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SM101

OA election nights

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If a Scout attends a long term camp NYLT for the 5 nights towards OA.

Then attends a winter campout with inclement weather so they ended up staying in a walled non heated shelter but cooked outside and camp stove.  1 night

attended a Spring Camporee for 2 nights

Helped with a day camp for younger scout and camped out at night for 3 nights.

Went to the normal Scout camp because it’s the SPL  to support their troop camping.  They camped over the fire one night and slept in canvas tents or under the stars.  They made sandwiches the night of Wilderness survival and built a shelter.    I counted this as 3 nights because it was a separate Scouting event and different dates than the long term camp.  No other event shall exceed 3 nights even if they camp more nights.

attended 2 night campout at a local State park for two nights.

My main quest is May I count the three night campout.    If yes the scout has 16 days of camping.  If not the Scout has 13.

this will impact our upcoming Scout Election.

Thank you!

 

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Welcome to the forums, and thanks for all you do for our youth!

From requirements on https://oa-bsa.org/about/membership (emphasis mine).

Quote
  • Have experienced 15 nights of camping while registered with a troop, crew, or ship within the two years immediately prior to the election. The 15 nights must include one, but no more than one, long-term camp consisting of at least five consecutive nights of overnight camping, approved and under the auspices and standards of the Boy Scouts of America. Only five nights of the long-term camp may be credited toward the 15-night camping requirement; the balance of the camping (10 nights) must be overnight, weekend, or other short-term camps of, at most, three nights each. Ship nights may be counted as camping for Sea Scouts.

Talk to your chapter chief. And to your scouts who already are arrowmen. Ask them if you're stretching the criteria beyond recognition.

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2 hours ago, SM101 said:

this will impact our upcoming Scout Election.

Welcome to the forum, @SM101.

What exactly is the problem you're trying to resolve? At first it sounds like you're deciding whether the scout is eligible for the the OA but at the very end you state this has to do with elections. The OA has specific requirements that you must follow but, as for elections, you own those. You can make any requirements you like.

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2 hours ago, SM101 said:

Went to the normal Scout camp because it’s the SPL  to support their troop camping.  They camped over the fire one night and slept in canvas tents or under the stars.  They made sandwiches the night of Wilderness survival and built a shelter.    I counted this as 3 nights because it was a separate Scouting event and different dates than the long term camp.  No other event shall exceed 3 nights even if they camp more nights.

 

 

How long was this campout?

If 3 nights or less, it counts as short-term camping.  If not, he already has his long-term nights from NYLT--so if this is, say summer camp (6-7 nights) it would not count toward eligibility (as least, as I understand the rules).  What I'm getting at is, I'm pretty sure you can't take a subset of the nights from a long-term camp and use them toward the 10 nights of short-term camping.

 

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15 minutes ago, MattR said:

Welcome to the forum, @SM101.

What exactly is the problem you're trying to resolve? At first it sounds like you're deciding whether the scout is eligible for the the OA but at the very end you state this has to do with elections. The OA has specific requirements that you must follow but, as for elections, you own those. You can make any requirements you like.

My reading of the elections comment was that this would determine eligibility for OA elections.

 

25 minutes ago, Chisos said:

I'm pretty sure you can't take a subset of the nights from a long-term camp and use them toward the 10 nights of short-term camping.

That is correct.  Only 5 nights from long term camping, the other 10 must come from short term (3 or less nights total in the event).  You cannot do 2 summer camps and count 5 nights from one and 3 nights from the second.  (We are headed out for our second summer camp of the year tomorrow.  In the past year and a half my nephew will have 54 nights of camping, with 27 of them long term, and 27 short term.)  

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2 hours ago, RememberSchiff said:

 @SM101  Welcome to scouter.com

Hello,

I can’t understand that we would sway any scout from leading and spending less time camping and not attending their Summer Camp.  It just doesn’t make sense.  It’s basically rewarding to do what is in their best interest instead of the troops beat interest.

This scout will be two nights of camping short if that is the case.   

This scout got 6 overnights and much more experience doing it than attending one 2 night weekend.  i hate to break the news to this scout and I feel it’s interpretation, I haven’t heard back from National or Council yet.  We may have to break the news to the Scout.  It was a goal they had and just came up two days short.  

Thanks for your input!

 

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The scout had no other camping in the previous two years?

On one hand...10 nights of short-term camping over two years really should not be a difficult goal to meet if a scout is active in the program.

On the other hand...life happens...maybe there's other things going on that prevented the scout from getting the camping nights.  Other meaningful activities, family issues, who knows.  If he only needs two nights, is there another troop around that is camping soon he could go with?  Or a cub scout pack having a campout he could help with?

The point of this requirement is not just the number of nights; it's consistent participation in the program (i.e. more frequent camping).

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This Scout will be going off to college, and will not be back in our Council next year. The last callout for OA is this coming Wednesday.  I u defat and limitations and will break the news to the Scout.

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Would it work to CIT for a few days?  I found a camp out of Council to offer this scout if they choose to do it.

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1 hour ago, SM101 said:

Would it work to CIT for a few days?  I found a camp out of Council to offer this scout if they choose to do it.

I'd say it a "you make the call" as SM.  The "objective" criteria is three nights or less.  Does it "count" if he goes for two nights of a five-night camp?

Food for thought for the group:  Do you camp to be eligible for OA, or are you eligible for OA because you camp?  Are the "rules" there to define only what "counts" or to exclude that which doesn't?  Does a 4-night campout count in any way for OA eligibility?

 

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I think the spirit of the rule is to only count "summer camp" once otherwise most scouts would only need to camp 5 nights outside of camp.  I would not count part of a long term camp as a short term camp unless this was truly a different event (not during the summer camp week at the summer camp).  

Over the last two years this scout has camped 4 times + NYLT + Summer Camp.  That is not enough for the OA IMHO.

4 hours ago, Chisos said:

Food for thought for the group:  Do you camp to be eligible for OA, or are you eligible for OA because you camp?  Are the "rules" there to define only what "counts" or to exclude that which doesn't?  Does a 4-night campout count in any way for OA eligibility?

 

I think you are eligible because you camp.  OA is a recognition of those who spend time away from civilization, usually under the stars or a tent roof, and who do it honorably. I think the rule is enough to determine what counts. The rule could be written that you must have 1 - 5 night camp plus 10 nights of camping where you are out no more than 3 nights at a time.  4 night camps don't fit the rule anywhere.  The rule is supposed to balance number of nights with number of trips without specifying exactly how you got there.  

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7 hours ago, MattR said:

The OA has specific requirements that you must follow but, as for elections, you own those. You can make any requirements you like.

Actually, no. The election, it’s requirements and how it’s run belongs to the Lodge, which must follow national guidelines.

The unit leaders discretion ends at determining who is eligible, again, based on national guidelines.

9 hours ago, SM101 said:

Went to the normal Scout camp because it’s the SPL  to support their troop camping.  They camped over the fire one night and slept in canvas tents or under the stars.  They made sandwiches the night of Wilderness survival and built a shelter.    I counted this as 3 nights because it was a separate Scouting event and different dates than the long term camp.  No other event shall exceed 3 nights even if they camp more nights.

My main quest is May I count the three night campout 

I have to admit, I’m not following this paragraph.

I will say I follow the spirit of what the OA is trying to achieve, which is to select honor Scouts with an emphasis on camping experience. 

Specifically, national has said you cannot split long term camping, like a 10 night Jamboree, into 3 outings of 5, 3 and 2 nights. But I cannot find anything on using a portion of a long term camp. Personally, to me counting it goes against the spirit, as they are usually, different types of camping. 

Also, I do not count shelter camping unless they are open shelters like the Adirondacks (not fully enclosed) found in some national parks. Even then I would have to give it some serious thought before counting more than one event using any shelters like Adirondacks.

Ultimately, beyond defining the minimum nights for long term camping (5), and maximum nights for short term camping (3), the OA leaves it to the discretion of the unit leader to determine if a Scout meets the requirements.

I would point you back to the spirit of the election. It is not about getting a sash and a patch. It’s about selecting those scouts with strong camping experience who live the oath and law daily.

A few more points to think about in terms of elections and eligibility:

First, call out is not required and even if you want one, it can be done by the troop itself, so don’t make it an arbitrary barrier.

Second, the unit may have only one election per calendar year.

Third, a Scout is eligible for election until they turn 21, so even if he is going off to college he can be kept on roster as a Scouter reserve and sill be eligible to be elected up to the date he turns 21. 

I hope that helps.

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2 hours ago, HelpfulTracks said:

Actually, no. The election, it’s requirements and how it’s run belongs to the Lodge, which must follow national guidelines.

I thought he meant troop elections.

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7 hours ago, MattR said:

I thought he meant troop elections.

Troop elections, or unit elections as they are now called do have a set of procedures mandated by National OA. Do not have the updated 2019 policy posted online yet, but here is the 2017 policy and it is not safeguarded. Pages 13-15 of the document has the exact procedure.

https://oa-bsa.org/uploads/publications/GuideToUnitElections2017.pdf

Regarding can you use part of the nights at Summer camp towards the 15 days, here it is in the Q and A section (page 17 of the document)  I posted above

8. My team attends summer camp for five days and four nights. Can that count towards the camping requirement?

A. The camping requirement for long-term camps is a minimum of five nights, so three nights of this could be counted as a short-term camp.  (italics for quotation)

 

SO 3 of the 5 nights of summer camp can count as short term camping.

 

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