Re: National Bulletin - Selecting Leaders
(no name) ((no email))
Tue, 7 Jul 1998 23:19:25 +0000
Merl Whitebook <MAWLAW@AOL.COM>
>During the previous week every Boy Scout/Varsity Scouting Unit
>Committee Chairman received (or will receive) a letter from Jere
>Ratcliffe, Chief Scout Executive regarding "Selecting Quality
This is part of the results coming from this spring's meetings and
was one of the items ratified during the National Meeting of the
Someone asked if this applied to present Scoutmasters and
Assistants or to ones that are "hired" after Sept 1. It applies to
those being hired after September 1. and your Councils will be
saying the same next month:
>The Bulletin outlines a seven step program:
Note please the ABSENCE of the position formerely called "Chartered
Organizational Representative", or COR:
>1.Chartered Organization Briefing: Head of Chartered Org. meets
>with local council to discuss the process of selecting and
>recuiting quality leaders.
This is currently done each year at rechartering time between the
(Senior) District Executive or District Director and the head of
the chartering organization. Nothing changes.
>2. Steering Committee Meeting: The head of the steering
>committee calls a meeting of the steering Comm and develops a
>prospect list, ranking of the prospects, obtains approval of the
>prospects from the head of chartered organiztion, previews part
>one and two of selecting quality leaders video, selects at least
>three people to call on the number one prospect.
Not much changes here except for the number of individuals calling
upon a prospect. There's safety in numbers. The video is something
new, and should shed a little more light on the proper selection of
quality leadership for Boy Scouting units.
>3. Make an appointment with the propsect
>4. Call on the prospect
>5. Have the prospect complete a membership application
>The attached letter call special attention to step five:
>completion of the adult volunteer leader application. The
>guidelines states that
>"it is the responsibility of the unit steering committee to
>review and screen the application."
This means, Merl and others, that the local Councils are OUT of the
screening business and that the chartered partner organization is
responsible for any kind of screening that they choose and deem
neccessary to certify the leadership of their units. No more of
this "multiple screening" at the unit and then at the local
Council/District level for volunteers.
>"Individuals who have lived in the community for three or more
>years and are known to members of the committee well enough for
>them to serve as a reference should require little additional
In other words, if the Troop Committee feels that this person that
have lived with them and is acceptable to them, then no more
"screening" is needed. If the person isn't as well-known to the
"screening committee" of the Troop, then more appropriate screening
and perhaps contacting of the references listed is appropriate.
>"Conduct a reference check on those who are new to the community
>as well as those who may be new to volunteer scouting. References
>should be checked in a discreet, nonthretening manner..."
The BSA has been beaten up collectively and individually by several
"high-powered" individuals that the local Council conducted their
standard "background screens" on, without their consent and in some
cases, revealing information about them that they would rather not
have had publicized. In this new way, the BSA now will leave it to
the chartered partner organization to do whatever level of
screening neccessary to insure that they are getting quality
leadership....and to do it in a spirit and manner that is more
condusive to acheiving the goal and less about "finding out about
Mr. X or Ms. Y".
>...and previous Scouting experience should be confirmed."
Easily done for many longtime volunteers and for those out of
Scouting for a while and coming back in.
>6. Welcome the new leader
Again, nothing changes here. This is what we do presently.
>7. A representative from the BSA local council will contact the
>new leader and schedule fast start trainging.
This means, Council Presidents and Commissioners, that an renewed
emphasis on getting more Commissioner support is ESSENTIAL. The
professionals are no longer going to be able to handle this and
their new tasks too.
Merl added these comments:
>1. This seems to shift the screening responsibility away from
>Scouting (where I presumed it was, including criminal backround
>checks etc.) and places it upon the Unit.
Not just on the unit, but SQUARELY on the unit and the chartered
partner organization. The COR is completely OUT of the picture
here, Merl....the line will now go from Chartered Partner to Troop
or Pack or Team or Crew Committee. We'll still have CORs around,
mainly because many chartered partner heads will refuse to get
involved in anything except showing up to vote for the new Council
>2. I better get busy, it will take me about a year before we can
>implement all the requirments to introduce any new leaders into
Actually, if you're going to bring in any officers after 1
September, these rules ARE NOW ACTIVE. Don't wait until you have to
get someone new; this is the time now to work with your chartered
organizational head and come to an agreement on what kinds of
people are acceptable to THEM (after all, it is THEIR UNIT!) and
what you and other adults are willing to "put up with".
I see this as a win-win for the BSA and for those that have been
saying that the BSA is invading personal lives through its
investigative "checking". The BSA is basically saying "you hire
them, you live with it" while at the same time relieving field
professionals from having to do background-background checks on all
but those that may be suspect as "undesirables" to the program.
A tightening of the adult leadership process at the unit level,
done by those in the unit rather than those at the Council level.
Thanks, Merl, for posting the information for all of us. Like I
mentioned earlier, this is one of several new twists to the BSA's
program that's going to come out within the next three to five
weeks as the BSA gets ready for one of it's biggest sets of changes
and modifications to it's programming and design!!
(c) 1998 Mike Walton ("no such thing as strong coffee,...") (502) 827-9201
(settummanque, the blackeagle) http://dynasty.net/users/blkeagle
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