Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
J-dawg168

Older Boys In Leadership.

Recommended Posts

When i first joined scouting, I had no idea i would be this far along, Philmont, Norther Tier, Jambo, Staffing camp, and SPL. I'm 15 going on 16, just bought a truck, honors classes at school, and will have to get a job to pay for my truck and insurance. My time as SPL is coming to an end, as elections are next week, and new terms starting two weeks later. I wanted to be a JASM, but without knowledge of my future availability, I was quickly shot down by the Scoutmaster. I would like to stay active and give back to the troop, but DO NOT want to go back to a regular patrol. I know I've hit the age of the three W's, wheels, women, and work.

 

Many things in our troop have changed under my term. We have about 50 - 60 boys, and a very experienced scoutmaster. He is quick to shut things down that have not worked in the past, and likes sticking to TIGHT schedule. Under my term its gotten a TAD bit more laid back and more enjoyable for everyone. Also, I've been a SPL, ASPL, TG, PL, and APL, so I've done just about everything.

 

My question is: What do you do with the older boys like me that still want to be active in leadership, but have a job where they can't be at everything and don't want to be in a regular patrol?

 

Also, there are no active venture crews in my area, and the scoutmaster has said NO to a venture patrol.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would wait and see what job you get and what flexibilty with hours you have. If you know that you will be able to always get troop night off of work, and can get 1 weekend a month off too - then you'd be able to come back to SM and let him know that you ARE going to available and want to be a JASM.

 

If you are unable to be in a leadership position you could still be involved with troop activities as much as possible. Our troop has a patrol with all the oldest boys - they will sometimes have just a couple attend a meeting, other times several will be there.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If anyone ever had any idea how destructive adult led can be, this has to be a classic example and I'm betting it goes on all over the country. Ever wonder why boys quit? I don't! I'm sure that any SM worth his salt will see a major reflection of how he/she destroys boy led, just look at this post.

 

First of all, I have no advice for this young boy except to sit back, keep your mouth shut, and do as you are told because this troop is in no way reflective of any BSA program being taught, but every indication of how traditional adult led program have turned off excellent scouts from continuing in the program.

 

I would suggest talking to the CC and if that goes nowhere, then enlist the support of the CO and/or unit commissioner. There is no reason any boy has to put up with this from any adult.

 

As a last resort, start a patrol of like minded mature boys and pool your leadership resources into a "regular" patrol that does venture patrol activities. If it's just a name thingy, then call yourself a regular patrol, plan your own activities, and basically, according to BSA rules and regulations avoid the adults and run your own program. If this is unacceptable to your SM then I have nothing else to offer except my condolences. Stick it out for your Eagle and make a promise to yourself, that when you are old enough to be a SM you NEVER do to another boy that which is being done to you.

 

I left scouts early for many of the same reasons that are expressed here and I have made it a mission to be the SM that my SM wasn't. I hope you will eventually come to understand the importance of scouting and the development of leadership and character that you would like to have present in your situation but are unable to accomplish. When you are SM make sure your boys have the opportunity you didn't.

 

By the way, this is why I changed troops and am now a SM in a boy-led, patrol-method unit. As an ASM I could no longer continue seeing boys like this miss out on what scouting has to offer.

 

Stosh

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Stick it out for your Eagle -- but also look into a venture crew. They are designed for the teenage busy life style. Also remember you and the other boys can go on the equivilant of a patrol campout (just don't call it a venture patrol) organize all the details and talk to adult leadership about going with you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Back in the day, they had the Leadeship Corps. This was the patrol for your older scouts who have "been there, done that." In my old troop it consisted of the ASPL (he was also the PL of the LC), troop quartermaster, librarian, historian, instructors etc. To get in, you had to be Star or above, serve 2 terms as a PL, and be elected by the current members. This was the patrol that taught the skills and did a lot of work running the troop. They first changed it to a venture crew, then with venturing coming out, changed it to venture patrol.

 

Having a venture patrol with the older scouts may be the answer. I know that my old troop used this until they decided to create a venturing crew. Both were successful, withthe Venturing crew giving additional challenges and opportunities.(This message has been edited by eagle92)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If the situation becomes untenable... look into a Venturing Crew (not venture patrol). If you have ties to fellow camp staff members, that's an easy road to take. You can be with like-minded people and go on adventures as time permits.

 

It won't be the same as in a traditional troop, but if your time is getting scrunched, it may be the best option.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

>>My question is: What do you do with the older boys like me that still want to be active in leadership, but have a job where they can't be at everything and don't want to be in a regular patrol?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

J-Dawg,

 

In my troop we always welcome the older boys to stick around to help out and guide the younger scouts. We would never reject help because of what your work schedule "might" be. In my opinion, your Scoutmaster needs to back off a few yards and let the boys run the Troop.

 

Seeing as there are no active Venture Crews you might visit your local Council office and see if another district or nearby Council has one you could join. If not perhaps they know a few people that would be willing to start one.

 

Hope that helps, feel free to e-mail me if you need anything.

 

Phillip Boyle

Troop #4

Canton, OH

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

jblake,

 

I found that very offensive to my troop. We ARE boy led. We ARE one of the most boy led troops around our area. Before you criticize a troop that hard, be educated in their structure and workings.

 

Also. I stated in my post that he is not open to an older boy patrol. One of our patrols does have some of the older boys in it, and the patrol is COMPLETELY worthless. I do see why he isn't open to.

 

To the rest of you, thanks for the encouraging words!

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

J-dawg168,

 

We had some scouts in my troop that were in the same situation. Being put back into a patrol was like being demoted. We put them in the Leadership Corp and let them take on specialized leadership details. They would take on a detail and plan it out as their schedule fits.

 

When I was in the LC, we ended up helping out smaller troops train up their scouts. They usually had a SM, a ASM and perhaps 7-10 scouts. If the boys were young and inexperienced, they needed an older scout to show how a patrol/troop should be run. Consider yourself a "leader on loan" to another troop. Most of the SM were more than glad to have an older scout help out.

 

We had a troop about the same size as yours. If a troop is run right, you end up with a surplus of trained scouts. If you don't let them lead, they will disappear. As an adult leader, I don't want to put 10 years or so into a scout and have their leadership squandered.

 

There is a place for you in the troop, but me not being in your troop, I can not comment where you belong though. You mentioned that your SM was very experienced. Talk with him a little bit more and try to find out why he is opposed to a JASM position. Pick his brain a little.

 

I am in agreement with Eagledad on this. Are you in OA? Can you help out the lodge? On camp outs, we used to send the older scouts to help out at a camp out station under another troops leadership. They would learn another troops style of leadership. A few times we had the older scouts take equipment to camp leaving the adults to deal with the scouts. When the troop arrived at camp, we had set up the leadership tents, had a nice fire going, and hot coffee ready to drink. You can drive equipment, but not scouts. Helping out a committee member on a project sounds good to me.

 

How about community service projects? I don't think that you would have to look far to find a nice project to do. Go to a local town meeting in your uniform and tell them that you need something to do. It will put your troop in good relations with the community.

 

I hope this has helped you out. Signed - The other Dawg, RD

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Unfortunately I stand by my comments. I was talking to the boy about his situation and how he perceived it. Of course, his perception may be what the troop is, but that's not the issue. He perceives a SM that will not work with him in his situation. He fielded a couple of options, but they were shot down with a "NO" answer. A SM that is perceived to be "quick to shut things down that have not worked in the past, and likes sticking to TIGHT schedule." indicates to me a problem for this boy's leadership development. When "the scoutmaster has said NO to a venture patrol" the question arises "What does it hurt" if someone wishes to show leadership in setting one up?

 

If I were perceived by my boys to hinder their leadership development in any way, shape or form, I too would be offended if someone were to express it, but I would also take a long look inward rather than take it out on the messenger.

 

I have never said "no" to any scouting ideas my boys may come up with that they wish to pursue. It is not my job as SM to curtail any effort on the boy's part to get into it and do something scouting. IPods? Yep, they're curtailed, but they aren't scouting. Starting a venturing patrol? well, I see that as a great opportunity for the older boys to seek something that will keep them in the program for as long as possible.

 

I was at summer camp a couple of years ago and there was a unit there that did not participate in any of the activities. They were all the "been there done that" boys that had all the MB's, been to all the competitions and as a patrol, were attending camp for probably the umteenth time and were just hanging out, having a great time enjoying each other's company and not disturbing anyone around them. I went over and spent some time chatting with them about their cars, their girlfriends, their jobs and scouting. When all was said and done, the most impressive thing about the whole situation was these boys were at scout summer camp...for the umteenth time.

 

Boy-led means the boys make the decisions and run the program. It may not be what I want as SM, but my attrition rate is rather low.

 

Stosh

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One thing that was mention that I completely forgot is the OA. getting active in the OA, if a member, can eba supllement to the dullness of the troop. Yes an Arrowman's fiorst responsibility is to the unit, but with so many opportunities out there for Arrowmen, jambo service corps; OA Trail Crew, Ocean Adventure, and Wilderness adventure at the national high adventure bases, European Camp Staff Program; etc. it will allow soem freadom of movement for the older ones.

 

Also OA has a new menoring program out. this allows expereicned scouts and leaders to work with new units. This is another option for the older scouts, with permissionof the SM of course.

 

On we thing I forgot to mention about my old troop's Leadership Corps/Venture Crew/Venture Patrol/Venturing Crew (this general idea goes back a ways)was that while our primary responsibility was to work with the younger guys, we/they did plan separate activities either on our own or within a troop trip. For example, when we did Vicksburg, the troop did one 14 mile trail while the LC did the 12 mile cross country trail. or if that was closed, we did both 14 and 7 mile road trails on our own. We had a separate canoe trip just for the venture crew, venture ASM, and me. And when they started their Venturing crew, they did things on their own 1 per quarter. But the rest of the rime they were with the troop and in essence their own patrol.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

J-dawg,If you are looking for a different Troop home let me know!!! I would ask you and the older scouts with you to be Mentors with Troop Guide POR for the new scouts crossing over to the Troop that you serve. Your responsibiities would be to teach the NSP on how to be scouts with a one year commitment to get each of them to First

Class with the goal of the NSP or new scouts being the best the troop has ever seen.

 

Not as difficult as it looks at first glance. The input and presence of older scouts having an interest in new Boy Scouts carries over for many years. I would suggest that you present yourself and the older scouts, if they are willing, as mentors/teachers, with the future of the Troop that you and them serve as the goal that the new Scouts will be the best the Troop has ever seen.

 

The 'feel good' part of this accomlishment may surprise you.

 

yis

SM redfeather

 

 

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  

×
×
  • Create New...