Re: Boys quitting after Eagle
Fri, 9 Jun 1995 08:23:15 EST
Tim Hurd asked how to keep older boys-
I've followed this thread for a couple weeks, now, and suggest that we
may be missing the point. You don't induce scouts to stay by ordering
them to do so; you induce them by making them want to do so.
In our troop of about 85 scouts, we have enough older scouts, and
enough asst. scoutmasters (ASMs) that we can dedicate three or more
patrols to older scouts only. It took us three years to find the
right formula for us, so don't give up if it doesn't work for you the
first time. One patrol is a high-activitity/high-adventure patrol,
into rock climbing, whitewater rafting, and hiking. Another patrol is
more social, and favors lock-ins, and patrol campouts, and one-day
events. Find the compatible ASM, and let the scouts self-select.
Sometimes I worry about Cult of Personality, that patrols become Mr.
X's Patrol, instead of the Y Patrol. But so long as the boys get what
they want, that's what matters. Try the Venture Program, if the BOYS
want it, not if the ASM wants it. Try Explorer Scouts if you must.
But we'd rather have them with our troop, where the younger boys can
look up and aspire.
You need the right chemistry, and enough boys, and enough ASMs, and
patience. But it's worth the effort. My patrol consistently has the
highest attendance ratio at our weekly patrol meetings. Because they
like to be with each other.
Manuel Pablo, ASM, Troop 1518, Springfield, VA.
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City