Re: Re: Uniforming
(no name) ((no email))
Wed, 6 Dec 1995 10:58:22 -0600
>How do you know that the methods are working? What is the objective
>standard by which you measure success? What are the measurement
>standards that BSA uses to assess the effectiveness of these methods.
The immediate measuring stick the BSA uses, Steve, is through the Quality
Unit/District/Council program, which all local Councils use and 79 percent of
all units use as a way to "grade themselves" on the level of their
The Quality Unit program measures a unit against *itself* (not against other
units it's size or other units in other Districts or Councils), which makes
it the most ideal tool for unit self-improvement, leadership development, and
of course, the effectiveness of the eight methods of Scouting.
Basically, the Quality Unit program looks at the level of adult leadership and
training/coaching. It looks at the number of youth members registered as
opposed to the previous year. It looks at the number of youth members whom
have advanced as opposed to the previous year, as well as the number of
_Boys'_Life_ as a resource tool. It also looks at the amount of camping
that the unit has done again against that previous year. Depending on the
kind of unit, it also looks at the quality of the meetings, or service
projects or other
While your Commissioner "grades" the sheet which becomes the application for
the awards, it is your youth and adult leaders that actually "grade
themselves" against the standard. You meet YOUR standard, you are a Quality
Unit. Of course, there are some "built-in "must-dos" " that come along with
the application, which only makes the operation of the unit better and more
There are a set of objectives for the District (really a combination of all
of the unit's objectives, plus some financial and personnel staffing
objectives); for the Council (again, a combination of the District's
objectives along with
financial, program and personnel staffing objectives) and for the Region
(taking all of the Council's information). The Quality
Unit/District/Council program is taken as a BIG DEAL at the National level,
Steve, and as a result, is a BIG DEAL in *most* local Councils.
Admittently, there are some local Councils that are (were) too small to even
consider meeting their Quality goals for more than two years in a row, and
they don't participate. There are other Councils that view the Quality
Unit/District/Council program as an intrusion on their right to manage their
Councils the way they see fit (after all, it IS their Council!) and after
the first few years of participation, don't place an overwhelming emphasis
on the Quality Unit program as they would their own Council programming.
Long term measuring sticks, are, as many replied to you here, Steve, hard to
quantify or objectively measure. This is because we are dealing with a
program which "implants the seed" and it takes a long time for the seed to
germinate, grow and produce fruit. I guess we can point to a rather long
list of successful parents, citizens and civic leaders whom were former
Scouts or Cubs or Explorers and ask them "how effective the program was to
them", but that effort would require literally hundreds of thousands of
dollars to do, involve a
research agency several years to complete, and it would be skewed according to
what that person viewed the BSA as today, as well as what kind of experience
(which can span decades!) they had as a Cub, Scout or Explorer as well as a
Scouter. Finally, depending on the daily news in the paper or on CNN (or
the other networks), their answers can be one thing one day and another set
of opinions the next.
It's like me "knowing" which of my three children will go onward to Grad
school and which will make me a grandparent first. I can look at ages (my
daughter is ten and in a few years, she could make me a grandparent; but
then, my oldest son is eight, and it won't be too long before he could make
me a grandparent) and I can say with a level of confindence only reserved
for parents, that my son Andy
will be the one to go to Engineering school after college and the military
(because of his high level of cognitive-type experiences and activities in
and out of school), but there's nothing that says that Mandy will decide
never to have any children or that Andy wouldn't end up with two or three
children out of wedlock before he's fifteen -- or that Aaron (my youngest
and the one with behavior problems)won't end up a ear-nose-and-throat surgeon!
Part of our problem with our program is what you are trying to find out, Steve:
"How effective am I REALLY"? There's not a good way to OBJECTIVELY find
this out...sure, we get Scouts to return to us as adults, strong and
active in their communities and in the nation. We also get Scouts to return
to us (or we see them) as "bums" out there on the streets. The only thing
that we can do as Scouters is to continually set the positive example, take
advantage of all parts of the program and promote all parts of it amoung our
youth, point them in the right direction, be there when they fall - dust
them off - and stand them back up again, and to "be there for them".
Everything else: the direction in which they want to take Scouting in, the
level of advancement or the amount of participation, and even whether or not
"getting anything from all of this"...it's all up to each and every youth member
in our programs.
Hope this helps!
>I see a lot of subjective assertions but little in the actual long
>term measure of their effectiveness.
>-Steve in Newark
(MAJ) Mike L. Walton (Settummanque, the blackeagle) (
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