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Zahnada

Now, when did it actually work?

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Bob,

And since you don't know the reason why there was a decline, you really can't comment on the reason. All you can do is assume like you always do.

 

Ed Mori

Troop 1

1 Peter 4:10

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It is true that we could debate this till the cows come home and still disagree. This thread proves that some troops have tried new things and have been very sucessful some have not. My own troop has been very successful with mixed age patrols if we were not we would stop, pure and simple. We have continued to flourish with 65 youth in the troop as of today. So in spite of what some may think (Bob) they are just plain wrong. In another thread,"Where are the Scouting Heros of Today", someone hit the nail on the head when they stated that "Scouting today is being run by administrators not visionaries". We scout leaders are what makes scouting successful not the national office. I also think BW is totally wrong when he states that National is constantly changing and updating the program, what they are doing is making administrative changes due to political pressure and to keep the BSA out of court. Maybe someday there will be a true visionary put in as the Chief Scout Executive, as unlikely as that is, and bring Scouting back to a level of recognition and pride it once possessed.

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Just to play devil's advocate for a moment...

 

There has been universal agreement that Dan's son was facing an "added advancement requirement" by doing his "life project" and that his troop had strayed "too far" from the BSA's program.

 

He described it as:

 

He finished his Life project last Sunday, and the write up of the project. The write up includes copies of the thank you letters for the 6 people he called to donate money for this project. A write up of who helped and how long. Issues he had with the project. List of supplies and cost. Pictures of the project being built and pictures of the completed project.

During the time he was a Star Scout he had put in over 30 hours of service hours for 4 Eagle projects, and 2 Life projects.

 

 

I think we all assume that the 30 hours on these other projects meets the service hours requirement for Life, but the requirement says:

 

While a Star Scout, take part in service projects totaling at least 6 hours of work. These projects must be approved by your Scoutmaster.

 

 

I imagine that this "approved by your Scoutmaster" part is interpreted more or less strictly, depending on the SM, just as "scout spirit" is. I think it is potentially inside the program bounds to require the Star service hours to be something other than just showing up at some other project and putting in hours. If the SM does not approve the other hours, that is his perogative, right?

 

Disallowing those other hours could dissuade star scouts from working on others' projects, but maybe not.

 

-Devil's Advocate :-)

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Lest we forget the words of Baden-Powell (who by the way Mr. White considers the sole national hero of Scouting) in the foreword to Aids to Scoutmastership:

 

"So most of these pages will be taken up with the objects of the steps rather than with the details of the steps themselves. These can be filled in by the learner according to his OWN INGENUITY, and in harmony with the LOCAL CONDITIONS under which he is working."

 

Wow...you mean B-P promotes individual ingenuity in harmony with local conditions, over the details of the steps themselves. What kind of scouting hero is that? Could B-P be suggesting that we not get bogged down in following the details of a definite program and possibly be a little creative. Way to be B-P...way to be. That's why your my hero!

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Actually I would think since B-P was a British citizen, I see him as the International Hero of Scouting. Seton, Beard, and Boyce would be the local national heroes. And if you have scouts who dont know who Beard, Seton and boyce is, just whose fault is that ? If your scouts dont have a scouting hero, just whose fault is that ?

 

Steve Fosset is one I can think of, Steven Spielburg is another and of course John Glenn and Gerald Ford.

 

I know this has been covered before, but rehashing old stuff is what we do best, or it should be as its what we do a whole bunch of the time, but the best PR the BSA can have is a well run local youth program turning out citizens of charactor with a good health ethic who continue to make ethical decisions over their lifetime becasue the program instilled in them the values of the oath and law. The people running those programs are the heroes, recognized or not

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OGE - yea, I don't know why Mr. White calls B-P his national hero, I guessed that Mr. White must be from England. As far as the living heros of scouting you mentioned - what have they done to promote scouting to the nation lately, other than just being?

 

I would like to better understand why - Baden-Powell instructs us, as scouting leaders, to use our ingenuity, in harmony with the local conditions, and to focus on the objectives of Scouting (rather than focusing on the details and steps of a defined program) and yet, so many others on this thread believe that B-P must be just plain wrong. If B-P is wrong about that, then what else was he wrong about. Could the foundations of scouting that he founded based on error. I don't think so...Scouters, follow the lead of B-P...your creativity and ingenuity is what scouting was founded on and what your unit needs.

 

WWBPD

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While I still am in awe of the need for some poters to wage personal attacks.

 

Some of the names that have been tossed about as the "heros" of scouting have to make one ask what the definition of hero is.

 

Seton was an artist and author who, together with Dan Beard, manged not only to Americanize Powell's scouting movement keeping the core of the Patrol Method and youth leadership, but totally ticking off BP in the process to where he washed his hands of the BSA for quite some time. James West a sharp administrator developed the council structure and all but alientated Seton from the program. This was not a group of adults who played nice together.

 

Important people certainly, but heros? An arguable view to say the least. The only real "hero" among them was Baden-Powell, who as a soldier did some amazing things and won the admiration and idolization of the youth and adults on the entire European continent. He achieved a level of popularity and recognition that far surpassed any, or for that matter all, of the American founders of the BSA.

 

And yet, decades after all of their deaths, the Scouting program continues in nearly every country in the world. And while few in this country, let alone in the world, know who W.D. Boyce was, every scouting program and most of its participants still know of Lord Robert Stephenson Baden-Powell.

 

But do not confuse the BSA with Baden-Powell's program. They never were the same. And just for the record, and Eamonn I believe will back me up on this, even the Scouting program in England is not the same as it was in 1907 when B-P started it.

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BW,

You obviously can't reconcile the fact that your views are diametrically opposed to those of B-Ps. I thought you said he was your hero...now you don't seem so sure. B-P gave us the Spirit of Scouting...in his own words he advised scoutmasters to use their ingenuity and creativity and to focus on the aims of scouting adjusting for local conditions, and not to focus on the methods. What you suggest is that the BSA is not an adherent to the spirit of scouting. I wander if they know that?

 

By the way, how dare you call me a 'poter'...sticks and stones may break my bones but......

 

WWBPD

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Boyce brought Scouting and Powell to America. Boyce brought Seton and Beard together from two different youth groups to start the BSA. He then hired West and West later got rid of Boyce and Seton. All of them had their differences of opinion, as we have differences in this forum on a regular basis. These were strong individuals with very good ideas and they each individually left a body of work worth knowing about. To say that any of these historical figures were less than heroes and that they were unnecessary for Scouting to progress is absurd and objectionable.

 

If having an opinion that is different or having a dispute with another person disqualifies a person from being a hero, then history and the present day will exist without one.

 

 

 

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Where do you get this stuff from Fuzzy? It was Seton who hired West, I never said they were unecessary in fact quite the opposite I said the were "important". But are they heros? That depends on your personal definition. They were the right people to do their job at the right time. Historic? I would say historical. the man who has more to do with the spirit of the BSA program today is arguably William Hillcourt.

 

What any of this has to do with the topic of the thread is beyond me.

 

 

 

 

 

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So, BW what do you say...I want to know your answers? Was Baden-Powell wrong in instructing scoutmasters to use their own ingenuity in accomplishing the aims of scouting? When B-P said to make adjustments based on local conditions, was he wrong again? When B-P said it is the aims, not the methods, that we should focus on, was he wrong again? What else was B-P wrong about?

 

Let's face it B-P never envisioned scouting as a legalistic program in which predetermined methods are the only means of achieving its lofty aims.

 

WWBPD

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I think you need to put things into their historic perspective, Baden-Powell said a lot of things to a lot of different people for a lot of different reasons during his life. To simply pull up one line of his without providing the framwork of context, purpose, and audience, robs your quote of it relevance. For all you know he was speaking to Scoutmasters who spend time creating artificial rules to "run their troops" with.

 

B-P lived and created Scouting in the Victorian Age. At that time his concepts on the scouting program were revolutionary. The thought of allowing boys to lead themselves in a time when London youth were largely uneducated, abused by the work houses, and in a community suffering from a huge juvenile deliquency problem, were "out of the box" to say the least. Given those conditions, he developed a teaching method that was far different from anything happening in England or abroad. For decades his teaching methods would be considered radical and would require leaders to be far different in their approach to scouting compared to anything else in their lives.

 

Was BP wrong when he said what he did? Not at all. But he didn't say them yesterday. You have to take into consideration what he was talking about, to who, and when.

 

I think leaders today still need to approach things differently. Following the scouting program would be different for many. It is still a unique and effective educational method, just as B-P intended it to be. Now if we can just get more people to learn how to use it rather than so many imagining themselves the next B-P and trying to reinvent a program that needs leaders to deliver it not rewrite it.

 

 

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Bob,

 

I think WWPND is trying to get you to admit you were wrong. The BSA of 1910 was modeled almost exactly after BPs program, adaptations for local use would come later. The Bible was written thousands of years ago yet is still valid today, so why not the words of BP himself? Maybe because his words blow a large hole in the Bob White interpretation of Scouting.The other posters here are correct Baden Powell wanted to have his leaders to use their own ingenuity and pass this on to their boys, that builds leadership for both. Baden Powell and the National office never intended for Scouting to be an inflexible program Bob, why do you have such a difficult tim with that concept?

 

Whether we like it or not Scouting is struggling today to hold its own with youth in a technologically advanced world vastly different from 100years ago. Many wonder if Scouting is even culturally relevant anymore. So again I say, anything that a scout leader can do to retain boys by tweaking the program here and there and is successful is to be applauded not condemned by someone who views Scouting with tunnel vision. While some of us have been fortunate with unit growth many more are struggling to hold on the few boys they do have. The truth we as scouters have to face is that if Cub Scouts were not part of the picture the BSA has been in a decline for 30 years nationwide membership and leadership wise. So we owe it to the boys to be willing to try new things to keep our program exciting and relevant to the boys. In my opinion National is too concerned with money and numbers and not enough about program development which is one of the main reasons units are folding. A friend of mine who was a former professional scouter at National has told me things that go on there that would enrage every scouter today. After many years of trying to advocate change and reform he left in disgust. Bob, we as scouters have to remember that we are the Scouting program and leaders not the paper pushers at council and National.

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Backpacker,

 

I would have a better chance with a coconut.

 

Somewhere in Scouting's long and varied history, it would appear that an extremist group of strict constructionists has arisen, with the goal of hijacking the scouting program from the spirit and values on which it was founded. This too will pass (like a large kidney stone).

 

 

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