Re: Frustrated Scout
J.E. Cross III (jcross@BEOWULF.MHSL.UAB.EDU)
Tue, 28 Apr 1998 15:17:23 -0600
On 28 Apr 98 at 0:13, Jeff Phelon wrote:
> I just got a call from one of the moms of a Scout. She was telling me that her
> son came home from our meeting tonight feeling that I was punishing him
> because he has not had some things signed off in his book. His attendence at
> meetings is excellent, second best in Troop, my son is first. Hard to avoid
> Dad. His attendence on campouts is not real good. I explained to the Mom about
> each requirement in question, and when we did them again in the field and her
> son was not there. Sometimes beyond his control, sometimes his choice. Mom
> said he (she?) felt her son was being punished as an example. I set up time
> for this Saturday morning to have any needed SM conferences and suggested her
> son come and sit down to talk about this situation. He will not be able to
> make it. Any ideas out there on what approach I should take on this. I
> certainly don't want to lose him, but also want to stress the importance of
> the outdoor part of the program. After all that seems to be the place where
> everything seems to fall into place.
> Jeff Phelon
> Troop 49
> Ft. Monmouth, NJ
Jeff, take it from a scoutmaster whose has been there. Be fair but
be firm both with the scout and his mom. If the requirements for
advancement are not clear to the scout; schedule a private meeting
with scout and mother and make the advancement requirements clear to
both. Let her know that you have the best interest of the boy in
your mind and heart. Make her your partner, not your adversary. You
will find a parent can your best friend. My goal is to get on a
first name basis with all my parents.
If the scout missed the opportunity to advance by not being on a
camp-out he has to accept this fact. It is much better that the boy
learn to accept the consequences of his actions and decisions or
lack thereof in scouting rather than later in life where his
education, job, family, or very life may be on the line.
You should be in scouting because you care about the boys. Well, it
is time to practice a little of that tough love. If the boy misses
out because his parents will not let him participate, then that is a
problem to be worked out between the boy and his parents. If the
boy misses out because he made a decision, he must learn to accept
the consequences of his decision. Its a tough lesson and the sooner
its learned, the better off the boy will be.
Always Remember, scouting is a tool to be used to help raise boys,
scouting is not an end unto itself.
DISCLAIMER: I speak for no-one except myself.
/S/ Jesse E. Cross, III - Systems Analyst
Mervyn H. Sterne Library, University of Alabama at Birmingham
Shelter a child and you protect him for a day. Teach a child
integrity and self-reliance and you protect him for a lifetime!
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City