Re: Canadian Scout in US Troop
B P Hynes / NTnet (bph@NTNET.NT.CA)
Mon, 18 Aug 1997 08:59:51 -0600
Yes, advancement is different in Canada. No, it is not based solely on
years put in. [Good try, though, don't you think? :-) ] More specifics
Most of Scouts Canada's records are not nearly as centralized as BSA's.
Most likely, his former scouter(s) have all that still exist, if any.
However, you could pursue two other possibilities...
1. If his troop was sponsored by an institution, such as a church, some
records may still exist with the sponsor. (If the sponsor itself hasn't
disbanded, if they were completed in the first place, and if the former
leaders thought to give them to the sponsor).
2. If he earned the badge, what did he do with them? If he can show you
the badge, there is a good chance he earned it.
Quite frankly, although it may sound harsh, I'd make him do the work if
he's interested. Let HIM call the sponsor. Let HIM write the former
council office. Let HIM look for his old badges, etc, or let HIM do the
requirements (again?) in your program.
Here's some more detail on our badges and recognition system.
The scout recognition system, as it stands, is complex. (Many say "too
complex.) Our recognition system will be changed in the immediate
future. New general guidelines have been circulated at the Jamboree last
month, but (being a cub leader), I didn't pay a lot of attention to all
However, (being a Trainer 3), I do understand the current system:
A Scout receives a "year flash" for a current year's registration.
(i.e.. "1996-97"). Only one of these should be worn at a time, and it is
supposed to be proof of paid registration (ha!). Past years of service
are noted by gold (5 year) and silver (1 year) bars just above the cuff.
(There is ongoing debate about whether adults should wear bars for youth
years.) This is the only recognition (for youth) based on time
registered in the organization.
I do not concur with Jim Carter's comparison of our "ranks" to BSA's.
(They are called "achievement awards", BTW). For example, when a person
is awarded the Chief Scout's Award, they do not cease to be a Pathfinder
Youth work on "achievement awards" [square badges] at the bronze, silver
and gold levels. (The beauty of this system is that within one outing or
activity, younger scouts may be working on bronze requirements, while
older scouts may be pursuing silver or gold stages of the same basic
topic). The completion of certain "achievement awards", at the
appropriate level, results in the Pioneer Scout Award, the Voyageur
Scout Award, and the Pathfinder Scout Award. (The mandatory achievement
awards required for each of these is where you will find community
service and the like.)
Since you have to hold the Pathfinder Scout Award to be eligible for the
Chief Scout's Award, it is often portrayed as the next "rank", although
technically, it's not.
While all of this is going on, youth may also be working on "challenge
badges" [the round badges]. These are more similar to merit badges, and
do not have gold, silver and bronze stages. However, by earning 6, 10
and 14 challenge awards, respectively, you can earn a bronze, silver or
gold challenge award. A challenge award is represented by a bronze,
silver or gold chain, worn like a lanyard. The bronze, silver or gold
level of a Challenge Award [chain], however, has nothing to do with the
bronze, silver or gold level of the Achievement Awards [square badges],
since it's based only on the number of Challenge Badges [round badges]
A highly successful older scout will be wearing a gold chain (Gold
Challenge Award), at least 14 challenge badges, at least five square
Achievement Awards with gold borders, and perhaps some other Achievement
Awards with silver, bronze or even yellow borders. (The yellow ones are
cub badges that can be worn on a Scout uniform until replaced by a
bronze, silver or gold in the same topic. Since some topics are
optional, the scout could have lower-level badges not counted towards
his/her Pathfinder Award).
This scout would have a diamond-shaped scout badge with four chevrons
under it, representing his Pioneer Scout Award. The Chief Scout Award is
proudly warn as a separate patch.
Of course, by this time, they'd likely be working on a Duke of Edinburgh
Award (yes, it's mentioned in the Scout Handbook), but that's another
Other special recognition is offered for World Conservation and a
Year-Round Camper and Acts of Heroism or Bravery. Since our Uniform
Police aren't as efficient as yours :-) the Scout would likely have
snuck on a Jamboree patch or similar item on one of the shoulders. (Some
troops encourage this, even though it's not official, and others would
Clear as mud, huh? I can get one of the 11 year olds to explain it to
us, if you think it will help. :-)
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Mark Wright [SMTP:wrightmd@ROANOKE.INFI.NET]
> Sent: Saturday, August 16, 1997 7:39 PM
> To: Multiple recipients of list SCOUTS-L
> Subject: Canadian Scout in US Troop
> A question to all of our friends north of the border...
> We have a young man who used to be a member of our Troop. He came to
> from a Canadian Troop which, unfortunately, has folded, and he has no
> address to contact any prior leaders.
> Could someone explain how Scouts works in Canada? I think (from
> to him) that I understand Scouts advance based on years of
> and not *necessarily* on completing a list of achievments? For
> instance, in order to earn First Class Scout in the BSA, a boy has to
> complete 'x' number of items in his Handbook. Is it different in
> In addition, is there anywhere we could write to try to recover his
> records? This is his second attempt at Scouting in the US, and we'd
> *really* like to get him advanced (he is 16 now, and only has his
> Mark Wright
> CC Pack 584
> ASM Troop 136
> Roanoke, VA
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City