Re: Eagle Board of Review Question
Bruce E. Cobern (bec@PIPELINE.COM)
Wed, 18 Jun 1997 10:08:35 -0400
Sorry, Ron, but I HAVE to agree with Russ and Jeff. Even if it were NOT
in the Advancement Guidelines, which it IS, how can you ask someone for a
CONFIDENTIAL reference letter and then turn around and show or give it to
the person it is written about? Isn't that a breach of trust? Aren't we
trustworthy? If the unit wants letters for an album then they should
solicit CONGRATULATORY letters, which are different from recommendation
You would be surprised at some of the things that can show up in these
letters. Not often, but occasionally. How would you deal with the Scout
who got a letter that you would rather not let him see? When you give
back the letters and the one from his teacher (priest, PARENT) is missing,
how do you explain it? In writing a confidential assessment letter the
author, while generally being positive, will often indicate the areas
needing improvement or where there are problems. Since that is exactly
what the board needs to know, it is important to get this information. If
the author thought that the letter would be shared with the subject he
might be much less candid.
I tell EVERY Life Scout, when I give him SASE's for the recommendation
letters, that the ONLY way he will see the letters is if the author
chooses to share them with him.
In my case, I hold on to the letters, with a copy of the Eagle application
and other paperwork, at least until the certificate is back from national.
In a practical sense, I only throw them out when I run out of room in my
file box and have to clean things out.
Bruce E. Cobern
> From: Ron Raab-Long <raablong@VOICENET.COM>
> Date: Wednesday, June 18, 1997 8:33 AM
> Sorry Russ, but I've got to say that is one of the worst ideas I've ever
> heard from this list. First, the board wouldn't get letters from people
> wouldn't give the Scout a good recommendation - the Scout and his
> Scoutmaster ask people to write them. Letters of recommendation should
> given to the board, read, then returned to the Scoutmaster for inclusion
> whatever package the Scout is given during his Eagle COH. The make a
> keepsake and let the Scout know, after the fact, what people he
> feel about him. In addition, I can't imagine someone writing a letter
> recommendation for a Scout and not expect the Scout to eventually see
> To destroy these letters is a terrible disservice to the Scout.
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City