A quieter summer

The summer of 2020 in Scouting is shaping up to be very different from any other summer we’ve experienced in our lifetimes. With personal protection and social distancing the current norms, a lot of the activities that Scouts enjoy either cannot happen or need to be modified substantially.

Councils around the country are figuring out how to provide a summer camp experience to tens of thousands of Scouts while maintaining the health and safety we hold in high priority. Continue reading “A quieter summer”

An Eagle extension

Despite our efforts to keep Scouting programs going in the face of the worldwide pandemic, some things just become impossible at the moment. Merit badge requirements that include camping, for instance, and the collaborative nature of Eagle projects when we can’t come together due to social distancing threaten the timely completion of requirements.

A Scout’s eighteenth birthday can’t be postponed, of course, so the national advancement team has announced a temporary policy change to allow accommodations for Scouts approaching the age-out deadline to have an extension of time to earn Scouting’s highest honor. Continue reading “An Eagle extension”

Knowing isn’t doing

We frequently encounter Scouts who just don’t do what we think they should be doing, like planning the details of this weekend’s campout, or setting up their tents before nightfall. On a larger scope, we wish our Scouts would move along with advancement a little quicker, instead of dragging their feet on requirements.

Some of our adults can give us the same fits – a committee member who won’t come to a meeting with essential information, or work on a task that’s in their area of responsibility. We wish we could say something or do something that would get them moving, or stop doing something that’s causing a problem.

When these things happen, we need to look deeper for clues as to what’s going on. Continue reading “Knowing isn’t doing”

Q&A: Chartered organizations, adult training

Time to open the mailbag and answer a couple more of your questions.

First, from the chartered organization representative of a Cub Scout pack:

We’re chartered by the Parent-Teacher Association of the elementary school that we serve. Up until now, the PTA has been a affiliated with the school, but they are separating and the PTA is becoming a separate entity. They are filing to become a non-profit organization with the IRS. Do we need to take any action or file any charter paperwork with the council?

Continue reading “Q&A: Chartered organizations, adult training”

Fill in the blanks – the right way

With fall comes our surge of new members in the Boy Scouts of America – mainly in the Cub Scouting program – and with it comes the paperwork. The BSA membership of our current members gets renewed at recharter time, but those new to Scouting or new to our units (including transfers from other packs) need to complete a membership application. And of course, this means both youth and adults.

For the last year or two, it’s been possible to submit applications online. This allows the new member to complete a paperless application, have it routed automatically to the unit leader or committee chair and chartered organization representative for approval, and forwarded to the council for processing. Key unit leaders must be registered on my.scouting.org, and will receive emails to notify them of new applications needing their action. The system makes the process smooth and foolproof with no paper to handle.

For various reasons, though, this approach isn’t optimal for many units: Continue reading “Fill in the blanks – the right way”