Re: Advancement Questions
Bob Morehead (rmorehead@NLS.NET)
Fri, 12 Jun 1998 10:36:59 -0400
Tony Mako and I have talked this over and have come down on opposite sides
of this issue. I've no doubt but that the list will benefit from his wisdom
shortly, but I did want to present the dissenting view. ;)
On the issue of the boy going to New York for the summer, I think we all
agree that anything he completes with a troop there counts. I don't know
where that fellow got the idea it wouldn't, but he needs a reality check.
The rub is on the issue of the boy going camping with his parents and having
them sign off on requirements. I strongly believe that allowing parents to
sign off on Boy Scout requirements is a bad idea. No matter how honest and
knowledgeable the parents, the practice invites problems the troop really
doesn't want to deal with.
Let's assume for a moment that you allow "Billy's" parents to sign off some
requirements. Billy's parents are good people with a lot of knowledge and
you trust their judgement. Six months later, "Joey" comes to you with a
list of requirements his dad signed off. Now, Joey's dad is one of those
"drivers" we read about now and then on the list who's living vicariously
through his son. His son's Eagle badge is HIS personal goal. You strongly
suspect the genuineness of these requirements, so you disallow them. Mr.
Joey goes ballistic and takes the matter to the committee, citing the
precedent of Billy's parents. Having opened the door with Billy, what,
short of calling Mr. Joey to task publicly on his untrustworthiness, will
you use to defend your position?
It's later now, and Billy is applying for Eagle. His packet is before a
hard-nosed BoR and they notice the requirements signed by his parents. They
suspect their genuineness and now Billy is in the unenviable position of
having to defend them.
By having a set policy of not allowing parents to sign off on requirements,
you ensure that these unpleasant scenarios do not take place. Not allowing
the parents to sign requirements in no way comes between the boy and these
family outings. The boy will have many more opportunities with the troop to
complete the requirements in a way that won't cause more problems than it
solves. The boy's family schedule doesn't ALWAYS conflict with the troop's,
In the meantime, make sure you reassure the boy that the troop FULLY
SUPPORTS his family outing. Family is IMPORTANT.
BTW, if they're that gung-ho for camping, get 'em a pair of adult
applications, quick! ;)
ASM, Troop 381
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City