Bobwhite Blather

Information, Observation, and Inspiration for Scouters

Committee chair timeline: September

september_200Now that school has started, many troops that scale back in the summer are in full swing again or are about to, and a new year of camping and activities is underway.

Since starting this series of articles a few months ago, I’ve been highlighting the things that the committee chair should remember to do during each month. For a reminder as we get the fall season underway, here are those things that you should be doing each month:

  • Plan and prepare for your monthly committee meeting. Prepare the agenda, soliciting input from your committee on any topics that need to be covered. The agenda should cover reports from committee members and the Scoutmaster, a financial report from the treasurer, an advancement update, a camping update, any old business left over from previous meetings, and any new topics that need to be considered. Distribute the agenda, along with the minutes of the previous meeting, to all committee members a week or so before the meeting.
  • Ensure that everything’s on track for this month’s campout – payments to the camp, equipment hauling, permission slips and payment from Scouts, and drivers to and from. Work with the Scoutmaster to arrange for enough adult participation – at least four is good; many more increases the chance that the adults will get in the way of the Scouts.
  • Look ahead to next month and make sure camping reservations are made and anything else that’s needed in advance is take care of.
  • Make sure that boards of review are scheduled for any boys who need one.
  • Go over the bank statement with the treasurer and determine if you are on track budget-wise.
  • With your Scoutmaster, attend Roundtable!

Now, on to September’s specifics:

  • Catch up with your troop’s Webelos resource person (or if you don’t have one, recruit one from last spring’s new crossover parents). Help him or her with contact information for the packs in your area, particularly the Webelos den leaders, as they often change from year to year. The Webelos den leaders should be provided with a list of dates for your fall and winter activities including courts of honor, troop meetings and any events such as camporees or campouts where the Webelos Scouts would be welcome to participate with your troop. Troops which maintain contact with Webelos dens are the ones who are most successful at receiving crossed-over Scouts.
  • In the same vein, make sure the pieces are in place for events where you plan to invite the Webelos. Camps should be reserved, equipment in order and recruiting materials updated and on hand.
  • Go back to your mid-year Journey to Excellence assessment and review it with the Scoutmaster. Look at any items that you met or improved over the summer, such as advancement, long-term camping participation or service. Find out where you need to improve during the rest of the year. In most councils, the completed assessment can be turned in as early as October, and is usually due by mid-December.
  • Review your adult leader training status, which can be done through your unit dashboard ( Work with your troop’s training coordinator to ensure that the required training is completed. Top leaders (Scoutmaster and committee chair) must be trained in order to recharter for 2014, and all leaders must be trained in 2015.
  • If your council holds a food drive or other community service project, appoint someone to oversee your unit’s participation. Publicize the event to your families and promote it as the date approaches.

If you can think of anything I’ve left out, please share your September to-dos in the comment section.

Image courtesy of arztsamui /

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