We are glad your son decided to join Boy Scouts of America (BSA) and Troop 1351. For many scouts, Boy Scouts is a continuation of a journey started as Cub Scouts. I want to emphasize that although the ideals of the programs are the same, the Boy Scout program differs in that it is now the boys that lead the Troop. Adult leaders (now called ASMs) are still there to provide guidance and teach skills – but it’s the boys that are setting the direction for the troop.
Patrols, Patrol Leaders, Patrol Leader Council (PLC), and Senior Patrol Leader (SPL) are some of the new terms you will hear. These are the organizational units within the Troop (made up of scouts) that form the leadership of the Troop.
Boy led is what Boy Scouts is all about. But even with excellent boy leaders, BSA & Troop 1351 still need adult help. If you are interested in helping our Troop, please feel free to contact out Scoutmaster Carlota Canar at Email: firstname.lastname@example.org .
The role of parents within Troop 1351 is to be supportive of the Troop’s efforts and to provide the atmosphere Scouts need to learn and excel. Parents should try to:
- Read their Scout’s handbook and understand the purpose and methods of Scouting.
- Actively follow their Scout’s progress (or lack thereof) and offer encouragement and a push when needed.
- Show support to both the individual Scout and the Troop by attending all Troop Courts of Honor.
- Assist, as requested, in all Troop fund-raisers and other such activities. All such assistance lowers the cost of the program we offer to the Scouts and, therefore, lowers each family’s cash outlay for their Scout(s).
There are many definitions of advancement, but the Scouting definition might well be, simply, “the art of meeting a challenge.” For that is exactly what the Boy Scout advancement program asks the boys to do. The Boy Scout advancement program provides a ladder of skills that a Scout climbs at his own pace. As he acquires these skills he moves up through a series of ranks, for which he is awarded badges; Tenderfoot, Second Class, First Class, Star, Life, and Eagle. The higher he climbs the more challenging his tasks — and the more rewarding. Achievements include:
- Learning skills that qualify for Scouting’s more rugged and exciting outdoor challenges.
- Developing body and mind, growing self-confidence, and helping younger Scouts climb the advancement ladder.
- Discovering how it feels to go further — in so many ways — than he ever though he could.
We don’t look at advancement as a goal, but as a natural outcome of a planned, quality Troop program.
Advancement through First Class
From the time the Scout enters the Troop through the time he earns advancement to First Class, he is learning basic scouting skills to enable him to camp, hike, swim, cook, tie knots, administer first aid, and perform other tasks in the outdoors and to work as a member of a team. With those first steps the scout begins to build themselves physically, mentally, and morally. He will start to live with the Scout Oath and Law. Soon he will learn the symbolism inherent in the Scout badge; he will learn that there are three points of the trefoil which stand for the three parts of the Scout Oath:
Duty to God and country, duty to other people, and duty to yourself.
The goal of this Troop is for the Scout to achieve the rank of First Class within his first year in the Troop. This is a sign that the scout has mastered the fundamentals of scouting and can begin to start the long process of learning to lead others, refining the learned skills and learning additional skills.
Advancement from First Class to Eagle
From the achievement of First Class through Eagle, the Scout will be demonstrating leadership, performing service projects, earning merit badges and using the skills learned while achieving the rank of First Class. The next ranks he will earn are Star and Life. These ranks are harder to obtain than the earlier ranks, but are also more interesting for the older scouts. Upon completion of all the requirements for Star and Life the Scout will be eligible to work for Eagle. The original principals, the Scout Oath and Law now have fuller meaning for the Scout and their understanding of them is much greater. The final steps towards Eagle are filled with leadership experiences. Details for advancement are contained in the Boy Scout Handbook, which every Scout should obtain as soon as possible after joining the Troop. Take a look at Chapter 1. This short chapter has an advancement summary through First Class.
The goal of the merit badge program is to expand a Scout’s areas of interest and to encourage the Scout to meet and work with adults in a chosen subject. Merit badges are earned by a Scout working with a registered merit badge counselor. The Council chooses people to council Merit Badges on superior expertise in a given subject. This gives the Scouts a chance to speak to an expert in a field they find interesting. Many adults today have found their careers while earning a particular Merit Badge. The Scout is required to contact the counselor to arrange for times and places to meet with the counselor. When the Scout completes the work on the merit badge the counselor will inform the Scoutmaster that the Scout has completed the requirements for that badge. Merit Badges earned will be presented to the Scout during the Troop’s Court of Honor.
Courts of Honor
Troop 1351 will conduct a Court of Honor regularly. The Court of Honor recognizes all Scout appointments, elections, awards, and advancements since the last Court of Honor. Recognition (rank patches or merit badges) may be presented prior to the Troop Court of Honor, but they are recognized at the Court of Honor. It is the responsibility of the Troop’s Patrol Leaders’ Council to plan and conduct the Troop Courts of Honor. The Court of Honor is a public ceremony, and is a chance for the Scouts to be publicly recognized for their achievements. Parents and all other interested individuals are be encouraged to attend.
Full Class A:
- Boy Scout Shirt – tucked in
- Neckerchief / slide
- BS pants / shorts
- Closed toe shoes
- Merit Badge sash
Partial Class A: Meeting & Travel
- Boy Scout Shirt – tucked in / can take off when leaders say ok
- Class B shirt underneath
- Solid color pants / shorts
- Closed toe shoes
- Class B shirt
- solid color pants / shorts
- Closed toe shoes
Troop Code of Conduct: Boy developed + agreed upon
- Have Fun
- Be on time to meetings
- Be respectful to others
- Include everyone
- Stand up for each other if bullied
- Listen when others are talking
- Wait to speak – no interrupting
- Respect S.P.L. – and all leaders
- Follow directions
- Speak respectfully – no dirty language
- Focus on the job at hand
- No horseplay
- Always try your best
- Be respect wildlife – don’t chase animals
- Stay with your buddy, patrol or unit – don’t wander off
- Always be prepared
- Abide by toting and fireman chits
- All meetings and events are weapons-free zones
- Leave all unnecessary stuff at home
- Respect other’s supplies
- Be in full uniform when coming to outings
- Keep all personal electronics at home
- Don’t throw stuff – unless instructed to
- Be safe
Reference items for parents & leaders
- BSA Parent Volunteer
- Boy Scout Leader Training
- BSA Youth Protection Training
- BSA Youth Application
- BSA Adult Application
- Annual BSA Health and Medical Record (Full and short versions from scouting.org)
- Troop 1351 Shutterfly Photo sharing site
- Camping List & Boy Scout 10 Essentials
- Service Hours Log
- Two-Deep Leadership – Driving Scouts