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Eagle94-A1

Adults at it Again

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Update from Scouters' meeting.

SM will be staying in position. We will be having monthly PLC meetings for 30 minutes the first Monday of each month. Additionally the terms of office will be 4 months long instead of 6. The one of the things I have reservations on is the selection of ASPL and SPL. This election, both ASPL and SPL are going to be elected. Next election, the ASPL will move up to SPL, and troop elects ASPL. Again got reservations, but have seen this format work in other organizations. Had a feeling we would be going this route since 2 adults were pushing this, and a third is in an organization that does it and is comfortable with it. Thankfully it is essentially an 8 month committment on the ASPL's part, and not a 12 month commitment. We have a lot of folks involved in extracurriculars that would not have a chance to run if we were doing 6 months terms still. Good news is that they didn't push it down to the APL/PL level as originally proposed. I think what helped prevent that from happening is the fact APL doesn't count towards advancement. And following the "elect APL and move up to PL" route would cause some problems for some of the Scouts who want to serve as PL, but need POR time.

My other concern is that the Scouts are getting no input into this decision. I think most of them won't care to be honest. But I think a small minority will be upset.

Overall I am willing to try this. I think this is a good compromise amongst the adults. Good discussion on the pros and cons of everything.

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Maybe I am stupid but 4 month terms? How will boys meet their 6 month requirement? Will you have guys dropping required POR#2 half way through or be doing a whole lotta "Scoutmaster Specials"?

We tried the vote for ASPL and SPL and ASPL trained (and really did the SPL's job for a year) and was supposed to automatically move up to SPL. ASPL had to be the 'bad cop' to the SPL 'good cop'. Then we got a new SM and CC who changed the policy at election time because "every SPL should be elected by the boys he serves" (Many of the young scouts were not around when the ASPL got elected the first time). The new SM then hand picked a new candidate to run against the ASPL. ASPL lost.

That ASPL did run again as SPL a year later but he never recovered from a sense of betrayal from adults who make jump the hoops and change the rules. He was mad at the 1st SM who made up the scheme and the 2nd one who switched it. We almost lost that scout who was a really good one.

I guess my point is you should not be making promises to that scout if you cannot have enough control to keep that promise. I think this is an adult driven decision that will lose some but in from the boys even if they never say anything...it SMELLS like adults manipulating things.

I predict in two years the 4 month terms and the ASPL->SPL policies will have changed back to more BSA norms. 

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SM got the 4 month terms from a podcast. And I have heard of a troop doing that due to sports seasons. I have not seen it in action, so I do not know how it will work. Plus the POR requirement does not have to be filled in one specific POR, you can use multiple PORs. For example, Oldest has his 6 months for Eagle from being SPL (4 months) and Librarian (2 months) The reason I am OK with it in the big scheme of things is because of the ASPL/SPL situation. That is my major concern.

And I too feel that one adult is manipulating the situation. I think one adult honestly believes in the approach since he's done it in other organizations. The idea is the ASPL is trained by the SPL for 2 months, and begins planning his 4 months while ASPL. Another adult  who agreed to it is in an organization that does that for their VP and Pres. So he said it can work too. But one adult pushing this commented that it would prevent the same scouts getting reelected  as fast as they have been. That is concern for me. I know him and another adult have complained that the same folks keep getting reelected. part of that may be legitimate concern. part of it may be that their sons have not been elected to office. I know they wanted to do that at the patrol level, but when I commented how Scouts who want to be PL and need a POR would be unable to become a PL due to APL not counting towards advancement,  the idea was nixed.  Although they adults did say the idea could be reevaluated if the ASPL/SPL situation works.

In all honesty, I am happy that the adults are willing to have monthly PLCs, even if only for 30 minutes during game time. I see it as a small step forward.

 

 

 

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7 minutes ago, Eagle94-A1 said:

SM got the 4 month terms from a podcast.

Image result for and there's your problem

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Our SPL plays on the High School football team (and a pretty good one) and has a 1 year term. ASPL fills in as needed and he manages. Scouts know he is committed because he comes out early Saturday morning after a game. 

Yeah I know about partial POR's but it falls into weird partial terms and is hard to get boys to fill.

As for just because it works in other organizations (many boosters and PTA's do the VP becomes the President) doesn't mean it is a good idea for scouts. Too many people want to be innovative instead of working the kinks out of the program. Why not add an electoral college system to the SPL election? That works (sometimes). :rolleyes:

What do I know? I had to passionately fight off a proposal to let the scouts, scouters, and parents all get a vote to elect the SPL...just hearing it as an adult proposal caused two boys to quit the PLC as a fraud.

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10 minutes ago, Tampa Turtle said:

Why not add an electoral college system to the SPL election?

Well..then the Russians would have to get involved and nobody has time for that

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20 minutes ago, Jameson76 said:

Well..then the Russians would have to get involved and nobody has time for that

Well no doubt Russian Helicopter PARENTS! :mad: I can here it now "Well it worked very well when I was in the Vladimir Lenin All-Union Pioneer Organization. All our boy leadership was selected then...or purged as the case may be"

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I think its better when the SPL can choose who will assist him so I would not recommend an ASPL election. We follow the guidelines of having the SPL choose ASPL with consent of the SM. I think it takes 6 months for most SPLs to get the hang of it but we do a 6th month term so more scouts can have a chance to be SPL.

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23 minutes ago, DuctTape said:

the electoral college system would be the PLC electing the  SPL. 

Actually reading older BSA literature, the SPL was elected by the PLC.

 

1 hour ago, Tampa Turtle said:

 Too many people want to be innovative instead of working the kinks out of the program.

Agree, folks do not have the patience to work out the kinks. They want results NOW. They do not see that it takes time and patience to get a troop going. And being innovative expends unnecessary energy and time.

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2 hours ago, TMSM said:

I think its better when the SPL can choose who will assist him so I would not recommend an ASPL election. We follow the guidelines of having the SPL choose ASPL with consent of the SM. I think it takes 6 months for most SPLs to get the hang of it but we do a 6th month term so more scouts can have a chance to be SPL.

While our program is like yours, I've observed the most mature troop programs had the commonality of electing the ASPL every six months with their SPL serving one year terms.

I proposed this system to our PLC and they said no because they liked our 6 month SPL terms and saw no reason to rock the boat. So, that was that.

Our system performed well, so I had no complaint. But I agree that our SPLs needed about 5 months to become productive. They work so hard, they think they need a break at the next election. I say, they think the need the break, because they can't seem to stop being an SPL even after the next SPL is elected. I believe they are over the hump of getting used to the job around 5 months, but I never got an opportunity to prove that theory. If I stayed on as SM, I probably would have requested a trial of 1 year SPLs from the PLC because I believe it would raise the maturity of the troop to another level.

I personally don't support keeping terms short to provide more leadership opportunities. Maybe it's my engineering nature, but I believe good leadership is developing the most efficient program they can vision. I also value "role modeling" as the "best teacher" for the scouts, so I desired the best leaders. Maturity starts from the top and works down to youngest least experienced scout. The best measure of a troop program are the oldest role models. 

Barry

Edited by Eagledad
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I personally do not like the ASPL -> SPL. What if he doesn’t want to be ASPL and then SPL? I mean, that’s how it usually works but still. The way my troop and every Troop around us do it is the SPL is elected first, then SPL chooses ASPL, then PLs are elected.

Edited by ItsBrian
Fix “picked” to “elected”
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16 minutes ago, ItsBrian said:

I personally do not like the ASPL -> SPL. What if he doesn’t want to be ASPL and then SPL? I mean, that’s how it usually works but still. The way my troop and every Troop around us do it is the SPL is elected first, then SPL chooses ASPL, then PLs are elected.

The SPL should get to pick his #2 guy. A smart SPL picks a guy who complements his strengths/weaknesses. We tried elections where the guy coming in #2 in votes was ASPL and they did not get along well. Though I have seen a SPL pick the runner up in a 'National Unity Party' kind of scheme.

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20 minutes ago, Tampa Turtle said:

The SPL should get to pick his #2 guy. A smart SPL picks a guy who complements his strengths/weaknesses. We tried elections where the guy coming in #2 in votes was ASPL and they did not get along well. Though I have seen a SPL pick the runner up in a 'National Unity Party' kind of scheme.

Agrreeeed. My first term I was “guided” to choose the runner up. It. Was. Horrible. If you saw my other posts about the parent always trying to blame something on me, that was her son I had to choose. (I didn’t have the courage to say no then) 2nd term? I picked whoever I wanted, and it is great. 

Funny thing is at our recent meeting, I asked what date we should have elections and each leader out of the 3, said one month further than usual. I don’t think they realize I have a medical terminology college class & more next year...

Edited by ItsBrian

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7 minutes ago, ItsBrian said:

Agrreeeed. My first term I was “guided” to choose the runner up. It. Was. Horrible. If you saw my other posts about the parent always trying to blame something on me, that was her son I had to choose. (I didn’t have the courage to say no then) 2nd term? I picked whoever I wanted, and it is great. 

Funny thing is at our recent meeting, I asked what date we should have elections and each leader out of the 3, said one month further than usual. I don’t think they realize I have a medical terminology college class & more next year...

They know you can juggle everything.  And if you have to miss a meeting or two that month, hey, I hear you've got a great assistant.  :D

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