Jump to content
Bill2018

"Active" definition - First Class to Star progression

Recommended Posts

 

6 hours ago, Bill2018 said:

he indeed is actively participating in Scout activities when he is free of his other stuff.

Can you provide a list of Scout activities he has participated in during the four months between First Class and Star? That information may help us provide better advice.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, SSF said:

Nine times out of 10, I advocate for the scout in any kind of being "active" advancement dispute situation, however, if he is not attending troop meetings or making any camping trips, then I think even the most flexible SM might be hard pressed to justify him as actively participating.

Are there any other troop functions or activities that your son is participating in? i.e. Eagle service projects, troop service projects, fundraisers, etc.

Did he attend summer camp?   

One thing to keep in mind though is that your son's months of active service do not need to be consecutive,. As long as he can piece together six months, even if not consecutive, then each month most definitely counts towards being an active scout. 

If you have a 'my way or the highway" SM though he may not care and might demand that the months be consecutive.They know that's against the rules, but they also know council will do nothing to stop them.

 

 

 

 

Correction four months, not six

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@Bill2018, Welcome to the forums! Dad of soccer kids here.

In front of the whole troop, Son #2 handed over his SPL position when he realized that he could not be at meetings and many activities because of his fall schedule. I consider that to be a proud moment in his career as a scout.

He picked up with responsibilities with the troop as soon as the fall season ended (late because of playoffs). I can't remember if he became SPL again. But because of being responsible like that, I don't think anybody questioned his tenure.

I'm sure your son can be a star player to his team and star scout to his troop. It's okay if he takes 8 months to do both well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 hours ago, TMSM said:

Second set priorities - you can play soccer and advance but you will have to make sacrifices to do both. Maybe only play spring soccer or miss a few games early in the season to go on some campouts.

I think BSA wrote the Guide To Advancement "Active" section exactly to avoid these "priority" decisions.  If the scout is registered, in good standing and he's learning character or fitness or other positive values through soccer, he should still advance.  

I agree it would be useful to learn more about how the scout is connecting with the troop, but the troop exists to serve the scout.  Not the reverse.  

IMHO, the real question is not "active".  The real question is how will the scout fulfill a position of responsibility.  It can be done even without attending meetings or campouts.  But it needs to be better planned / coordinated.

Personally, I hope I never have to ask a scout to choose between scouts and soccer or something similar.  It's their choice to meet the requirements.  If they do, they advance.  

Personally, advancement is much less important to me than getting out and doing things. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, fred johnson said:

Personally, I hope I never have to ask a scout to choose between scouts and soccer or something similar.  It's their choice to meet the requirements.  If they do, they advance.  

Please rethink your thought here, Fred. Mentoring is the scout's valued hope of Adult Association.

Scouts' struggle painfully through these kinds of decisions. Where else can a scout find unbiased direction? Friends? Parents? 

Imagine the quenching relief that pragmatic wisdom brings to the chaos of a young mind. Scouts don't need adults to learn scout skills for adventure, but how valuable is the mature unbiased wisdom when wrestling with complicated life decisions. 

 

1 hour ago, fred johnson said:

Personally, advancement is much less important to me than getting out and doing things. 

Adult vanity is the most powerful adversarial force scouts face during their scouting experience. 

Barry

Edited by Eagledad

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 minutes ago, Eagledad said:

Adult vanity is the most powerful adversarial force scouts face during their scouting experience. 

I hugely agree, but I'd interpret it differently.   IMHO, suggesting a scout start prioritizing between soccer and scouts is effectively telling him to choose.  Now, he  may need to do that at some point.  But if he's passing the BSA criteria for active, it's not my place to raise a non-existing obstacle.  You can be in scouts and a committed soccer player too.  

You write:  "Please rethink your thought here, Fred. Mentoring is the scout's valued hope of Adult Association."  I agree, but mentoring is not teaching the scout about choices that do not exist except if created by your troop.  It's like pressuring a good friend to choose who the best friend is.  At that moment, you're not being a good friend.  As a scout leader, I would not be a good mentor.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, fred johnson said:

You write:  "Please rethink your thought here, Fred. Mentoring is the scout's valued hope of Adult Association."  I agree, but mentoring is not teaching the scout about choices that do not exist except if created by your troop.  It's like pressuring a good friend to choose who the best friend is.  At that moment, you're not being a good friend.  As a scout leader, I would not be a good mentor.  

Fred, mentoring doesn't pick the subject.

Mentoring is not active guidance of a specific direction, that would coaching. Mentoring waits to be approached. Mentoring is a torch that brings light in the darkness of confusion so that the choice hopefully becomes more clear to the mentoree. The mentoree's choice may not be the mentors choice. The power of mentoring unbiased guidance and no personal ownership of the decision. 

Maybe I should have used different words. Mentoring is valued hope for the hard choices during life's experiences. Most of the time the mentor may be unknowingly supporting the tougher choice, even though they didn't give any specific direction. How many times have we felt relief when making the harder choice?

I guess that is the difference in us; For me, mentoring was the most enjoyable part of being a scout leader.

Barry 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, Eagledad said:

Fred, mentoring doesn't pick the subject.

Mentoring is not active guidance of a specific direction, that would coaching. Mentoring waits to be approached. Mentoring is a torch that brings light in the darkness of confusion so that the choice hopefully becomes more clear to the mentoree. The mentoree's choice may not be the mentors choice. The power of mentoring unbiased guidance and no personal ownership of the decision. 

Maybe I should have used different words. Mentoring is valued hope for the hard choices during life's experiences. Most of the time the mentor may be unknowingly supporting the tougher choice, even though they didn't give any specific direction. How many times have we felt relief when making the harder choice?

I guess that is the difference in us; For me, mentoring was the most enjoyable part of being a scout leader.

Barry 

I agree.  Mentoring and working with scouts is the most enjoyable part.  I just don't view my job as adding non-existing extra obstacles to create mentoring situations where the scout comes to us for guidance.  There will be plenty of opportunities.  We just don't need to add "hard choices" for our scouts that don't already exist.  

To be specific ... We are talking advancement ... and troop's extra criteria for active ... and BSA's guidance saying that activities such as this scout's soccer involvement would fulfill the "active" criteria if the scout failed to meet the troop's criteria.  It's explicitly written.  Maybe we need BSA to enumerate each and every possible activity.  But otherwise, it's about as explicitly written as possible.  

So for "active" there should be no concern for the scout.  No hard choice.  It's a non-issue unless we as adult leaders force the issue on the scout.  

Every rank has requirements about service hours, positions of responsibility, merit badges, etc.  There is plenty for the scout to overcome and also plenty of chances for us to mentor.  

We just don't need to create extra situations. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, fred johnson said:

To be specific ... We are talking advancement ... and troop's extra criteria for active ... and BSA's guidance saying that activities such as this scout's soccer involvement would fulfill the "active" criteria if the scout failed to meet the troop's criteria.  It's explicitly written.  Maybe we need BSA to enumerate each and every possible activity.  But otherwise, it's about as explicitly written as possible.  

You are saying that if a scout comes to you to ask for advice, you are going to say no, it's not in my job description?

Mentoring is not about forcing your choice, it's about helping sort out the complexity of choices. Ignore soccer, football, band, Troop, OA, piano, advancement, or even paper airplane class. Mentoring is the higher level thinking for searching the answer. Theoretically the mentor has developed mature thought process for making choices. Mentoring is guiding a development of a thought process for making choices. The mentor doesn't care about the choice, the mentor cares about the process to making the choice.

Personally I believe mentoring is a process that builds rationalizing which sorts the complexities of choices to be more obvious. That doesn't make the choice easier, but it provide a base for making a choice.

Barry 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, fred johnson said:

I think BSA wrote the Guide To Advancement "Active" section exactly to avoid these "priority" decisions.  If the scout is registered, in good standing and he's learning character or fitness or other positive values through soccer, he should still advance.   

I think without the specific troop rules for what "Active" is you can't provide good advice. Each troop can define what Active is thats the point. Here where I live soccer is mainly travel soccer with games Saturday -thru Sunday and practice is every day so its impossible to go on campouts and hard to attend meetings. This is where sacrifice (priority) comes in to play.

Edited by TMSM

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, Eagledad said:

You are saying that if a scout comes to you to ask for advice, you are going to say no, it's not in my job description?

You are talking about mentoring as if we believe differently on the topic.  It's not in what I've written.  Perhaps I've been unclear or we are addressing different questions. 

This thread is about "active" and in this case there is no issue with the active requirement.  BSA explicitly handled it.  For us to add one is injecting ourselves in the scouts creating an issue for them to overcome. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, fred johnson said:

You are talking about mentoring as if we believe differently on the topic.  It's not in what I've written.  Perhaps I've been unclear or we are addressing different questions. 

This thread is about "active" and in this case there is no issue with the active requirement.  BSA explicitly handled it.  For us to add one is injecting ourselves in the scouts creating an issue for them to overcome. 

Ah, I see and understand.

Barry

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
42 minutes ago, TMSM said:

This is where sacrifice (priority) comes in to play.

Each troop can define active, but each troop needs to follow BSA Guide To Advancement about using "alternate requirements" (BSA Guide To Advancement) when the scout falls short of the troop's active definition.  

I get very scared when scout leaders begin talking to scouts about priorities based on something extra the troop adds that explicitly has additional options in the Guide To Advancement.  It's like leaders are praying scouts are ignorant of the rules.  

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
38 minutes ago, fred johnson said:

I get very scared when scout leaders begin talking to scouts about priorities based on something extra the troop adds that explicitly has additional options in the Guide To Advancement.  It's like leaders are praying scouts are ignorant of the rules.  

@fred johnson, but the Scouts are ignorant of the rules, and generally, so are the parents. That's how these types of leaders get away with "75 percent of the meetings and 50 percent of the campouts" over XXX months policies. They just repeat that over and over until it becomes troop doctrine about what "active" means, and Scouts and parents typically don't know the GSS even exists or that BSA actually has policies on these matters.

But I agree with you, btw.

 

Edited by an_old_DC
  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

OK clearly this is a discussion-stimulating topic.   I agree that "each troop deciding what is active" is arguably not the best practice, it should be what BSA says.   But I don't want to start a debate over that.

My son currently:

  • Chaplin Aide
  • First Class (age 13).   His goal is Eagle by age 16
  • "Administratively meets" all upgrade to Star requirements.  Has service hours, Merit Badges, etc.  Has about 1/2 the Eagle badges already done.
  • National Junior Honor Society, plays soccer, does some service hours at Nursing Home.  Also is altar boy at church.   In other words, he is "whole concept" demonstrating Scout values, health physical/moral, service to others, striving to do his best at school, etc.
  • Active at fund raising, popcorn, wreath sales (door to door can be done outside of soccer).   Typically out-sells other Scouts (not that this is a requirement, but....)
  • Will probably miss every Troop meeting between now and December  
  • will attend some campouts between now and December
  • well liked by other Scout adult leaders in troop (not a requirement, but...)

** I am considering discussing this with him and seeing if he would like to hand-write an "appeal" letter or "please consider my case" letter to the Troop Scoutmaster

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by Bill2018
upgrade to Star is correct

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×