Scouts-L Mail Archive for October of 1998: Re: SCOUTS-L Digest - 15 Oct 1998 to 16 Oct 1998
Re: SCOUTS-L Digest - 15 Oct 1998 to 16 Oct 1998
Sat, 17 Oct 1998 13:19:18 -0700
The very idea oof a scoutmaster signingoff merit badges is a conflict of
inteerst IMO.But reality is that Scoutmasters and ASMs have to involve
themselves in this process. Gray areas abound here.
Merit Badge counselors serve at the pleasure of the District Committees and
usuall someone in the District Program\Advancement\Meritbadge chain has the
staight scoop as laid down by your council Adv people and your District
Committee on the process for qualification.
The merit badge system is present in scouting to provide opportunities for
boys to come into contact with varied and diverse subjects that may lead to
a vocation or carreer. It is a virtual model of the job application
Their are some badges that are suitable to be administered and signedoff by
the unit leadership. My District Merit Badge list chairman acknowledges all
of our units scoutmasters and his assistants in the ability to sign off
camping,cooking,hiking and backpacking merit badges. They can also be
signed onto the District Merit Badge Counselor list for the usual 7 (an
arbitrary limit to thwart stacking the deck or running a family merit badge
This system has workred well for several years now.
District are required to publish merit badge counselor list from time to
Our list is presently an EXCEL file and it is usualy published and
organized by ZIP CODE so Scoutmasters can help a boy select a nearby
Our District also does'nt allow hidden counselors. All Counselor names and
vitae are published and the counselor can simply decline if contact at that
time is inconvenient.
I also have advised(as Dist Comm) our MBCL chair to mail a copy( in print
or on disk) to all Scoutmasters and no one else as I feel that the gateway
into the merit badge system is through the scoutmaster or his designee
T.The SM can reprint and distribute within the troop as he sees the need.
AS for the four merit badges we allow our SMs to signoff on I think you
would agree that it is appropriate in as much as they are the ones in
contact with the boy during the activities of these aprticular badges, In
fact when I was SM I had an assistant SM whose job was to keep careful
records on who attended campouts etc and also provide pearls of wisdom to
the Boy leaders to make sure those on outings had every opportunity (the
operative word here) to fulfil those four badge's requirements in a
simple and invisible way. It worked. More boys achieved these abdges.
Somne had to be counseled to apply for them. They had'nt realized their
NEVER GIVE UP
NEVER DO A JOB A BOY CAN DO
Red Coat In Spokane
Friends may mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
Date: Fri, 16 Oct 1998 12:02:19 -0400
From: "Gibson, Jim" <JGibson@SUBARU.COM>
Subject: SM and Merit Badges
I heard an interesting comment last night at our committee meeting, and
was wondering how accurate it was: "The Scoutmaster is allowed to
sign-off on *any* merit badge."