ADD/MB & HANDICAPPED SCOUTS
Michael F. Bowman (mfbowman@CAPACCESS.ORG)
Wed, 2 Aug 1995 00:59:35 -0400
Many on the list have raised a number of questions concerning the waiver
of requirements or leniency in requirements for ranks and merit badges.
This item was discussed awhile back, so I dug through the archives and
thought I'd repost a message on the subject. While looking I also found
a great handout on ADD that many of you may find useful. Two repeated
Date: Mon, 19 Sep 1994 00:33:56 -0400 (EDT)
From: "Michael F. Bowman" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Merit Badge Requirements & A Word on Disability
Your intuition is right. The Official BSA line is found in Merit Badge
Counseling, Booklet No. 6517, which states, "The Scout is expected to meet
the requirements as stated--no more and no less. Furthermore, he is to do
exactly what is stated. . . ."
Now, I've been signing those little blue cards, since sometime around 1969
and I've almost always found a little room for interpretation, unless the
requirement was extremely specific. I know that I've been reluctant to
sign when a Scout was only putting forth minimal effort and could do much
better. In such cases I've encouraged the Scout to see this as a growth
opportunity where he could get something out of it besides a mere badge.
In a few instances, where a Scout was going all out, I know that I've
interpreted just what would suffice as a "demonstration" or how to show
Since my early days, I've also learned that BSA has an Alternative Eagle
Program for Scouts with disabilities. Under certain circumstances, when a
mental or physical handicap (health care professional certified permanent
disability) prevents a Scout from completing required Eagle Merit Badges,
others may be substituted and an Alternative Eagle Application No.
58-730 submitted with the standard Eagle Application No. 58-728.
In addition, time limits may be waived. However, even here BSA stands
firm that the requirements must be met as set out. Sometimes this means
that reasonable accomodation is dictated in how a report is written (using
special devices) or ideas are communicated (again special devices for
those incapable of oral expression).
For those of you who are interested, Scouting has the following
Scouting and the Learning Disabled: A Manual for Scouting Leaders
Scouting for the Physically Disabled
Scouting for the Hearing Impaired
Scouting for the Blind and Visually Impaired
Scouting for the Mentally Retarded
Date: Sun, 20 Nov 1994 17:40:42 -0800
From: "Elizabeth A. Stiles" <estiles@PACIFIER.COM>
Subject: Re: ADD/ADHD Kids
Went to a class at Powwow/Potlatch on Saturday. Three of all things was a
class on kids with ADD/ADHD. Came home with some good information. The
class was lead by an Adult who just 5 months ago found out that he was a
ADD adult. Told us all the story about how as an Adult he never heald a
job longer the 27 months. Never fired, but got board with the job. The
following is a copy of a hand out that I though everyone would be
AN ADD CHILD'S BILL OF RIGHTS
"Help me to focus" Please teach me through my sense of "touch." I need
"hands-on" and body movement.
"I need to know what comes next" Please give me a structured environment
where there is a dependable routine. Give me advanced warning if there
will be changes.
"Wait for me. I'm still thinking" Please allow me to go at my own pace.
If I rush, I get confussed and upset.
"I'm stuck, I can't do it" Please offer me options for the
problem-solving. I need to know the detours when the road is blocked.
"Is it right? I need to know NOW!" Please give me rich and immediate
feedback on how I'm doing.
"I didn't forget, I didn't 'hear' it in the first place." Please give me
directions one step at a time and ask me to say back what I think you said.
"I didn't know I WASN'T in my seat!' Please remind me to stop, think, and
"Am I almost done now?" Please give me short work periods with short term
"What?" Please don't say "already told you that". Tell me again in
different words. Give me a signal. Draw me a symbol.
"I know, it's ALL wrong isn't it?" Please give me praise for partial
success. Reward me for self-improvement, not just for perfection.
"But, why do I always get yelled at?" Please catch me doing something
right and praise me for my specific positive behavior. Remind me (and
yourself) about my good points, when I'm having a bad day.
c 1991, Ruth Harris, Northwest Reading Clinic
Got this from one of the handouts in class. For those of you who
sometimes lack for the right guidence to give your child's teacher there
is real wisdom in this list and for those of us who need for ourself
I felt really good about what this class was trying to teach those who
don't live with our kids.
got that warm feeling all over..... ;)
Note: It is my understanding that the copyrighted material was
authorized for use in Scout training, but not for commercial use.
Both of these postings were previously distributed to the list, so I
apologize to those who were around then then for the repeat, but I
thought with so many new folks it would be worth repeating.
Speaking only for myself in the Scouting Spirit, Michael F. Bowman
DDC-Training, GW Dist. Nat Capital Area Council mfbowman@CAPACCESS.ORG
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City