Re: Camping Problems with Parents
Henry Knowles (hknowles@POLARIS.ORL.MMC.COM)
Fri, 9 Feb 1996 14:07:45 EST
Bruce K. Rosen asked about restricting campouts to Scouts whose parents
camped at least once per year. Although I sympathize with Bruce's
situation, and I have sometimes felt like doing something similar, I
do not think it is a good idea.
First, the program is for the Scouts, and the Scouts whose parents won't
camp probably needs that outdoor experience as much as, or probably more
than, the other boys. The Scout has little or no control over whether
his parents will camp, so I would not penalize the Scout for his parents'
(lack of) action.
Second, you indicated that the parents who won't camp support the troop
in other ways. Not everyone likes to camp, but not everyone likes doing
some of those non-camping jobs either. If you now have enough parents
committed to the camping, use the others for jobs that don't involve
camping. I have had some outstanding Scouts in my troop who did not
like being Patrol Leader, but were outstanding in other roles such as
Quartermaster. Should I have forced them to run for PL?
Finally, making a big issue out of this, and being adamant about it,
will probably have the effect of dividing the troop, resulting in a
deterioration, or even loss, of the program for the Scouts. Does this
serve the best interests of the Scouts?
Bruce, I share your frustration, but I urge you to consider other
actions instead. We must always focus on what is best for our Scouts,
even when that is not the most convenient for the adults.
Scoutmaster, Troop 911, Central Florida Council, 1984-present
> Assuming we modify our camping schedule for next year I have
> been thinking of telling the Troop Committee that I plan on doing
> the following. At the start of the school year I will ask people to
> sign up for camping trips. Unless we have had an unexpected
> increase in membership, families that do not sign up for at least one
> trip will be informed that there is not a place for their boys in the
> camping program because of our limited volunteer base. Of course
> given my Committee Chair's attitude towards camping the result
> would be a most interesting and very "loud" meeting. I guess my
> real question is, am I justified in taking this action, or am I burned
> out and should I instead resign as SM at the end of this school year
> before causing the resulting uproar? I should also point out that
> there does not appear to be anyone at this point willing to serve as
> SM. I became SM at the conclusion of my son's first year in the
> Troop and will have been in place for 2 years this May.
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City