Scouts-L Mail Archive for February of 1999: Re: National Screw-up (Long Post!)
Re: National Screw-up (Long Post!)
Mon, 8 Feb 1999 10:19:13 -0600
Thank you for your explanation of the way things work with National and the Eagle
process. Let me make a couple of points of clarification:
1. My son's Eagle paperwork was approved by the Council registrar. All merit
badges, dates of rank, time in rank, etc. were checked and approved BEFORE the Eagle
Board of Review. I was the Advancement Chairman for 2 years before I became
Scoutmaster and I am a fanatic about record keeping (some people say I'm 'anal
retentive' but I like to think of it as 'thorough'). After the BoR, the paperwork was
hand carried to the Council office and was again approved by the registrar. (I know
this because I took the day off and stood there watching.) After the registrar signed
off, the paperwork was hand carried to the Scout Executive and laid in front of him
for his signature (I know because I did it). The paperwork was then put in an
envelope and readied for the next day's mail (I saw that happen too).
2. The Council had verbal approval from National of his advancement on January 11,
1999. I know this because the Council Advancement Chair sent my son a letter
congratulating him and inviting him to the Council Recognition dinner to be held on
January 29, 1999. He went to the recognition dinner and was honored along with 45
other Eagles from the Council. The Council Advancement Chair told me they could NOT
honor him at the dinner without National approval of his advancement.
3. At the Council Recognition Dinner, I picked up the Eagle Recognition Kit from the
Registrar. If there was any doubt in her mind about Scott's qualifications there is
no way on Earth she would have given me that kit.
Now, let us step back a moment and look at the time line. Eagle BoR on December 10,
1998, paperwork approved and sent to National December 16-17, 1998, approval verbally
given to Council Advancement Chair January 11, 1999, Council Eagle Recognition dinner
held January 29, 1999.
I understand the steps taken at National to get the approval for the Eagle Award, but
I do not understand what happened after January 11, 1999, when the approval was given
to the Council. It is now February 8, 1999 and still no paperwork.
The Court of Honor was scheduled and planned after January 11 when the approval was
received by Council. Isn't "immediate recognition" one of the things we are taught at
training? Is waiting 6-8 weeks before even SCHEDULING the recognition pushing the
limits of "immediate" just a bit?
I have received a number of responses from my post. Some have been less than kind
while others have been informative and empathetic. Mike, yours has been the most
informative and thought provoking. Almost unanimously, the posts have said it takes
between 4 weeks and 3 months to get the paperwork back from National. Now my question
- why do we put up with this? In my opinion, this is totally unacceptable and the
only way it can be corrected is by National understanding it is unacceptable. I
guarantee this time lag will only get longer with the rush of Eagle applications sure
to hit National as April 1 draws nearer. I can see Eagle Boards of Review being held
at the end of March and the corresponding Courts of Honor being held in November.
Mike, again thank you for your response. I appreciate that you took the time to
write. I understand what you are telling me, but I must respectfully disagree with
you. I talked to the District Director on Saturday (February 6,1999) when I
rechartered and told him about it. He agreed (or at least pretended well in front of
the crazy Scoutmaster) that there had been a breakdown somewhere. He also mentioned
that the CoH should not have been scheduled until after everything was back from
National. After counting to 10 I explained the sequence of events as I have written
here. I still think National screwed up. I am sending a letter to the National Scout
Executive with copies to the Council Executive and the District Director explaining
the situation. I doubt anything will happen but this is my personal windmill that I