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MERIT BADGE GROUP INSTRUCTION EVENT Application Form


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#1 CNYScouter

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Posted 30 September 2015 - 01:19 PM

As a MBC I received an email today from my councils advancement committee with the following attachment:

 

MERIT BADGE GROUP INSTRUCTION EVENT – Application Form

 

This is a form I need to fill out and get approval if I am going to have a Merit Badge class that has more than 5 Scouts in it.

I need to attach a Draft copy of the event flyer or information sheet at a minimum of 2 weeks prior.

 

Along with the form there are 2 pages of policy on

 

Do any other council's have this?

 

Have Merit Badge days, fairs, midways, clinics, workshops gotten so prevalent that this is needed?

 

Personally I have never taught at one of these nor do I like working with more than 3 or 4 Scouts at a time

 


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#2 Krampus

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Posted 30 September 2015 - 01:33 PM

Nope. Never seen it. And if it is not in the GTA I won't follow it. Geesh, isn't life hard enough already?


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#3 Stosh

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Posted 30 September 2015 - 01:58 PM

LOL, after a long lull of not doing MB's I went in just this morning to sign up again.  The registrar said I had to fill out a new application because it had been more than 5 years since I did any MB classes.  She said put your name on it, sign it, and hand it in.  Nothing else, just needed a paper trail.  Then fill out the sheet as to what MB's I would want to teach.  End of the paperwork after I hand it in.

 

I figure that if the council wants to know how many boys I did MB's for, they can count up the cards with my name on them at the end of the year.  Not my problem  The boy has the only paperwork that counts anyway.... his blue card!


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Stosh

 

There's a reason why I don't always answer the phone, doorbell or comments on forums.  :)


#4 Eagledad

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Posted 30 September 2015 - 02:24 PM

I don't like group Merit Badge assemblies mainly because they tend to skip the BSA guidelines for the scouts that I consider important like getting the SM to sign a card and then contacting the counselor to make arrangements for meeting. I almost killed our District MB College for that very reason, but I was asked to step aside.

 

Anyway, a friend (actually a mentor) who was put in the same situation called me. We came up with the idea to use the class for introducing the MB subject and reviewing a few requirements. Once he finished, he instructed the group that if anyone was interested to give him a call. 50% of the scouts called him and 20% earned the badge. So, if you feel inclined to meet the group, use it as an opportunity to introduce the subject and then instruct the interested scouts to call you. 

 

Barry


Edited by Eagledad, 30 September 2015 - 02:25 PM.

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"Experience is the hardest teacher. It gives the test first, then the lesson."


#5 RememberSchiff

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Posted 30 September 2015 - 02:36 PM

Ask to see those same forms which your local scout camp completed for their merit badge program.   :laugh: 


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#6 gumbymaster

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Posted 30 September 2015 - 04:55 PM

At my MBC training course, they made a particilar point that the SM signature is NOT required for a Scout to start a Merit Badge.

This appears to be supported by the GTA section 7

 

 

Typically after the unit leader signs the blue card, the Scout contacts the merit

badge counselor and sets an appointment. Even though Scouts may benefit from
reviewing requirements with a counselor before pursuing them, a boy may begin
working on a merit badge at any time after he is registered. It is the counselor’s
decision whether to accept work or activities completed prior to the issuing of the
signed blue card.

 

The theory being that the SM really didn't have the authority to prevent a scout from working on a Merit Badge or otherwise creating impediments to the Scout's advancement.

 

However, in typical BSA fashion, this also appears to be contradicted by

 

... but the Scout must still discuss the merit badge with the unit leader and get a signed blue card. Should a

Scout want to change counselors, he should once again speak with the unit leader to verify that the
counselor is properly registered and approved.

 

Which would imply that the real purpose of the SM signature is to make sure the scout is working with an approved counselor.


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#7 Krampus

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Posted 01 October 2015 - 08:06 AM

...and further confounded by the blue card itself which would seem to indicate that the unit leader signature is de facto authorization to begin working on the MB in question.

 

MeritBadgeBlueCard.jpg


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#8 Eagledad

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Posted 01 October 2015 - 09:23 AM

As a MB counselor, I won't accept any scout without first seeing a signed card so that I know that somebody knows this scout is working with me. I don't think that was the original intent of the signature, but I wouldn't be surprised if National likes having the paper trail for that purpose. The leading source of abuse complaints 20 or so years ago were merit badge counselors. That signature tells the counselor that somebody knows. Of course that is just a huge guess on my part, but I won't accept a scout with a blank card.

 

Barry


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"Experience is the hardest teacher. It gives the test first, then the lesson."


#9 Krampus

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Posted 01 October 2015 - 09:44 AM

As a MB counselor, I won't accept any scout without first seeing a signed card so that I know that somebody knows this scout is working with me. I don't think that was the original intent of the signature, but I wouldn't be surprised if National likes having the paper trail for that purpose. The leading source of abuse complaints 20 or so years ago were merit badge counselors. That signature tells the counselor that somebody knows. Of course that is just a huge guess on my part, but I won't accept a scout with a blank card.

 

Barry

 

Same here. If I don't know the scout I won't take the meeting until I talk to his leader for these exact reasons. We meet at Starbucks and I require that I meet the parent and the scout before we begin work if I don't know them. This is my policy to protect me. If someone doesn't like it they can find another counselor.


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#10 ZScout5

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Posted 01 October 2015 - 07:08 PM

The 2012 printing of the Blue Card changed the wording to: "I have discussed this merit badge with the Scout and recommended at least one merit badge counselor."

However, under Instructions for Counselor section of the card it says: "Merit Badge applications MUST be signed in advance by the applicant's unit leader."

Edited by ZScout5, 01 October 2015 - 07:11 PM.

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#11 robert12

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Posted 05 October 2015 - 07:14 AM

I suspect this is in response to the new text in the The Process of Counseling section in the 2015 Guide to Advancement:

 

 

...The sort of hands-on interactive experience described here, with personal coaching and guidance, is hardly ever achieved in any setting except when one counselor works directly with one Scout and his buddy, or with a very small group. Thus, this small-scale approach is the recommended best practice for merit badge instruction and requirement fulfillment. Units, districts, and councils should focus on providing the most direct merit badge experiences possible. Large group and Web-based instruction, while perhaps efficient, do not measure up in terms of the desired outcomes with regard to learning and positive association with adults.


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#12 John-in-KC

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 09:46 AM

As @Beavah said (my paraphrasing, since I can't speak Beavah) more than once, if you expect consistency in wording from National, you are on a fools errand.


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#13 Krampus

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 10:18 AM

As @Beavah said (my paraphrasing, since I can't speak Beavah) more than once, if you expect consistency in wording from National, you are on a fools errand.

 

Still...as a national organization they should strive for it. Instead of focusing on some of the things they do, establishing a clear and concise message should be a top priority. It will help with all the other issues (i.e., membership, training, etc.) if that objective was met and extended down the food chain.


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