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How to increase usage of Patrol Method

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11 hours ago, Treflienne said:

The troop leader guidebook (p 37) talks about the regular monthly PLC meeting.  Also about "Patrol Leaders' Council Huddles" before each meeting and a brief PLC meeting at the end of each troop meeting. 

Our small new one-patrol troop has been holding an all-interested-troop-members-invited "PLC" meeting once a month for the scouts to plan the upcoming activities.  Typically about half the scouts in the troop (including the PL/APL) attend.   We have not been having the brief PLC meeting at the end of each troop meeting.   However I am starting to feel that something of the sort is needed -- that is, remote means of communication (email, phone) between troop meetings are not quite enough.  

So,  in your experience, especially in your small-troop experience:   do you do these post-troop-meeting huddles?  Whose attendance is critical?  Whose attendance is optional? 

On my small-troop experience, whoever did the work held the position, patches were superfluous. But how this wound up was a couple of older scouts would stay after and we asked them how things are going and what we should do next. IMHO, focus your attention on the PL+APL if they are showing up, and if other scouts are joining them and it's making everyone productive, keep it going. In the process you will identify who might be the better QM vs Scribe vs Librarian, etc ...

There is no point in formally convening a PLC until the troop has three patrols who need to coordinate. Then, PL/APL from each patrol and the SPL/ASPL are your PLC -- effectively or "leadership patrol." Again, I don't go checking patches to see who is sitting there. If a scout's doing work, he has a say.  In this context, how the weekly after-meeting goes is that some weeks it's obvious that what the plan for the next week will be so SPL says, "See you next week." Other weeks we have to hash out a number of details or follow-up on a bunch of activities, so the meeting is about a half hour. In that case, the SPL will let the leaders know that he'll need more of their time that week.

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Rough idea ... stop troop camping.  Maybe troop summer camp and a troop district camporee.  Beyond that, patrols should function as patrols.  Choose their activities and schedule.  Find their own camps.  If you really want patrols to function as patrols, minimize the troop focus.  

I say this as a rough idea because every troop calendar I've seen has a monthly troop focus with some sporadic higher adventure activity.   I never see an annual calendar for the patrols.  

Maybe asking the patrols to have one or two months each year where they focus on creating the coolest patrol campout or activity.   One patrol goes caving.  Another does a canoe trip.  Another does a state park.  Maybe another does a bike trip.  

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