Blue Cards

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Postby 616kayak » Thu Jun 29, 2006 2:44 pm

If I were a SM I would give him the blue cards but warn him about how much work he is in for. I advise him to invite other scouts to join him to work on the merit badges. A group would make him more likely to accomplish the 8 badges and would also get other scouts badges.

Is there a rule against giving out blank blue cards without signatures? If there is no rule against it then I would suggest allowing each scout to have a set of blank blue cards so they don’t have to depend on some one else bringing blue cards to the meeting.
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Postby Mad Dog » Thu Jun 29, 2006 2:58 pm

Our council has a rule that a MBC can only council 10 merit badges.

We are getting bogged down in multiple layers of rule:

1) National Rules
2) Coucil Rules
3) District Rules
4) Troop Rules
5) SM Rules
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Postby maricopasem » Thu Jun 29, 2006 3:31 pm

I agree! I'll say it again:

Why would you stifle any boy that is motivated to do something of value?

I would think that every Scout leader would be thrilled to encourage any and every boy that had the desire and the motivation to work on 2 or 5 or 20 MB at one time.

Maybe we ought to micromanage less and encourage more.
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Postby scoutaholic » Thu Jun 29, 2006 3:47 pm

PaulSWolf wrote:
scoutaholic wrote:...If I understand national policy correctly, each adult can only sign 5 MBs for each boy in a year. Our council has made it even more strict and they say only 3...

You are misinterpreting the national standards. Here's the official rule, from "Advancement Committee Policies and Procedures":

...There is no limit on the number of merit badges a youth may earn from one counselor.

An approved merit badge counselor may counsel any youth member, including his or her own son, ward, or relative.

Nothing about limiting a counselor to 3 or 5 MBs for any boy in any year. On the contrary, it specifically says there is no limit.

The first line I quoted covers the last part of your comment. Each MB Counselor MUST be approved by the Council Advancement Committee for EACH MB he/she wishes to counsel, and must show competence in the subject. So, unless the person has been approved for that specific merit badge he/she may not counsel any Scouts for that badge.


evmori wrote:There is no written rule that a MB counselor can only counsel xx meritbadges for a Scout nor is there a written rule regarding parents being their sons MB counselor. I do agree that a Scout should be going to someone other than his parents for MB counseling & the SM does have a say in who the Scout should use as a MB counselor.

OK. Apparently our Council has made up their own rules on this subject.

It is a printed and documented rule in our council that a MBC can only sign 3 MBs per scout per year.
It is also documented in council advancement guidelines that parents (and SMs) should not act as MBCs except in cases where the subject matter of the MB makes other MBCs impractical. The 3 MBs per year rule also (especially) applies to SMs and Parents acting as MBCs.
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Postby Mrw » Thu Jun 29, 2006 8:38 pm

The three MB per boy maximum is a rather foolish and completely unenforcable rule from your Council as there is no paperwork that goes to them stating which counselor a boy has seen for a badge.

I would always encourage the boys to see someone other than a parent for a badge, and to not see only one counselor for everything.
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Postby Lynda J » Fri Jun 30, 2006 10:52 am

If our Council had this policy I would be in trouble. I have done 5 badges with one boy already this year. THey are all nature related which is my passion. Our SM laughs that I love the creepy, crawley, grimmy badges. I love outdoor, nature and outdoor science related badges.
He isn't from my troop. What I look as is if after earning the badge does the boy know tha material. You are always going to have counselors that make badge work more fun than others. And counselors that work with certain boys better than others. So limiting the badges a counselor can work on with one boy isn't fair to the boy or the counselor.
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Postby FrankJ » Fri Jun 30, 2006 12:42 pm

I read the part in the Boy Scout Handbook about the SM providing the name of a counselor. I see nothing saying a scout must use that counselor. What if the counselor is not available? The scout decides to do the merit badge at summer camp or a merit badge clinic? As long as a conselsor is registered for that merit badge, the advancement guidelines state he can approve completion of a merit bagde.

A SM can and should provide encouragement and advice on merit badges, but ultimately it is up to the scout on how or even if he completes a merit badge. A scout will learn even from his mistakes.
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Postby WVBeaver05 » Mon Jul 03, 2006 11:19 am

Mad Dog wrote:He wants to use the off season to work on his badges. ... He will not be seeing the SM over the summer and the SM had a habit of "forgetting" to bring blue cards with him during the year to meetings.

I have never heard of a Troop not meeting during the summer (some Packs don't meet, but there are programs to encourage them to meet at least once a month.)

Not meeting during the summer would certainly slow down advancement, and probably hurt Scout retention as well. Perhaps the Committee and/or PLC should discuss this and decide whether to meet or not.

Mad Dog wrote:Also, the SM does not normally give out a blue card until all the work is done.

This has been discussed, but let me add something. How does the SM know that the requirements are completed? I look a the MBC signatures and the initials and dates next to the requirements. With no blue card, what would I look at?


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Postby Mad Dog » Tue Jul 04, 2006 3:46 pm

With the exception of a week at camp we do not meet between mid June and mid September. I am hoping to get a few activities going over the summer but without meetings it is hard for the boys to get things organized. I told my son not to get discouraged and to just do three at a time.
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Postby Scouting179 » Tue Jul 04, 2006 7:53 pm

A blue card itself is not required, but tracking of MB status is necessary. Look at the paper stock TM sells for its MB card printouts.
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Postby Lynda J » Wed Jul 05, 2006 10:02 am

Like Beaver05. We meet on Monday. So the week of camp and the Monday after camp we don't meet. But the rest of the summer we meet every week. I don't think there is a Troop in our district that doesn't meet all summer.
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Postby ICanCanoeCanU » Wed Jul 05, 2006 2:08 pm

Our troop only meets from Sept to June, with an occasional summer event or meeting prior to camp.
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Postby evmori » Wed Jul 05, 2006 2:11 pm

We meet september thru summer camp which is the 2nd week of July.
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Postby wagionvigil » Wed Jul 05, 2006 3:36 pm

WE always take the Month of July off after we attened camp in June. But we planned an outing or two like WW Rafting or biking.
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Postby vpalango » Wed Jul 05, 2006 4:32 pm

We meet generally from September, through summer camp (2nd week in July). Over the summer, it's a bit of scouting "time off" for both the boys, and for us leadership types. I know I need a little time off in the summer, where I'm not concerned with the troop, and can simply enjoy some golf and family time without the constant activity level we have the rest of the year.

We do have some activities, however, in August. We elect our PLC at summer camp for the next year, so we have a planning session to flesh out the calendar at least for the first half of the year sometime in

In addition, this year we start a little earlier (late August) because we're participating in our first campout on the weekend of September 8th.

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Postby Chief J » Thu Jul 06, 2006 11:27 am

We generally meet on Monday's year round. We do take off those Monday's that are holidays as well as the Monday after Summer Camp.

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