Adopted July 17, 2007
For a Scout to advance in rank, a Scout must be a Member in Good Standing with the Troop. To be a Member in Good Standing, the Scout should be active in the Troop as defined in the Troop Participation guidelines.
If, since the Scout’s last rank advancement, the Scout’s participation level has fallen below 50% of the Troop Participation guidelines, then the Scout should increase his participation level to bring his overall participation level to at least 50% of the Troop’s participation guideline since his last rank advancement before he will be considered a Member in Good Standing.
Note: For the rank of Star, Life and Eagle (4 months for Star, and 6 months for Life, and 6 months for Eagle) to fulfill the "Active Participation" requirement for the rank, the Scout should be active at the Troop Active Participation Guideline level i.e., 2/3rds of Meetings, 50% of Outings, and 50% of Other Activities.
Example: It has been 24 months since the Scout’s last rank advancement and during that period of time there have been 22 outings, 72 meetings, and 30 activities, for the Scout to have met the Troop’s Active Participation Guideline (2/3rds of Meetings, 50% of Outings, and 50% of Other Activities), he should have attended at least 48 Meetings, 11 Outings, and 15 Troop Activities. However, if the Scout’s participation level has fallen below 50% of the Troop guideline i.e., fewer than 1/3rd of Meetings (<24), fewer than 25% of Outings (<6), and fewer than 25% of Other Activities (<8), then he should bring his participation up to the minimum before being considered a Member in Good Standing and being eligible for advancement to the next rank.
Example: If a Scout turns Life and then is active for the next 6 months at the Troop Participation Guideline level (2/3rds of Meetings, 50% of Outings, and 50% of Activities), then during that 6 month period he will have attended at least 3 Outings. If it is 2 years from the time the Scout turned Life until the Scout is ready to advance to the rank of Eagle, then over that 2 year period there will be about 22 Outings. At the 25% Outing participation level, that means that in addition to the 3 Outings that he attended to fulfill the “6 months active” requirements for Eagle, he should attend 3 additional outings in that 18 month period – or ONE OUTING EVERY 6 MONTHS.
Example: If a Scout turns Life and then is active for the next 6 months at the Troop Participation Guideline level (2/3rds of Meetings, 50% of Outings, and 50% of Activities), then during that 6 month period he will have attended at least 3 Outings. If it is 3 years from the time the Scout turned Life until the Scout is ready to advance to the rank of Eagle, then over that 3 year period there will be about 33 Outings. At the 25% Outing participation level, that means that in addition to the 3 Outings that he attended to fulfill the “6 months active” requirements for Eagle, he should attend 6 additional outings in that 30 month period – or ONE OUTING EVERY 5 MONTHS.
- On June 28, 2008, in order to clarify the Troop participation guidelines and to address concerns by some members of the Troop regarding the appropriateness of those guidelines, a special Troop committee meeting was held at Sunshine Park. All parents were invited to attend to participate in the discussion. After considerable discussion, a majority of those attending this special meeting voted to continue to operate with the existing participation guidelines.
- February 2007, the Committee approved the practice to have a Board of Review with Life Scouts prior to them coming to the Committee for approval of their Eagle Project. The purpose of the Board of Review is to meet with the Scout to insure that he is a viable Eagle Scout candidate prior to him doing his Eagle Project.
- After some subsequent discussions amongst some of the adult leaders in the Troop, it became clear that there were questions about the criteria Troop 693 would use to determine if a Scout is a viable Eagle Scout candidate.
- A special Committee meeting was held June 14, 2007 to discuss the criteria. At that meeting, attendees felt that a Scout should be active at some level to be considered a viable Eagle Scout candidate; however, the level of participation in Troop activities was not determined. Some felt that applying the Troop Active Participation Guideline* was reasonable. Others felt that this would be too hard for the older Scouts to fulfill given their other commitments.
- A subcommittee was formed to come up with a proposal for the Committee to review.
Note: The Troop 693 Active Participation Guideline is that the Scout should attend 2/3rds of the Meetings, 50% of the Outings, and 50% of the Activities to be considered active.
Things Considered in Developing the Proposal
- The rank of Eagle Scout is Boy Scouts of Americas highest award and is widely recognized as a distinguished achievement – it requires a strong commitment to the program – it is reasonable to expect that for a young man to receive the program’s highest award, that Boy Scouts should be one of his HIGHEST PRIORITIES.
- Outstanding character is one of the most important criteria for a boy to become an Eagle Scout. For members of the Troop (both Scouts and adult leaders) to assess a Scout’s character, he needs to be active in Troop activities - we need to see him “in action” – especially on outings where a young man’s true character often reveals itself.
- As Scouts get older, there are many other conflicting commitments that make it difficult for them to attend all Troop activities. Scouts are faced with the decision of how to devote their time – school, clubs, sports, church, family, social relationships, and other activities. For a Scout to become an Eagle Scout, a Scout will have to decide to make Scouting a high priority.
- The teenage years are ones of very rapid change in the development of a young man – from the time a boy joins the Troop to the time he becomes an Eagle Scout, he will undergo significant changes – physically, mentally, socially, and perhaps morally. A Scout’s character will develop and change over time; therefore, it is important for a Scout to remain active in Troop activities so that Scouts and adult leaders can observe that the Scout has and demonstrates the strong character qualities required of an Eagle Scout.
- The Scout Handbook “describes anyone worthy of the Eagle Scout Award as the ‘all around perfect Scout’. That is a very demanding standard.” The statement in the Scout Handbook implies that becoming an Eagle Scout is not an easy thing to achieve.
- Each rank, from Second Class to Eagle, requires that the Scout demonstrate “Scout Spirit”. While there is no strict definition of Scout Spirit, being active in Troop activities reasonably should be a component of Scout Spirit.
- From the “Aims of Scouting” - Outdoor Programs. “Boy Scouting is designed to take place outdoors. It is in the outdoor setting that Scouts share responsibilities and learn to live with one another. In the outdoors the skills and activities practiced at troop meetings come alive with purpose. Being close to nature helps Boy Scouts gain an appreciation for the beauty of the world around us. The outdoors is the laboratory in which Boy Scouts learn ecology and practice conservation of nature’s resources.”