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Vote by peers the only way in?


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#61 SM bob

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Posted 21 May 2014 - 06:39 PM

We scouters know how this happened. An adult bullied scouts into getting their way. As a SM or ASM scouts listen and respect us. If a mom came up to a OA member and showed a signed form by a unit leader they would not questions it. The adult members of the lodge should take heed of this situation and provide some oversight in the future. The adult OA members should be in the shadows of the checkin area to make sure stuff like does not happen. The number of outraged responses shows that this is not normal. My own lodge has two OA scouts check in all ordeal candidates. Behind them sits an adult quietly monitoring the process.
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#62 SWScouter

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 12:18 PM


My son was elected to OA recently and attended Ordeal this past weekend. Another boy in his Troop was not elected and his mother was VERY upset about it. So she had one of the ASM sign an Ordeal registration form for her son. She took him to Ordeal on Friday with the signed form and registration money and the OA staff allowed him to stay and complete Ordeal. So I can tell you that I know being voted in by your peers is not the only way in...at least at this lodge.

I would not recommend this route as it has caused a conflict in the Troop and the boys who were honestly voted in feel like they have been slighted. And I feel like it took something away from their experience.

I have considered contacting OA staff for the lodge and discuss my concerns but at this point I can't decide. What do you all think?


To me, this is purely an issue with the lodge's ordeal registration process. Granted the ASM had no business signing a registration form, but the lodge should not have allowed the registration since the scout in question was not elected and the election form turned in by the election team would not have included the scout. So the big issue is how did the scout's registration get past the ordeal registrar's scrutiny. That is where the problem lies.
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#63 Longhaired_Mac

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Posted 18 July 2014 - 12:08 AM

How elections are officially supposed to be done has already been covered so:

To MomLeader I would respectfully say that no matter what the odds your son will get in when he deserves it. By that time...after gaining experience, skills, and maturity he will be the description of an OA member period, and that will be in its own time not yours.

To JCMom, I understand your son's disappointment in the situation as well as your own frustration and obviously consequences should occur and probably have already begun to happen. Most likely no one will really be happy with the end result. I do believe to be fair to the boy who's mom "cheated" his way in to the OA, he should be given the opportunity by the SM or the Lodge Chief if necessary to retract his membership and agree to go through the process again honestly. From that point if he's a scout he will do whats right.

NOW if he won't, and his mother is the pushy type with such a personality as has been attributed to her beyond your own description by many here (that pops-up in every troop sooner or later)... petty as it might be, you may feel some recompense when his Eagle BoR comes up. There is little doubt the boy will make it that far with such a mother. BoR's are supposed to be teaching moments and recognition of development but they can also be the place of honest comeuppances to teach and develop.

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#64 jorgeghr

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Posted 31 August 2014 - 03:32 PM

If found this link interesting, which talks about the OA elections being run as popularity contest: http://www.oa-bsa.or...ularity-contest

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#65 TAMScout

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Posted 06 October 2014 - 06:43 PM

There certainly is something rotten in the state of Denmark. I'm a Chapter adviser, An arrow man from youth. A veteran Scoutmaster and now working with the district committee. If a willing scout is not elected there is a problem. A few years back a certain scout was not elected in our district. After a chat with the scoutmaster the reason was apparent. The Scout in question had introduces a smoke bomb into a snow cave rendering it uninhabitable. Now my question is this: "is this a popularity issue? or just a sign that this is not a good scout?" Both could be acceptable answers. Another Troop recently elected half of their members. Something that was impossible under the old percentage rules. Precisely one of those boys made it to Ordeal. It wasn't the popular one. It wasn't the one with the pushiest parents. It wasn't the one who barely scraped 50% of the vote. It was the quiet kid from the struggling family. He has remained active up until this year. Not sure If I'll get him back until the end of soccer season. I just hope he limits it to one sport. By the way the popular kid with the pushy parents asked for a reelection this year but declined last week to attend ordeal. Now back into the dusty history. I was that kid who moved into the troop and didn't make friends. How did I get elected. Organized hazing! it's the only way I can justify it in my mind. The fellow scouts must have thought it would be pretty funny to see me get tapped out. I don't care now nor did I then, I wanted in and I took whatever it took to get in. Ordeal was without a doubt the most influential scouting experiencing of my youth. What I really think happened to this scout back in March was Organized hazing. The fellow scouts saw that this was what he wanted and conspired to deny it to him. For whatever reason. Perhaps the equivalent of a smoke bomb, or maybe just rank jealousy. If in deed there is hazing in the troop the scoutmaster is responsible to end it. I had to do it as a scoutmaster, it did not make me popular. Now I don't think the scoutmaster should tell then how to vote, I do think the scoutmaster should enforce the Scout law regarding kindness and courtesy. As to what can be done about this. I don't like the idea of subverting the ASM. That leaves the option of finding a troop that does respect achievement. My son has been dual enrolled for 2 years as a camp staffer. He wears the numbers of the crew that supports him. I dislike this approach as well but it is a way around that is legitimate. I wonder if taking away an eagle scout from them would motivate the leaders to solve the problem. One thing is certain once he is elected and has earned his eagle he should move to a venturing crew. Sorry for the long read -- Tam
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#66 AlamanceScouter

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 06:17 PM

Just wanted to post to say thank you for this thread and the great responses. My son did not get tapped out last night and he was crushed...I mean...it surprised me how crushed he was. This thread has helped me to think about ways to positively handle this with him when I pick him up from camp tomorrow. Of course, by tomorrow he probably will not even remember how he felt last night.....lol.
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#67 PA Scoutmaster

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Posted 25 September 2015 - 03:47 PM

Just wanted to post to say thank you for this thread and the great responses. My son did not get tapped out last night and he was crushed...I mean...it surprised me how crushed he was. This thread has helped me to think about ways to positively handle this with him when I pick him up from camp tomorrow. Of course, by tomorrow he probably will not even remember how he felt last night.....lol.

 

Alamance, I've been there, and it feels terrible. It took 3 years on the ballot for my son to be elected. Looking back, he probably lacked maturity the first year. The second year was definitely a popularity contest. However, he did eventually make it, and he really embraced it. Maybe because he had to wait, he valued it more. He has become involved with the lodge and jumps at every opportunity for a service weekend, trail crew day, or pretty much anything else. 

 

I found the link you posted regarding elections a few years ago. We did find that it helped to make an actual ballot as opposed to having kids write down names. In addition, i really started taking time to talk with any candidate that met the requirements for OA. We let them know that if elected, we expect them to not only complete the ordeal, but really become involved in the lodge. If you can't commit to that, I completely understand and will not think less of you for not being on the ballot. I found that these steps give us a good pool of OA brothers that really care, and really want to be part of it. 

 

Best of luck to you and your son. 


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