Re: Personal Management Questions (LONG)
Paul S. Wolf (Paul.S.Wolf@ALUM.WPI.EDU)
Thu, 13 Aug 1998 18:56:06 -0400
Carol Kelley wrote:
> I was printing out the new requirements for Eagle Required Merit
> Badges to make some booklets for the troop and was looking at the
> requirements for Personal Management. A couple of requirements
> really don't sit well with me. Requirement 1 and 2.
> My husband and myself have decided that what we make or how we spend
> it is none of the children's business. So my question is, once (or
> if) they finally start working on Personal Management with a
> counselor, can the first requirement be hypothetical?
The requirement reads:
1 (a) Lead a discussion with your family to identify one
family financial goal that must be saved for out of
family income. Choose a goal that has strong
personal interest for both you and your family
(a family trip or vacation, a new VCR, or a family
car, for instance).
(b) Discuss the goal in detail (where to go on vacation,
for example, or what kind of car to buy), the cost
of the goal, and when you want to reach the goal.
(c) Discuss how your family could accumulate funds to
reach this goal, how the goal will affect the rest
of the family budget, and how you could help your
family achieve the goal.
There is nothing there that says you must discuss how much you make. It
does require a discussion of possible spending plans. The discussion
can be theoretical, but should be realistic. The purpose IS to give
them some idea of how you spend your income. Teens should have some
idea of what rent/housing, food, auto, vacations, etc. cost.
> Another question I have is about the personal budget, how is a Scout
> that doesn't work or have an allowance going to have a budget? Can
> the budget be hypothetical as well? The only type of budget I could
> imagine them having is as follows:
> When my parents give me money for an activity, I will save 5 cents
> and use the rest to do what they told me to do with it.
> The only types of entries on what they spent that I can imagine would
> be something like as follows:
> "My mom gave me two dollars for our trip to the skating ring. I
> saved 5 cents and spent $1.95 on games and a soda."
> Is this what they're talking about, or am I missing the boat? Or
> should they wait until they can get a job to do this badge?
It can go either way. However, why not tell them that for the 90 day
period, rather than you giving them money if and when they ask, you will
give them a set amount (ie an allowance) each week for that period, and
its up to them to prepare and adhere to their budgets. They really do
have to learn how to live within a budget eventually. better now than
> I guess what I'm saying is I was planning on the boys not working so
> they wouldn't have to worry about "work" and could concentrate on
> their School, Scouts, and Sports.
That's very admirable.
> But from the very nature of some of the advancement requirements, it
> seems to me BSA is actually encouraging the conflicts that pull boys
> away from Scouting.
I don't think so. If you and they really have no need for outside
employment, a basic allowance could be a real learning experience for
Paul S. Wolf, PE mailto:Paul.S.Wolf@alum.wpi.edu
Traffic Engineer, Cuyahoga County Engineer's Office, Cleveland, Ohio
Past President, Great Lakes Region, Federation of Jewish Men's Clubs
Winding Rivers Dist. Advancement Comm., Greater Cleveland Council, BSA
Advancement Webmaster, US Scouting Service Project (www.usscouts.org)
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City