When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

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Re: When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

Postby FrankJ » Sun Sep 23, 2012 11:34 am

I hate to say this not really knowing the whole story, but. Not fighting fairly & threatening to burn houses down is certainly not following the scout law. Just an observation from a distance. :)
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I never teach my pupils. I only attempt to provide the conditions in which they can learn.--Albert Einstein
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Re: When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

Postby kc9901mom » Sun Sep 23, 2012 1:25 pm

:lol: Thanks Frank J.

"Keep your friends close and your enemies closer". I sincerely hope that I am wrong about this ASM.

I have not violated YPT.

I have at least two or more examples of how I have demonstrated the Scout Oath and Law while at Scout events (and in my personal life). "Actions speak louder than words" - I will let my "actions" be the "ammunition for this war". I will plan to be at every scout event (quietly sitting in the background in an inconspicuous manner).
Last edited by kc9901mom on Thu Nov 01, 2012 9:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

Postby Nuts4Scouts » Sun Sep 23, 2012 3:55 pm

For every "violation" of protocol or Scout Oath and Law - I have at least two or more examples of how I have demonstrated the Scout Oath and Law while at Scout events
So then you are saying, you have "violated" BSA guidelines, and the Scout Oath/Law? Could you expand/explain?

My suspicion is that this female ASM is trying to get me banned from going camping so that I cannot influence where the scouts' camp and so that she does not have to "deal" with me (She is a public school teacher and I am a stay-at-home mom, who do you think will be going to camps?).
How are you "influencing" where the Scouts camp? How will getting you "banned from going camping" change that?

What does her being a public school teacher, or you being a stay at home mom, have to do with any of this?

a carefully constructed "rebuttal" letter is in the works. I will mail this letter to the SM and to the CC via USPS without a return address.
Why no return address?

Knowledge is power and I know from past experience that the DE cannot remove or reprimand an Adult Leader unless child abuse is involved. I have not violated YPT.
Why would you think the DE would get involved at all?

From your first post -
I didn't see you in the old dining hall making sandwiches for 3 hours after driving 3 hours and setting up camp.
Who did you spend 3 hours making sandwiches for, and why?

Who did you set up camp for, and why?


Just trying to clear up some confusion in my mind so that we can all come up with some advice for you that might be useful.
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Re: When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

Postby biglou » Sun Sep 23, 2012 9:44 pm

I don't know what to say about this. Interesting.
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Re: When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

Postby kc9901mom » Tue Sep 25, 2012 10:23 am

Basically, this ASM is stating that I am a "bad example" for the boys in the Troop and in her opinion she thinks the troop would be better off without me around.

The details do not really matter. What matters is that I feel that my character is being attacked and that I am being singled out. I have witnessed another "Leader" interfering in boy business and "crossing the line" yet this ASM is not doing anything about this person's interference (and no one else does either).

I expect for my children to do their assigned duties and to help regardless of circumstances (whether we leave at the same time as the troop or we leave before the troop or they go without my husband or me). My children will help others set-up camp when the troop arrives (if we leave early). I knew it would be several hours before our Troop was going to arrive and I did not want my kids to go to sleep before their troop arrived so I suggested that we go find out if help was needed. Also, because our Troop failed to plan this camping trip - I wasn't sure if my boys were going to be tent buddies or if they were going to be partnered with another scout.
Last edited by kc9901mom on Thu Nov 01, 2012 9:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

Postby FrankJ » Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:14 am

There is your problem! The only adult "leaders" on the trip should be the SM & ASMs. Any exceptions to this should be at the discretion of the Scoutmaster.
Frank J.
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Owl-2 WB 92-49
Foothills District Atlanta Area Council
I never teach my pupils. I only attempt to provide the conditions in which they can learn.--Albert Einstein
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Re: When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

Postby Mrw » Tue Sep 25, 2012 12:30 pm

I can understand why you go on trips to monitor your son's medical condition, but outside of that, you should be completely off to the side and generally invisible and let the SPL and the leaders run the events without your input or assistance/interference (as it seems to come across differently to different people).

You will be there in case of a medical issue, but are otherwise pretty much not really there. Take a good book and catch up on your reading.

I am not going to pretend to understand the bad blood and snippy dynamics going on between you and this other ASM, but if your boys are happy in the troop, my advice is to back well away and let them be.

My guess is also that if this ASM you are butting heads with has only the 18 year old still involved with the troop, her involvement will soon drop off considerably as taking other people's kids camping every month will get old quick.

Obviously I do not know you at all. You are coming across to me through this and other threads as a mom we once had in our troop and that is not exactly a good thing. She eventually yanked her son to another tropp because she thought we were holding him back from her appointed Eagle schedule. It was a shame to lose a boy we all liked and though was an asset to the troop. But we couldn't be happier thaose parents were not there to be pushing all the time.

You have said you have some district involvements - focus your energies there for now.

And let your disagreements quietly fade away. No one EVER wins when you start with the tit for tat and sniping back and forth.
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Re: When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

Postby kc9901mom » Tue Sep 25, 2012 4:37 pm

Unfortunately, this ASM has another son who is 11 or 12. The biggest issue here is that other ASMs and other Leaders' interject and interfere and assist when it is not their place or when a good lesson could be learned and no complaints or requests for banishment are brought up to the Scoutmaster or Troop Committee.

To Be Honest - the Troop failed to plan for this camping trip. Who's responsibility is it to plan camping trips? The Troop's right? Specifically, the SPL and the PLC. And who is responsible to oversee that the boys' plan for trips? The SM and the ASMs' correct? Just my opinion but if a Troop fails to plan a camping trip then the camping trip should be cancelled. Instead, the ASMs' planned the trip for the boys', they bought the food. The Duty Roster was not made and tent buddies were not assigned. I did not point any of these things out to any of the Troop's Leadership.

Another example of a Leader's interference is another ASM gave a scout a lighter to light the Troop's propane stove (but the ASM did question the Scout about the contents of the trailer before he handed over the lighter). There was not a lighter to be found in the trailer nor were there matches. None of the boys had matches nor did they have flint-and-steel. The majority of the scouts' on this trip were Life Scouts. If I were in charge or was an ASM I would have called all the boys over and done a bag inspection right then and there and I would have guided them to discover their "failures" and then I would have given the lighter to the grub master.

I should have added that there has not been any "drama" or arguing or Jerry Springer type action going on at any time. I have not reacted in a negative way to any of this ASM's actions or statements when I have been confronted. I have not brought up any of the Leaders' interference (yet). Twice now I have been caught off-guard by this ASM. This ASM joined this troop in Oct. of last year and my family and I joined in Feb. of this year.

Most of the time my husband does the camping with the Troop because he is a more experienced camper than I am and he has a lot of knowledge that he could teach the boys should they ask him to do so. Not only that, but there is the "male bonding" that goes on between men and boys while they are in the "woods" (my opinion here). It is a rare occasion that my husband and I are both able at the same time to go on Boy Scout camping trips because we have dogs that have to be fed and watered. My husband was an ASM (with our old Troop) and has just now decided to transfer his position to the new Troop. My husband was unable to take vacation this past summer because of work-related issues and this is the "why" of me attending Summer Camp.

Our Troop does not have a van or bus so the Scoutmaster and the ASMs' rely on other Leaders and Parents to help with transportation. So, yes, on occasion Parents and other Leaders' (Treasurer, Committee Members, Committee Chair) do go camping with the Scouts. Also, our Troop attends two in-council Summer Camps and a High Adventure every summer. The men ASMs' joke and say they send the "Pony Tail Patrol" to the BSA Camp that is very close to us with the first-year scouts. The SM and the senior ASMs usually go on the high adventure trips because their boys are older. The Troop only has one female ASM. Some of the other male ASMs are military and do not have the luxury of taking leave every summer for BSA camp.
Last edited by kc9901mom on Sun Nov 04, 2012 4:46 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

Postby jr56 » Wed Sep 26, 2012 1:55 pm

If you are a registered Committee member, you should not be on the campouts. Personally, I have had committee members on campouts to help, and welcome the additional help. Sounds like this ASM and the Scoutmaster are not seeing things this way. This type of back and forth fighting will do no good. Either back off and let them have their way, or join another troop. Technically, you may be right, but I'm afraid it's a fight you just won't be able to win.
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Re: When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

Postby kc9901mom » Fri Sep 28, 2012 11:37 am

The Scoutmaster is not the issue here. The Scoutmaster and the "senior" ASMs welcome Adults and Committee Members to go on Troop Camping Trips.

The Treasurer and the Outdoor Activities Chair attend the first-year scouts' summer camp every year.

All I want is to enjoy the scouting program with my kids. I understand the Program. I know it is boy-led, boy-run. I don't have any issues with staying out of the way and "be seen, not heard" unless specifically asked or invited by Troop Leadership.

What I have issues with is double standards - interference is interference whether it benefits 1 scout or the whole Troop.

I do not think I am wrong with the assessment of the situation and time will tell because I will make it a point to go on every camp-out. I will make it a point to set a supreme example for the boys abiding by the Scout Oath and Law and without pointing out my good deeds or interfering in "boy business". We can't change Troops for at least a couple of months so I will have to "grin and bear it" and hope that I am wrong.
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Re: When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

Postby JH-SM-T03 » Sat Sep 29, 2012 11:13 pm

jr56 -- you stated that registered committee members should not attend campouts.

Is this your personal policy or position? What is your authority for this? I will take help for any family I can for all our activities. To exclude any parent is against Scouting policy. I have had campouts where myself and my ASM's could not attend, should I cancel the campout? National BSA has stated that Scouting is not a secret society, we do not hide our activities. I invite all my Scouts parents and in some cases grandparents to participate to the fullest extent that they care to.

With all the recent push on various additional training, I have parents who want to participate in the camping program but not the weekly meeting side, they are quite happy to be a registered committee member, but do not want the ASM tag. I am to shut them out? You may but I will not.

Provide a BSA official position on you policy please, for all of us.
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Re: When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

Postby FrankJ » Sun Sep 30, 2012 9:57 am

JR said shouldn't not can't. But
Nice thing about scouting is you will not find many outright prohibitions about anything but safety issues. So there is considerable flexibility about how a troop is run. Better maybe to take a Scoutmaster fundamentals course along with the outdoor leader course. The committee member training is not quite as complete. But in committee training you will find nothing about committee members interacting with boys on a camp out. You will not any specific prohibitions for just about anyone camping with troop. Instead you will find a general philosophy on how a troop is supposed to work. Key to that is the youth primarily interacting with themselves. Untrained adults wandering about tend to interfere with this no matter how well intentioned.
Frank J.
Venturing Crew Adviser, Assistant Scout Master, Renegade Merit Badge Counselor
Owl-2 WB 92-49
Foothills District Atlanta Area Council
I never teach my pupils. I only attempt to provide the conditions in which they can learn.--Albert Einstein
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Re: When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

Postby jr56 » Tue Oct 02, 2012 3:49 pm

Yup, Frank covered it perfectly.
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Re: When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

Postby Bill Pitcher » Wed Oct 03, 2012 12:07 pm

We also let any of our youth adults go on camping trips. We just had a canoe trip in the Adirondacks last weekend. Mother's and Father's went (man. it was cold and wet!! :twisted: ). All of them had YPT, Safe Swim AND Safety Afloat. We also had 2 Lifeguards . . . both BSA Lifeguards and one with Red Cross in addition. So, if the adults ate trained and the Troop is prepared, why not? "Shouldn't and/or wouldn't include Committee Members" should not come into play!
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Re: When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

Postby kwildman » Thu Oct 11, 2012 11:25 am

KC - you stated that you want to enjoy the scouting program with your kids. Scouting isnt designed to be a family program. The kids need time to be kids, interact with other kids and other adult role models. I am not saying that there isnt a role for parents to be in scouting or on camp outs. In my troop we work hard to keep the parents from being parents on camp outs - they can come, they can participate in parts of the activities, etc. However, the program needs to be run by the YOUTH as directed by the SM and the ASMs. I see too often where parents want to hover over their kids or make sure that they dont fail or have conflict. This often robs the kids of very valuable learning and teachable moments. Enjoy your time camping and on activities but remember you and other parents or committee members are guests. Discussions or suggestions for improvements should be at the committee meetings and not on the camp outs.
No one can pass through life, any more than he can pass through a bit of country, without leaving tracks behind, and those tracks may often be helpful to those coming after him in finding their way. - Lord Baden-Powell
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Re: When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

Postby kc9901mom » Wed Oct 24, 2012 9:39 pm

KC - you stated that you want to enjoy the scouting program with your kids. Scouting isnt designed to be a family program.

It's all about semantics, isn't it? I can enjoy the scouting program along with my kids and not be a "parent". Like many scouters, I have more than one title in BSA. I am a troop committee member (I honestly believe that I am a Committee Member and I am not "acting in an official manner in regards to the troop" here) because I would like to have a say in the "standard operating procedures" of the troop. I am a troop and district merit badge counselor and I am a Council Hornaday Adviser. If I did not enjoy the scouting program alongside (or with) my kids then I would stay at home every Monday evening and just "be a parent". :)

I already stated in previous posts that I understand the scouting program. I deflect my kids while on troop camp-outs in a mild manner (don't want people thinking I'm a mean scouter) and refer them to their SPL or SM (or acting SM or adult in charge) (unless they are sick or just happen to be in the bathroom at the same time in separate stalls and need toilet paper - hopefully, they learned their lesson and will be carrying their own toilet paper to the stall with them from now on - yes, I did rescue both of them but not without consequences and no, suprisingly, I wasn't chastised for providing them with toilet paper that one of them had in their back pack that was inside their tent that I went and got for them while adults and other scouts were in an open area).
Last edited by kc9901mom on Mon Nov 05, 2012 8:56 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

Postby LSR » Wed Oct 24, 2012 10:44 pm

I must say that this thread has given this Scoutmaster a deeper appreciation of the adult leaders in his Troop!
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Re: When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

Postby kc9901mom » Thu Nov 01, 2012 12:31 pm

Today, I received my "dismissal" letter from my sons' SM.

I didn't realize that a parent had to be invited or "earn" a Committee position.

I guess I am asking too much for a Troop to have rules and abide the rules and run a Scouting program according to BSA Guidelines, Policies, Procedures, and By-laws.

Looking for a new Troop now!
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Re: When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

Postby Quailman » Thu Nov 01, 2012 1:18 pm

You got a dismissal letter from the Scoutmaster???? I thought you were a Committee Member. Even though it sounds like you need to find a new troop it is not the SM's job to hire and fire Committee Members. In my troop, our former SM thought he was King of the Troop, as well as SPL, but in most troops the COR or the CC will have a discussion with you about continued involvement. This sounds like a totally dysfunctional troop from the get-go.
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Re: When the Troop Committee decides not to play nice!

Postby kwildman » Thu Nov 01, 2012 3:11 pm

One of the best sessions that i ever attended at a University of Scouting was how to "fire" a volunteer. Basically, a lot of people dont understand that volunteer positions are a privilege and not a right. I had to remove a coach from a youth football league once and was threatened with a law suit because he thought i was violating his rights. In scouts, it is ultimately the right of the charter organization to determine who may volunteer for positions. My experience is that the CO/COR will not go against the wishes of the Troop Committee. Just like most Troop Committees wont go against the SM. The troop committee should have had their chair give the dismissal.
No one can pass through life, any more than he can pass through a bit of country, without leaving tracks behind, and those tracks may often be helpful to those coming after him in finding their way. - Lord Baden-Powell
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