How Do You Form Your Patrol?--No Philosophies--Just The Facts
Fred Smith (Fred_Smith@CLR.COM)
Tue, 21 Oct 1997 10:49:53 -0500
Troop 261, Plano, Texas has about 65 scouts and 20 registered adults. We
reorganize new patrols every 6 months, in September and March for terms
beginning October and April. We begin with an election of SPL and ASPL.
Those standing for election are self nominated and approved by the SM. The
nominations are for teams of SPL/ASPL. We usually have 3 pairs to vote on.
The scouts running for office must complete a contract for that position
where they agree to the job description and submit it to the SM. Actually
scouts desiring to serve any position of responsibility must complete a
With 65 scouts we have six patrols that camp in what we call "trailer camp"
style and 2 patrols that desire to camp in a "low impact" style. A total of
eight patrols. The difference is mainly whether the patrol uses a chuck box
with Coleman stove, perishable food in coolers and cots for sleeping.
Low impact patrols use back-packing stoves for cooking and may only bring
what will fit in a backpack and packframe. In the Spring one of the eight
patrols is designated the new scout patrol with a Troop Guide as patrol
leader. This patrol is made up of young scouts just joining the troop
usually from a Weblos cross-over. They will remain in this patrol for one
six mounth term to work on Scout, Tenderfoot... with the goal of having
most requirements completed through First class by the end of the term.
They usually have only the 10 campouts/activities to complete at this time.
Again, those standing for election as PL are self nominated and approved by
the SM. The election is held by class of camping, i.e. low impact scouts
elect low impact PL's. On the next Sunday afternoon after the elections
the newly elected PL's and SPL/ASPL meet with the SM to draft patrols. We
allow some ground rules, i.e. known personality conflicts and brothers must
be together or not, etc. Then the PL begin selecting their patrols with
one choice per round. The first choice is usually the PL's choice for APL.
Continue until everyone is placed in a patrol. There may now be a time for
trading based on mutual consent of PL.
This method allows for less politically skilled scouts to be elected as PL
and SPL and serve terms to meet advancement criteria. It tends to group
scouts according to age and neighborhood. The requirements for the low
impact patrols are First Class rank and 20 nights of camping so these
patrols tend to have the older scouts in them any way. Usually our older
scouts choose to be in the low impact patrols. We use the low impact patrol
to teach methods for high adventure camping like Philmont and Northern
CC Troop 261, Plano Texas
Great Plains District
Circle 10 Council
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City