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Can a SM ban OA elections?


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#21 Oldscout448

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 04:11 PM

I would leave the Troop and find another. Who knows whatelse is afoot within the Troop.

Ya mean like appointing the patrol leaders? Yep
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#22 King Ding Dong

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 04:33 PM

I would leave the Troop and find another. Who knows whatelse is afoot within the Troop.

You need to help out with those older boys. Talk to your DE and see if there is a troop that can help them out with the PORs and OA.

I think there is someone else on this board who appoints patrol leaders.....who is that ?
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#23 DuctTape

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 05:19 PM

I would leave the Troop and find another. Who knows whatelse is afoot within the Troop.

I was thinking the same thing as the final option on the continuum of options. Less than full resignation from the troop and failure to convince the SM to change, a scout may register jointly with another troop and participate with them as well. This may provide the opportunity for recognition into the OA as well as other potential opportunities.
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#24 Hueymungus

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 06:15 PM

I would leave the Troop and find another. Who knows whatelse is afoot within the Troop.

The only way to fully make the Adults within the Troop to stand-up and take notice is vote with your feet. All the emailing, talking to the committee and other stuff won't do much since it more than likely will stay the same.

When the Scouts start leaving for other Troops, the SM should get the idea. The CC/COR/Treasurer will start to ask questions since they have to transfer Scout ISA's to other Troops.
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#25 JoeBob

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 07:52 PM

I would leave the Troop and find another. Who knows whatelse is afoot within the Troop.

The problem with leaving for another troop for an OA election is that they probably won't get elected in a new troop where no one knows them. By the time that they're in a new troop long enough to get elected, their service window has dramatically shortened or they have aged out.

SM's are not demigods, we just play one in the movies. This SM needs to be enlightened or circumvented..
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#26 Oldscout448

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 08:11 PM

Just curious; what would this SM do if the PLC invited an election team to an event other than a troop meeting? Gotta have 50% attend and requirement #4, SM certification of Scout Spirit could be waived or delegated to an ASM. Summer camp free time? Camporee?

If the boys really want an OA election, Indians can be sneaky. It is the BOYS troop, right? Maybe elect the SM, too.

elect the SM?!?! I would just love to see the look on his face. Doubt he would go on the ordeal though
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#27 Oldscout448

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 08:14 PM

I would leave the Troop and find another. Who knows whatelse is afoot within the Troop.

JoeBob true, but a slim chance is still better than no chance.
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#28 frankpalazzi

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 08:26 PM

Funny thing is, we have a similar issue in our troop, but it isn't the SM, it's the BOYS! They don't want any part of OA. The adults do NOT speak ill of the OA either, but the boys won't openly tell us in BORs why they don't want to go to the ordeal when they are elected. A few years ago, at a Pack event, I chatted with some of the Lodge officers who wondered why elected boys from our Troop don't attend the ordeals, or otherwise show any interest in the OA. Eventually the SM told me that the some of the boys, once elected and inducted, would attend chapter and lodge meetings and basically be ignored; would sign up for committees and never be called, etc. It's the BOYS in our troop who don't want the OA, which is what I told the Lodge folks. Naturally, I got "yes sir"ed to death. The boys talk to each other, and there is an overall ill will toward the Order! The OA Lodge has a serious Public Relations problem with our scouts and THEY need to fix it!! They've made no attempt to do so in the past few years. None. So, the SM goes through the charade of letting them hold elections each time (when they bother to show up), no boys attend Ordeals, and the Lodge is apparently happy with that. Fine and dandy. They have their signed papers as another notch in their belts for "Quality Lodge" or whatever. Did I mention that one of our scouts is also the Lodge Chief? The past two OA Representatives appointed by the SPL have done nothing to promote the OA because the boys don't want to hear it. I do feel that the thirty minutes of Troop time could be better spent, though. P.S. The scout in our troop who is the Lodge Chief? We rarely ever see him. It's been that way for about 2 years.
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#29 Sqyire21

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 08:33 PM

Interesting read, and I would like to know how this will play out. I had a similar issue with a friend who was the SM. He didn't understand the OA, and after a lot of poking from me (and others) he finally allowed an election. Several boys were elected, however most of them didn't attend the induction. The SM honestly was interested, however wasn't able to make it. (medical reasons) So... after all of the work, really only 1 boy was able to join OA. SM changed...and new SM said "Not worth our time...look how many didn't show interest last time." Wasn't really a fair statement, but I could understand his point of view. I hate to say it, but I'd start looking for a new troop. Make a very loud and honest appeal at the next committee meeting, and if they vote it down... walk. (I'd have your new troop already picked out, and probably want to warn them of the possible mass emigration heading their way) One point: You mention the 10%....which was the rule for elections several years back. Just so you know, and someone please confirm this: The 10% rule isn't used anymore. Now, if a boy has enough votes, they can attend Induction. From what I understand, this didn't open it up much...but it did help with some of the troops only having 1 or 2 boys get elected each year.
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#30 qwazse

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Posted 15 October 2013 - 07:13 AM

thanks for the responses guys, I need some help to stay balanced here. One of the scouts who would be up for election is my son #4. Sons #1 and 2 spent some time on the ceremonies tram, as I was the coach all the bonnets, pipes, bows etc were stored at my house for years. so he has wanted to be a member since he was 5 or so. and it really burns me to have some one who has never been in the OA deny him this. based on what some SMs at summer camp told him (his words) The camp was in a different council by the way.
BD, I sadly agree that for most the Order is only a flap and sash. But some of us foolish idealists took/ take the obligation seriously. Perhaps because I had to recite it over 100 times a year at rehearsals all through my teenage years. I want to let the new 10% get their shot at it.
The lodge is just huge has about 22 chapters. Most of 'em are in VA, as are the summer camps. So very few of us MD chapters send many scouts to pack tents for free. Mostly the OA serves as camporee staff, helps new troops out, local stuff.
I once saw them serve as parking crew at a scout's funeral, a lighting strike at Philmont
and yeah I talked with him, I talked (and listened) for an hour he gave the reasons listed in the op and finished up with these words to my son " If you want to be in the OA, you will have to join another troop"
D-Tape I offered to set up a meeting such as you suggested, SM indicated he had zero interest and would not attend. Rarely have I met such a closed mind.
Funny thing is I like the guy, I think he is doing what he thinks is best for his troop. but there's the rub between us, he thinks its HIS troop, I insist its the scouts troop, and if they want it let them have at it
Oldscout

Sounds like son #4 needs to decide if he should transfer to another troop so he has a chance to qualify for O/A, or stick with this troop and take a pass on lodge life.

It is unfortunate when adults perpetrate this kind of bias. And it must be tough on you because it sounds like you were trying to keep up a family tradition. But, now it's in your son's (and maybe his friend's) hands.

If he sticks with the troop, he can mention at every SMC and BOR that this is his one regret about this troop. He may decide that this wont be his mantra forever. Or, he may decide to be a persistent yet respectful agent of change.
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#31 Oldscout448

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Posted 15 October 2013 - 04:02 PM

Interesting read, and I would like to know how this will play out.
I had a similar issue with a friend who was the SM. He didn't understand the OA, and after a lot of poking from me (and others) he finally allowed an election. Several boys were elected, however most of them didn't attend the induction. The SM honestly was interested, however wasn't able to make it. (medical reasons) So... after all of the work, really only 1 boy was able to join OA. SM changed...and new SM said "Not worth our time...look how many didn't show interest last time." Wasn't really a fair statement, but I could understand his point of view.
I hate to say it, but I'd start looking for a new troop. Make a very loud and honest appeal at the next committee meeting, and if they vote it down... walk. (I'd have your new troop already picked out, and probably want to warn them of the possible mass emigration heading their way)
One point: You mention the 10%....which was the rule for elections several years back. Just so you know, and someone please confirm this: The 10% rule isn't used anymore. Now, if a boy has enough votes, they can attend Induction. From what I understand, this didn't open it up much...but it did help with some of the troops only having 1 or 2 boys get elected each year.

ah, I understand the confusion. My mention of the 10% referenced those scouts who do much more than attend the ordeal got a lodge flap, a sash and are nevermore seen at any lodge/chapter event. unlike the other 90%.
Frankly I had forgotten the old percent election rule. I think that has been done away with for some years now
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#32 Oldscout448

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Posted 15 October 2013 - 05:03 PM

Update: Had troop meeting last night, Son went into the room, I stayed in the hallway. was pretty clear the SM and CC were not going to budge, and if I stayed I would be seem to be giving my support to their position. Figured it was best if I just moved on. I had told my son he was old enough to make his own decision, and he seemed ok with that. CC came out and asked me if I could sit on a tenderfoot BOR. told him no ( that was a first for me ) since I was leaving I didn't think I should. two of the ASMs overheard this and asked me why. Figured I owed them an answer, we had hiked more than a few miles together. Asked them to step outside, and we talked for 5-10 minutes. they went back in. I drove off. Came back to pick up son an hour or so later. He wanted to talk to the SM so I went and stood by the car. I couldn't hear all that was said, but at the end SM got pretty loud, something like this: A decision has been made! and I don't like you and your father talking to other people about it! A few replys went through my head at this point but somehow I said nothing. He jumped in his car and drove off. I guess my bridges just got burned.
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#33 Miami_Chief

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Posted 15 October 2013 - 05:59 PM

All lodges are not created equal, My sons chapter stinks, so he attends another chapter and attends the lodge level events.

Is the Lodge just slave labor for the councils camps???? Is there any program to speak of.???? While it is the Brotherhood of cheerful service, Many councils abuse this. This may be the case.

Has anyone actually sat down and asked the SM why? Not try to change his mind but just why???


As an SM I have a hard time sending my guys to set up and tear down camps and work the for profit council events.


But honestly the OA is nothing more than a lodge flap to 90% of the OA members.

"But honestly the OA is nothing more than a lodge flap to 90% of the OA members."

This sums up about 95% of all problems I ran into as a youth officer and now as an adviser.
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#34 Hueymungus

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Posted 15 October 2013 - 06:21 PM

Update: Had troop meeting last night, Son went into the room, I stayed in the hallway. was pretty clear the SM and CC were not going to budge, and if I stayed I would be seem to be giving my support to their position. Figured it was best if I just moved on. I had told my son he was old enough to make his own decision, and he seemed ok with that. CC came out and asked me if I could sit on a tenderfoot BOR. told him no ( that was a first for me ) since I was leaving I didn't think I should. two of the ASMs overheard this and asked me why. Figured I owed them an answer, we had hiked more than a few miles together. Asked them to step outside, and we talked for 5-10 minutes. they went back in. I drove off. Came back to pick up son an hour or so later. He wanted to talk to the SM so I went and stood by the car. I couldn't hear all that was said, but at the end SM got pretty loud, something like this: A decision has been made! and I don't like you and your father talking to other people about it! A few replys went through my head at this point but somehow I said nothing. He jumped in his car and drove off. I guess my bridges just got burned.

Interesting that the SM has that reaction and comments. Guess your son just got the Communications MB...;)
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#35 JoeBob

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Posted 15 October 2013 - 08:06 PM

Update: Had troop meeting last night, Son went into the room, I stayed in the hallway. was pretty clear the SM and CC were not going to budge, and if I stayed I would be seem to be giving my support to their position. Figured it was best if I just moved on. I had told my son he was old enough to make his own decision, and he seemed ok with that. CC came out and asked me if I could sit on a tenderfoot BOR. told him no ( that was a first for me ) since I was leaving I didn't think I should. two of the ASMs overheard this and asked me why. Figured I owed them an answer, we had hiked more than a few miles together. Asked them to step outside, and we talked for 5-10 minutes. they went back in. I drove off. Came back to pick up son an hour or so later. He wanted to talk to the SM so I went and stood by the car. I couldn't hear all that was said, but at the end SM got pretty loud, something like this: A decision has been made! and I don't like you and your father talking to other people about it! A few replys went through my head at this point but somehow I said nothing. He jumped in his car and drove off. I guess my bridges just got burned.

Old448 - I'm sorry that didn't turn out better for your son. Don't you think he'll be better off with a better SM who can defend his positions with reason?
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#36 Basementdweller

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Posted 15 October 2013 - 08:40 PM

That is pretty pathetic. A lad has enough guts to walk in and plead his case for something reasonable and actually part of the BSA that doesn't violate the G2SS, ethics or any laws and the SM says NO.... I give your son Kudos and a big pat on the back for me. I wonder if it will give the other adults pause or reason to follow where ever your scout goes.
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#37 sst3rd

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Posted 15 October 2013 - 08:51 PM

448, Embarrassing is all I can say. What a baby (that Scoutmaster). Talk about setting a lousy example. It's hard changing troops if the OA issue is the only concern.So, stay with this troop and know what you've got, or take your time and help your son find a more complete Scouting program including the OA. If he's not getting ready to turn 18 soon, he'll have time to make friends and build a good reputation. For your son to want to face this adversity head on, I'm impressed. Continue to support him as he moves forward. sst3rd
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#38 Tampa Turtle

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Posted 16 October 2013 - 08:15 AM

There are parts of BSA I don't always like but that is part of the package -FOS and Popcorn for example. I tolerate them even if I do not actively support them. I think the SM's attitude was the tip of the iceberg of a bad attitude. Kudos for your boy for standing up for what he thought was best. Time to move on.
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#39 Oldscout448

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Posted 16 October 2013 - 05:05 PM

Many thanks to all here, you have been more help than you know. My son asked if I knew of other troops nearby, so I guess he is considering a move too. He turns 18 in about 15 months, did Philmont last summer with this troop, so leaving his buddies can not be an easy thing for him. If I'm honest about it it isn't easy for me either. Well gotta go, there is a different troop meeting that starts in 24 minutes
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#40 Twocubdad

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Posted 16 October 2013 - 05:34 PM

Funny thing is, we have a similar issue in our troop, but it isn't the SM, it's the BOYS! They don't want any part of OA. The adults do NOT speak ill of the OA either, but the boys won't openly tell us in BORs why they don't want to go to the ordeal when they are elected. A few years ago, at a Pack event, I chatted with some of the Lodge officers who wondered why elected boys from our Troop don't attend the ordeals, or otherwise show any interest in the OA. Eventually the SM told me that the some of the boys, once elected and inducted, would attend chapter and lodge meetings and basically be ignored; would sign up for committees and never be called, etc. It's the BOYS in our troop who don't want the OA, which is what I told the Lodge folks. Naturally, I got "yes sir"ed to death. The boys talk to each other, and there is an overall ill will toward the Order! The OA Lodge has a serious Public Relations problem with our scouts and THEY need to fix it!! They've made no attempt to do so in the past few years. None. So, the SM goes through the charade of letting them hold elections each time (when they bother to show up), no boys attend Ordeals, and the Lodge is apparently happy with that. Fine and dandy. They have their signed papers as another notch in their belts for "Quality Lodge" or whatever. Did I mention that one of our scouts is also the Lodge Chief? The past two OA Representatives appointed by the SPL have done nothing to promote the OA because the boys don't want to hear it. I do feel that the thirty minutes of Troop time could be better spent, though.

P.S. The scout in our troop who is the Lodge Chief? We rarely ever see him. It's been that way for about 2 years.

Sounds like my experience. After spending all morning collecting food, I drove my first two Ordeal members to help the chapter sort food at the collection site. On our way home I cheerfully asked if they had met anyone. No, they said, no one really talked to them, but some idiot in a war bonnet kept yelling at them. I spent two years driving two different Troop OA reps to chapter meetings. They kept volunteering for stuff and never got called. One spoke with every vice chief and advisor trying to volunteer to help out in a support role with the ceremony team. There was always someone else he needed to talk to. Lost of pressure to serve on the election team and as a Langolier (whatever) for ordeals, though. Never actually saw anyone do a service project outside the Ordeal labor camps. Lot of strutting around summer camp making sure everyone knew the Lodge was really in charge of camp.

Currently, I don't have anyone interested in serving as Troop OA rep or advisor and I'm danged well not doing it again. Consequently, we missed elections this year. No one seemed to notice.
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