Our council goes beyond the personal letters of reference and also include one from the SM. If the SM does not submit one, the EBOR his not scheduled.
I'm betting that's a district practice, not a council one. I've seen quite a few backwards districts, but usually when it gets to a council level things are more per BSA GTA direction. But then again, I'm in a very large council. Some councils are the size of some of our districts.
As for the practice, it's just wrong and a waster of time. The SM has signed the eagle project and the eagle application. If the SM won't sign those, there is a well written process to pursue rank under disputed circumstances. Requiring a SM reference letter is just a weak, ill-defined, dead-end, non-BSA process. Did I mention wrong?
I'm always surprised when I hear things like this. People value Eagle so highly that they add their own twist / signature to the process that flies directly in the face of the organization that is providing the credential. It's a contradiction to highly value an organization's credential but not the infrastructure behind that credential. I just don't get it. BSA's methods and processes are just not that hard to understand.
Edited by fred johnson, 21 April 2017 - 10:37 AM.