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Jameson76

Why do you need 50% of troop there for an election??

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2 hours ago, Eagle94-A1 said:

Yes, the OA has lost its luster. Started back when you could vote for whomever you wanted instead of 50% of those eligible. When I found out a SM rigged an election so that everyone could get in, I was ticked. I don't know what happened after I became inactive with the OA due to Cubs Scouts, but my chapter is dead in the water. My oldest, who has been eligible for some time now, has no interest in the OA.

I think of it a bit differently - your chapter, and perhaps lodge, has lost it's lustre. 

I'm coming to realize that it's our generation's turn to make these institutions great.  Of course the boys run it, but our generation of adults needs to be behind the scenes lining things up so that it can happen.  It feels to me a little like volunteerism is down, so it's making that harder these days, but it seems to be the challenge that's out there. 

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7 minutes ago, ParkMan said:

I think of it a bit differently - your chapter, and perhaps lodge, has lost it's lustre. 

I'm coming to realize that it's our generation's turn to make these institutions great.  Of course the boys run it, but our generation of adults needs to be behind the scenes lining things up so that it can happen.  It feels to me a little like volunteerism is down, so it's making that harder these days, but it seems to be the challenge that's out there. 

I think what OA represented is dead. OA used to recognize the above average scouts. They were experts with woods tools and felt very comfortable alone in the woods. They were givers of their time an represent Friendly, Courteous, and Kind to a fine art. Todays adults prefer mediocrity so that nobody feels bad being the below average scout. Advancement is more desired in groups and leadership is given so that each scout gets a turn. OA was a program that gave the above average scouts a bigger arena to expand dreams. Now it's just another boring program that is challenged to fit in a troop agenda.

Barry

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1 hour ago, HelpfulTracks said:

That is not the rule. A Scout can vote for everyone/anyone on the ballot. It has always been so. You need 50% of the Troop present in order to hold a vote, and you need 50% of the ballots cast to be elected.

Prior to 1996 Scouts could vote for 1/2 of those eligible. If it was an odd number, you rounded up to the next even number. So if 2 Scouts were eligible, you could only vote for 1. If 3 or 4 Scouts were eligible, you could vote for 2. Etc. Still needed 50% of the unit there, and still needed 50% of the vote. And abstentions counted. I remember one troop that had an odd number eligible. SM divided the troop into 1/3s and told them who to vote for. That was the only time I saw everyone eligible get elected into the OA prior to the current policy. And I found out the next year when he was bragging because he no longer had to rig the elections so that everyone could get in.

 

 

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17 minutes ago, Eagledad said:

I think what OA represented is dead. OA used to recognize the above average scouts. They were experts with woods tools and felt very comfortable alone in the woods. They were givers of their time an represent Friendly, Courteous, and Kind to a fine art. Todays adults prefer mediocrity so that nobody feels bad being the below average scout. Advancement is more desired in groups and leadership is given so that each scout gets a turn. OA was a program that gave the above average scouts a bigger arena to expand dreams. Now it's just another boring program that is challenged to fit in a troop agenda.

Barry

Then change it.  

Heck, just get your OA group to simply adopt your goal:
"By joining the OA, you have chosen to join an elite group.   We represent the best of the best scouts.  While a member you will become experts with wood tools and will become confident alone in the woods.  You're expected to represent the best of the Scout Law.  Here you will be given a chance to become even stronger leaders that you are today.  If you're up for that, this will be an arena to expand your dreams.  If not, that's OK, but this isn't the group for you"

I'd start with that.  If everyone quits then go recruit a new batch and build it up again.  This stuff is only mediocre if we let it be.

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With my lodge the problem is lack of information or being notified too late about stuff. Also they have way too many things and they conflict with other stuff on the calendar. Everything competes with each other and then people wonder why 3 guys show up. It used to be a place where I could hang with the guys. Now that’s going away too. So now it’s just another service organization that travels hours to do service. I can do nhs and stay in town and then hang with the guys at sonic. That appeals to guys more than what Oa offers now. 

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1 hour ago, HelpfulTracks said:

... Honestly, I cannot remember reading a single post of yours that is not negative towards Scouting. 

Don't worry HT, E94 has his bright moments.

But graft an corruption -- especially from volunteers and pros -- cause him to squeak.

13 hours ago, Back Pack said:

Actually it’s 50% of ballots cast. So if you have 51 scouts show and only 40 submit ballots your magic number is 21. So it’s not scouts in the room but ballots cast. 

We really emphasize this point with the boys. If they don't know a scout, abstain. (Yes, we have to teach them what the word means and how to spell it!)

Some first class scouts in a troop that's only been doing patrol-oriented activities may only be known to their patrol, SPL, and ASPL. For them, 6 honest votes (up or down) out of 10 is all that should matter:cool: ... unless between school and meetings other scouts know that he robs liquor stores to buy drugs.:mad:  The opposite could be true. A scout could be in a patrol full of bullies, and he's going against their current. The thugs don't notice it, but boys in other patrols do. Either way that's why you want as much of the troop as possible to weigh in and vote: yes, no, or abstain.

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11 minutes ago, ParkMan said:

Then change it.  

Heck, just get your OA group to simply adopt your goal:
"By joining the OA, you have chosen to join an elite group.   We represent the best of the best scouts.  While a member you will become experts with wood tools and will become confident alone in the woods.  You're expected to represent the best of the Scout Law.  Here you will be given a chance to become even stronger leaders that you are today.  If you're up for that, this will be an arena to expand your dreams.  If not, that's OK, but this isn't the group for you"

I'd start with that.  If everyone quits then go recruit a new batch and build it up again.  This stuff is only mediocre if we let it be.

I was recruited for that very thing. BUT, how much can we do in one hour a week. We turned a dying troop of 7 into a successful patrol method program of 100. That takes a bit more than one hour a week.

There are many discussions on this forum of learning how to say "No". And please don't think bad of us. I had many choices for applying my one hour a week after I step back from Scoutmastering. I decided to go a route where I could accomplish the most growth with my limited time. It was a purposeful strategic choice of teaching adults and senior scouts at the council level. My dream was a council of patrol method troops. I just didn't see accomplishing the same goal with OA. I admit I believe OA is hopeless.

Barry

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1 minute ago, ParkMan said:

Then change it.  

Heck, just get your OA group to simply adopt your goal:
"By joining the OA, you have chosen to join an elite group.   We represent the best of the best scouts.  While a member you will become experts with wood tools and will become confident alone in the woods.  You're expected to represent the best of the Scout Law.  Here you will be given a chance to become even stronger leaders that you are today.  If you're up for that, this will be an arena to expand your dreams.  If not, that's OK, but this isn't the group for you"

I'd start with that.  If everyone quits then go recruit a new batch and build it up again.  This stuff is only mediocre if we let it be.

Yes it is only mediocre if you let it. And I know how much work is involved in getting a chapter back on its feet. Done that twice, and started a new chapter once. And I may have to do it again since I found out the Chapter Advisor stepped down.

As for me being negative, kinda hard to see something you have devoted all of your adult life falling apart. feel like I am the Dutch boy putting fingers and toes in the dikes. District committee is non-existant. Folks are expressing their displeasure with national's policies by stepping away. Folks believe that national is not listening to them, and that the organization as a whole is not the same one they signed up to be members of. we are talking folks with 10, 20, 30, 60 years in the organization. And not having a full time DE, someone who can devote all of his energies into recruiting folks hurts the district too.

And I know I am burning out, which is also contributing to the negativity. I am tired of being put in charge of things at the last minute. 2016 camporee was dumped on me 2 months before it was scheduled. Took a year to plan 2017 camporee, then WHAM, one week before a CS activity is dumped on me at the same time and place. Ditto with Cubmobile the past 2 years and Scouting for Food.

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@Eagledad @Eagle94-A1

I completely understand.  I don't think bad of you at all for saying No - I don't have the time.

I'm in the middle of my own burnout phase.  Been Committee Chair for a troop of 75 boys with a Scoutmaster who has turned difficult and ungrateful into an art form.  I do get it.

I've said in other threads that I think the real problem behind much of this is the neglect of our district committees.  Too few people left doing too many jobs.  We lack a structure that develops new leaders and builds up our "community scouting" team.  Camporee's suffer, Day Camp suffers, the OA suffers, the list goes on.

I just think I've got a choice.  I can mourn Scouting's passing, or I can be a voice in my small town that says let's do better.  In fact, my plan is to say no to most everything, but instead work to find those people who will say yes.  Maybe it won't work - I don't know.  But it's all I can think of.

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21 minutes ago, ParkMan said:

@Eagledad @Eagle94-A1

I completely understand.  I don't think bad of you at all for saying No - I don't have the time.

I'm in the middle of my own burnout phase.  Been Committee Chair for a troop of 75 boys with a Scoutmaster who has turned difficult and ungrateful into an art form.  I do get it.

I've said in other threads that I think the real problem behind much of this is the neglect of our district committees.  Too few people left doing too many jobs.  We lack a structure that develops new leaders and builds up our "community scouting" team.  Camporee's suffer, Day Camp suffers, the OA suffers, the list goes on.

I just think I've got a choice.  I can mourn Scouting's passing, or I can be a voice in my small town that says let's do better.  In fact, my plan is to say no to most everything, but instead work to find those people who will say yes.  Maybe it won't work - I don't know.  But it's all I can think of.

So very true. I was a very good recruiter as well. It requires someone of humility because others will get the recognition for the tasks you recruited for. I learned that recruiting is an art and a rarer skill than most realize. You can move mountains simply by putting the right people in the right positions. I know this, we now have a few mountains in Oklahoma. :D

Barry

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2 hours ago, Eagledad said:

Todays adults prefer mediocrity so that nobody feels bad being the below average scout. 

Scouting isn't a competition. I don't think there is any such thing as a below average scout. 

Scouting is about having fun with your friends. It is not supposed to be like school or sports. Scouting doesn't have grades or class ranking. There is no above average or below average. There is no best of the best. There are no championships. There are no all-stars. There are no winners and losers. 

I am often annoyed by people who try to take the competition out of sports, but I am even more irritated by people who try to put competition into scouting. Not in my unit.

Edited by David CO
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16 minutes ago, David CO said:

I am often annoyed by people who try to take the competition out of sports, but I am even more irritated by people who try to put competition into scouting. Not in my  the CO's unit.

Fixed your post. ;):ph34r:

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31 minutes ago, David CO said:

Scouting isn't a competition. I don't think there is any such thing as a below average scout. 

Scouting is about having fun with your friends. It is not supposed to be like school or sports. Scouting doesn't have grades or class ranking. There is no above average or below average. There is no best of the best. There are no championships. There are no all-stars. There are no winners and losers. 

I am often annoyed by people who try to take the competition out of sports, but I am even more irritated by people who try to put competition into scouting. Not in my unit.

Aren’t you the adult who doesn’t allow OA in your troop?

Barry

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50 minutes ago, David CO said:

Scouting isn't a competition. I don't think there is any such thing as a below average scout. 

Scouting is about having fun with your friends. It is not supposed to be like school or sports. Scouting doesn't have grades or class ranking. There is no above average or below average. There is no best of the best. There are no championships. There are no all-stars. There are no winners and losers. 

I am often annoyed by people who try to take the competition out of sports, but I am even more irritated by people who try to put competition into scouting. Not in my unit.

We talk a lot in Scouting about leadership.  To me, a big part of leadership is standing up and leading.  Every scout could do that, but many choose not to.  

We've got a kid in our troop that shows up 90% of the time, leads all kinds of events, and puts himself out there.  We've got other kids that come 20% of the time, never camp, never participate, never show leadership, and in short - just don't try.  We've got a lot more kids in the middle.

As adults, I think we want to encourage boys to be more like the first example.  Do things, try things, take chances, be a leader.  Having a program like the OA which provides an incentive to lead is itself a tool to teach leadership.  If a scout tries and puts his heart into it, should he get into the OA - you bet.  But, I think for it to be an effective tool, there has to be a line somewhere.  If there's not line, how can it be a tool to incentive boys to try & lead. 

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