all the requirements. He even made the comment, this is what your parents asked for, see why we don't focus on MBs."

Our Annual Planning Conference is in the next 3 weeks. patrols had their meetings to come up with ideas. Will be interesting what they come up with.

 

1 hour ago, WisconsinMomma said:

I can say with my boys I would love for them to become Eagle scouts, but we totally understand it's a long road, and we might not get there.  Right now we're on the swimming skills baby step.  Wish us all luck!   I hope to end up with boys that know how to swim and cook and a few other things.  For me, the basic life skills, cooking, personal fitness, personal finance are all super-valuable.  Getting reinforcement of that from BSA is great.  I sincerely love MBs and that's OK. :)

 

All the best. But remember, even if your sons do not get Eagle, they will have learned valuable life skills. That is what is importan.t

 

1 hour ago, WisconsinMomma said:

ETA:  Is there a way to get some detachment from the situation to make these issues less painful for you?   Safety questions need to be addressed, they are important questions and the parents may just need reassurance and hand holding.  That's OK.  Maybe you have a pat answer like, we follow all the rules in the guide to safe scouting, we use the buddy system, we supervise x, y and z.  Are there follow up questions you can ask to get to their concerns?  Do they just need some reassurance that their kid is doing OK?   Or if he's not doing OK, that that is OK and the Troop is working with him to help things along?   The parents are your partners, and you are on the same team, really! 

That's the thing, up until this meeting no safety questions or concerns have been raised by anyone. It's all been advancement oriented. This happened out of the blue. And the manner and body language he used reinforced the negativity of the comments he made, as if we do not care at all. And as I stated, he is a registered Cub Scout leader and should know better. It was clearly implied that he does not trust any of the Scouts to do the right thing, and that he expects the adults to hover over all of the Scouts like he and his wife does.

 

As @numbersnerd stated "Children' will only grow up as quickly as adults let them. Limit those opportunities and it stunts that growth. " And I am not about to let anyone stunt my Scouts' growth.

 

 

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Even bird know when it's time to kick the fledglings out of the nest.  And, no, time in the nest doesn't get longer each season because mamma bird has become their warm fuzzy BFF and there's an inherent danger in the shear drop from the nest.

The sad part of the whole process is that the modern parent really doesn't want to "let go".  "They're my babies" after all, and all that coddling stunts their development. - and the same can be said for the patrol-method.  The more the adults interfere, the longer it will take for the boys to actually lead.    I'm thinking the - No patrol outings without adult supervision was implemented because at the rate we're interfering, that ship has already sailed, having been pushed back to legal adulthood age.

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All that said, if a mom or dad knows that a boy is having a tough time, I like to hear about it.

Sometimes that conversation with the parent is all it takes to keep her from hovering.

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28 minutes ago, qwazse said:

All that said, if a mom or dad knows that a boy is having a tough time, I like to hear about it.

Sometimes that conversation with the parent is all it takes to keep her from hovering.

Isn't that what the SMC is for, to find out what is going on with the Scout? Both Scouts in question have had 2 SMCs to date. That has not been brought to the SM's attention.

As for having a conversation about how hovering actually hurts their Scouts, we have had it multiple times.

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9 hours ago, Eagle94-A1 said:

Isn't that what the SMC is for, to find out what is going on with the Scout? Both Scouts in question have had 2 SMCs to date. That has not been brought to the SM's attention.

As for having a conversation about how hovering actually hurts their Scouts, we have had it multiple times.

clarificarion:

It helps an SM to hear from parents whose scouts are having a tough time in the troop. That news often precipitates an informal SMC.

It doesn't help to hear from parents whom themselves are having a tough time with the program. It may help the CC. But that depends on how those concerns are delivered.

 

 

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1 hour ago, qwazse said:

clarificarion:

It helps an SM to hear from parents whose scouts are having a tough time in the troop. That news often precipitates an informal SMC.

It doesn't help to hear from parents whom themselves are having a tough time with the program. It may help the CC. But that depends on how those concerns are delivered.

 

 

Thanks for the clarification.  Yes, it does indeed help.

I am still seeing things on the thread in the lens of  this situation. Bear with me.

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21 hours ago, Eagle94-A1 said:

That's the thing, up until this meeting no safety questions or concerns have been raised by anyone. It's all been advancement oriented. This happened out of the blue. And the manner and body language he used reinforced the negativity of the comments he made, as if we do not care at all. And as I stated, he is a registered Cub Scout leader and should know better. It was clearly implied that he does not trust any of the Scouts to do the right thing, and that he expects the adults to hover over all of the Scouts like he and his wife does.

 

Eagle, are you in my Troop? Sure sounds what I am experiencing. Oy Veh.!

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On 12/16/2017 at 7:36 PM, Eagle94-A1 said:

Well, today was the day we had the parent's meeting. Here is the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly.

The Good: We now have a committee that will do the work. We have a mix of old and new parents involved. part of the hope is that by given everyone a job, they won't bug the Scouts. Fingers are crossed.

The Bad: Some issues, i.e. problems with families, needing to use more of the Patrol method, etc were glossed over. Mostly due to the....

The Ugly: Several uglies to be exact.

One was concerning advancement.  How advancement is done has been gone over 2 or more times, depending upon the new parent, was gone over again, and some of them still don't get it. They expect their Scouts to earn something EVERY meeting and camp out. One of my friends posted a head banging on the wall gif. Very frustrating. 

But worse, was the comment that insulted me and several other Scouters. The dad of the Scout who is not allowed to camp unless mom camps too, a dad who has never been on a single camp out with us ever, questioned the safety of his son on trips since we are not essentially hovering over the Scouts. THAT. TICKED.ME OFF.  Especially since he is a registered Cub Scout leader, and supposedly knows about the G2SS, etc. Apparently he wants us hovering over the Scouts all the time since "they are just children."  I admit the  "just children" comment ticked me off to no end. As an 11 year old "child," I had to do basic first aid until EMTs arrived and brought someone to the ER. When I got hypothermia in Canada, it was a 15 year old "child" who recognized I had hypothermia and started treatment. It was the 13 to 17 year old "children" in my patrol who continued treating me. And when I was injured returning from a water rescue, it was a 15 year old "child" who recognized that I was not OK, and was in shock and that the  "shoulder looks funny."

We follow the guidelines. We have multiple people with certifications and training, just in case. I was involved in a water rescue of a Scout that resulted in me spending 4 weeks in a sling waiting to have surgery .That surgery left a 1" and a 5.5" scars as a reminder of that day. Then  I spent another 7.5 weeks in an arm immobilizer so my shoulder could heal. Then I did another 6 months doing rehab so I could get some of my mobility and strength back.. I still do not have 100% mobility, and suffer pain when it gets cold or rains. But I am not concerned about safety because I am not hovering over their scout all the time? We had another Scouter willing to spend over $300 and a weekend to get the needed WFA certification to take the guys on the AT. He also purchased a PLB and WFA kit supplies, but we are not concerned about safety? We have 4 first aid kits, plus several of us carry our own kits, but we are not concerned about safety? That ticked several of us off.

And one Scouter is very concerned. His impression of the conversation is that if anything happens to that guy's son, he'll be suing. He is now considering taking out personal liability insurance because of this one parent.

One thing I was heard part of the conversation dealt with equipment. #1 priority is new stoves. The ones we have are 30+ years old, and are unreliable. We are down to one that works most of the time, and adults have been lending personal stoves to the patrols to cook on. The Scouts also want some other equipment. including tents. Some of the tents are damaged and not usable, and others missing pieces due to neglect But they can be cannibalized and  are still viable. But these tents are not the best, and the troop is looking into phasing in new backpacking tents, one patrol at a time. I wasn't there for the rest of the conversation, but apparently this ticked off the dad above. He wanted to know why his son had to deal with old tents that someone else damaged and not use a new tent. Do not know how that went.

We got another meeting next month set up. I'm taking this a month at a time.

The problem with new parents observing a troop is that they don't know the boys outside of their own boys' friends/cohort.  Those of us who have been with a troop for a while, know the boys. We know when we can trust the older boys to supervise.  We had an ASM who was fairly new to the troop (his son was a Life Scout, and we were his third troop in town) and he was there only occasionally and only camped with us once or twice  (he worked offshore in the oil industry, and was out of town two weeks a month minimum), and he used to want us to helicopter the boys when they played their outdoor games during meetings.  Why?  He didn't trust the older boys.  He didn't trust that they would do what they were supposed to do in an emergency.  I didn't have any problems with it. I knew them, and knew how capable they were.    I figured they could handle the first stage of an accident as well as most of the adult leaders.  We would be able to assist after that. 

 

In terms of the tents, my answer to the parent would be--If you want him to have a new tent, buy him one.  Our troop allows personal tents.  

Edited by perdidochas

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In my experience, it's the Scouts are quicker on the noticing problems and initiating first aid, too.  As for tents, personal tents are OK, but not hammocks.  Only adults can hammock. Middle son and his buddy are nto happy about that since buddy has been hammocking since Cubs, and he converted my son to the Dark Side." Middle son has only used his hammock 2 times since getting it. 

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23 hours ago, WisconsinMomma said:

I remember badgering two ASMs because I really wanted to know if there would be opportunities for my son to get some cooking stuff checked off at a campout, because he needed some cooking stuff signed off, and there are only so many campouts, so if he wasn't able to cook and have the right opportunities at the camp in the spring, he might have to wait until summer camp or another time.  I hoped that he would get a chance to do the cooking stuff.   The first answer I got from the first ASM was vague.  He is a cooking MB counselor and he's been around forever and so he probably gave a glossed over answer when I was looking for reassurance on the details, so I asked another ASM more point-blank -- will these cooking skills be specifically covered because I'm worried about it.  The ASM said yes, and said that of course it's up to whether the scouts do the skills, and I said, yes, I just want to make sure the opportunity is there.  Note that an adult does all the grocery shopping for our Troop and it doesn't sound exactly like patrol cooking but I'm not there so I don' t know exactly whats' going on.

This one paragraph, I believe, is a large part of the problem in many Scouters minds, and why you see so many negative reactions from them.

badgering two ASMs because - every minute an ASM/SM spends with you is is a minute he does not spend with the youth. Not to mention badgering gets old.....and why are you asking rather than your son?

I really wanted to know if there would be opportunities for my son - you wanted to know, not your son wants to know. What is important to the ASM/SM is what your son wants out of Scouting not what mom or dad think their son wants/needs to get out of Scouting.

get some cooking stuff checked off at a campout, because he needed some cooking stuff signed off - Get stuff signed off, the bane of ASM/SM's - it's not about learning, it is about getting stuff signed off, because the youth need stuff signed off. Again it is about getting stuff signed off to check another box on a requirement towards a goal the Scout may not even care about. Scouts want to have fun and learn cool stuff. Sometimes, usually later rather than sooner, the Scout may want to do advancement. That is when the ASM/SM starts to become more concerned about advancement.  Unfortunately, a lot of the advancement push I see is by adults long before the youth care. In fact the adult push is, in my opinion, one of the main reasons I see youth pushing back on advancement.  I have watched too many youth flounder under the pressure from mom and dad, to only flourish once the parents backed off and gave the Scout space.

if he wasn't able to cook and have the right opportunities at the camp in the spring, he might have to wait until summer camp or another time.  I hoped that he would get a chance to do the cooking stuff - so, he may have to wait. If waiting bothers him, he should talk to the ASM/SM about how else he fulfill that requirement if he really doesn't want to wait until camp.

 The first answer I got from the first ASM was vague.  He is a cooking MB counselor and he's been around forever and so he probably gave a glossed over answer when I was looking for reassurance on the details - more likely his answer was vague because it was not your son coming to ask him, it was you. One of the primary reason for merit badges are so the youth interact with adults other than their parents. When parents start asking me specifics about merit badges for their son, I tell them to have their son come talk to me. Now, if they want to understand the mechanics of being a merit badge counselor, I will gladly teach them (in fact I do that as part of my district and council positions). Your son, not you, need to be the one working on the details, finding out what needs to be done and asking their MB counselor the questions.

The ASM said yes, and said that of course it's up to whether the scouts do the skills, and I said, yes, I just want to make sure the opportunity is there. - it is up to the Scout to get it done, in fact making sure the opportunity is there is also up to the Scout. Scouts plan the program, and when they set up program during annual planning, and outing planning, the ASM/SM's are whispering in their ear "did you think about x and y?" But even then it is up to the Scouts to plan out those activities. Once the Scouts make a plan, it is up to the adult leaders to make sure that details the Scouts cannot accomplish are handled.

@WisconsinMomma, you have caught a lot of flack on this board that I do not think you deserved, but you have also made a number of comments that illustrate exactly why many "old school" leaders get frustrated. I, like most leaders I am sure, am happy to discuss, explain and even teach parents on any number of Scouting topics. But the moment the parents vision differs from the Scouts vision of what they want, the parents words fall on deaf ears. Even when the parent and Scout are in sync, the moment a parent starts doing the things the Scout should be doing I push back. The Scouting experience is for the youth, not the parent. On that point I do not and will not waiver except in extreme circumstances.

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" I have watched too many youth flounder under the pressure from mom and dad, to only flourish once the parents backed off and gave the Scout space." Amen. I have rallied more than one reluctant Eagle with the "who cares what your parents want, what do YOU want" speech." One time the scout said "no one has ever asked me".

If your boy needs to ask and it is a problem for him have him make his own "to do" list for the meetings. (only 1-3 items). Not ideal but better than you doing it.

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THEY. STILL. DO. NOT. GET. IT!

After the meeting on Saturday where we went over the entire advancement process, i.e. how meetings and activities are not meant to earn awards but work on skills, etc,  as well as how the PLC plans the program not the adults, they still don't get it. We had our Christmas party last night, and all the adults ended up together and talking. Some of the discussion was talking about trips done in the past, and how we hope the PLC  plans some cool trips this year. Two of the dads started talking about places they've been to on their own,  and how they talked with officials at these places so that the Scouts can earn XYZ MBs that weekend. They started going on and on about it. Since it was a Christmas party, I didn't say a word. But man I was tempted to say it's about the knowledge, skills, and abilities, not the badges. SM tactfully stated it's something for the PLC to consider.

At one point the topic became a possible AT trip this summer. OK PLC has not planned anything yet for 2018, but there has been enough talk about it that the adults are looking into it to give the Scouts some options: time of year, section, etc. Only thing set is one of the prep trips, the one we had to cancel 2 hours before kick off. And we don't have a date for that yet.  Mom pipes in about how that would be great for her Tenderfoot son to do since he needs a 5 mile hike with map and compass to earn Second Class. Now this is the Scout whose Mom a) refuses to let him camp without her, b) has camped with the troop only once, besides summer camp (and on the camp out he snuck into Mom's tent the first nite), and c) has told mom he is not interested in Boy Scouts.

Now the Scouter who heads up these has 2 requirements in order for the Scouts to go:  #1 Must be First Class or higher and #2 Must go on at least 1 prep trip prior to the AT trek OR  been on a previous AT trek. For adults to go on the trek, they must have gone on the prep trips, or a previous, AT trek. He mentioned this to her, and she was questioning this policy since it isn't BSA's but his. He mentioned how it's a safety factor. If a Scout or Scouter cannot pull his share , he jeopardizes the entire crew. Then goes on about how the one time he allowed an exception, for an adult with previous backpacking experience as a youth. However the adults was not ready for the trek, and it  caused issues that almost turned into a survival situation. Adult got dehydrated and collapsed. His group of Scouts took care of him until the trek leader could get to him. Thankfully nothing serious, water and rest took care of it. I then mentioned that one troop I know of also puts an age limit on HA trips:13. Basically mimicking the HA bases policy. Hopefully that will lose mom's interest. I know the trek leader doesn't want to put an age on it. The first AT trek he did with the troop, was a trek he did with his then 9 year old son.  Son would have been 12 when the first trek was done, and with a 13 year old rule, son would have not went. So dad would not have got the trek going.

 

Why does everything have to be about advancement?

 

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19 hours ago, HelpfulTracks said:

@WisconsinMomma, you have caught a lot of flack on this board that I do not think you deserved, but you have also made a number of comments that illustrate exactly why many "old school" leaders get frustrated. I, like most leaders I am sure, am happy to discuss, explain and even teach parents on any number of Scouting topics. But the moment the parents vision differs from the Scouts vision of what they want, the parents words fall on deaf ears. Even when the parent and Scout are in sync, the moment a parent starts doing the things the Scout should be doing I push back. The Scouting experience is for the youth, not the parent. On that point I do not and will not waiver except in extreme circumstances.

Great post. Why is it so hard for parents to let their kids do all the work? I'd ask the rhetorical question if parents do the same thing for the kid's school work, but the answer I suspect it most likely affirmative. There seems to be a high correlation between the parents that hover in Scouting and those that hover for school work. This is the equivalent of cutting a kid's meat for them.

@Eagle94-A1, I really feel for you and your efforts. If the SM has not fully bought in to the patrol method and boy-led approach, AND he is not afraid to act as gate keeper to keep the adults at bay, then it is truly an up hill battle.

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58 minutes ago, Eagle94-A1 said:

THEY. STILL. DO. NOT. GET. IT!

.......

Why does everything have to be about advancement?

 

Exactly.  We tell our Scouts (and parents) none of our outings are advancement focused.  That being said, there is always an opportunity for advancement, it's just the scout must initiate that advancement.  We are a large troop so there is usually enough leaders on the outings for many key items.  Also we have Life scouts and above sign off on any advancements for Tenderfoot - First Class.  No adult leaders sign off, we participate in some (present yourself to a leader packed etc). Yes, the young maybe 11 year old has to go and have a conversation with an older scout about what they have completed...scary thought isn't it

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Helpful Tracks,  yes, I'm being totally honest about what I was like when I was learning about how the Troop works.   Now, I am more relaxed, but I think these kinds of concerns are common, and it's part of learning how things work in Troops. 

 

ETA: I am hanging around here to learn from you guys, doh! :) 

Edited by WisconsinMomma

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