Western Shore District News
Special Needs Contact
Jane Elliott, of Venture Crew 1321, is the new special needs contact person between the district and the council.
Watch Unit Rosters for Boys Who Have Crossed Over
Please watch unit rosters for boys who have crossed over to Boy Scouts so that no Webelos are left behind or dropped by accident.
New Requirements for Merit Badge Fairs and Group Instruction
In order to provide a quality Merit Badge Program in compliance with the Guide to Advancement (188.8.131.52) the NCAC Advancement and Recognition Committee has established the following policy with regard to merit badge fairs and group instruction:
- A troop or crew can use group instruction of merit badges within their unit without seeking approval from the council or district.
- If a unit decides to offer a merit badge opportunity to Scouts outside their unit, or if the district sponsors such an event, they must get District Advancement Committee approval to conduct the event. The District Advancement Committee will review the proposed event for compliance with the GTA guidance on group instruction.
- Council level groups such as Aquatics, Shooting Sports, the Jewish Committee, and STEM must get approval from either the Council Advancement Chair, Council Merit Badge Dean, or NCAC Program Director for the same reason.
- Organizations outside the BSA must always receive council approval from the Council Advancement Chair, Council Merit Badge Dean, or NCAC Program Director.
What Will the District Review?
- Are all proposed counselors actually registered as a Merit Badge Counselors and approved for the badge(s) they intend to counsel?
- Is there a limitation on the group size to afford the counselor the ability for every scout to complete the requirements as they’re written within the time frame proposed? Should more counselors be recruited?
- Is the fee charged consistent with the event not being a fund raiser?
- Are any prerequisites defined? Should they be? How will they be advertised?
- Is there a plan to explain to scouts how a partial completion from the event can be completed?
- Is there a mechanism for anyone with a concern about the event to report it to the Council Advancement Committee?
Processing Time for Eagle Scout Applications
Eagle Scout is one of, if not the most prestigious award that a young person can earn. Why? Because most people, including employers and college admissions officials, know that BSA volunteers do their very best to ensure that each candidate adheres to the stringent rules and requirements for earning the award. This includes a careful review, by unpaid volunteers who have jobs and other responsibilities outside of scouting, of the Eagle Scout Application after it is submitted. This takes time—sometimes a lot of time if there is a flood of applications, as occasionally happens after a spell of “Eagle Project Weather.”