Unique Method for SPL (& ASPL) Elections....

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Unique Method for SPL (& ASPL) Elections....

Postby wjturner » Wed Jul 13, 2011 11:10 am

OK, this thread has been dead for a few years, but I have a question about one of the rules I see listed here. Years ago, my troop's PLC decided to change our SPL election procedure to try to give a little more continuity to the position. The idea was that in six months, a boy was really getting used to the position just as his term ended. On the other hand, a one-year term would not give as many boys the opportunity, so we (the youth) decided on a hybrid solution. We elected a boy to a twelve-month term as ASPL and SPL: he served three months as an ASPL to shadow the SPL, then six months as SPL, and then three more as ASPL--for lack of a better term--to serve as an adviser for the new SPL. We still had an election every six months, in the middle of the current SPL's term and at the end of the previous SPL's final stint as ASPL, to find the current SPL's successor. Does this violate some rule, even though it was the youth who created it to solve a problem they saw in their troop? I think it worked well, although since it was so long ago, I expect it is probably no longer the troop's practice.

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Admin note: Split from "Troop Bylaws That Violate BSA Policy".
Last edited by RWSmith on Thu Jul 14, 2011 10:22 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Troop Bylaws That Violate BSA Policy

Postby smtroop168 » Wed Jul 13, 2011 11:56 am

No.

The junior leader with the most responsibility in a troop is the Senior Patrol Leader. He is elected by all of the members of the troop. Each troop sets its' own requirements and schedule of elections, though senior patrol leaders are usually chosen at six- to 12-month intervals and can be reelected. ”

— Scoutmaster Handbook p. 13
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Re: Troop Bylaws That Violate BSA Policy

Postby FrankJ » Wed Jul 13, 2011 11:58 am

Since there are no official "rules" (outside what the smtroop168 just stated) about how the SPL is elected, it is hard to violate them. :) What you have written sounds reasonable especially if it is working for your troop.
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Re: Troop Bylaws That Violate BSA Policy

Postby wjturner » Wed Jul 13, 2011 12:08 pm

Thanks, smtroop and Frank. That was my thought. This was what go me wondering:

AquilaNegra2 wrote:* The ASPL will automatically advance to SPL; only the ASPL will be elected.


In my scenario the ASPL did automatically advance to SPL, but of course we elected an ASPL specifically to become the SPL (in addition to other ASPLs appointed by the SPL).

As for if it is working, I can't say. It did was working when I was a youth with the troop, but I have no idea what they are doing anymore. It's been a long time since I was in that troop!
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Re: Troop Bylaws That Violate BSA Policy

Postby jr56 » Wed Jul 13, 2011 1:03 pm

Sounds like a pretty good idea to me.
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Re: Troop Bylaws That Violate BSA Policy

Postby bnelso » Wed Jul 13, 2011 3:29 pm

I am confused. My understanding is that there are no term limits to an SPL. He can be reelected. Not sure what it says in the SM Handbook about this.

However under the scheme of electing an ASPL who then must be a SPL, how would an SPL be reelected if the Scouts wanted to keep him on? At first blush the process would seem to defete the Scouts electing their leader.

If it is understood by the Scouts that they were not electing an ASPL, but an SPL and the current SPL could run again, and not have to leave office, then it would not be a concern.
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Re: Troop Bylaws That Violate BSA Policy

Postby wjturner » Wed Jul 13, 2011 3:39 pm

This was all along time ago, but I believe we allowed the SPL to be reelected. His term would be extended by another six months, and the extra ASPL position (that one that is either SPL-designate or past SPL) would stand empty for six months or be appointed like any other ASPL. It is awkward, I admit, coming in the middle of the term, but I think that is the one drawback.

Perhaps you are referring to my original comment that we didn't like a year because it reduced the opportunities for scouts to serve as SPL. I didn't mean it to say a scout couldn't serve a year, just like someone can serve as POTUS for eight years: they just have to be reelected.

I don't see how it defeats the scouts electing their leader since they did elect him to be SPL. He was just required to serve as an ASPL to learn the ropes before he was given control.
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Re: Troop Bylaws That Violate BSA Policy

Postby wjturner » Wed Jul 13, 2011 3:43 pm

bnelso wrote:If it is understood by the Scouts that they were not electing an ASPL, but an SPL and the current SPL could run again, and not have to leave office, then it would not be a concern.


Sorry, I missed this. I don't know that everyone actually understood it, but that was always very clearly stated: It was an election for an SPL who would start his term in three months.
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Re: Troop Bylaws That Violate BSA Policy

Postby bnelso » Wed Jul 13, 2011 3:43 pm

Thanks, yes that sounds fine. And gives the SPL 3 months tutoring prior to taking office. No issues here if that is the way it worked.

My concern in any of these matters is taking leadership or running their troop away from the boys.

But as for it being against BSA policy, even the other way as far as I know isn't against BSA policy.
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Re: Troop Bylaws That Violate BSA Policy

Postby wjturner » Wed Jul 13, 2011 3:53 pm

bnelso wrote:My concern in any of these matters is taking leadership or running their troop away from the boys.


That's always my concern, too. The further I get from my home troop, the more amazed I am at how youth-run it was. In this case, it was the youth who identified a problem they wanted to correct, devised a method to address it, and implemented it. The adults, as far as I could tell, just watched. (I'm sure they would have kept us from making too big of a mess if the need arose, though.)
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Re: Unique Method for SPL (& ASPL) Elections....

Postby RWSmith » Thu Jul 14, 2011 10:27 am

I like it!
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Re: Unique Method for SPL (& ASPL) Elections....

Postby razor_strop » Thu Jul 14, 2011 11:24 am

I may not be remembering things correctly, but I thought that the SPL was directly elected by the troop, and the ASPL (or two) was appointed by the SPL, much like the PL is elected and the APL is appointed.
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Re: Unique Method for SPL (& ASPL) Elections....

Postby wjturner » Thu Jul 14, 2011 11:38 am

That's the way we ran it, too, except for this additional ASPL who was really either an SPL-elect or past SPL. There was at least one additional ASPL appointed by the SPL when his term began.

Again, we are talking about a very old policy that I was only wondering about in regards to national policy because someone in the original thread posted a rule that seemed to say this went against national policy. Perhaps this is the place where it could run afoul of it.
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Re: Unique Method for SPL (& ASPL) Elections....

Postby FrankJ » Thu Jul 14, 2011 1:00 pm

The method you describe meets the spirit of the national policy. The SPL should be an elected position. You can look at as you are electing an SPL that then under goes a mandatory 3 mo training program.

The real truth is regardless of how you select you SPL; scout master appointed, troop vote, committee vote, tarot cards, whatever, nobody from national or council is going to come in and make you do it any differently. The troop is owned by the charter org. The only control the council has is not to renew the charter. Fortunately most people involved in scouting are doing it for the right reasons and want to do the right thing. The interesting discussions come from just what the right thing is. :)
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Re: Unique Method for SPL (& ASPL) Elections....

Postby jp2790 » Thu Aug 18, 2011 2:52 pm

My troop tried this for 2 elections. I was actually the 2nd to be elected ASPL then automatically advance to SPL. When I got to SPL we switched the system and I was able to choose my ASPL.

It got pretty mixed reactions at the time. We also had a "term limit" on SPL. A scout could be SPL more than once, but not back-to-back.
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Re: Unique Method for SPL (& ASPL) Elections....

Postby Guerillero » Fri Aug 19, 2011 10:20 pm

My troop did this for a while and it worked well.
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