Re: Eagle before 13?
Susan Ganther (susan@EMAIL.UNC.EDU)
Thu, 22 Sep 1994 13:08:54 -0400
On Thu, 22 Sep 1994, Bob Condon wrote:
> A boy that puts in 3x the amount of time but produces less quality
> product should not be given an award over the boy that executes well and
> produces a superior product. The first boy may be more committed, but the
> end result is still poorer. Time is not a good test.
You are missing the point if you think you have to choose between them.
The product is the boy himself, not the reports he turns in. The boy who
serves in a leadership position at 13 is not going to get the same
experience out of it he would get serving in that position at 15. Please
don't compare your most mature 13 year old to your goofiest 17 year old.
What we are comparing here is your most mature 13 year old and that same
boy at 17. Would you not agree that that same boy at 17 is going to gain
insights about leading others that he would have missed at 13?
> If a boy is committed to the troop and commited to the leadership,
> executing well ,then he deserves the recognition and the advancement,
> no matter the age.
No argument there. I don't advocate holding anyone back, but in an
environment where 16 and 17 year olds still have something to gain from
the Scouting experience and something to contribute, the older boys are
going to be elected to the leadership positions and the younger ones are
going to have to wait for their chance. They are not going to get the
opportunity to execute well until they have had the opportunity to learn
plenty from the examples of the older Scouts ahead of them. I am not
saying that it has to be this way, just that when it does work this way
it seems to produce a better and more experienced leader, since the Scout
has had the opportunity to learn from both the successes and mistakes of
those going before him.
> > There are plenty of other things a boy can and should do between
> > the ages of 11 and 13 than full time persuit of the Eagle award, so
> > cramming everything one hopes to get out of Scouting into a 2 year period
> > is not the answer.
> Please explain.
Scouting is supposed to round a guy out. If he is not active in sports,
academics, church and extracurricular school clubs, WHY NOT? He should be
encouraged to be involved in the community in more ways than just thru
Scouting. He should have more contact with members of the community than
> Some of the boys have decided that service to the troop
> leadership is what they want to do at this time in their life. This is
> the group of boys that I want to work with for Eagle.
Are you saying that you are picky about who you are willing to develope
along the Eagle trail? I hope not. Scouting is for ALL boys, not just the
precocious, intelligent, overachievers that all parents seem to want
their kids to be.
> These boys are around
> 13 and are advancing because they are willing to put in the time and effort
> and to execute their leadership well.
> [Sarcasm on]
> I suppose I should tell them that their dedication
> should come later and they should go off and do other things. Scouting
> leadership is for the older boys.
> [Sarcasm off]
Sarcasm is not appreciated, a Scout is courteous.
> This makes no sense to me at all.
Then why try to boil my comments down into something senseless. That is
not what I am advocating at all as I am sure you are well aware unless
your contempt for people with opinions other than you own has clouded
> > We need to make our units more responsive to the
> > needs of the older Scouts instead of trying to crank out Eagles faster
> > because they will leave at 14 or 15 to find what they are looking for
> > elsewhere.
> My statement is to make our units more responsive to the needs of the
> scout that is willing to do the work. No Age Requirement.
I have not advocated any arbitrary age requiremets, you must have me
confused with someone else.
> If we aren't responsive to the 11-13 year old who is willing
> to do the work, then they will leave too.
Willing is one thing, having the opportunity is something else. Are you
going to deny leadership positions to 14 year olds because they were
unable to finish first class first year and therefor are not worty of the
opportunity? Do you reserve those positions for the best and brightest
(fastest)? Is your attitude toward the older slower achievers reflected
in the elections because you have created a culture where only the fast
trackers are respected? It sounds to me like you don't want to work with
the plodders and late bloomers. That is too bad, because Scouting is
supposed to be for ALL boys.
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City