Henry Knowles (knowles@ESCMAIL.ORL.MMC.COM)
Tue, 22 Nov 1994 11:13:50 -0500
My troop typically has few major discipline problems, but the Scouts (and the
leaders) prefer that the Scouts handle those and the minor problems as much
as possible. In order to help ensure that the discipline is consistent,
reasonable, and appropriate, our PLC met a few years ago to produce a set of
penalties for various discipline problems. This replaced an older set which
a previous PLC had established long ago.
They first came up with a list of potential problems they had faced or might
face. They then came up with a list of potential penalties/punishments.
Finally, and most difficult, they decided which penalty or combination of
penalties should be associated with each problem, for a first, second, or
third offense within a given amount of time. The problems ranged from
talking during the meeting to fighting and vandalism. The penalties ranged
from a warning or time-out holding up the Scout sign to being sent home,
removed from leadership positions (if any), and suspension for up to 2
months. They also discussed the fact that no such chart is appropriate
100% of the time. Therefore, they established that the SPL, ASPL, and
PL's (along with the SM as advisor) would serve as a troop disciplinary
board when needed. This board handles any situations not covered under their
procedure (although this hasn't happened yet). The board also resolves the
situation if there is disagreement over what caused the transgression or
over whether the Scout involved is "guilty". The Scouts involved in the
transgression also have the option of appealing the automatic penalty if
they feel there are some extenuating circumstances. The appeal must go to
the troop disciplinary board, which hears all sides of the case and then
decides whether to impose the automatic penalty or a different penalty,
which may be more harsher, more lenient, or none at all. Finally, the Scout,
with his parent's consent and participation, may appeal to the troop
committee, although this option has never yet be taken.
In the last three years, this disciplinary committee has been called upon to
meet two times, and performed admirably both times. All other problems have
been handled by the standard penalties, usually by the SPL or ASPL. Every
Scout and his parents were, of course, given copies of the problems & penalties
chart, and it was discussed in meetings.
If anyone would like a copy of this chart, I will be glad to mail it to you
via snail-mail (most of the chart is a WordPerfect 6.0 table). Simply send
me your snail-mail address.
Scoutmaster, Troop 911, Central Florida Council
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City