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Assistant Scoutmaster as Advancement Chair?


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6 hours ago, yknot said:

I get that in one sense but on the other hand given the bankruptcy situation we are in and all our current challenges, PR and otherwise,  that is kind of an irresponsible viewpoint. If your unit parents were able to read this forum, is that what you would want them to read  how you selected your summer camp location? That you chose it specifically because the camp did not require adequate adult supervision? Sometimes I think scouters have a death wish... 

@yknot

No.

We are not in any bankruptcy situation...that is squarely on a non-profit corporation called BSA.  I am a part of the Scouting movement.  BSA is just the current purveyor of Scouting I use.

Current challenges?  Too nebulous to address...

PR...Again, that is on BSA and another non-profit, this council.  The only PR we concern ourselves with is for our Scouts, our unit, and our CO.  We are not here as showpieces for either the local council or National.

and otherwise?  Again, too nebulous.

"Kind of irresponsible"...no.  Parents are fully informed on the complement of adult leaders and the numbers of Scouts going on every outing.  Parents also sign a Permission Slip for every outing, where they acknowledge 

"I understand that participation in Scouting activities involves the risk of personal injury, including death, due to the physical, mental, and emotional challenges in the activities offered. Information about those activities may be obtained from the venue, activity coordinators, or local council. I also understand that participation in these activities is entirely voluntary and requires participants to follow instructions and abide by all applicable rules and the standards of conduct."

Before and during each outing, I perform a modified Operational Risk Management approach.  I allow Scouts to take lots of risks.  Parents understand my approach, in that I have Scouts take risks a lot of the time.  (...like letting an 11 year old use an ax!!)

Most people who know me or camp with me think I am too cautious ;)  (Rather than making snap judgments based on a few lines in a forum.)

Adults don't select our Summer Camp location...Scouts do through the PLC.  In the case mentioned, that supervision requirement was but one factor in the decision process, albeit a significant one that steered our PLC away from that camp.  Please don't read too much into comments made.  Ask questions first before jumping to conclusions and resulting to hyperbole.

"adequate adult supervision" is outing and activity specific.  I would be fine with 30 Scouts and 2 adults, depending on the situation.  (If we are camping at our local camp, or in our CO's field.)  Would I go into the backcountry with 30 kids and just two adults?  Nope.

Young people need adventure and risk.  Do I let them go too far sometimes?  Yes.  From time to time, I look at an activity or situation and say, "OK, stop...let's pull back here."

Do I not let them go far enough sometimes?  Yes.  From time to time, I look at an activity or situation and say, "OK...you can go a little farther here."

Here's a good read for you...

https://www.fatherly.com/parenting/how-to-raise-adventurous-kid/

Best quote from it? "In other words, if kids don’t run to the edge every once in a while, that sense of limitation will harm their brain development." 

Wanna know why anxiety, fear, and depression are on the rise in our country?  It is because adults aren't adequately managing risk for their kids (or Scouts).  Having an adult constantly watching everything they do sends this message, "You cannot succeed without an adult."  Not taking risks sends this message, "The world is too dangerous for you, and you cannot handle it."

https://www.cdc.gov/childrensmentalhealth/features/anxiety-depression-children.html

The only way to eliminate all risk is to not do Scouting.  I choose to identify, evaluate, and mitigate risks.  And where acceptable, I take risks. This makes life (and Scouting) very fun...you should try it ;)

I comply with all BSA directives regarding adult supervision.  You and your CO have the prerogative to impose more stringent requirements.  Fill your boots :)

 

 

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Concur.  That is why BSA doesn't do it.  They give you the minimums.  We use BSA directives to establish the minimums, and then rely on judgment, experience, activity or subject matter expert adv

The real question is, what is the minimum number of adults to charter a unit? Four, in five positions. 1 x COR (dual hatted as a MC) 1 x CC 1 x Additional MC 1 x Unit Leader (

Hi @Chadamus, Sorry to be a few days late here.  It's probably also worth noting the BSA publication, "Troop Leader Guidebook, Volume 1" describes a role of Assistant Scoutmaster for Advancement

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I have a hard time defining "adequate adult supervision" foir all situations without more details.  Then there's BSA's definityion, set out above - two registered Scouters, 21 or older per "scout activity: White water rafting?  Council camp?  "Lock in" to watch videos, as suggested by Journey to Mediocrity?   Those objecting may, of course, assume that their opinion is the requirement.  Instances of Joe's Scouting are hardly unique.  We have a curent thread where one unit is adding significantly to reequirements for Eagle.

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4 hours ago, InquisitiveScouter said:

@yknot

No.

We are not in any bankruptcy situation...that is squarely on a non-profit corporation called BSA.  I am a part of the Scouting movement.  BSA is just the current purveyor of Scouting I use.

Current challenges?  Too nebulous to address...

PR...Again, that is on BSA and another non-profit, this council.  The only PR we concern ourselves with is for our Scouts, our unit, and our CO.  We are not here as showpieces for either the local council or National.

and otherwise?  Again, too nebulous.

"Kind of irresponsible"...no.  Parents are fully informed on the complement of adult leaders and the numbers of Scouts going on every outing.  Parents also sign a Permission Slip for every outing, where they acknowledge 

"I understand that participation in Scouting activities involves the risk of personal injury, including death, due to the physical, mental, and emotional challenges in the activities offered. Information about those activities may be obtained from the venue, activity coordinators, or local council. I also understand that participation in these activities is entirely voluntary and requires participants to follow instructions and abide by all applicable rules and the standards of conduct."

Before and during each outing, I perform a modified Operational Risk Management approach.  I allow Scouts to take lots of risks.  Parents understand my approach, in that I have Scouts take risks a lot of the time.  (...like letting an 11 year old use an ax!!)

Most people who know me or camp with me think I am too cautious ;)  (Rather than making snap judgments based on a few lines in a forum.)

Adults don't select our Summer Camp location...Scouts do through the PLC.  In the case mentioned, that supervision requirement was but one factor in the decision process, albeit a significant one that steered our PLC away from that camp.  Please don't read too much into comments made.  Ask questions first before jumping to conclusions and resulting to hyperbole.

"adequate adult supervision" is outing and activity specific.  I would be fine with 30 Scouts and 2 adults, depending on the situation.  (If we are camping at our local camp, or in our CO's field.)  Would I go into the backcountry with 30 kids and just two adults?  Nope.

Young people need adventure and risk.  Do I let them go too far sometimes?  Yes.  From time to time, I look at an activity or situation and say, "OK, stop...let's pull back here."

Do I not let them go far enough sometimes?  Yes.  From time to time, I look at an activity or situation and say, "OK...you can go a little farther here."

Here's a good read for you...

https://www.fatherly.com/parenting/how-to-raise-adventurous-kid/

Best quote from it? "In other words, if kids don’t run to the edge every once in a while, that sense of limitation will harm their brain development." 

Wanna know why anxiety, fear, and depression are on the rise in our country?  It is because adults aren't adequately managing risk for their kids (or Scouts).  Having an adult constantly watching everything they do sends this message, "You cannot succeed without an adult."  Not taking risks sends this message, "The world is too dangerous for you, and you cannot handle it."

https://www.cdc.gov/childrensmentalhealth/features/anxiety-depression-children.html

The only way to eliminate all risk is to not do Scouting.  I choose to identify, evaluate, and mitigate risks.  And where acceptable, I take risks. This makes life (and Scouting) very fun...you should try it ;)

I comply with all BSA directives regarding adult supervision.  You and your CO have the prerogative to impose more stringent requirements.  Fill your boots :)

 

 

You have loaded an awful lot of things onto the backs of the suppositional 3rd or 4th adults along on this imaginary outing we're talking about. If I'm reading you right, you are saying that having an extra adult or two turns a scout outing with 20 or 30 kids into a risk desert?  That 20 or 30 kids will somehow not find something risky to do? You're saying that having "an heir and a spare" along is contributory to youth anxiety? 

I don't know how to interpret opinions like yours -- and I've read similar ones elsewhere on this site. I don't know  where the resentment towards adequate adult supervision comes from. I can recall many conflicts and sometimes it was blatant parental interference and sometimes it was leadership negligence rightfully being called out -- like setting up camp under deadfall in a windstorm. 

I also cannot follow your logic regarding BSA. To most of the public, scouts is a generic term. They hear or see someone doing something questionable, and their reaction is  -- Well,  there they go again...  They don't know or care whether you are part of BSA or not, they just know you are "a scout."

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1 hour ago, yknot said:

You have loaded an awful lot of things onto the backs of the suppositional 3rd or 4th adults along on this imaginary outing we're talking about. If I'm reading you right, you are saying that having an extra adult or two turns a scout outing with 20 or 30 kids into a risk desert?  That 20 or 30 kids will somehow not find something risky to do? You're saying that having "an heir and a spare" along is contributory to youth anxiety? 

I don't know how to interpret opinions like yours -- and I've read similar ones elsewhere on this site. I don't know  where the resentment towards adequate adult supervision comes from. I can recall many conflicts and sometimes it was blatant parental interference and sometimes it was leadership negligence rightfully being called out -- like setting up camp under deadfall in a windstorm. 

I also cannot follow your logic regarding BSA. To most of the public, scouts is a generic term. They hear or see someone doing something questionable, and their reaction is  -- Well,  there they go again...  They don't know or care whether you are part of BSA or not, they just know you are "a scout."

Nope...didn't imply any of that...maybe I'm not understanding you...

You said your CO requires additional adults.  Fine.  Our CO does not.  BSA does not.  I am comfortable with 30 Scouts and 2 adults in some situations.  I think the max I have ever had with one other adult is about forty.  That included Scouts of all age ranges.  The older Scouts provided the leadership and program.  We were there for health and safety. 

I have no resentment toward additional adults or "adequate adult supervision".  Please don't ascribe sentiments to me that I did not state. I have never excluded additional adults on trips.  They are always welcome.

"I can recall many conflicts and sometimes it was blatant parental interference and sometimes it was leadership negligence rightfully being called out -- like setting up camp under deadfall in a windstorm. "  I don't see your point with this...

You seem to be stating a belief that 2 adults for 30 Scouts is never "adequate."  If so, I respectfully disagree.  It depends on the outing and the Scouts attending.

 

 

Edited by InquisitiveScouter
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43 minutes ago, InquisitiveScouter said:

You seem to be stating a belief that 2 adults for 30 Scouts is never "adequate."  If so, I respectfully disagree.  It depends on the outing and the Scouts attending.

I agree with this 100%. It really depends on the outing (location, activity, weather) and the Scouts (age, maturity, past issues, health, capability, leadership skills, etc.).

 

One of my proudest moments on a campout was when I had gone on a hike with 6 of our Scouts. They were having a great time in this one area of an old camp. No one else was at the camp besides the 7 Scouts and 2 adults. I needed to get back to the campsite to change my socks or something. Now, I didn't have a buddy, but I was headed back to camp along a clear trail. I told the group "I'm headed back to camp. You saw how we got to this side of camp, let me know when lunch will be, and I'll at least see your cooks back in the campsite" They were shocked I would leave them alone. I made it clear that they should not go into the water and to not go anywhere without a buddy. They were thrilled that they would be trusted to be by themselves and get back to camp on their own. Shocked and trilled. 

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34 minutes ago, InquisitiveScouter said:

Nope...didn't imply any of that...maybe I'm not understanding you...

You said your CO requires additional adults.  Fine.  Our CO does not.  BSA does not.  I am comfortable with 30 Scouts and 2 adults in some situations.  I think the max I have ever had with one other adult is about forty.  That included Scouts of all age ranges.  The older Scouts provided the leadership and program.  We were there for health and safety. 

I have no resentment toward additional adults or "adequate adult supervision".  Please don't ascribe sentiments to me that I did not state. I have never excluded additional adults on trips.  They are always welcome.

"I can recall many conflicts and sometimes it was blatant parental interference and sometimes it was leadership negligence rightfully being called out -- like setting up camp under deadfall in a windstorm. "  I don't see your point with this...

You seem to be stating a belief that 2 adults for 30 Scouts is never "adequate."  If so, I respectfully disagree.  It depends on the outing and the Scouts attending.

 

 

BSA requires you to follow your CO's guidelines.  United Methodist Church requires 2 adults per 13 youth; Catholic Church basically requires 2 per 8 youth unless everyone is above 14.  Most school districts require more stringent ratios. Most third party campgrounds and facilities as well. Not sure how you are able to get around that. The blog I posted noted that BSA sorta kinda does require upping the adults as the scout head count goes up and it was in the old online TAP.  Like I said, I don't understand the resentment to something that is common sense and part of being prepared. 

 

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1 hour ago, InquisitiveScouter said:

You seem to be stating a belief that 2 adults for 30 Scouts is never "adequate."  If so, I respectfully disagree.  It depends on the outing and the Scouts attending.

Actually, scouts shouldn't need any adults if the program is running correctly. National only recently change the policy where adults are required on campouts.

Our program was built on a theme of putting the adults out of business. Of course adults are required for some functions like driving and BORs. But, if a patrol is willing to hike from town to a camp site, who needs adults? 

The crux of the problem is the modern fear that youth must be 35 years old to have the maturity for activities without adults like camping. Programs with those adults will never mature to wear their scouts have the maturity to safely camp without so called adults. Those troops are basically advanced Webelos III programs. Anyone that is treated like child will not mature beyond a child. 

Barry

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5 minutes ago, yknot said:

Like I said, I don't understand the resentment to something that is common sense and part of being prepared. 

We already already constrained in a million different directions. The problem is almost "over defined" - meaning there is no solution that can meet all requirements. To impose additional hard limit requirements, when they are not there, is very frustrating.

None of the third party campgrounds and facilities in our area have any ratios in their rules and regulations (I read them). School districts in our area don't impose their standards meeting in their facilities or other tangential groups.

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7 minutes ago, yknot said:

BSA requires you to follow your CO's guidelines.  United Methodist Church requires 2 adults per 13 youth; Catholic Church basically requires 2 per 8 youth unless everyone is above 14.  Most school districts require more stringent ratios. Most third party campgrounds and facilities as well. Not sure how you are able to get around that. The blog I posted noted that BSA sorta kinda does require upping the adults as the scout head count goes up and it was in the old online TAP.  Like I said, I don't understand the resentment to something that is common sense and part of being prepared. 

 

"Not sure how you are able to get around that."?

Ummm...never said we did...and we don't.  If a campground requires more, we comply, or find a place that doesn't require it, at the level we are comfortable with.

Again, you use the word "resentment."  I have no resentment for those CO's or units that want to self-impose additional restrictions.  As I said before...fill your boots ;)

It is common sense to me to evaluate the risks and take precautions where necessary.  If I think 2 adults can handle the task, then that is what we go with.

 

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6 minutes ago, Eagledad said:

Actually, scouts shouldn't need any adults if the program is running correctly. National only recently change the policy where adults are required on campouts.

Our program was built on a theme of putting the adults out of business. Of course adults are required for some functions like driving and BORs. But, if a patrol is willing to hike from town to a camp site, who needs adults? 

The crux of the problem is the modern fear that youth must be 35 years old to have the maturity for activities without adults like camping. Programs with those adults will never mature to wear their scouts have the maturity to safely camp without so called adults. Those troops are basically advanced Webelos III programs. Anyone that is treated like child will not mature beyond a child. 

Barry

I miss the days when we could send out patrols on their own.

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6 minutes ago, Eagledad said:

Actually, scouts shouldn't need any adults if the program is running correctly. National only recently change the policy where adults are required on campouts.

Yes, and in the modern state of legal liability and supervision, the days of yore when you could let 30 scouts out alone in the back country are gone.

I don't blame National for that.

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21 minutes ago, Eagledad said:

The crux of the problem is the modern fear that youth must be 35 years old to have the maturity for activities without adults like camping.

The neuroscientists tell us the prefrontal cortex is still developing until 25.

Quote

The development and maturation of the prefrontal cortex occurs primarily during adolescence and is fully accomplished at the age of 25 years

 
Johnson, S. B., Blum, R. W., & Giedd, J. N. (2009). Adolescent Maturity and the Brain: The Promise and Pitfalls of Neuroscience Research in Adolescent Health Policy. Journal of Adolescent Health, 45(3), 216-221. doi:10.1016/j.jadohealth.2009.05.016
 
Sharma, S., Arain, Mathur, Rais, Nel, Sandhu, . . . Johal. (2013). Maturation of the adolescent brain. Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment, 449. doi:10.2147/ndt.s39776
 
Edited by CynicalScouter
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1 minute ago, CynicalScouter said:

Yes, and in the modern state of legal liability and supervision, the days of yore when you could let 30 scouts out alone in the back country are gone.

I don't blame National for that.

@CynicalScouter, to be clear, my comment before about risk and ORM, relating to adults and anxiety were my keying in on something you may not have meant overtly...

Constant supervision...

I contend that Scouts do not, and should not be constantly supervised.  The camp I referred to earlier had stated that Scouts should never be out of sight of adults.  This was what our PLC took issue with (and I agree.)

This is what I meant about risk assessment and youth anxiety.  They need to be allowed to be out of sight, with some freedom and a little risk, or else they will not grow.

I do not adhere to constant supervision.  Adults set up camp away from Scouts.  We make sure the Scouts know where we are, and that they have an expected program and agenda to accomplish, and we leave them alone.

As Scoutmaster, usually the only youth I try to interact with is the SPL.  Assistant Scoutmasters mentor Patrol Leaders.

When young Scouts wander into the adult camp (yes, it happens), and they ask a question, 99% of the time, our response is "Did you ask your Patrol Leader?"  If it's the PL, we ask "Did you ask your SPL?"

Even if it is a minor injury (burns, cuts, scrapes, splinters, etc.), I task Scouts to handle it, and report back, thru the SPL.  Then, I look in on the wounded later to make sure it was handled appropriately.

"Train 'em. Trust 'em. LET THEM LEAD!"

 

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17 minutes ago, CynicalScouter said:

The neuroscientists tell us the prefrontal cortex is still developing until 25.

And what is the prefrontal cortex for, insofar as we know?

"Experience plays a role in the development of the prefrontal cortex. Teens exposed to a variety of stimuli and challenges may “mature” more quickly. However, most neurologists agree that the prefrontal cortex is not fully developed until around the age of 25."

This is what Scouts need mentoring and experience with, and why Scouts from a good program fare better than their peers in adulthood.

https://jech.bmj.com/content/71/3/275.full

"Conclusions Participation in Guides or Scouts was associated with better mental health and narrower mental health inequalities, at age 50. This suggests that youth programmes that support resilience and social mobility through developing the potential for continued progressive self-education, ‘soft’ non-cognitive skills, self-reliance, collaboration and activities in natural environments may be protective of mental health in adulthood.

Edited by InquisitiveScouter
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