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New Eagle Palm Policy, August 2017

eagle palms

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#1 Back Pack

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 07:24 AM

So if I read this right, if you get Eagle after 8/1/17 you get all palms you've "earned" without any additional steps?

So besides a wholesale bling giveaway which now makes plans meaningless, what for plams do?

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#2 Stosh

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 07:51 AM

About the only positive it shows me is that it gives recognition for the extra work a boy does before reaching the rank of Eagle.  I guess I wouldn't be too upset if they changed it even further that for every MB earned beyond the ER 21, he gets a palm even before he gets Eagle.  This means that while he is doing POR work in the troop beyond the rank advancement requirements and showing good leadership along the way, and maintaining interest on a deeper level than just showing up while fulfilling rank, he gets recognized for it.  It may also help with those boys who "drop out of scouting" around 15 only to come back and blast through to get their Eagle before turning 18.  Maybe those two years of active participation can be recognized and even if the boy doesn't get Eagle, he gets recognized for the responsibility, activity, and leadership he puts into the program.  Otherwise he gets nada.  That doesn't really seem fair to me.  The journey is more important than the destination.  Palms could be a good indicator that even a Life scout did good things for his troop beyond the requisite POR/activity for rank advancement.  How many scouts get their 6 month POR for Eagle and then sit on his hands, takes a break, or succumbs to the "fumes" until he gets closer to 18.  


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#3 KenD500

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 07:53 AM

I'm not sure of your question.

 

My thought - this greatly benefits the Scouts that have stayed in the program & earned Eagle in their last year.


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#4 qwazse

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 08:01 AM

I have no idea why this is necessary. In the current requirements how is it extra work for no recognition? Scout gets colorful patches to deck out a sash for his ECoH.

 

Palms recognize that, above and beyond that, he worked intentionally with his troop or patrol to develop and practice more leadership. At least until August, that's what they recognize.

 

It doesn't benefit scouts. It makes all past Eagles think less of them.

 

I see this as being very divisive.

 

The only thing that I would have changed in the existing requirements is instead of starting the "palm clock" at EBoR, start it at the ESMC.


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#5 RememberSchiff

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 08:13 AM

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#6 Back Pack

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 08:17 AM

I'm not sure of your question.
 
My thought - this greatly benefits the Scouts that have stayed in the program & earned Eagle in their last year.


No. It gives something for nothing. Make eagle today at 15 and eligible for 2 Palms? Get all three today. This rewards MB junkies.

The OLD program rewarded guys who stayed in the program AND continued to provide leadership.
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#7 Col. Flagg

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 08:23 AM

It doesn't benefit scouts. It makes all past Eagles think less of them.

 

I see this as being very divisive.

 

 

Awards for having received awards, now with express checkout.

 

Exactly! I live with an Eagle from 2016. Could have gotten 3 palms but in the end his own procrastination prevented earning them. It was a great life lesson for him that, despite holding leadership positions are earning MBs after finishing Eagle, he left something on the table. He realized his procrastination was a problem and is working to fix it. Why? Because he remembers the lesson he learned NOT getting his three Eagle Palms.

 

This is BSA's version of a participation trophy. Only BSA could make something like Eagle Palms worth less than the Scout rank.  :rolleyes:


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#8 pchadbo

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 08:43 AM

So the way I read this, the few MB overachievers who earn all 137 merit badges before Eagle would get Eagle AND 23 Palms at their COH??!?!


Edited by pchadbo, 10 July 2017 - 08:43 AM.

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#9 Col. Flagg

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 08:47 AM

So the way I read this, the few MB overachievers who earn all 137 merit badges before Eagle would get Eagle AND 23 Palms at their COH??!?!

 

Bingo!


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#10 MattR

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 08:54 AM

This will have no impact on anything of importance to me. So I guess I don't really care. Most scouts don't really care about merit badges, especially those that are close to 18 when they get Eagle. I hate saying this but MBs are mostly boring homework assignments. I would much rather see a push to make MBs more activity based than they are now (describe, discuss, explain, snore). The changes are orthogonal to what I would like to see.


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#11 NJCubScouter

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 09:11 AM

Hmm.  I liked it better the old way.  It provided at least some incentive for Scouts with "extra" MB's not to wait until the last minute, which in this case means having the EBOR after the 17-year-9-month mark, and that's for just one palm.  Not that I think any Scouts in my troop actually speeded up their Eagle journey just to get palms.  My son would have gotten at least one palm if he had moved faster, but as it turned out he completed his requirements two days before his birthday, and had his EBOR after his birthday.  If this new rule had been in effect back then, he would received the palm, maybe two.  The same is true for a number of other Eagles in the troop, and I suspect, many others across the country, probably including some members of this forum.  (Not me though, I'm a Life for Life.)


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#12 NJCubScouter

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 09:16 AM

Awards for having received awards, now with express checkout.

 

That's true.  I think a merit badge sash at an ECOH with (say) 60 MB's on it is impressive enough, without the extra little bits of metal.


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#13 Sentinel947

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 10:59 AM

Makes no difference but I don't think its a useful change.
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#14 Col. Flagg

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 11:01 AM

I wonder, but does BSA talk to anyone in the real world of Scouting before they make these changes? Do they talk to SMs and others to see how palms are earned and/or what impact the old system had on keeping Scouts around, versus this approach?


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#15 Eagle94-A1

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 11:16 AM

I wonder, but does BSA talk to anyone in the real world of Scouting before they make these changes? Do they talk to SMs and others to see how palms are earned and/or what impact the old system had on keeping Scouts around, versus this approach?

 

Actually they sent out a survey 2 or 3 years ago on this topic. I participated in it. I was opposed to the proposed changes then, and I am opposed to the changes now. 

 

To quote the Second Doctor, aka "the Hobo," " I see you changed things...HHHMMM I don't like it."


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#16 desertrat77

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 11:18 AM

I don't think palms are that big of a deal.

 

If a scout makes Eagle and is truly committed to the program, he'll stay and help.  The bling may or may not interest him.  Palms certainly won't hold an Eagle who is on the fence, or has decided to move on.

 

Looking back, I made Eagle at 14.5 years of age.  I had a couple years to earn palms, but ended up with two.  I had a late rally right before 18 to earn the silver, but time ran out.  That's that and life goes on.

 

As a teenage scout, scouting had much more to offer than palms.  After Eagle, I was SPL for a couple years, then JASM.  Active in OA, went to NOAC and later served as vice lodge chief.  Stayed active in a troop that emphasized outdoors, outdoors, outdoors.  

 

I continued to earn MBs, but only the ones that truly interested me.  And as a swan's song, I earned Basketry as my last MB, right before I aged out.

 

I'm ambivalent about the new policy.  If it helps some scouts, great.  Overall, I think the Eagle rank is already lauded far too much today.  More attention, more after market devices... it just feeds the issue.


Edited by desertrat77, 10 July 2017 - 11:32 AM.

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#17 Stosh

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 12:18 PM

No. It gives something for nothing. Make eagle today at 15 and eligible for 2 Palms? Get all three today. This rewards MB junkies.

The OLD program rewarded guys who stayed in the program AND continued to provide leadership.

 

Either way it works according to your view.

 

The boy must earn Eagle, then stay and get palms, the boys that eagle late do the same thing, but miss out on the palms.  Somehow the math doesn't add up for me.  A boy can attain Life at 13, sit around for 4 years doing MB's and working on his project or take a hiatus from scouting. come back and get his Eagle.  That's how it works, but if the boy continued to stay active, did POR work, showed leadership, earned MB's then Eagled at the last minute he gets the same reward as if he had taken a hiatus.   No incentive to do anything but work on Eagle at age 13 and then if palms aren't important, quit.


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#18 Col. Flagg

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 12:29 PM

@Stosh, the way I read the new rule:

  • Guys who make Eagle AND have any palms completed will get those palms and Eagle at their ECOH.
  • Guys who make Eagle and DON'T have any palms completed, still need to follow the regular three month guidelines, with expanded roles for leadership, etc.

So if a Scout had 5 palms and Eagle all by his ECOH he get all of that right away, rather than being forced to stick around for 15 months, take additional leadership positions and continue to be active in his unit. No matter how you slice it, the unit now has to create an incentive for him to stick around.


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#19 DadScouts

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 12:50 PM

This is a shame.  We had palm BORs and for ex-SPLs who were active JASMs, doing mentoring for Senior Patrol and New Scout Patrol the BORs were a great way for some adults to sit down with a Scout and discuss college app process, scholarships, and other true life skill stuff.  Ya, could still have that but the palm BOR was a kick in the rear reminder to get some great adults together and have this chat with the Scout.  Our palms actually held short-term leadership assignments where the Scout, in advance, set up the goals for those 90 days and the BOR was a great chance to review successes and non-successes.  Now the whole program is nothing but a stupid MB participation trophy.  Maybe we'll just let the helicopter parents (fortunately few post-Eagle) just buy the bling themselves at Council and put it on My Johnnie Is Special's uniform.  Sad.  


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#20 NJCubScouter

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 12:56 PM

  • Guys who make Eagle AND have any palms completed will get those palms and Eagle at their ECOH.

Yes, but "completing" those palms (the "pre-Eagle" palms) will only involve earning 5 "extra" MB's per palm. No additional "active" requirement, no SM conference or anything else.
 

  • Guys who make Eagle and DON'T have any palms completed, still need to follow the regular three month guidelines, with expanded roles for leadership, etc.


Well, it isn't just guys "who make Eagle and don't have any palms completed." Under the new rule a Scout could have BOTH pre-Eagle and post-Eagle palms, or only pre-Eagle, or only post-Eagle. The post-Eagle palms will still require the 3 months for each one, and the "active" requirement will no longer be limited to the troop and patrol, but can be satisfied by any BSA activity. The examples they give are OA, Venturing, serving on camp staff or NYLT or NAYLE staff.

And there will be no more BOR's for any palm. I don't think that is a great loss. I have participated in several of those and they are really just formalities.
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