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donert

Centential Quality Unit Award

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I am confused how it was suppose to work. You fill out a form to set your goals (where does that form go?) and then you fill another form to see if your goals were met? I might have this all wrong. Has anyone ever completed the process? Please help.

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There has been some rough going with this in it's first year. Many councils are letting units set their goals at the same time they are supposed to be seeing if their goals have been met. This makes the award basically a gimme this year.

 

Ideally, at the beginning of the year (the award is a CALENDAR year 01/01-12/31) the unit leader, CC, and UC meet and set goals to be met over the course of the year. This goal sheet is given to the UC, and then the council. Then in November/December, at the end of the year, the units meet with their Unit Commissioner to see how well the unit has met the goals they set at the beginning of the year.

 

There is no sorta/kinda thing. Either the goals were met, or they were not. If ALL of the goals were met, the unit earns the Centennial Unit Award for that year. If ALL of the goals were NOT met, the award is not earned.

 

 

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I'm seeing similar issues as both of you mentioned. I'm even hearing from some council folks that "they" will be going back to the old way of doing QU within a year or so. Not sure if this is wishful thinking on their parts? But I do agree, it hasn't been rolled out terribly clearly or effectively around here either. Here's hoping to a better use of the program in 2008.

 

 

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Right, there has been a lot of difficulties rolling out this program. I know the western region president sent an email on this to all the western region councils.

 

Basically I was told (I'm a District Commissioner) that units should look for improvement and if there was improvement, then the unit should qualify for the award.

 

This goes for units that filled out the commitment form and also those that did not. There were a lot of units that made unacheivable commitments for example that will now be able to get the award. For example, a pack with 10 Webelos that graduated to boy scouts out of 50 cubs may have committed to 90% retention, an impossibility. That unit probably should have committed to something like 70%-74%.

 

The form goes to the district. Basically the unit leaders meet with their unit commissioner and fill the form out. The unit should keep a copy for records and the UC should get a copy to the district commissioner. The forms are changing for 2008.

 

SWScouter

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Yes, many units did set unreasonable goals...

 

I had one in particular who set 85% retention as their goal, even though the district standard was 70%. As an ADC, I'd have a hard time justifying not awarding it to them even though they had 82% retention, while the guys down the street went with 70% and only retained 75%. Fortunately, we were told that the DC's and ADC's have the discretion to apply some discretion.

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OK well part of the problem I see here is that no one wants to be the grinch and tell a unit, sorry, you didn't make it. Since this is the first year and lots of units probably did set wildly unrealistic goals, I don't have too much of a problem with this...this time. But what about next year, when units again don't meet goals? Then we say nope, sorry, and they say but last year you looked the other way when we didn't meet our goal! Either that, or next year the UCs encourage them to set ridiculously low goals that make the whole process a joke. I'm just not sold on this concept. The idea might be nice, to encourage units to challenge themselves, but the reality is that having units make QU is a big deal to all the district types and the pressure will be there both from below (what do you mean, our unit didn't make QU?) and from above (aw, they were close enough, give it to them anyway so we can make Quality District, Council, etc.).

 

 

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I don't think the idea is for units to challenge themselves. I think the idea is for the units to look at where they're at and improve on that.

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Well our venturing crew does not have a UC and no prospects in the future, our DE stopped by to drop off our charter and she admitted to knowing NOTHING about how this award or the paperwork involved, she is a real waste of time that one. So digging up what I could on how it is supposed to work and trying to deal with council turned out to be an exercise in futility. As a crew we decided the award is not important enough to worry about, even though we got the quality unit award all our past years, so we are taking a pass on it this year. When the DE comes screaming she didn't make quality district, after I stop laughing at her, maybe she will have learned something by then. I know the other crews in the council feel the same way, their members could care less about it. As one of the teens put it so well, "We don't need no stinkin patches."

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A year ago, our UC suggested we set a goal of sending our SPL to NYLT. What we didn't do was ask the SPL. Unfortunately, the scout who got elected wasn't interested (too much time and money), so the troop will not qualify. Oh well. Rule #1...don't set goals for things that you don't control.

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In our case, it worked pretty much the way it's documented. In February, our UC sat down the with the CC, SM, and COR and we documented our goals for the year. Then in November we evaluated how we had done, and earned the award.

 

So, fine. Still, the award was a gimme. You do not have to set a goal of improving. In some areas, we did not, because I didn't expect we'd improve, and I didn't want to set an unrealistic goal. We didn't need our UC's encouragement to set ridiculously low goals - we already knew enough from our experience in corporate life to do that on our own.

 

In our district, setting an 85% retention goal for the pack would make perfect sense. They are computing retention by taking (membership at end of year) divided by (membership at end of year).

 

So I'm not sold on the concept either. Between the poorly done roll-out, the potential for different groups to set wildly different goals, and the ability of the UCs to show discretion, the award is essentially meaningless. There are a few hard and fast rules in there, and those are fine, but I do feel the rest of the requirements don't end up meaning a lot. I'm all for the UC sitting down with the unit and setting goals, but I'm not sure that self-set goals should be the basis for a unit award.

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I've always thought that the whole "Quality Unit" concept is a bogus as heck. Many "Quality Units" aren't "quality."

 

All it does is add undue stress to the lives of everyone involved. Oh my God! We lost one too many Scouts this year! Our program isn't Quality. The fact that three First Class Scouts used their Boy Scout training to rescue a man from alien abduction doesn't count.

 

Quality Chapter! Gotta get those conversions to Brotherhood.

 

Quality, quality, quality! It's all about numbers, not real quality. I think that if I were still involved at the unit level, I'd simple refuse to participate.

 

 

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We just went through the exercise last night at our troop committee meeting (which our UC attended). Looking at the form that was filled out at the beginning of the year, one of the items in particular is completely impossible. We were supposed to aim for at least 10% of the scouts going camping once a month. I don't think (or expect) that a single scout went on every single trip that the troop had this year! The 2008 forms have "camping or other group activity" which makes it a little more possible that someone would participate in SOMETHING every month (we read that as counting service projects, camping, hiking, parades, etc.) - but that's still a lot to ask, I think. I'd be happy if 25% of the scouts went on at least half of the troop activities!

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mschwartz, I'm a little confused. Does that mean you had to have 10% who went to everything? Or does it mean that on a given campout, at least 10% of the troop was present? I'd have thought the latter, with the idea being that the troop should have some kind of camping program on a monthly basis. Can you clarify?

 

 

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Well, that was exactly the problem. The wording on the form seemed to imply that 10% of the scouts should have participated in a troop activity (and it specified camping) every month. We were all extremely confused. We do easily have 10% of the troop participate in every campout, but it's not the same 10% every time. Our UC decided that we had enough camping activity and participation that we qualified. But hopefully next year's form will be a little clearer!

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