A Failed Board of Review

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A Failed Board of Review

Postby jreader4564 » Wed Feb 20, 2008 3:11 pm

I have a question on Boards of Review. How long does a scout need to wait after he has failed a Board of Review to take it again. I am the Scout Master and our Committee Chair brought in an outsider to do his Board of Review for Life Scout, the person brought in is the same person that sits on the Eagle Boards of Review. She said that he was too immature to be a life scout and that he never should have even had a Board of Review yet.
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Postby ThunderingWind » Wed Feb 20, 2008 3:29 pm

While I do not have an answer to your question...It makes me ask a few more.

Did you as the SM feel he was ready to go before the board and thusly be promoted?

What is the definiton of immature being used in this case?

Is there a reason the CC is bringin outsiders? Not that this is wrong, just never heard of it before outside an Eagle BoR.
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Postby wagionvigil » Wed Feb 20, 2008 3:29 pm

she is wrong.THis was a bad bor. In my Opinion it does not count.any others?
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Failed Board of Review

Postby jreader4564 » Wed Feb 20, 2008 3:32 pm

yes, as a SM I did feel he was ready. No sure what the reasonings for bringing in an outsider. I did feel like he was failed before he even had a chance. The ousider made him feel very uncomfortable.
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Postby wagionvigil » Wed Feb 20, 2008 3:37 pm

Again her we have someone that is adding to the requirements. Maturity is no where mentioned in any BSA Literature that I know of. Does show scout spirit? The SM Thinks so or he would not have sent him for the BOR. He is able to have a BOR today if you want.
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Postby evmori » Wed Feb 20, 2008 3:41 pm

While we want our Scouts to mature, maturity isn't a requirement for any rank advancement.

I agree with wagonvigil, this BOR was bogus & the Scout should be given a do over.

Why was an outsider brought in anyway?
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Failed Board of Review

Postby jreader4564 » Wed Feb 20, 2008 3:46 pm

so there is no time limit to wait?
she told me that he would have to wait 3 months to try again. The scout had told me that they were quizzing him on the requirements for his Merit Badges that he had earned and they had asked him what all of his Merit Badges were. He got confused with the EVS one because it shows the symbol for recycling and so that is what he called it.

On another BOR the scout complained about a trouble maker scout in his patrol and the CC said that she could not tell me what was said because BOR's are confidential and she could not even tell the SM. Is this true?

Sorry, I have a new troop, only two years old that I have started from scratch. Have done a lot of work to obtain supplies and recruit members (we have 20 scouts) this weekend the CC went behind my back and called some of the parents and talked to them for about an hour each saying the troop was being run all wrong and we need to change the way I am doing things. I was told this by my parents. Needless to say, I was not happy.
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Postby Mrw » Wed Feb 20, 2008 3:50 pm

I question bringing in an outsider for a Life BOR too. Why was this done? This boy should have a new BOR now.

If the BOR did legitimately turn him down for advancement, they should have told him specifically what it was he needs to improve to pass the BOR and given him a time frame in which to do this - in writing.

There is a training document out there on how to conduct BOR's. I am at work and cannot look up a link for you now, but it would be worth your while to look this up and train or retrain your committee on the proper BSA way of doing BOR's and their purpose.
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Postby smtroop168 » Wed Feb 20, 2008 3:57 pm

Here's the gouge. The bolded parts are done by me. If the scout appeals he will win.


National BSA Policies Related To Boards Of Review


Boards of Review
A periodic review of the progress of a Scout is vital in the evaluation of the effectiveness of the Scouting program in the unit. The unit committee can judge how well the Scout being reviewed is benefiting from the program. The unit leader can measure the effectiveness of his or her leadership. The Scout can sense that he is, or is not, advancing properly and can be encouraged to make the most of his Scouting experience.

Not only is it important to review those Scouts who have learned and been tested for a rank, but also to review those Scouts who have shown no progress in their advancement over the past few months.

The members of the board of review should have the following objectives in mind when they conduct the review:

To make sure the Scout has done what he was supposed to do for the rank.
To see how good an experience the Scout is having in the unit.
To encourage the Scout to progress further.

The review is not an examination; the board does not retest the candidate. Rather, the board should attempt to determine the Scout's attitude and his acceptance of Scouting ideals. Scout spirit is defined as living the Scout Oath (Promise) and Scout Law in a Scout's everyday life. The board should make sure that good standards have been met in all phases of the Scout's life. A discussion of the Scout Oath and Scout Law is in keeping with the purpose of the review, to make sure that the candidate recognizes and understands the value of Scouting in his home, unit, school, and community.

The decision of all boards of review is arrived at through discussion and must be unanimous.


Review for Tenderfoot Through Life Ranks and Eagle Palms. After a Scout has completed all requirements for Tenderfoot, Second Class, First Class, Star, and Life ranks, or an Eagle Palm, he appears before a board of review. This board of review is made up of at least three and not more than six members of the troop committee. One member serves as chairman, usually the committee member responsible for advancement. Unit leaders, assistant unit leaders, relatives, or guardians may not serve as members of a Scout's board of review.

The review shall be conducted at a convenient time and location, such as a meeting, summer camp, or the home of a member of the troop committee.

The review has three purposes:

To make sure the work has been learned and completed.
To check to see what kind of experience the boy is having in his patrol and troop.
To encourage the Scout to advance to the next rank.

Because many boys are ill at ease when talking to adults, it is important that the board be held in a relaxed atmosphere. A certain amount of formality and meaningful questioning should be used during the review.

The Scout should be neat in appearence and his uniform should be as correct as possible, with the badges worn properly. It should be the desire of the board to encourage the Scout to talk so that the review can be a learning experience for the candidate and the members of the board.

The review is not an examination. The Scout has learned his skill and has been examined. This is a review. The Scout should be asked where he learned his skill, who taught him, and the value he gained from passing this requirement.

The Scout reviews what he did for his rank. From this review, it can be determined whether he did what he was supposed to do. The review also reveals what kind of experience the Scout is having in the troop. With that knowledge, the troop leaders can shape the program to meet the needs and interests of the Scouts.

The board should attempt to determine the Scout's ideals and goals. The board should make sure that a good standard of performance has been met. A discussion of the Scout Oath and Scout Law is in keeping with the purpose of the review, to make sure the candidate recognizes and understands the value of Scouting in his home, unit, school, and community.

The board of review members should feel free to refer to the Boy Scout Handbook, Scoutmaster Handbook, or any other references during the review. The Troop Committee Guidebook contains examples of questions that could be asked during a review.

The review should take approximately fifteen minutes. At the conclusion of the review, the board should know whether a boy is qualified for the rank or Palm. The Scout is asked to leave the room while the board members discuss his achievements. The decision of the board of review is arrived through discussion and must be unanimous. If members are satisfied that the Scout is ready to advance, he is called in, congratulated, notified as to when he will receive his recognition, and encouraged to continue his advancement or earn the next Palm.

If the board decides that the Scout is not ready to advance, the candidate should be informed and told what he has not done satisfactorily. Most Scouts accept responsibility for not completing the requirements properly. The members of the board of review should specify what must be done to rework the candidate's weaknesses and schedule another board of review for him. A follow-up letter must be sent to a Scout who is turned down for rank advancement, confirming the agreements reached on the actions necessary for advancement. Should the Scout disagree with the decision, the appeal procedures should be explained to him. (See "Appealing a Decision" below.)
After the board of review is completed, the Scoutmaster is informed of all of the decisions that were made by the board of review.
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Failed Board of Review

Postby jreader4564 » Wed Feb 20, 2008 4:05 pm

I really appreciate all of your advice. When I first started the troop I obviously had a lot of questions. I saught answers to those questions from our district advancement chair (same person called in for the review in question) she would give me answers like-you can not work on Merit Badges as a group in your troop ?????? And if you are the MB counselor, you can not teach your own kid ????? Both of these statements I proved her wrong, she did not like that
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Postby mt_goodrich » Wed Feb 20, 2008 4:07 pm

As others have said, this was a bogus BOR.

If they had problems with the Scout, they should detail exactly what they were.

I feel bad for the Scout in this case.
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Postby wagionvigil » Wed Feb 20, 2008 4:20 pm

Is this your Son?
Oh I am so PO'ed right now.
I would have no problem calling and filing a complaint with the council against this Individual.

What Council are you from? This should be in your profile under Location.
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Failed Board of Review

Postby jreader4564 » Wed Feb 20, 2008 4:39 pm

Yes, it is my son. He just turned 13 two weeks ago, he has 21 Merit Badges. He attends two weeks of summer camp. He is a very quiet and shy science geek kinda kid. His major goal in life is to be the first Eagle Scout in our troop. My parents were very big into all aspects of scouting from cubbies to Boy Scout to Sea Scouts. Sadly my dad is gone so he will not see Austin's accomplishments, but he wants to achieve Eagle before my mom passes away, she will be 80 this June. He works hard.
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Postby wagionvigil » Wed Feb 20, 2008 4:41 pm

Call the council service center and file a complaint. Better yet have your WIfe and Son call.
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Postby FrankJ » Wed Feb 20, 2008 4:42 pm

It sounds like your district advancement chair needs to go to training. Beyond verifying that the merit badges were awarded, they are not subject to review. They are good subjects for discussion in a BOR, but they should not have any bearing on rather or not the scout passes.

If your committee chair brought some one in for a BOR, it seems that there are other issues going on that need to be addressed. When the CC & SM cannot communicate, the troop suffers.

I would insist on a written summary of what the scout needs to do & why he was not passed. If the why does not refer to the requirements for rank, I would start the appeals process immediately. You are probably going to end up at council because, reading between the the lines, the district & your CC are already in agreement.
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Postby mt_goodrich » Wed Feb 20, 2008 4:47 pm

The more I read this thread, the more upset I get.

I would hate to think that something like this would turn a young man off of Scouting.
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Postby wagionvigil » Wed Feb 20, 2008 4:48 pm

http://www.scouting.org/boyscouts/train ... ining.aspx

Go here and print the training session and go and give it to the CC and the Adv Chair. Hand deliver it to them.
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Postby mt_goodrich » Wed Feb 20, 2008 4:59 pm

wagionvigil,

Thanks for posting that link.

I am going to print it off and deliver to my committee. We haven't had any problems, but better to stay on top of things.

Sometimes they attempt to "retest" a Scout and from time to time, I have to remind them it is not proper to "retest" or decide whether a merit badge was earned or not. Once it is awarded, end of story.

jreader....please stay on top of this. It may just be ignorance on the part of the troop committee and they do not know how to conduct a proper BOR.
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Postby cballman » Wed Feb 20, 2008 5:08 pm

seems kinda funny to me to bring in someone who sits on EAGLE boards for a life board. the things that were told about waiting 3 months has nothing to do with the district or council. that to me is a troop matter. I would raise nine kinds of caine with this. also look at it this way if the CC is going behind your back to the parents then there are problems with troop leadership and the committie. working together is not a theory to try but must happen if the troop is to flourish. I would sit down and talk with the CC along with someone else just in case it gets heated. seems to me that your son might be the first Eagle in the troop and someone either the CC or another parent might be a little upset. is your son the only one that is close or is there another child close? is the CC jealous that their son is not quite as advanced as your son? I have seen these things before and its not pretty when the truth comes out. Good luck
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Postby ThunderingWind » Wed Feb 20, 2008 6:29 pm

It is situations like that confirm my desire to see more professional Scouters in each Council and actively set more public/parents knowledge of the workings of the entire program.

1) Separate the money earning part and make that a full time job in and of itself.

2) Create a new District position that is focused on the program. Share this within the Council depending on size. No money grubbin'

3) Create a Council Training position. Full time position.

4) Require BSA National Certifications in areas such as District Advancement Chair with an exam given by National to do the job.

5) Require parents to stay at more meetings each year for "mandatory" parent education. This way they know what to expect.

6) Require all leaders to be trained within six months of signing the adult application or they are out. Put this on the National Application.

7) Require more review of each CO as they re-charter. Are all the leaders trained? Is the next training scheduled?

8: Stagger re-charter time in each Council so that X units or one disteict is due every Y weeks so the above review can be done. It's all Interneet based now anyway.

9) Bring the training to the units if need be. Do not be afriad to stipulate that on X night of Pack 123s schedule there will only be adults in for training, the kids are off. Try it on a Fifth week of the month. Skip the monthly Pack meeting and hand out awards at the next Den meeting if need be. Change above to meet Troop and Crew schedule.

10) Run a national campaign asking former Scouts to come back and help a local unit, Dictrict or Council.

11) Work with a college to create a major in Youth Services with Scouting (Boy or Girl) to help create more professional Scouters.

12) Mandate more in-depth training for the COR, and ALL Committee Members. This gets to the heart of the issue with origianl post. Mandate the certification exam as well.

Yes, I know that this could hurt some units short term. But think of improvements this would bring overall.
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