Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
kraut-60

Why does sports/band/etc seem to trump Scouting?

Recommended Posts

I have an excellent SPL, when he is at a meeting or activity that has no conflict with his sports involvement. I have an excellent ASPL that often fills in for the absent SPL, but sometimes is absent as the schools music program schedules its concerts on the same night we hold meetings.

 

I am considering having any candidate for election to SPL be counseled by myself as SM, that if elected...I expect them to place their position as SPL above sports, band, etc... Way too often I have had a scout or their parents tell me they will be missing meetings while going out for whatever given sport is in season or the music program, whatever.

 

I am just fed up with everything extracuricular offered by the school trumping Scouting! I dont see where sports offers anything of greater value than what Scouts offers. Music has points that are valuble, but overall, I dont see how being a musician will give a boy better direction for the rest of his life. I know these programs are popular and have inherent value to those who are interested in what they offer, but I just dont get why a parent will have their son miss a camp-out that we DONT have every weekend...so their son can play in a game they have EVERY weekend during the season it runs for.

 

I was a band member as a youth...I was on the wrestling squad in HS (wasnt a good athlete, but coach needed a manager, I fit the bill), so I can understand how people enjoy what these activities offer...BUT, Outside of the gratification an active player feels as a result of playing and scoring...what is the pay off? I have seen many of the scouts out for a sport where mostly what they did was keep a certain part of the bench warm, while the "talented" athletes got all the time on the field. How would that be gratifying?

 

Okay, enough of my rant...I'm sure I'll be taking flak soon enough from the band boosters and sports fans, but I believe I have a valid point here...Why does Scouting seem to take a backseat to sports/etc??

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Perhaps because most boys don't dream of becoming Professional Scouters with 8 figure contracts? And we don't usually penalize scouts for missing functions, like the coaches do.(This message has been edited by scoutldr)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Probably mostly due to the other activities inflexible policies. My experience has been that scouts who choose to participate in these, especially on the middle school level or higher, find themselves being told they will be dropped should they miss even one or two practices; and that is even when they add them in or change their schedules. As far as they are concerned, nothing else matters. It is really too bad that scouts are considered optional by the others, no matter what the activity. I have had scouts have to forgo almost every type of event at one time or another.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As the parent of a band geek who is also the JASM of the troop, I understand what you are saying. However, band does trump scouting. Especially during the fall.

His grade in band is directly related to him participating in pep band at every home game, his participation at marching band, his practice after school for special band events. If he doesn't show up, it will show on his GPA and effect his ability to letter. He would move down in his chair which will effect his ability to compete for a music scholarship.

No excuses.

I'm sure sports put the same expectations on their members.

We try to attend every scout meeting not in conflict and attend every campout possible. But once in high school, that is about 50% of the time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Priorities, plain and simple. If it's ok to sit and warm the bench in sports, being an active member of the patrol is ok too. If one wants to be SPL then they can't be star quarterback at the same time. It's part of life, make your choices and live with them. Only a rare few excel in multiple venues because of the conflicts.

 

Stosh

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yep band members get grades for their performances, so miss a game or pareade, and the grade goes down. As for sports, some schools consider varsity sports as a PE. So you need to make practices and games to make the grade as well. That way the "free period" is taken up with HW. Once the season is over with, then their normal PE class resumes.

 

Now it is possible to hold eagle required PORs and be active in extracurriculars. Time and planning are must, and you will NOT be in the top positions. I knwo quite a few scouts who did it, and I also did it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"Now it is possible to hold eagle required PORs and be active in extracurriculars. Time and planning are must, and you will NOT be in the top positions. I knwo quite a few scouts who did it, and I also did it."

 

-Renaissance Student Steering Committee

-Lifesavers

-Baseball (4 varsity letters)

-Football (2 varsity letters)

-Basketball (2 varsity letters)

-National Honor Society

-Big Brothers/Big Sisters

-3.5 GPA

 

Finished as a Life Scout by personal choice. Served as SPL, JASM, and went to National Jamboree along with summer camps. It CAN be done IF they WANT to do it.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also consider that band, theatre and high school athletics have a captive audience to draw from. Students are surrounded by the trappings of their activities every day they go to school. The awards fill the display cases in the lobby. The coaches and band/theatre teachers are often popular, many times the beneficiaries of a hometown cult of personality. It's an educationally-sanctioned in-crowd.

 

The bigger picture, at least where I'm from, is that a ton of kids think that they have a future as professional athletes - a dream encouraged wholeheartedly by their parents and coaches. When they get to college or try out for the big leagues directly, they realize they experienced (were the victims of?) Big Fish/Small Pond Syndrome, and by then it's too late for a redo.

 

For every major league ballplayer, there are hundreds of young men who spend years in the minors, selling TVs at Sears on the side to pay the rent while dreaming of something that's never going to happen. There are thousands more who might have made it to the bigs, but fell hard when a knee blew out or a rotator cuff got injured.

 

Scouting, on the other hand, offers some pretty intangible benefits. To a starry-eyed ESPN-watcher, the challenge of earning Eagle or visiting Philmont has a real hard time stacking up against the possibility of a career with TV endorsements and dates with models. Or just an article in the local paper and a date with a cheerleader.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

kraut,

 

In our troop, we counsel the boys that there will be certain expectations when they are in a POR. If you are SPL.....you are SPL. You need to be there unless providentially hindered. We counsel them not to seek office during their season as they have obligations that will prevent them from meeting their POR obligations. If they run and get elected and then don't show up, they don't get credit for the POR. Therefore, we tell them to run when they can devote their time just like they have to do with sports and band.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For critical PORs like SPL, we demand they dedicate to participate every meeting night. So, like my son, when he was SPL, it was in the spring when band was less active. They don't play for the varsity track team, but do for football and basketball. But you won't see him in his patrol from August to November because Tuesday night is marching band practice. Its a balance. I drop him off at practice, then head to the scout meeting myself. We try to do as many campouts as we can, but after he started high school, that dropped off dramatically. We are lucky to attend half of the troop campouts now. Eagle son now wants to join the swim team which is a spring sport. I guess that will lead to more juggling.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Why does sports/band/etc seem to trump Scouting?

 

Because sports/band/etc IS more important to some boys than Scouting. Not every scout holds scouting in as near a divine regard as some of use Scouters.

 

"I dont see where sports offers anything of greater value than what Scouts offers. Music has points that are valuble, but overall, I dont see how being a musician will give a boy better direction for the rest of his life. "

 

Why assume that boys would value scouting the way an adult scouter would? And how many boys are looking for something to give them better direction for the rest of their lives?

 

And really, does scouting really give most boys that much "better direction for the rest of their lives"? Some of this is wishful thinking on our parts; a perception not necessarily shared by many scouts or their parents.

 

NC

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"Music has points that are valuable, but overall, I don't see how being a musician will give a boy better direction for the rest of his life."

 

I responded re: sports/band/scouts conflicts in the other thread, and my own experience was like what others have posted in this thread. Not only was band a huge commitment, it was also tied to honor's band credit, which (contrary to popular belief) was not an easy grade. There was pretty much a zero-tolerance policy to get an A.

 

But the statement above kind of puzzles me, especially because I am still an active musician. Granted most of my classmates dropped their instruments after high school, but a few played during their college years, an even smaller group kept playing, and a very small handful became professional musicians (although I have played professionally, I wouldn't label myself a professional).

 

I've also contemplated why I continue to be a musician, at considerable time and expense (I can't begin to count how many weddings and other gigs I've worked -- "playing" and "having fun" aren't usually operative words on most professional gigs -- where my net has been negative). I didn't really come up with a better answer than "it's just what I do" or that "I don't do this because it is fun, I do this because I feel compelled to do it, as if a higher power is involved". Back when I was a kid, I didn't do it because I was looking for direction for the rest of my life. I wasn't participating in Scouting because I was looking for direction for the rest of my life either.

 

Character development, citizenship and personal fitness. Did I only work towards these aims because of the Scout troop I was involved with then (and the one, and the district, I am involved with now)? Or is this just part of the "stuff" I have because of who I am and where I've been and how I was raised?

 

Citizenship? Maybe this is stretching the definition a little, but I've played countless community events, fundraisers for charity and that sort of thing. My least favorites are dinners where food isn't provided for the band (OMG! $20 extra per band member?), even though the band is donating 6+ hours of time (travel, setup/teardown, etc) for everyone's entertainment.

 

Just as a humorous note, anyone that doesn't believe that music has a personal fitness component should see this page on auditions for the Ohio State University marching band: http://tbdbitl.osu.edu/?action=a030 (marching band is about as aerobic as you can get!). Also catch the part where they say summer sessions aren't mandatory -- but read between the lines on that one. Anyone who really wants to make the band isn't going to be skipping "voluntary" summer sessions.

 

Guy

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Why does sports/band/etc seem to trump Scouting?

 

I think in part it has to do with the recognition aspect.

If you attend Philmont and climb the highest peak or hike the longest trail, who knows about it?

Your Troop and the staff at Philmont.

 

If you hit the game winning homer in the bottom of the 9th or score the touchdown to win your team the District Championship, EVERYONE associated with your school knows about it and you can become a GOD.

 

Tying square knots and building a campfire can't compete with that.

 

In most boys minds, it's a non-contest...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also, if one took this discussion to it's logical extreme if you were doing Scouting to it's fullest extent you wouldn't have any time to do sports/band etc. I disagree. Just like I disagree that that youth who feels like he has to spend every moment on the baseball field/football field/ track/ band room is also wrong there IS time, the question is how will you allocate it and will the youth Do the work necessary in each area?

 

Look, we have the majority of Scouts from the time they are 10.5 to 11 until they either Eagle at 15 and maybe quit or until they are 18 either way we are looking at 4 to 7 years.

Of that 4-7 year period each sports season usually only occurs concurrently for about 4 months at a time.

I've not yet seen a Sport keep a youth from participating in Scouts who wanted to be there.

My own son talks to his coaches during tryouts(I didn't give him a script)tells them he'll be there for practices, for pre-camps, for games, but if a Saturday or Sunday practice conflicts with Scouting that he won't be available. One of the things a lot of Coaches use the "Mandatory" Saturday practice for isn't to DO the extra work it's to see who is dedicated to the cause(Of winning games). So far they have seen the fact that he's laying it out before he's on the team that he's giving them the option not to "hire" him for the season - So far he never not made any team. And for the most recent season he made the team not for any skill he had in the sport but so the coach could use his leadership skills and work ethic as a goad for the other players. Skills and and ethic he learned in Scouting.

In my experience to date Coaches will work with youth who have multiple activities IF the youth WORKS when they are with the coach and if the Coach knows it's not an excuse to miss practices or otherwise slack off but that the youth will be there EVERY time he CAN. And the he will BE there when he is there.

 

I feel the same way about Scouting, I don't mind if the Scout goes off and does however many Sports as long as he realizes that HE still has to WORK Scouting if he is to get anywhere. If he's just showing up for a camping club and to ride along with everyone else he may get something out of it but not what he should - and just like the coach is concerned about slackers on his team the Scout can influence the work the other Scouts are doing (for Good or for bad) depending on his attitude when he shows up.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just think what would happen if we imposed the same "mandatory" attendence like the others do.

Well, we would have a small set of dedicated scouts (the same we already have, the ones who only do scouting) but no others.

 

I guess we just need to get used to it and accept our second class status to our youth's priorities.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×