scouts-l Mail Archive for May of 2000: Re: Scoutmaster's Key
Jack H. Ablon (jablon@FLASH.NET
Sat May 27 2000 - 11:00:36 CDT
Scoutmaster--Troop 221, Oakwood GA
.... Adult recognition is important as a tool for retaining leaders but
the focus of the adults should be on assisting the boys in developing a
quality program and not on which knot they can try for next and which
rules or guidelines they can bend in their quest to become one of the
It is for the boys!!
In my Humble Opinion, as a 38 year Scouter, the training awards are
MINIMUM standards. At Basic Training we tell new leaders that if they
are not AT LEAST doing what will qualify them for the training award for
their position, they are not providing the MINIMUM program to the boys
and they should recruit an immediate replacement and step aside. If the
cockamamie knot is so important they are in this program for the wrong
reason. That is why BP set the standard of awards with no real value,
self-satifaction for a job well done is the real value of these awards.
Had a SM around here who had a disagreement with his Troop Committee.
He recruited some folks who trusted him to help him start a new troop.
Twelve boys from his old troop came along to start the new troop. Did I
mention he had 6 months left to get the Scouter's Key? He did not go to
summer camp with the boys and at the end of six months, he resigned.
Said, "I can step down now, I've got the Key just like my daddy did!"
There had been no effort on his part to build the troop or train a
replacement - he used the boys to get a buck and a quarter patch!!
It has been my experience, that when someone becomes a Scouter for the
right reasons, they earn the training awards almost by accident. They
just get into the program, get trained and go to town being the best
leader for their Scouts they can be. Later somebody notices the award
has been earned and the paper work gets filed.
Its kinda like when we tell the boys to have a fun patrol outing on a
Saturday - go explore open areas, creeks etc. near your homes. Take
something to along to cook for lunch if there is an opportunity for a
good deed try so much the better. When they return to the patrol
leader's house, he asks for their books and signs off all the
requirements they were not aware they had just passed while they were
having a good time on a small adventure!!!
Rotating jobs to get awards "imho" is so much bugle oil! The reason to
change jobs is to replace leaders who cannot continue in the job due to
changes in other committments. Sure, each leader should trin a
replacement, especially if their volunteer status is going to change;
but you don't get that replacement for your ticket out. The more
trained "Gung-Ho" leaders a unit has the larger the unit can grow and
share their troop's success with more boys OR the more advanced
challenges the troop can undertake because there is always enough adult
support and participation to see that the activity can happen.
Yours in Scouting,
Jack H. Ablon, SM T-256