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help desperately needed with tour permit

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I agree it is highly unlikely that the Yorktown folks will ask you for a copy of your tour permit. Most likely your SE was either ill-informed or else bluffing you. That's not a credit to your SE in my book.


However, I also think it is the responsibility of your pack's leadership to ensure that you have the permit in hand and have jumped through whatever hoops are necessary to achieve it - especially since you are now talking about a long distance trip and not something local. There is a GREAT deal of planning that goes into making such a trip successful (and in dealing, ahead of time, with various "what if" scenarios so as to "be prepared" for them if they unfortunately occur). Baloo isn't the be-all, end-all of training but it does a decent job of helping participants think through the issues involved in extended outings with cub-aged kids.


Think about this from a parent's perspective. Those other parents are trusting YOU (pack leadership) to do the right thing here. They are likely going to assume you've dotted all the i's and crossed all the t's. And you haven't, if you don't have a tour permit.


And I would imagine that your CO would be extremely unhappy to discover that you went off on a long distance trip, knowingly violating your council's expectations about preparations and documentation, if something were to go wrong. I know I would be if I were an executive officer of your CO.



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Where do you live Belinda? I'm a District Training Chair in Cary, NC, and we're a few hours from the USS Yorktown in Charleston. Occoneechee Council headquartered in Raleigh, NC has one or two BALOO courses coming up that you might be able to attend. I think it's debatable whether or not staying on the aircraft carrier is camping out. I'd personally err on the side of it being considered camping out. I'd also say that complying with BSA Policy and having a tour permit is critical.(This message has been edited by willhi1979)

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I agree with Lisabob that you want to stay on the good side of your CO. In times where I've wanted to use my judgement to decide whether some particular rule is critical, I've always found it a good idea to talk with several people. If you're worried about what your CO would say, then talk to them and see what they recommend. I've found that while people inside the BSA can get really hung up over these policies, people a bit more removed can sometimes just shake their heads and put things into perspective.


I've taken BALOO, and I've stayed on an aircraft carrier, and I don't think that the first helped me with the second. I've never been asked for a tour permit in all the camping I've done. I'm not a lawyer, but I don't believe you have any liability based on failure to complete a permit. Still, doing as willhi1979 suggests and looking around for a BALOO course is a good idea. Most councils have their training calendar on their web sites. There's probably a BALOO course somewhere in the area.


The Occoneechee Council training calendar is here: https://www.doubleknot.com/openrosters/Calendar.asp

It looks like their next BALOO course is on March 29. But you might be able to find others that are sooner.

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I second what Eamonn said about asking someone who has Baloo training to come along... of course, the Pack gets to pick up the tab :)


Tour Permits are a PROCESS, designed to force us grown-ups to think about the trip, and do some proper planning. I'm not going to debate the circumstances of is this/is this not an appropriate trip. Regardless of what the National Council says, if the local SE says do one, then you do one. Period.


It's a lesson about training, though, which should be filed away in the CC's continuity book. Several people in each Pack should be graduates of Baloo. Webelos leader, OWLS, and then Boy Scout leaders, whatever it's named this week.


In the meantime, we are in "how do we get from here to there with the least pain?" To me, that's what Eamonn said: Borrow a BALOO leader!

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I'm not sure what good a sheet of paper locked away in the Council Service Center which is closed for the weekend does anyone?

Tour Permits as far as I can see serve little or no real purpose. Other than as some kind of a check list.

Councils have no real way of ever checking if all the information is right and I think if they could I'd be a little worried! I don't want some person who maybe I don't know? Who could be hired off the street with little or no training? Looking or being able to look into information that maybe I don't want someone to look at without my permission.

On the other hand I'm all for leaders being trained.

If everything was as it should be?

Everyone would know and be aware of what training's were needed to do whatever it is that needs done!!

It does seem that overnight trips for Cub Scouts who are going to Battleships, museums and maybe even lock-ins? Seem to have somehow either not been addressed or have somehow slipped through the cracks.

As I see it BelindaB, has a problem.

It needs to be fixed.

If we want to serve the Scouts that she is serving we fix the problem.

Later we can look at what the cause of the problem was /is?

I liked to think I was up on all this stuff.

I was wrong!!

I never ever would have thought that BALOO Training was required for this sort of trip.

Off the cuff I think I could come up with a few ways to find loop holes or ways to skirt around the requirements.

But that isn't the example we should be setting for the Scouts we serve.

I have only ever helped present BALOO Training one time. That was sometime back when I was serving as our Council Training Chairman.

I can't help feeling that if I didn't know it was a requirement for a trip like the one posted? Something somewhere is wrong.

Sure it could be me.

But if no one knows? How fair is it to expect people to comply?

To be honest having a BALOO trained person tag along who doesn't know the Scouts, just to meet the requirement is about as much use as pockets in your underwear! Even if it was my idea!!

But if that's what it is going to take to get these Scouts to the event that they have been promised and are looking forward too? So be it.

If I were BelindaB, I think I'd be a little upset at the powers that be for not making me aware!!

The Pack has been camping in the past.

What happened to the rule then?

If it is a new rule?

Did everyone miss the memo?

I am all for us doing everything we can to keep the kids we serve safe and I do think adults trained in dealing with age appropriate activities is a good thing.

If however we are going to mandate these training's not telling and letting everyone know is a great disservice.

Which will result in people skirting the requirements and looking for the loop holes.





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Eamonn writes: "If however we are going to mandate these training's not telling and letting everyone know is a great disservice."


In fairness Eamonn, we do not know this is the case. Yes BelindaB indicates that her pack camps three times a year. However, perhaps her council has made the BALOO requirement abundantly clear in basic leader training sessions, and no one from her pack has attended those sessions in recent memory (or they didn't pay attention). Or, to use my council as an example, we are not required to fill out a tour permit unless we leave the council. So a pack could camp any time they want, within council grounds, without ever filling out a permit, and therefore without council ever checking the BALOO-trained status of a pack's leadership. In this scenario, the only thing stopping pack leaders from holding camp outs minus a BALOO-trained leader is their own willingness to abide by the council's expectations.


There is also a distinct possibility that the pack may have camped without ever filing the required permit. While I have no idea whether this is the case with Belinda's pack, I know many packs do this (including the one I was part of), often pleading ignorance because, again, no one has been to leader training in a long time. This can hardly be laid at the council's feet, unless said training is simply not offered (unlikely, I hope). When a leader finally comes along who has been through training and who tries to do things "by the book" then all of a sudden it raises all the red flags at council - flags that should have been raised long ago, except that pack leadership never let council know they were engaging in whatever activities they were engaging in, to start with.


I remember finding this out the hard way shortly after I became the second "trained" leader in my son's pack and discovered that we needed tour permits and BALOO-trained adults to do a variety of our "typical" pack activities. It was the main reason I went to BALOO (so we could do a "by the books" pack camp out) and subsequently encouraged a bunch of other pack leaders to do the same.



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I understand what you are saying, but I also understand, as do you :), how much information we don't get in many of these posts.


That's why I liked so much Eamonn's response to this one on the Baloo qualified leader. With time urgent, it was the right band-aid for this challenge.


I think it's worth Belinda or him CM or her CC talking with their UC (back to that conundrum), and asking how their SE sees TP's in their Council. I think you'll agree that regardless of certain posters visions here, the fact of the matter is there is variance in how each of the 300+ local Councils do business.


Have a great rest of the weekend, my friend, :)



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I guess I look at overnighter different than some do. To my mind an overnight trip is one that people stay overnight at. Whether that overnight be at a campground, in a cabin, on a ball field, on a ship, in the aquarium or whatever. The only specific exception to BALOO trained person is for Council Family Camp where Council has planned, staffed, and collected fees for. If a pack wants to do their own outings BALOO is the training to attend. As a matter of fact that is where they are told the specific whys and wheres of tour permits for their council. I would like to see BALOO be part of required training for all den leaders. BALOO is readily available being offered twice per year in our district alone and it is not a long involved training about 5.5 to six hours including lunch. The answer is to require all cub leaders to attend BALOO to complete basic training and be eligible for Woodbadge just as Webelos leaders must attend WALOO and SM & ASM attend IOLS. In short send all your cub leaders to BALOO and avoid asking others how to blow off the rules and do what you were going to do anyhow.

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I haven't been involved or around Cub Scout Training's for some time.

I was our Council Training Chair when BALOO first came out.

My understanding of it then was that it wasn't supposed to be taken by adult leaders.

It was aimed at people who didn't have a leadership position in the Pack.

Something maybe along the lines of the Pine Wood Derby Chairperson.

The idea being that the CM and DL's were busy looking after the Scouts that they knew.

Having a BALOO trained person left them to do their thing.

A lot of what the course covers has little or nothing to do with a trip to a Battleship. Which other than the Scouts sleeping over is not really that different than the Pack going to a baseball game?

Is an overnight trip to a Battleship or a museum really an outdoor activity?

The BALOO is after al Basic Adult Leader Outdoor Orientation.

I suppose it comes down to how you interpret "Outdoor"!

I do have some concerns that insisting on too many training's for the parents of young children will end up harming the program.


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I don't know what BALOO was originally intended to do. I do know that it is now marketed toward registered leaders, though four or five years ago our pack also had some non-leader parents attend to increase our pool of BALOO-trained individuals. Reality seems to be that people who aren't willing or able to be leaders are unlikely to attend BSA trainings in most cases though.


As to whether it is useful to someone leading a trip to an aircraft carrier, well that's debatable (our council would require it, others may not, but the original poster's council apparently does). I certainly don't see much use in requiring it and then marketing it toward non-leaders who in all likelihood are not the ones planning a trip or outing anyway.

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Sorry jargon bites again Webelos adult leader outdoor orientation. Part of the required training to be an officially trained strip WEBELOS leader. along with new leader essentials, Webelos specific, youth protection, and the appropriate fast start. Is a little bit more involved than Baloo as WEBELOS are allowed to do a few things other cubs are not see the middle pages of the guide to safe scouting affectionately known as G2SS.

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