To be a Boy Scout, you must have completed the fifth grade or be 11 years old or has earned the Arrow of Light Award but is less than 18 years old.
The first rank which must be earned is the Scout rank. The Scout rank must be earned before any other rank can be awarded. The requirements for all ranks are explained in the Boy Scout Handbook, which is available from the Scout Shop. In addition to the Handbook a scout will need a uniform which is detailed in the Uniform section.
Troop 380 follows the Boy Scouts of America plan to provide youth with an effective program designed to enable them to experience:
Growth in moral strength and character – the boy’s values, honor and vision
Citizenship – broadly meaning the boy’s relationship to others. He comes to learn of his obligations to other people, to the society he lives in and the government that presides over that society.
Development of physical, mental and emotional fitness – Fitness includes a healthy body, confidence to think and solve problems and self-control, courage and self-respect.
Respect for the environment. In Boy Scouts we use many different methods to achieve these purposes:
Ideals: The ideals of Scouting are spelled out in the Scout Oath, Law, motto and slogan. The Scout measures himself against the ideals and continually tries to improve.
Patrols: The patrol method gives Scouts an experience in group living and participating citizenship. It places a certain amount of responsibility on young shoulders and teaches boys how to accept it. Outdoors: Boy scouting is an outdoor program. It is in the outdoors the Scouts share responsibilities and learn to live with each other. It is here that the skills and activities practiced at Troop meetings come alive with purpose
Advancement: Scouting provides a series of increasingly higher yet surmountable obstacles to overcome during the advancement process. The Scout plans his advancement and progresses at his own rate. The Scout is rewarded for each achievement along the way. The steps of advancement help a boy to grow in self-reliance and his ability to help others.
Adult Association: Boys learn from the examples set by adult leadership. The association with adults of high character is very important to a young man’s development at this stage in his life.
Personal growth: As Scouts successfully complete an activity that they planned they experience personal growth. The Good Turn concept is a major part of the personal growth method of Scouting. Boys grow as they participate in community service projects and do Good Turns for others.
Leadership Development: Boy Scouting encourages boys to learn and practice leadership skills. Every Scout has the opportunity to participate in both shared and total leadership situations. Understanding the concept of leadership helps the boy accept the leadership roles of others and guides him towards the citizenship aim of Scouting.
Uniforms. Scouts are encouraged to wear the official Boy Scout shirt (long or short sleeve) at all Troop meetings. Uniform inspections are held at the beginning of each meeting.
Class A Uniform: Troop 380 defines a class A uniform as an official Boy Scout shirt with all appropriate patches in the proper locations and official dark green pants. Scout socks (olive green) and dark shoes are preferred for formal occasions/events but not required for weekly meetings.
Class B Uniform: A Troop 380 T-shirt replaces the official BSA shirt, otherwise the same as Class A.
Attendance: One of the requirements of any rank advancement is to be “active in your Troop and patrol.” By attending and being active in Troop meetings and activities, a Scout is able to learn the skills required for his rank advancement and to carry out his leadership responsibilities.
Behavior: The guidelines for acceptable behavior for all scout activities are contained in the Scout Oath, Law, Motto and Slogan. The Patrol Leader’s Council has adopted specific remedial courses of actions for discipline problems with backing by the uniformed adult leadership. Problems between Scouts are to be resolved by the Patrol Leader and possibly the Senior Patrol Leader if needed. The adult leadership will handle any problems dealing with health and safety issues immediately. Fighting, hitting, pushing, hazing or harassing another Scout is prohibited and will result in immediate expulsion from the activity and suspension from future Troop activities until a conference with the Scoutmaster, Scout and his parents occurs. This is a zero tolerance item! The use of foul language/swearing etc. is also not allowed. An initial warning will be issued to any Scout using inappropriate language. Should the behavior continue, the Scoutmaster/adult in charge will determine a suitable punishment (eg: expulsion from a particular event/trip). If necessary, parents will be expected to collect the Scout in question at the earliest possible opportunity.
Troop Meeting Facility: Each Scout in our Troop must respect and protect our meeting place. As guests of St. Peter’s on Capitol Hill, we must clean up and return the meeting place to the same as/a better condition than when we came. Any damage or loss to church property will be the responsibility of those who caused it.
Troop Organization: Troop 380 uses the “patrol method.” Patrols are the building blocks of the Troop. Our Troop is currently divided into 2 patrols. When a boy joins the Troop, the Scoutmaster, in consultation with the Scout’s parents, and the Senior Patrol Leader (SPL) will assign him to a patrol.
Youth Leaders: Leadership is an important aspect of the Scouting program. Successful demonstration of leadership is REQUIRED for Star, Life and Eagle ranks. Troop 380’s goals for youth leadership are:
• Help each Scout learn the art of leadership
• Offer each Scout specific guided leadership opportunities
The Senior Patrol Leader reports to the Scoutmaster every other month on the performance of his leadership staff. The Scoutmaster will use this report along with personal observations in determining whether or not a Scout fulfills the leadership requirements for rank advancement. The standard for successful completion of these leadership requirements is high and not simply “time- served.” A Scout in a leadership position will get feedback from the Scoutmaster as his term progresses as to the quality of his leadership execution. In this manner the Scout will not be surprised at the end of his term to find out that he will not receive credit for rank advancement. A Scout must fill out, sign and get his parents to sign the application for leadership form found on the Troop website. The Senior Patrol Leader is responsible for explaining to each new leader their specific duties and responsibilities he and the Scoutmaster expect him to execute during their term.
All of the youth positions are well documented in the Junior Leader Handbook published by the BSA. All youth positions are obtained by peer election except the Junior Assistant Scoutmaster and the OA Rep that are appointed by the Scoutmaster. Troop position elections are held the first meeting of October and March each year. The order of office elections held is:
• Senior Patrol Leader
• Assistant Senior Patrol Leader
Each patrol has a patrol-elected leader (PL) and assistant (APL). The patrol leader appoints a patrol quartermaster who is responsible for Patrol equipment such as stoves and other cook gear.
Adult Leaders: All registered adults must complete BSA’s Youth Protection Training and the Catholic Church’s VIRTUS training to promote awareness and prevention of child abuse.
Chartering Body: The chartering organization, St. Peter’s Catholic Church on Capitol Hill, is provided with a well-refined youth program by the Boy Scouts of America in return for providing an appropriate meeting place and qualified adult leadership. The official agreement between the chartering organization and the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) is known as the charter. By signing this charter the Troop can operate as an official Boy Scout Troop. The chartered organization’s representative, or COR, acts as a liaison between the Troop committee and the chartering organization. The person in this position is responsible for approving adult leaders by signing their applications on behalf of the chartering body and scheduling all meeting facilities required by the Troop for meetings and special events.
Committee Positions: Boy Scouting is a boy-led organization. The quality of any unit however is dependent on the participation of Scout parents and other adult volunteers. Each family is asked to have one adult participate in the Troop adult leadership. There are many ways to help. The Troop Committee is one such way. The Troop committee is appointed by the chartering organization and is normally made up of parents of Scouts within Troop 380. The Troop Committee’s purpose is to administer the affairs of the Troop, assist and support the operation of the Troop, and provide fund raising opportunities for both the Troop and the Scouts. The Troop Committee meets the 2nd
Tuesday of each month at an agreed upon location for the year. For the year 2012-2013, that location is the Starbucks on the corner of 3rd & Pennsylvania Avenue, SE. Meetings are open to all parents of active Scouts. Voting members of the Troop Committee are:
• Institutional Head
• Chartered Organization Representative
• Committee Chairperson/s
• Advancement Chairperson
Ideally, a fully-staffed Committee would also include the following voting members:
• Fund Raising Coordinator
• Volunteer Coordinator
• Health and Safety Advisor • Outdoor Chairperson
Before any vote can be taken a quorum of at least five (check) voting members must be present.
The Treasurer is responsible for maintaining the Troop checkbook and keeping track of the Scout accounts. Checks written against Troop funds must have two authorized signatures. The Secretary maintains minutes of each meeting and performs Troop correspondence as necessary.
The Fund Raising Coordinator is responsible for all fund raising activities.
The Health and Safety Advisor maintains all health forms and first aid kits, and advises the Scoutmaster on all health and safety related policies as distributed by national BSA headquarters. The Advancement Chairperson is responsible for maintaining a current record of all completed requirements and rank positions for all Scouts. Troop 380 provides all advancement patches such as rank and merit badges. The Advancement Chairperson procures these items as necessary from the Council Scout shop.
The Outdoor Chairperson is responsible for making camping reservations including summer camp in a timely fashion as to get facilities as requested by the Scoutmaster. The Outdoor Chairperson also maintains driver insurance information and obtains tour permits.
The Membership Chairperson is responsible for maintaining an up to date roster of all Scouts and Adult participants and gathering all dues, fees, applications and other information necessary for rechartering each year.
The Merit Badge Counselor Coordinator is responsible for maintaining the merit badge counselor database, registering and annually re-registering merit badge counselors, and making available a counselor list to the scouts and leaders as needed.
Program Positions: These “uniformed” positions are the Scoutmaster and Assistant Scoutmasters. The Scoutmaster is the adult leader responsible for all actions, activities and programs of Troop 380. The Scoutmaster’s responsibilities are summed up in four basic terms:
• to train and guide boy leaders;
• to work with other responsible adults to give Scouting to boys;
• to help boys grow by encouraging them to learn for themselves; and
• to use the methods of Scouting to achieve the aims of Scouting.
The Scoutmaster should attend all meetings and activities of the Troop. He/She should be available as soon as possible to any Scout requesting a meeting. The Scoutmaster should delegate as many of his/her duties as appropriate to Assistant Scoutmasters, the Scout leadership and other registered trained adults. The Scoutmaster needs to be aware of the needs and characteristics of each boy in the Troop and use every resource available to make their Scouting experience rich and rewarding.
The Scoutmaster and Assistant Scoutmasters are required to take New Leaders Essentials, Youth Protection Training, and VIRTUS Training (Youth Protection Training required by the Catholic Church). The Scoutmaster is additionally required to take Scoutmaster Specific Training and Introduction to Outdoor Leadership. All Assistant Scoutmasters are encouraged to take Scoutmaster specific training.
Each patrol needs at least one (1) Assistant Scoutmaster present at every meeting and outing. A second adult is helpful at Troop meetings but required for “two-deep” leadership at all activities outside the meeting times. The Assistant Scoutmaster for Advancement is responsible for organizing, scheduling, Scout signup and tracking Eagle merit badge requirements for all Scouts.
Adult in Charge Events requiring a permission slip will always have a designated adult in charge. When the Scoutmaster attends he/she is the adult in charge. In the event that the Scoutmaster cannot attend or must leave an event another BSA registered adult who meets all the appropriate BSA and the Catholic church’s VIRTUS training requirements for the event will be designated as adult in charge. This person assumes the rights and responsibilities as the Scoutmaster for the event. This includes spending Scoutmaster discretionary funds, signing blue cards and performing Scoutmaster conferences (other than Eagle). This person is also responsible for event planning, bringing appropriate equipment, and making sure food and transportation are available for the scouts (and adults). At least one of the two or more adults accompanying the Scouts must be a Scoutmaster or Assistant Scoutmaster. This is to insure BSA program representation.
Planning and organizing a Scouting event is a fun activity that involves both youth leaders and adults. Once the youth have decided on an event (ie campout) and the committee has approved the event, various adults have a specific sequence of duties to perform to make it a reality.