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To tell you the truth, I just think our den lacks of a real male leader, which has been all along. Currently, our tiger & wolf dens have 2 strong male leaders each, they are doing great with a huge number of scouts! Our bear and Webelos I dens have 1 strong female  leader each, they get by with few scouts. Last year, the Webelos II had 19 scouts because we had 1 strong dad who took the responsibility of leading the boys and providing a rich program. Because of that, the den drew more scouts to sign up and more dads to assist at the end. Moms were there to support by decorating the B&G venue, helping with the food, etc,. I think this is what a Pack should look like. 

Anyway, after speaking to that dad last night, he canceled 4 adventures & sticks to the rest after viewing the requirements on the book. Actually, he is the only parent who cheats adventure belt loops & pins in our Pack. I am not surprised. He got a master degree but couldn't find a job (lack of social skills, think high IQ is everything, a little arrogant), so he went back to school & is working on his Ph.D. while his dad (used to be the treasurer and very good scouter) has to go back to work and support him because that dad's wife committed suicide. She was the breadwinner. 

We do ask parents to help. For example, i have been advertising my AC position since September via email & announcement repeatedly. I offered training and after support but I have not found any volunteer. 

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3 hours ago, ParkMan said:

I'd recommend that someone just have an honest conversation with the guy - sort of like what you've done here. 

"Hi Bob, It's been great having your son in the pack.  He's an awesome kid.  I noticed that you put him in for 17 adventure badges last month.  As you can imagine that many badges all at once was unusual and raised the question of if he really earned them.  If he did, no problem - but you can imagine how this seems like something we should check on.  What do you think?"

Then let the guy explain.  If he's sticking to his story - then move on.

This right here is the answer. It's not wrong to question such an ambitious run on advancement. And the parents should be understanding of why you'd question it if you provide this kind of explanation, that it's highly unusual and definitely raises some questions. You're just doing your job by asking about it, and you'd be remiss to not bring it up. That's all.

If that kind of a very fair explanation still ruffles feathers, move on and let it go.

3 hours ago, ParkMan said:

Part of the risk you take with letting parents enter awards is that this happens.  It's not worth blowing things up over some Webelos adventure loops.  Of course, if others start doing the same, then you've got to rethink the practice of parents entering them.

I don't think we get much of a choice in this anymore, do we? I was under the impression that Scoutbook settings now allow parents to mark off advancement and we're locked out of changing that. At least that's what I saw in the system for my Pack.

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Firestone: Yes, you can set up to allow the parents to view but not edit. 

Thank you so much for everyone's input. I guess I will just give him the pins in the next Pack meeting then. 

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3 minutes ago, jsychk said:

Firestone: Yes, you can set up to allow the parents to view but not edit.

I don't have that option, all of the parents in my den are set to "Full Control" and I can't click on the toggles to change those. Maybe it's something I just don't have permission to change, though, it's a Pack admin feature or something.

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Posted (edited)

FireStone: You have to have the Pack Admin key to edit the Connection Manager. Or, you ask the Pack Admin to give you the permission. 

Edited by jsychk

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, jsychk said:

To tell you the truth, I just think our den lacks of a real male leader,

Please don't associate being a strong leader with being male or female. It's incredibly sexist.

41 minutes ago, jsychk said:

Firestone: Yes, you can set up to allow the parents to view but not edit. 

As of the update last fall, parents retain full control over their Scout's accounts and have the ability to edit advancement. It cannot be removed by an admin. It's still up to the Den Leader/Advancement Chair to approve the awards. If you have concerns about them being completed, don't approve them.

Edited by Pale Horse
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49 minutes ago, Pale Horse said:

Please don't associate being a strong leader with being male or female. It's incredibly sexist.

 

They didn't actually associate "strong" with either male or female.  They used it as an additional descriptor for both genders.  So you can have a strong male or female leader, or a weak one.  My reading was that "strong" in this context is used to describe "someone who puts together an adventurous and substantial program" and is in contrast to the described "weak" leader that cancels activities regularly and whiffs on requirements.

 

Now, they did specify a need for a male leader, but that's one of those points where personal opinion is legitimate IMO.  I know that while I wouldn't tell a female who wanted to be a leader "No", all else being equal, I'd prefer to have a male leader over a female one at both Cubs and Scouts levels.  Mostly because having a "mom" figure around changes the dynamic.

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Pale Horse:  Is it mandatory for parents to retain full control over the scout's account by the BSA? You have a good point that the parents can edit advancement and the DL/AC reserves the right to approve it.

However, I respectfully disagree with the sexist part because the quality of a strong male leader is very different from the same of a strong female leader. That's a fact. Let me put it that way. Men & women are never equal, ever. We are definitely wired differently. Men & women process different unique abilities. Just like my situation, when problems happen, I want to talk about it, vent and be heard. That's the emotion part of a woman. However, the men's problem-solving advice is more like "follow the procedure, get over & move on." Period.

I was a den leader before. I thought  I did pretty good because I had more than 80% attendance for all my den meetings 2 to 3 times a month (mandatory by the CM, a strong male leader) & 90% of the scouts earned their rank. (Footnote) However, I don't think I can transform those boys into men under my leadership because I know I just don't have it. When I present something to the boys, they don't listen (or pay attention) as attentively as an old veteran presenting. 

(Footnote) That dad who entered 19 adventures in 2 weeks was there when the (previous) CM was a strong male leader, and he didn't dare to pull that trick on him. He knows the CM would make sure all the awards are accounted for. And again, this CM's strong leadership brought us the most prosperous time of our Pack, with 83 scouts.
 

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Posted (edited)
38 minutes ago, jsychk said:

... However, I don't think I can transform those boys into men under my leadership because I know I just don't have it. When I present something to the boys, they don't listen (or pay attention) as attentively as an old veteran presenting.  ...

I think this depends on what one observes in their community. We boys responded to den moms pretty well, I think, because there was no uncertainty of the belt that would come down upon our backsides if word got to our dads that we were the least bit disrespectful. That seemed to be pretty much the culture nation wide. So, moms were seen as the ideal den leaders. Then, in Webelos we got a male leader and boy did we give him a hard time!

In other parts of the world, older teens are seen as the ideal den leaders. Parents are nowhere to be seen. The few adults were mentors to the older teens who ran the program. So imagine a scoutmaster for about 120 youth, both sexes, ages 5 to 20. I had friends raise their kids in Czech scouting. They missed the involvement of adults. On the other hand, their boys had an exceptional level of maturity.

I'm sure there are places where much older men are the ideal leaders for the youngest scouts.

Now, when it comes to managing adults as well as youth, I've seen that forceful men can wind up getting baited by these "high speed, low drag" dads, and a unit can get strangled as well as flourish. It's a rare CM who can insist "not in this pack" and still be everyone's ally in raising their kids. BSA has put us in a position where parents have a lot of say with their Cub's advancement. I enjoyed this because it gave me and my sons a checklist of things we (and Mrs. Q) could do together. But it does leave the door open to cerebral types who think it's a good thing to eek the bare minimum out of a kid's life as a scout.

Edited by qwazse

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, elitts said:

They didn't actually associate "strong" with either male or female.  They used it as an additional descriptor for both genders.  So you can have a strong male or female leader, or a weak one.  My reading was that "strong" in this context is used to describe "someone who puts together an adventurous and substantial program" and is in contrast to the described "weak" leader that cancels activities regularly and whiffs on requirements.

 

Now, they did specify a need for a male leader, but that's one of those points where personal opinion is legitimate IMO.  I know that while I wouldn't tell a female who wanted to be a leader "No", all else being equal, I'd prefer to have a male leader over a female one at both Cubs and Scouts levels.  Mostly because having a "mom" figure around changes the dynamic.

Jsychk most certainly did associate strong leadership as the realm of males. 

The one strong leader female example was grudging given praise as "getting by".

To quote: "Last year, the Webelos II had 1 strong dad who took the responsibility of leading the boys and providing a rich program... Moms were there to support by decorating the B&G venue, helping with the food, etc,. I think this is what a Pack should look like."  This is explicitly stating that men make better leaders and women are ok to "help setup".

Edited by Pale Horse
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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, jsychk said:

Pale Horse:  Is it mandatory for parents to retain full control over the scout's account by the BSA? 

 

Yes

Edited by Pale Horse

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24 minutes ago, Pale Horse said:

Jsychk most certainly did associate strong leadership as the realm of males. 

This seems to be turning south - I don't think it is worth anyones time to debate the strenght of any specific gender, please stop.

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Pale Horse:  I am not here to argue about the political correctness. I am sorry! I don't believe in it. 

elitts: You do speak what I mean to say, too.

 

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Yes, Akela (!) is the parent, the CM, the DL, ….   When I was a CM, I had both types of parents in the Pack. The "give it to the Cub because he tried, no matter what",  and the "when the Cub accomplishes it, he will get the award " type.   Back then, we had the Cub Scout Promise and the Law of the Pack.  The whole enchilada Scout Promise and Scout Law had not been put to the Cubs yet, that was years ahead.  I ALWAYS put it to the Cub,  "did you enjoy earning this beltloop/elective/badge?"  and the Cub would usually give things away by how he reacted.  I was once phoned by a parent who wanted her urchin to earn a particular elective.  I asked, shouldn't I be talking to the Cub?  I can talk to him at the next meeting. Oh, she said, I'll pass him for it by then. I wanted to know what I should tell him about it.  I said have you read the requirements in the (rank) book? It is pretty self explanatory, either he does it or he doesn't. Have him read it to you.  Oh, she said,  I never let him read it himself, he wouldn't understand it....   I let it go at that, I was not going to ask about his "disability" over the phone.  

It comes up in other venues, too.  The CSDC Director who "assumes" that teaching a knot is the same as knowing how to tie and use the knot, for instance ("no, we did NOT learn eight knots. We LEARNED four.").  The Scout  who attends a Merit Badge "class"  at a Saturday MBCollege and is surprised when he can't simply walk off with the Blue Card signed by virtue of his sitting thru a "class" ("prerequisites? Oh, that attachement to the registration thing?  My mom read it. She didn't tell me anything". )

Then you meet the Scout who you overhear tell his dad that it's okay, he'll learn it himself next campout. 

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58 minutes ago, TMSM said:

This seems to be turning south - I don't think it is worth anyones time to debate the strenght of any specific gender, please stop.

That is such a latitude-ist statement!  How offensive!  It clearly implies that South is inferior to North!  Please stop!  Oh, for pity sake, please stop!  [sob]

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