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Active scouts in both a troop and a crew


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#1 Tatung42

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Posted 06 May 2016 - 12:48 AM

We have a joint venture crew and scout troop.  A big issue right now is that our venture crew is that taking experienced boys away from the troop.  It is causing enough problems that our scoutmaster is pretty much discouraging older scouts to join the crew.

I listened to this pod cast:


And their main point is that scouts can be active in both their crew and troop.  However, it doesn't address the fact that realistically scouts just don't have time to do both.  It is pretty unrealistic to expect a scout to attend 4 scout meetings per month, 2 crew meetings per month, 1 troop outing, and 1 crew outing.


Edited by Tatung42, 06 May 2016 - 12:49 AM.

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#2 qwazse

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Posted 06 May 2016 - 05:57 AM

I'm a crew advisor in a similar configuration, and I pretty much discourage older boys as well. By that, I mean that they are responsible for filling out their own paperwork to even join, they are encouraged to find me someon who hasn't been in scouting before (or maybe left scouting) to join with them, and they do all of the heavy lifting for any program they want to implement.

That leaves me with quirky scouts who just want a little extra (I have found quite a few boys with ample time for 6 meetings and 2 outings per month), and leaves the troop with boys who want to focus on the boys.

@Tatung42, before we get any further in this discussion, however, let's hear some real stats, what are the:
# of boys in your troop,
# of boys age 14+
# of those actually registered with the crew
# in Order of The Arrow
# of young (age under 18) male venturers in the crew
# of young male venturers total in the crew.

Maybe that will help us get a better handle on what you're dealing with.
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#3 perdidochas

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Posted 06 May 2016 - 08:22 AM

We have a joint venture crew and scout troop.  A big issue right now is that our venture crew is that taking experienced boys away from the troop.  It is causing enough problems that our scoutmaster is pretty much discouraging older scouts to join the crew.

I listened to this pod cast:


And their main point is that scouts can be active in both their crew and troop.  However, it doesn't address the fact that realistically scouts just don't have time to do both.  It is pretty unrealistic to expect a scout to attend 4 scout meetings per month, 2 crew meetings per month, 1 troop outing, and 1 crew outing.

 

Well, I'm noticing our older boys are starting to turn off to scouting.  I'm going to start a Venture crew to take them away from the troop for that reason.  I'd rather them be in a Venture crew and quit the troop, then just quit the troop. 


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#4 Stosh

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Posted 06 May 2016 - 09:48 AM

I have always encouraged venture patrols. No paperwork, no separate programming, no separate committee, no separate meetings, no separate requirements, no doubled adult involvement, no advancement issues, no hassles. If a boy shows a loss of interest, they get invited into the venture patrol. They are still able to do advancement, hold troop POR's and help the younger boys if they want. WAY TO MUCH hassle to start a Venturing Crew for the older boys. This works better if the BSA patrol structure of New, Regular, and Venture patrols are used and not interest mixed.
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#5 Eagledad

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Posted 06 May 2016 - 11:34 AM

Well, I'm noticing our older boys are starting to turn off to scouting.  I'm going to start a Venture crew to take them away from the troop for that reason.  I'd rather them be in a Venture crew and quit the troop, then just quit the troop.


I'm trying not to be disrespectful, but your older scouts are turned off because the program has not matured to their level of level of maturity. If the adults in the troop can't raise the troop program's maturity, why would they think they can build a successful Venture program? Same goes with Venture patrols. Three out of five new Venture Crews dissolve in four years due to low interest.

I found there are two types of adults who talk about starting new Venture Crews. One is the leader who wants to keep the older boys in the program. I can helps those leaders fix their older scout problem. The other is the adult's bored with troop program and used the bored older scout as an excuse to move on. they are harder to change.

Program quality is measured from the oldest scouts. If that part of the program struggles, then the whole program is struggling.

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


#6 Krampus

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Posted 06 May 2016 - 11:40 AM

We used Venture Patrols. Worked better and did not decapitate the youth leadership.
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#7 Beavah

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Posted 06 May 2016 - 12:47 PM

Yah, hmmm...

 

I confess I'm not as fond of joint crews/troops in many cases.    Either this happens, or da crew program is shortchanged and becomes just Older Boy Scouts.    Stand-alone crews seem to work OK, but then what we're findin' across da country is that they don't have staying power, eh?   They tend to fold after the founders age out.

 

That having been said, I know a couple of programs that run joint troop / crews that work very, very well.   They're runnin' more on da international scouting model, where crew members are also leaders of troop patrols and help run troop (or sometimes Webelos-level cub) programs.    Da PLC and the crew overlap quite a bit.

 

Those programs don't have any problems maintaining older boys in the troop, and the kids seem to handle the extra commitment just fine.   The crew is giving 'em fun and adventure with friends, plus a lot of learnin' new skills.   The troop is giving 'em scope to use those skills with their friends to lead and teach others.    They've got very full calendars, but the youth are the ones workin' the calendar and they seem to cope just fine.  It's gettin' the adults to keep up that's more challengin'! :huh: 

 

My advice for your Scoutmaster would be that if older kids are leavin' the troop program that's on him, eh?   The troop program isn't providin' enough scope for their talents.   Rather than try to discourage 'em from joining the crew (which never works), encourage 'em to take what they learn in the crew and use it to lead the troop.    They should be the ones runnin' mini-high-adventure outings for the troop, leading instruction for the troop, managing safety and drivin' the troop program to new heights.   

 

When you've got kids like that, da role of the adults is to get out of the way as fast as yeh can.    It's being treated like responsible adults whose skills really matter that keeps boys in the troop.

 

Beavah


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#8 qwazse

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Posted 09 May 2016 - 07:47 AM

So, I am reviving this thread because it runs parallel to your other thread http://scouter.com/i...roops/?p=437350. Based on what you've written there:

 

Your older boys are not abandoning troop responsibilities because venturing is more fun than boy scouts.  The troop is being lead without them. Clearly it will do just fine in their absence because the adults make sure everything runs on time and on schedule. Your SM (along with his ASMs) has sucked the air out of the room. If a young man is going to mature as a leader, he will instinctively find areas where he is solely responsible for what happens in his circle. He will shun positions of responsibility that amount to little more than a patch on his left sleeve.

 

On the bright side, this may be an angle for you to begin to crack the cycle of adult leadership in your troop. The next time the SM gripes, tell him, "Well maybe if the boys actually had responsibilities that should they fail, real hiccups (instead of bailouts) ensue, they might feel needed in the troop like they do in the crew."


Edited by qwazse, 09 May 2016 - 07:48 AM.

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