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Greyfox

Leadership patrol?

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On camping trips, who do your SPL's and ASPL's eat and pitch there tents with? With the adults, as guests of patrols, or as a seperate Leadership patrol? If the latter do they have typical patrol gear, i.e. a dining fly, patrol box, etc.

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Our SPL and ASPL are part of regular Patrols in our Troop. Normally, that would be the Venture Patrol, as SPL's tend to be older (15 - 17) in our Troop. One events, they camp with their Patrol.

 

Mark

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Question Mk950,

How can the SPL and ASPL who lead the Patrol Leaders be in a Patrol being lead by someone they lead?

 

Bob White

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We dont camp very much with our patrols-we dont get many to go on each campout. We basicly make new patrols each campout. Hopefully, this will change in two weeks. Summer Camp this year is going to be done by patrol camping so hopefully we will have new patrols with the main campers in the same patrols.

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In past we have had so few scouts that we have been very much ad hoc but we have had a good Webelos influx and I am now, for the first time, in a postition to influence organization directly and I am determined to institute a formal patrol system if I have to recruit Scouts off the street to fill them. Initially I had thought that they would eat with the adults but another ASM felt that this innapropriate. I think he is right as when our sons are in leadership this would be to much of a "family affair" and constrains youth independence. No way we have enough for a Venture Patrol(incidentally why use venture rather than Varsity patrols?. Our currrent plan is to have the SPL and ASPL, who are not memeber of either patrol, camp a little seperate and eat as guests of the patrols on a rotating basis. They would not be on the duty roster but would be responsible for their own dishwashing and, of course, pay the same thing as the rest of the patrol. I have some concern that this may insitute resentment in the patrols so it must be handled delicately. When I was young we haad several JASM and they formed a seperate patrol with the leadership, probably functionally equivalent to a Venture Patrol today. It seems like we had a lot more boys interested in Scouting back then.

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Bob,

 

We start teaching leadership the moment a boy crosses into our Troop. We use this set up as a way to reinforce one of the first things we teach our boys when teaching leadership: In order to be a good leader, you have to know how to be a good follower.

 

While preparing for an event, the SPL runs the PLC and directs their planning. When the planning is done and the event is on, the Patrol Laaders do 90% of the leading. It might even be more than that on a unit event. He then assumes the role of a Patrol member, although as a courtesy, his Patrol Leader usually goes light on him when writing the duty roster, and he never has responsibilities on Friday night (arrival) or Sunday morning (departure). During these times, we want him to be "above the fray", and making certain everything is done on a timely basis.

 

We've had one ASM who has suggested a few times that we should move the SPL and ASPL out of their Patrol, but except for his son, no one has ever seen the point. They tent with their buddies anyway, they don't want to cook for just two (in fact they end up not having to cook at all in most cases).

 

I would not argue that ours is the only way to do it, but it works for us, and the guys who have served in these positions almost all have prefered it this way.

 

Mark

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Right now, our troop has three patrols with rather slim numbers of 4, 5 and 7. We also have two boys in the Sr. Patrol (SPL & ASPL). A couple of months ago I asked the boys if they wanted to form two patrols of eight and they declined. I was glad that they fell a patrol identity. We have our SPL and ASPL eat as guests of a patrol. We are going to have an influx of four new Webelos Scouts in April and the current patrol of 4, which has two Scouts who crossed over in February will in all probability be the patrol for the new boys, bringing it up to eight. I like the peer group approach vs. the "even it out" approach when it comes to patrols.

 

The long range plan is to have the Sr. Patrol include the troop QM, Scribe, etc. and start to become a funcioning patrol of their own. It is difficult to do with two boys.

 

The adults eat as a patrol.

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Our SPL and ASPL on overnights sometimes varies. Often the senior scout on the overnight is 'acting'SPL and the next senior is 'acting' ASPL. Not necessarily the best of situations, but it does teach the scouts that they may have to step in and fill positions that they are not originally tasked for. If the 'acting' SPL and ASPL turn out to be the PLs then the APLs step in .. so on and so forth. We try to get the SPL and ASPL to set up between the scouts and leaders, helps prevent scouts running directly to the leaders to ask questions. The SPL and ASPL are tasked to monitor the patrol cooking sites and tents. They will normally eat with the adult patrol and will often cadge food from the patrols as what they are cooking is judged for the coveted Golden Skillet Award.

 

yis

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