Bruce E. Cobern (bec@PIPELINE.COM)
Fri, 26 Jun 1998 11:26:25 -0400
> From: Michael Kauffmann <optimist@MERITBADGE.COM>
> Date: Wednesday, June 24, 1998 11:34 AM
> I agree with you. However, in this case, I think an easy
> comprise is at hand. I'm under the assumption that this
> testing is occurring during a swimming period of at least
> an hour or so. Why not have the Scouts do the second class
> test at the beginning of the hour and then perform the
> first class test later during the same swim?
> With a rest period in between the two tests, this wouldn't
> be too stressful on the Scouts. And by performing the
> second class test first, although similar, your not asking
> the Scouts to do the same thing they just did.
I'm a little surprised at you, Michael. If a Scout completes the 1st
Class swim test, then in doing so he has certainly also completed the
swimming part of the 2nd class swim test. So, on what basis are we going
to require him to do it AGAIN? Or, are you suggesting that while we have
a Scout IN THE WATER we stop him at the halfway point, even though he can
do more, and wants to, so that he will ONLY do the 2nd class swim. And
that then we make him come back and do it again a half hour later?
I thought, long ago, most of us agreed that skills are maintained because
they get used in the program, not because we continually retest them,
either at a SM conference, board of review, or by pretending that he
hasn't done something which he has, and thus making him do it again.
I am still waiting for someone to point me to anything in the Scouting
literature that states, in writing, the oft expressed belief that a given
act can be used to satisfy ONLY ONE requirement.
> It should be pointed out that the BSA swim test only
> requires two different strokes. If a Scout completes that
> test using only two strokes, it will not qualify for the
> first class requirement.
I believe that Bob's original statement was that he jumped into the water
and completed the 1st class swimming requirement (which, btw, does not
require that he jump in, OR that the water be over his head). Thus, based
on the original facts as stated, all three strokes would have been
Now, of course, it could have been the deep water test that the Scout
completed, in which case there is still the question as to whether he had,
in fact, satisfied the 1st class swimming requirement.
But the word is that this confusion and conflict between the two sets of
swim tests will be eliminated as a result of impending changes. We shall
Bruce E. Cobern
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City