scouts-l Mail Archive for February of 2000: Swimming Test
Henry Sanschagrin (hdpysans@NCIA.NET
Thu Feb 03 2000 - 20:52:00 CST
Members of Scout-L:
Take a look at this scenario for a moment. The boy is at summer camp. He
has failed a few of the swimmers test to meet the requirement of the MB.
His Camp SM arrainges to have the boy take the test at a time when no one
else is in the water and all his troop goes down to cheer and encourage him
on. One senior boy, a swimmer, says,"I'll go in with you just to give you
confidence, just so that you'll know that someone that you trust is close
by should you need me, but I can't and won't help you pass the test, this
is something that you have to do by yourself and for yourself". So with as
much confidence as the scout can muster, some rest and all his scout
friends behind him and cheering him on, He passes the test with no problem.
HE HAS MET THE REQUIREMENTS OF THE SWIMMING MERIT BADGE. PERIOD. NO one can
take that away from him EVER. Whether He passes or does not pass the
swimmers test the next time has no relevance to anything else. If He passes
for the Swimming Merit Badge, He automatically passes for the 1st class
requirements. This, however, does not necessarily make him a swimmer. Maybe
He just needed some encouraging words and people to help him succeed. Maybe
He didn't pass the next time because He was having a bad day. This exact
scenario happened to one boy in our troop at summer camp that I was the
camp SM at for the week. Why didn't the boy pass in the first place??? He
had gone on an 18 mile hike on the Saturday before the Sunday of summer
camp when the swimmers tests are usually done. No wonder He was tired.
I would challenge any SM who would cross off my signature and write failed
next to it!!! And as far as the scoutmasters giving authority to the MB
couselors, He ultimately gives up that authority when He signs the Blue
Card or signs the permission for the scout to attend summer camp. Is the
scoutmaster suppose to be in attendance for every requirement for every
MB??? What a busy person He must be!!!! It all comes back to TRUST. You
should have seen the big smile on this scouts' face when the MB councelor
gave him the "Thumbs up".
This scout later came to me and said that He knew that He was not a swimmer
and that He would practice during the summer. No one ever forced him to go
swimming when the troop went on a water adventure. Yet, He even went on
canoe trips with us and was always with the most qualified and strong
swimmer that we had and we all watched out for him. Its called "comradery".
38 Crestwood Drive
Gorham, NH 03581