Serve for 4 months, 6 months, 6 months...

Scout Badge, Tenderfoot, Second Class, First Class, Star, Life, and Eagle Palms.

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Re: Serve for 4 months, 6 months, 6 months...

Postby RWSmith » Thu Nov 05, 2009 11:35 pm

kwildman wrote:After they do their 1st class SM conference we tell them that they know who is on the TC and that they need to be responsible for asking 3 of them to do a BOR.

[This has been discussed before; but, I'm going to bring it up here so newer folks get the correct information.]

Not only is this adding to the requirements, but it also by-passes a critical link in the chain of authority concerning rank advancement.

Once a Scout is ready for a BOR, the SM contacts the TC... supposed to be the AC, if there is one. Again, the SM contacts the TC; the TCM responsible for setting up the board contacts the Scout to set a mutual time/date/place for the BOR... Sure, this could all be easily done at a single Troop meeting (except for Eagle, of course) if enough of the right people are there. The point is, a Scout NEVER sets up his own BOR -- ON HIS OWN. It's not his responsibility; it's not his job. Adults setup BORs, not Scouts. (Scouts have certain things they can and cannot do; the same goes for ULs and TCMs.)
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Re: Serve for 4 months, 6 months, 6 months...

Postby evmori » Fri Nov 06, 2009 8:38 am

Fibonacci wrote:Comment on the original topic: I had a mother get very mad at me (I'm the Adv Chair.) I insisted her son complete all the requirements before his Board of Review. He was a week short of his 6 months POR for Life. It was not a problem for anyone else to hold his board on the 6 month date (exactly), but she felt it would be more convenient if we would hold it a week early, on the 6 month date of his activitity as a member, but a week short of his Position of Responsibility. I told her that we were holding her son to the same requirements as every other Life Scout in BSA, but she said I was just being picky.


I love parents like this! Just being picky! Wonder if it's "just being picky" to drive the speed limit or use your turn signals or be on time for work?
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Re: Serve for 4 months, 6 months, 6 months...

Postby Cowboy » Sun Nov 08, 2009 9:12 am

I must have missed it somewhere in my training, because I do not remember hearing or reading that a Scout is not allowed or responsible for arranging his BOR (except EBOR.) In fact, I would suspect that National is okay with this practice. Why? Just last year National finally came out and made the rule that a Scout can have no input regarding the makeup of his EBOR. First: They recognized that Scouts were handpicking the EBOR, and decided that this is NOT a good idea (I strongly agree). Second: They did NOT include the other ranks with this rule. Had National intended for the Scout to have no input for any rank they would have made it an across the board rule, not specific to Eagle.
I know that we have many boys in our Troop that avoid certain people on a BOR. One of them is very long winded and will drag out a BOR for 45+ minutes. There are also personality conflicts. If a boy and leader do not get along on a personal level it does not mean that either one is "bad", but why force a negative experience?
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Re: Serve for 4 months, 6 months, 6 months...

Postby smtroop168 » Mon Nov 09, 2009 10:33 am

Cowboy wrote:I must have missed it somewhere in my training, because I do not remember hearing or reading that a Scout is not allowed or responsible for arranging his BOR (except EBOR.) In fact, I would suspect that National is okay with this practice. Why? Just last year National finally came out and made the rule that a Scout can have no input regarding the makeup of his EBOR. First: They recognized that Scouts were handpicking the EBOR, and decided that this is NOT a good idea (I strongly agree). Second: They did NOT include the other ranks with this rule. Had National intended for the Scout to have no input for any rank they would have made it an across the board rule, not specific to Eagle.
I know that we have many boys in our Troop that avoid certain people on a BOR. One of them is very long winded and will drag out a BOR for 45+ minutes. There are also personality conflicts. If a boy and leader do not get along on a personal level it does not mean that either one is "bad", but why force a negative experience?


From the scouting.org website:
Question: What is a board of review, and what is its primary purpose?
Answer: The troop committee conducts a board of review to periodically review each Scout's progress, from Tenderfoot through Life ranks, to encourage him, to learn whether he is enjoying his Scouting experience, and to evaluate the unit's effectiveness in conducting the Scouting program to benefit him. The review presents a good opportunity to monitor the Scout's advancement and keep him on track. It also gives unit leaders a chance to measure the effectiveness of their leadership. The troop committee appoints three to six individuals to conduct the board of review.

My emphasis added.
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Re: Serve for 4 months, 6 months, 6 months...

Postby kwildman » Mon Nov 09, 2009 5:02 pm

Information provided on the website is not necessarily policy or regulation. There have been things that are contradictory and wrong on there as well. Our TC has no problems w/ the current way the program is being run. As for "adding requirements" I see this as a troop tradition and dont think it puts any strain on the boys...if there was a boy that had problems with it we would arrange it for them.

All of this is a bit off topic as my post wasn't meant to start a new debate but rather give some guidance on how to enable more frequent BORs. Use whatever works for you, the bottom line is that troops that only schedule several BORs and mange advancement in groups are not looking out for the best interest of the individual scouts. Boys are encouraged to advance at their own pace and making them wait is not right.
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: Serve for 4 months, 6 months, 6 months...

Postby smtroop168 » Mon Nov 09, 2009 6:00 pm

kwildman wrote:Information provided on the website is not necessarily policy or regulation. There have been things that are contradictory and wrong on there as well. Our TC has no problems w/ the current way the program is being run. As for "adding requirements" I see this as a troop tradition and dont think it puts any strain on the boys...if there was a boy that had problems with it we would arrange it for them.

All of this is a bit off topic as my post wasn't meant to start a new debate but rather give some guidance on how to enable more frequent BORs. Use whatever works for you, the bottom line is that troops that only schedule several BORs and mange advancement in groups are not looking out for the best interest of the individual scouts. Boys are encouraged to advance at their own pace and making them wait is not right.


I'll pass your concerns on to the CSE about the quality of the info on his web site. How about Page 55 in the new handbook "your Scoutmaster will arrange a board of review for you."

It's clear that your unit will not change how they do BORs and there is no leverage anyone on the forum has to compel you to do so. We have seen many instances where posters ask about units that blantantly "use whatever works for them" without regard to the actual rules because of "Troop Traditions". Each of these generally involve adding to the advancement requirements and these posters are asking how to get help.
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Re: Serve for 4 months, 6 months, 6 months...

Postby kwildman » Tue Nov 10, 2009 3:50 pm

so the scoutmaster can, at his discretion screw up, the program by deciding that he will only have 3 BORs per year? I suppose that page 55 means that he can decide to stall kids or even decide not to set-up a board of review at all? If all of these rules were so clear we wouldnt even need this forum. There are many places that the "rules" contradict themselves. Lets not even get into all the places that the local councils differ with national. The point is that the leaders should be looking at what is best for the kids.
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Re: Serve for 4 months, 6 months, 6 months...

Postby smtroop168 » Tue Nov 10, 2009 5:28 pm

kwildman wrote:so the scoutmaster can, at his discretion screw up, the program by deciding that he will only have 3 BORs per year? I suppose that page 55 means that he can decide to stall kids or even decide not to set-up a board of review at all? If all of these rules were so clear we wouldnt even need this forum. There are many places that the "rules" contradict themselves. Lets not even get into all the places that the local councils differ with national. The point is that the leaders should be looking at what is best for the kids.


Of course not... :evil: The SM works for the Committee. If he's not meeting his responsibilities, then the Committee takes action to correct the situation. Nowhere does it say that Scouts set up their own BORs. Scouts have a SMC, ask for a BOR and the Troop Committee is responsible for appointing the members and holding the BOR.
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Re: Serve for 4 months, 6 months, 6 months...

Postby FrankJ » Wed Nov 11, 2009 9:37 am

The Advancement Guide Book does not address who selects BOR members for Star & below other than they be on the committee. Since BOR is a committee function, implied in there would be that the comittee should decide how thet are set up. The SM's job is only to let the committee know the scout is ready for his BOR. The notification should be immediately after the scout completes all the rank requirements. If the procedure a troop has in place for a scout to get his BOR in a timely manner is working, I wouldn't worry too much about it.
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Re: Serve for 4 months, 6 months, 6 months...

Postby WeeWillie » Thu Nov 12, 2009 12:59 pm

Why would a SM have a SMC and then not inform the TC of the results? If a SM was really out to screw up a Scout's advancement he or she would have only 3 SMCs a year. Advancement is a shared responsibility between the SM (and ASMs) and CC (and CMs).

The purpose of tradition is to complement an organization's goals. Our goals are expressed in the Scout Oath and Law. A Scout is Obedient is the 7th Point of the Scout Law. That includes following instructions. SM168 cited "Page 55 in the new handbook "your Scoutmaster will arrange a board of review for you." Traditions that are contrary to written instructions are not valid.

While SM I have made several well intended decsions that were contrary to BSA policy. For example I imposed a 6 month deadline to complete Summer Camp MB partials. When a parent pointed out the policy was invalid I thanked them and immediately recinded the policy.

Time to recind your troop's tradition.
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