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delayed/deferred/denied rank advancement after BOR. Why?


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#21 andysmom

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Posted 27 January 2015 - 10:25 AM

Whoa... I misread the original post. If you were part of this BOR and have inside information the scout was not privy to, there are so many things thus described that are wrong, I would approach the CC and let them reconvene a valid BOR group that knows what they are doing. Sounds like "these two leaders" are adding to requirements that have already been fulfilled, a major no-no in scouting. I hope that the CC is not one of "these two leaders" in that you are really screwed if that is the case.

By the way, these separate hoops the BOR is requiring are bogus and outside the scope of the Scout Law. One does not show leadership by setting up tents and I don't believe there is anything in the requirement that says a boy has to show leadership in anything required for Star.

In the future I would refuse to sit on any BOR for this troop until they were properly trained and held accountable for their actions.

Boy joins at 11, by 12 his could be FC, by 12 yr 4 mo he could be Star. What gives "these two leaders" justification that 13 is too young for Star and they have taken it upon themselves to deal with something that BSA has strictly forbidden?

I would get my UC involved with this issue immediately.

Stosh


Sadly, one of these two leaders is our current committee chair and the other is his replacement (appointed by the current CC)
The first thing that happened in this BOR was the "New" CC tossing a rope to the scout and asking him to tie a knot, which sadly he struggled with. I told him to stop and after the scout left I informed the "new CC" that this was against policy and he wont do it again. He asked how are we supposed to know if a scout knows his skills and I told him that is the job for the asst scoutmasters and scoutmaster not us. To his credit he apologized and was receptive when I told him that the 2nd scout we were reviewing had severe anxiety and has trouble camping.

I am the "advancement person" in the troop, but only have been since September. The problem with the committee training is that once you do it you are done. You don't redo it when policy changes. The "old CC" did his training 19 years ago when he joined the committee. He has kept up with the changes to know enough not to retest, but he still has ideas in his head about other things. This is the same CC that I have posted about before requiring scouts to re write life purpose statements if he felt they were weak and didn't show the scout's "character" to his satisfaction.

We have a small struggleing committee. Old CC, new CC (who has been to 7 committee meetings in 7 years), 1 dad who's son Eagled 2 years ago and is now in college, he acts as one of our Eagle mentors, another Dad who's son Eagled last summer and turned 18 in Jan. The COR who has been involved in the troop for a year and a half, an Eagle Scout who never had scouts in the troop but who has been extreamly active until about 2 mos ago (we heard a rumor that he also is having trouble with the pastor of the church), the former SM (both son's Eagled and are now in college) who is now the treasurer and me. Most of them wont be around much longer and I am afraid of what is going to happen to the troop.

For the matter at hand I have emailed the district advancement chair, SM has emailed the UC and the DE. Our DC is also aware of teh situation as he is a former member of our committee and a close friend
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#22 Sentinel947

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Posted 27 January 2015 - 11:25 AM

Where in the star rank requirements does it say, "Show leadership?"

"While a First Class Scout, serve actively in your unit for four months in one or more of the following positions of responsibility (or carry out a unit leader-assigned leadership project to help your unit):"

Did this scout get the POR requirement signed off? If so. He's done the requirement. If the CC has issues with how the Scout performed during his term of POR, he needs to take that up with the Scoutmaster.

The CC adjourning the board till the Scout shows "leadership" sounds a little bit off the cuff. If the Scout did not actually do anything in the POR, that's on the Scoutmaster to work with the Scout and not sign off the requirement. It's a little too late to do anything in a BOR.

Perhaps I just don't understand the Star Requirements as well as the Committee Chair of your Troop.
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#23 ScoutNut

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Posted 27 January 2015 - 11:39 AM

The committee chair stated that he didn't feel the scout was ready for star.
He wanted to see some leadership from him.
He wanted to slow him down.
He said he wanted to use the fact that the date in his handbook for when he started his POR was 8/14 (he needs 4 mos) as an "out"

The scout was asked what his best scout skill was. He said camping. He was asked to be more specific, what was he really good at. He said setting up a tent. He was told that "a journey of 1000 miles starts with one step, he has gone 999 miles of that journey and they the committee wants to see that he can provide leadership" they asked him to come back in 2 weeks and set up a tent, he could "even use a troop tent", but set the tent up for us so we can see that that he can lead someone to doing it.

The 2 committee members couldnt tell specifically what they look for in a star scout saying that it varies by the boy.


This is all a load of horse excrement !

The Guide to Advancement is NOT open to "interpretation". The requirements for Star Scout do NOT "vary" by boy. They are set in stone by BSA.

As for the POR nonsense - The BSA states in the requirements for Star -

While a First Class Scout, serve actively in your unit for four months in one or more of the following positions of responsibility (or carry out a Scoutmaster-assigned leadership project to help the unit):

Boy Scout troop. Patrol leader, assistant senior patrol leader, senior patrol leader, Venture patrol leader, troop guide, Order of the Arrow troop representative, den chief, scribe, librarian, historian, quartermaster, bugler, junior assistant Scoutmaster, chaplain aide, instructor, troop Webmaster, or Leave No Trace trainer.


You stated in your opening post that the Scout served as Troop Librarian for 4 months and 1 week. Librarian is a valid POR. He was never removed from his position, or told he was not doing a good enough job. He served the required amount of time.


From the Guide to Advancement - Boards of Review -
8.0.1.1. - Not a "Retest" or "Examination"

A Scout must not be rejected at a board of review for reasons unrelated to advancement requirements.

Where - exactly - does BSA state that showing a BOR how to set up a tent is a requirement for the rank of Star? Also, how does setting up a tent - by yourself - show leadership? Is the Scout supposed to bring other Scouts into his BOR? Not allowed by BSA. Is he supposed to "lead" the members of the BOR in setting up the tent? Nonsense!

8.0.1.5. - After the Review

If a board does not approve, the candidate must be so informed and told what he can do to improve. Most Scouts accept responsibility for their behavior or for not completing requirements properly.

In any case, a follow-up letter must be promptly sent to a Scout who is turned down. It must include actions advised that may lead to advancement, and also an explanation of appeal procedures.


The council must keep a copy of the letter.


I would contact your District Advancement Chair, and have him/her have a friendly chat with your CC, and COR, on how they are doing things.

"Slowing down" a Scout is NEVER a valid reason for delaying a BOR. BSA SPECIFICALLY states that a Scout is supposed to advance at HIS OWN PACE!

I would also consider looking at other Troops.
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#24 fred johnson

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Posted 27 January 2015 - 12:25 PM

Wow. I'm upset with the situation, but pleasantly surprised with the responses.

My comments are to add that Andysmom understands the roles and BOR purpose. And, I applaud her for having the guts to stop a BOR member who asks for something inappropriate during a BOR.

I'd advise do NOT walk away from the BOR. If your son is there, stay in it and try to keep it on-track somewhat.

Also, here's the key GTA link. Look at section 8.0.1.5. http://www.scouting....e/pdf/33088.pdf

=======================

Many years of experience can also just be many years of doing it wrong.
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#25 andysmom

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Posted 27 January 2015 - 12:26 PM

I appreciate everyone's comments. We will be visiting other troops. It's sad but we have been involved with the pack from the CO since Andy was a tiger. My husband was his assistant den leader and pack committee chair. I was on the committee as well and served as advancement in that role. We crossed into the troop knowing that the current SM was planning to retire and my husband, then an ASM hoped to take over. He was the only one interested. He LOVES being a SM. Right now in our troop we have trouble getting volunteers. My husband has camped every single month with the troop since Andy crossed over 3 years ago, many times with me as the 2nd adult because no one else would step up. He takes the week off for summer camp and for the last 2 years I have had a bag packed to spend the first half of the week because no one would commit. The thought of leaving is causing him alot of guilt not knowing what will happen to the scouts and who will take over. It has been difficult. Our committee does not know that our long time COR resigned in December and was replaced in Jan. or that the old CC plans to step down at the end of next month and has recommended the new CC take over. (Only 3 of us, myself, my husband and our treasurer showed up for the Dec committee meeting, so we couldnt have one and our Jan committee meeting was cancelled because of a snowstorm) We have no communication. I emailed the old CC to see if he would be at the meeting last night because I have an eagle application for him to sign and he never responded to my email. I have contacted the district advancement chair and the SM (my husband) has contacted the DE and the UC. I have a call with the DC in less than an hour and I have been informed that the "new CC" has contacted him. It will be interesting to see how this goes The opinion of the new and old CC seems to be that our troop produces excellent scouts and this is the way we do it. If you don't like it, leave. He said he has never been questioned or sued (where ever that came from) about how BOR have been conducted in the troop
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#26 andysmom

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Posted 27 January 2015 - 12:30 PM




8.0.1.5. - After the Review

If a board does not approve, the candidate must be so informed and told what he can do to improve. Most Scouts accept responsibility for their behavior or for not completing requirements properly.

In any case, a follow-up letter must be promptly sent to a Scout who is turned down. It must include actions advised that may lead to advancement, and also an explanation of appeal procedures.


The council must keep a copy of the letter.



I pointed this out to him during the exchange while the scout was out of the room and he asked me if I got that information from my "training" or if that was official policy because as he recalled they were told never to put anything in writing.

After both BOR were over and I had access to my bag I pulled out my personal copy of the 2013 Guide To Advancement and pointed that out to him and he argued with me that we did not fail the scout, we deferred him. Did not fail, did not need a letter.

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#27 Stosh

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Posted 27 January 2015 - 12:55 PM


I pointed this out to him during the exchange while the scout was out of the room and he asked me if I got that information from my "training" or if that was official policy because as he recalled they were told never to put anything in writing.

After both BOR were over and I had access to my bag I pulled out my personal copy of the 2013 Guide To Advancement and pointed that out to him and he argued with me that we did not fail the scout, we deferred him. Did not fail, did not need a letter.


This guy is so out of touch it is unreasonable to think one can work effectively with him. If a boy walks out of a BOR without approval, it is not a "postponement" it is a failure to reach a conclusion on the part of the committee and that must be documented with the boy and the council in a letter.

Time to move on. Been there done that multiple times in my scouting career.

Stosh
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#28 qwazse

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Posted 28 January 2015 - 07:19 AM

After both BOR were over and I had access to my bag I pulled out my personal copy of the 2013 Guide To Advancement and pointed that out to him and he argued with me that we did not fail the scout, we deferred him. Did not fail, did not need a letter.

So, if you want to stick to your guns, since they did not fail him, insist that they sign-off the date of the BoR when the boy first appeared for advancement ... Just in case the kid's up for life 6 months from last week.
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#29 Hedgehog

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Posted 28 January 2015 - 07:52 AM

A possible suggestion for a different solution.... work with the new COR representative to revamp the committee. Try to get people with boys currently in the unit on the committee. If your son has aged out, you can stay for a year to provide wisdom to the new members. That way, you get some empathy for the boys - seriously, who is going to be an [insert un-scout like word] about advancement if they and their sons are involved in the troop? Also, the new blood will go through the current training. Finally, if there is a concern about the boy's leadership (agree, the requirement is "responsibility") then there is a problem with the Troop program that the committee needs to address. That is the role of the BOR and the committee -- not to evaluate the scout but to evaluate the quality of the program.
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#30 Scouter99

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Posted 28 January 2015 - 11:56 PM

Forward your offending committee members this video from BSA National "Guardians of the Gate"

#31 andysmom

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Posted 29 January 2015 - 09:17 AM

We have been trying to recruit new committee members for the entire time I have been on the committee, in fact, just prior to the BOR I spoke with this particular scout's father about joining the committee and he asked me to send him information about what is involved... My son is 13, he is a first class scout who just had his SMC for Star. When he ages out our intention is to be sure whatever positions we hold in the troop are covered and move on to district or council levels for him and I would like to volunteer at the council office.
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#32 andysmom

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Posted 29 January 2015 - 09:49 AM

Forward your offending committee members this video from BSA National "Guardians of the Gate"


I love this video, thank you for sharing, sadly I doubt either committee member would watch it. After telling the DC that he understood the no testing rule and promised that it would never happen again, we offered to give "new CC" my copy of the GTA and the committee guidebook because he is taking on this new responsibility, he turned him down flat and said that he has every intent of having the scout set up a tent. Maybe he didn't want my obviously used copy with my notes from the last 3 years of committee and advancement training that I have taken, but I doubt it.

We sent several emails asking district and council if we are missing something, if we are in error. If we are we will give a sincere and heartfelt apology. We do not know everything about the program, maybe we interpreted the rules incorrectly, maybe we still are, but I really don't think so. The way I handled the incident was not my finest moment. The District advancement chair spoke with me yesterday and told me he had received a call form the "old CC". I explained my view of what happened and urged him to speak with the "old CC". The district advancement chair knows the "old CC" outside of scouting so he admitted that it put him in an uncomfortable position so he planned to discuss it with council. The council advancement chair knows my husband very well as they served on wood badge staff for the last 2 courses, he was also the merit badge counselor for the 2 citizenship merit badges that the scout put together and completed with a small group of scouts.
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#33 fred johnson

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Posted 29 January 2015 - 10:25 AM

There are many scouters out there that don't care about what is documented or communicated. They want their own vision implemented. Wish you the best.
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#34 qwazse

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Posted 29 January 2015 - 10:56 AM

It's time for a lesson in scouter-speak ...

... We sent several emails ... if we are in error ... we will give a sincere and heartfelt apology. We do not know everything about the program, maybe we interpreted the rules incorrectly, maybe we still are, but I really don't think so.

You may have been taught that this is the right way to go, promising to offer an apology if you're wrong. But in other scouter's ears, it rings of false humility. You're husband is a coach. He's read the rulebook. He threw down the red flag. NOBODY apologizes for that in advance. And when the ref rules against the coach, no apology is needed after. Never apologize for doing your best. That's not what apologies are for.

Now it's time for me to be chauvinistic ...

The way I handled the incident was not my finest moment. The District advancement chair spoke with me yesterday and told me he had received a call form the "old CC". I explained my view of what happened and urged him to speak with the "old CC". The district advancement chair knows the "old CC" outside of scouting so he admitted that it put him in an uncomfortable position so he planned to discuss it with council. The council advancement chair knows my husband very well as they served on wood badge staff for the last 2 courses, he was also the merit badge counselor for the 2 citizenship merit badges that the scout put together and completed with a small group of scouts.


Yeah sure, you went all "momma bear" on the good-old-boys. Don't make it a habit. Guys don't like it.

DAC's are supposed to be friends with scouters (comes with the fourth point of The Law). Don't expect him to choose between you and his buddy. Asking politely if he can use his friendship to get the guy to see things at least a little bit your way is one thing, asking him to play hard-nosed referee is another. Also you're not asking the DAC and CAC to choose sides. Let everyone know that you respect what they do for the boys, and if you flew off the handle it's because you were caught off guard by something you found to be patently absurd.

Now, go help that boy figure out the kind of tent that would give him and his buddies the most cheer while setting it up! ;) Oh, I forgot to suggest the boy assemble 8'foot tripods suspending a cross-beam or bull/climbing rope for the ridge pole, and a 12'-by-24' tarp (include four 4'-5' spars to suspend side walls). Weighted properly, the tripods could also support a couple of hammocks. Use a hatchet to cut the tent pegs from branches on site. He could request committee complete the BoR on site. :cool:
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#35 Scouter99

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Posted 29 January 2015 - 10:40 PM

I'm on board with Qwasze's sentiment in the over-the-top area but I'd suggest you just tell the kid to set up a pup tent then egg the guy's house for the same effect with less effort.

#36 TAHAWK

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Posted 31 January 2015 - 01:23 PM

Video: "The purposes of Advancement are to build the boys' confidence and self-esteem." [apx]

BSA:
"The steps in the advancement system help a Boy Scout grow in self-reliance and in the ability to help others."

"
Experiential learning is the key: Exciting and meaningful activities are offered, and education happens. Learning comes from doing. "

"Success is achieved when we fulfill the BSA Mission Statement and when we accomplish the aims of Scouting: character development, citizenship training, and mental and physical fitness. We know we are on the right track when we see youth accepting responsibility, demonstrating self-reliance, and caring for themselves and others; when they learn to weave Scouting ideals into their lives; and when we can see they will be positive contributors to our American society."

What I was taught: Advancement is a way of giving recognition for behaviors we wish to encourage. It encourages both the recipient and those who see the recipient being recognized.


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#37 qwazse

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Posted 01 February 2015 - 12:01 AM

Here's a convenient possibility that his patrol could do together.
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#38 JasonG172

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Posted 10 February 2015 - 11:00 AM

Had a BOR last Monday for Tenderfoot, He has his First Aid Merit badge and Cooking Merit Badge as well. He could not tell me the order of the cleaning pots, nor could he tell me why you keep chicken and hamburger meat separated but what really did him in was he couldn't tell me what EDGE stood for. He came back last night knowing those answers.
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#39 qwazse

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Posted 10 February 2015 - 01:19 PM

Had a BOR last Monday for Tenderfoot, He has his First Aid Merit badge and Cooking Merit Badge as well. He could not tell me the order of the cleaning pots, nor could he tell me why you keep chicken and hamburger meat separated but what really did him in was he couldn't tell me what EDGE stood for. He came back last night knowing those answers.


I'm gonna pick on you just a little, but understand that I'm doing it from an anti-EDGE bias. I suspect your conversation was more in depth, friendly, and encouraging. So don't think I'm taking issue with how you did things, but more how it comes off in the ether.
  • Per GTA recommendations, did you provide a written statement regarding why his advancement was delayed and what he needs to do to rectify it? Not judging. Just wondering who really does this for lower ranks.
  • So, he forgot (or never learned) some key points of an MB he supposedly earned.
    • Blame it on everyone thinking that teaching a kid via EDGE is the bees knees. Did you ask who his counselor was? Did he have a merit badge book? During the instruction was the material boring? Confusing?
    • Did you ask him if there was something the troop could do (maybe an activity to practice) to help him stay sharp?
    • Would he like his patrol to cook dinner for an upcoming meeting?
  • He couldn't rattle off an acronym.
    • Did you ask around if there are there mitigating factors that might make this difficult for him. (Is English his second language? Does he find reading/spelling hard?)
    • Did you ask him if he ever taught anyone some something (maybe to throw a ball, to play a video game, to tell a funny joke)? Then follow-up with these questions:
    • Did he/she learn what you were teaching?
    • How did you teach it? Did you talk, get a reference, show how, practice?
    • What worked best?
    • Would you do something differently next time?
I'm just trying to emphasize that the point is not just to be sure that a kid can rattle off the right answers. It's also to help the committee and the scout figure out how to build a better troop.
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#40 fred johnson

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Posted 10 February 2015 - 02:44 PM

It's also to help the committee and the scout figure out how to build a better troop.


That is 100% correct. And then add to also encourage and discuss future advancement.

The BOR is not at all about making sure the scout knows a specific skill or answer. That's water over the dam. He's already been evaluated and was passed. It's about improving the troop and improving the scout's experience with the troop.



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