Troop 269 – meet in person (with social distancing)

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On July 27, Troop 269 had their first in person Troop meeting since the end of March.  The Troop has been having regular virtual meetings during this time – but this was the first in person.  The meeting was held out in the church parking lot, everyone had to wear a mask, bring a lawn chair, Scouts of the same family grouped together, and everyone else at least six foot separation.

The Scouts had a good time and they did LEAVE NO TRACE – by using socially distance activities, discussion and skits.

Unified dates for School District Cub Scout Recruitment Nights Requested

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ALL:  Our District Director, Eddie Stahl, is looking to set up one night per school district for the Cub Scout join nights.   For example: All of Washington Township elementary schools would be on the same night.  All of Zionsivlle Community Schools would be on another night.

 If your unit has a recruiting day/night planned and secured, please verify the date with  Eddie Stahl Eddie.Stahl@scouting.org Materials will be created for your specific date.

CAC Districts Merging

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Scouters and Friends,

 

As you may have heard Monday, there are some changes coming to how we operate as districts in Crossroads of America Council.  Due to serious challenges facing our entire council, primarily driven by the broad impact of COVID-19, we are merging the Del-Mi and North Star Districts.

 

Paul Kovach, North Star District Chair and Bob Bissell, Del-Mi District Chair have already talked both on the phone and in person along with our District Commissioners Jenny Beyer from North Star and Jim Hester from Del-Mi.

 

Together, we are working on a plan to merge our district operations into one unified team!  We have fantastic volunteers in both districts and we have no doubt, our youth will continue to receive the program they need and want.  In fact, our units should feel little or no impact on their operation and delivery of the Scouting program.

 

Over the next few days and weeks, Paul, Jenny, Bob and Jim will be working with Eddie Stahl, our District Director, to meet this challenge and share those plans with you all and to solicit advice and ideas from our teams.  The overall timeline to complete the merger is by December 31, 2020.  As you can imagine, there are many points of operations to address.  Some will be addressed soon, such as our joint committee meetings whereas other will be phased in as we learn how best to use our resources going forward. For the time being, assume that our district operations will continue as normal until announced differently.

 

As an official start of this process, beginning August 6th, both District Committees will meet together.  Look for an agenda later as it is still being developed.

 

We look forward to rolling up our sleeves and working together.  With everyone’s support and participation, we will be a great district!

 

Yours in Scouting,

 

Bob Bissell

Del-Mi District Chair

317-408-8652

bob@thebissells.net

 

  Paul Kovach

North Star District Chair

317-294-4005

pmkovach@att.net

 

Jim Hester

Del-Mi District Commissioner

317-502-6281

scouter.jh107@gmail.com

 

Eddie Stahl

District Director

317-813-7127

  Jenny Beyer

North Star District Commissioner

317-661-0431

jenny.beyer.52@gmail.com

 

eddie.stahl@scouting.org

OA NEWS: Temporary Camping Night Policy Due to COVID-19

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    Announcements

More information about the Order of the Arrow’s response to the COVID-19 outbreak can be found ​here.OA star

In light of the extended period of camping restrictions attributable to COVID-19, the following temporary modification is being made to the camping requirements for OA eligibility:

Virtual camping (i.e., backyard or solo camping) may be counted toward the required nights of camping for OA election eligibility if all the following stipulations are met:

  • To be counted, all virtual camping nights should be a direct result of COVID-19 pandemic restrictions and be part of a BSA unit-organized unit camping event (i.e., multiple members of the unit are involved and camping simultaneously at remote locations).
  • Some form of unit-organized communications should occur either during or immediately following the event.
  • All existing youth protection policies and digital safety guidelines should be followed.
  • No more than three (3) nights of virtual camping are to be credited in any month in which government- or council-imposed COVID-19 restrictions are in place.

This change is in effect until September 1, 2020.

Units which have already held an election between March 1, 2020 and April 30, 2020 are authorized to hold one additional election for any individuals who were ineligible at the time of the election due to the camping requirement, but would have been considered eligible at the time if this temporary policy had then been in effect. This second election must be completed no later than July 1, 2020. Those who were previously considered for election in the first election may not be reconsidered on this second ballot (i.e., no one can be considered for election more than once in a year).

Given that virtually all councils have either cancelled or reduced their summer camp programs this year, creating a situation where a high proportion of Scouts will not have the opportunity to attend an in-camp summer camp in 2020, a temporary provision to allow for “virtual” long term camping credit for OA eligibility is necessary.

Virtual Long-Term Camping Authorization

Two situations have developed associated with the current pandemic that may prevent Scouts from having an opportunity to qualify for OA eligibility due to not having attended a long-term camp this summer.

  • The local council camp is closed and not offering a traditional summer camp experience.
  • Scout parents are unwilling to allow their child to attend traditional summer camp programs due to health concerns.

In order to address these circumstances, virtual long-term camping of five (5) consecutive nights is authorized to be counted toward the long-term camping requirements for OA eligibility consistent with the above guidance and the following additional guidelines:

  • A long-term camp plan must be developed and approved by the unit leader prior to the commencement of the long-term camp. This plan is to be individualized to each Scout’s capabilities and situation and should strive to include:
    • Progress toward advancement for each Scout
    • Outdoor relevant experience consistent with local conditions and restrictions
  • Unit-organized communications should occur on a daily basis during the camping experience and include discussion of progress made on summer camp goals.
  • An end-of-camp assessment must be conducted with the unit leader to report on progress made during the experience itself and discuss how future virtual long-term camping experiences can be enhanced. During this assessment the unit leader will make the determination if the Scout’s participation warrants granting credit for a completed virtual long-term camping experience in terms of OA eligibility.

This virtual long-term camping authority is not meant to substitute for attendance at traditional council summer camp programs, but rather to provide an alternative for Scouts who fit in one of the two categories mentioned above.

If you have any questions, please reach out to membership@oa-bsa.org.

University of Scouting – Nov. 14 2020

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usccoutingThe University of Scouting (scheduled for November 2020) will be done virtually – which classes, and how it will be done are still being planned.

Every Scout deserves a trained leader. The University of Scouting, one of the premier training events in the council, is one of the easiest ways for you to achieve this goal. This single-day training event, offered by the Crossroads of America Council, is designed to supplement any Scouter’s training.

UPDATE ON Training (new Scouts BSA training coming soon!)

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A new online and facilitated version of Scouts BSA training will be available on August 3rd. If you are currently completing the training please complete prior to this date as we will be changing the Learning Plans for all positions – Scoutmaster/Assistant Scoutmaster, Committee Chair, Committee Member and Merit Badge Counselor. If you do not complete by August 3rd you will have to restart the training using the new learning plans and modules.

The new online learning combines content resulting in fewer modules. We have also streamlined courses to help reduce the total time it takes to complete the training. The new facilitated course uses offline versions of the learning modules to facilitate maintenance on any future changes – thus the online and facilitated content are simultaneously updated to ensure consistency in the versions of the training.

Please note: Completion of the appropriate portion of the Scouts BSA facilitated session will meet the requirements for

Scoutmaster & Assistant Scoutmaster: S24 Scoutmaster Specific Training

Merit Badge Counselor: D76 Merit Badge Counselor Orientation Training

Troop Committee Chair & Committee: WS10 Troop Committee Challenge

Thank you for being a trained leader and working with the youth!

ALL LEADERS are encouraged to do ‘TRAINING’ through my.scouting.org.  ALL LEADERS MUST be “TRAINED” for their registered position prior to recharter.  The ONLY exception will be the IOLS training for Scoutmasters and Asst. Scoutmasters.  The IOLS training is being deferred until recharter for 2022

What to consider when restarting meetings in person and/or outings

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In-Person Unit Activities

♦ Q: Should we hold in-person Scouting meetings, outings, or activities?

With safety in mind and based on guidance from national health officials, the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) is strongly advising that in-person meetings, activities, events and gatherings be conducted only within the guidelines outlined by your state and local health department and other local officials, as well as under the direction of your local BSA council and chartered organization. This applies to youth and adults.

Units need to consider:

  1.  State Guidelines
  2.  County and / or local guidelines that may be MORE restrictive (as is the case in Marion County).
  3. Council Guidelines Reopening-Unit-Meetings-and-Activities (2)
  4. Chartered Organization Guidelines
  5. Units Committee Guidelines
  6. Parents Guidelines
  7. The Guide to Safe Scouting

It’s a long list.  These are complicated times.  With some ingenuity and creativity we can start to scout in person again.

 

 

BSA Membership Fee Increase

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Over the last few months, the National Boy Scouts of America (BSA) has seen the Scouting community come together, even while physically apart, to bring solutions, relief and comfort to those in need. From making masks to supporting food banks, Scouting has been a vital partner for communities across the country.

The value of Scouting is undeniable for those within the program and the greater public, and the BSA is committed to continuing to offer this unmatched opportunity to young people and families nationwide.

The BSA has worked to keep the membership fee as low as possible. Unfortunately, operating costs have continued to rise and COVID-19 has compounded the need to increase the fee to maintain the program.

To ensure the resources to fulfill the promise of Scouting, the updated national membership fee is:

  • $66 for Cub Scouts, Scouts BSA, Venturing and Sea Scouts participants
  • $42 for Exploring participants
  • $30 for council-paid memberships
  • $42 for all adult volunteers (includes cost of background check)
  • $75 for a unit charter fee

The membership fees will take effect August 1, 2020, for new members in the 2020-2021 program year. For renewing members, the new fee will take effect on October 1, 2020. The updated unit charter fee will take effect August 1, 2020, for all new and rechartering units.

Starting August 1, 2020, there will also be a one-time $25 joining fee for new program participants in Cub Scouts, Scouts BSA, Venturing and Sea Scouts; however, there is no joining fee for Exploring participants, participants previously registered in any BSA program, those transferring from one program to another, council-paid memberships, or adult volunteers.

The national membership fee helps pay for the cost of essential services, including program resources, liability insurance for those participating in approved Scouting activities, youth protection and other local council resources.

National BSA will also continue to develop and improve resources that support our volunteers and youth members through online registration, Scoutbook, and national initiatives that bring us all together like the National Camp-In and the Scout Salute partnership with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Across the country and in each of our communities, we know that Scouting remains one of the most valuable investments we can make in young men and women today so they can become the leaders we will turn to tomorrow.

Our dedicated volunteers, staff, and Scouting families make this possible. Thank you for continuing to support one of the most valuable opportunities available to young people today.

Firecrafter – summer 2020

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Firecrafter
Fellow Firecrafters,

On Monday, May 4th, the Crossroads of America Council made it public that there will not be traditional summer camp as we know it. Echoing the words of our Scout Executive Mr. Joe Wiltrout, health and safety is our top priority. Although we will not be having in-person summer camp like we are used to, Firecrafter is exploring ways to provide the best experience possible for our scouts this summer.

There is a lot of information that I am excited to share with all of you regarding different opportunities that the Firecrafter Council is planning to put on, but to start there are a few things that we would like to clarify and make publicly known. There will be no 2020 Midsummer Ritual, and all other events will be examined as we receive updates from our state and federal governments, including Grand Ritual. Moving on from there, the Council Committee has approved a year extension for those that would age out of the program this year, to allow them another year to complete any rank of Firecrafter next summer.

Regarding this summer, the Council Committee approved a program in which scouts can earn the Camper and Woodsman ranks in a virtual setting. The requirements for Camper and Woodsman will not be altered and the scout will be guided through a program to submit evidence of completing each requirement. The program will be led by our Council Vice Chief Ryan Wainscott. There will be more information in the coming weeks on the format of this program and how to sign up. We also are working on a similar program to be able to administer the Webelos Camper and Webelos Firelight ranks as well for cub scouts.

For the third rank of Firecrafter, the Council and Alumni officers met and decided in order to maintain the quality of the experience for the candidate and the program as a whole, we will not be allowing Firecrafter to be administered in any online format. Instead, the Council Committee approved the creation of a team to work on creating a possible in-person experience later in the summer.

Those units that are lone troop trained and are still planning on putting on a program need to reach out to Ryan Wainscott, the Council Vice Chief, to clarify how they are attempting to do so. Additionally, if your troop has created an alternate summer experience and wants to have a conversation about how the Firecrafter program could exist there, reach out to Ryan by May 20th via email (councilvicechief@firecrafter.org).

Finally, thank you to everyone who has been working towards creating some sort of experience for our scouts. By no means is this anyone’s first choice for a summer experience, but your willingness to work with what we’ve got is what makes Scouts and Firecrafter special. The Firecrafter Council will be open with communication about any developments in the programs we have proposed, and we hope we can make our centennial summer something to remember.

In the Mystic Fire,

M Matt Hustel

Firecrafter Council Chief

Needed: Unit Commissioners

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Friend – Coach – Mentor – Listener

A Unit Commissioner is a volunteer Scouter who works directly with Scout units and leaders to help them provide the highest quality Scouting program possible….

The primary purpose of the Unit Commissioner is to help units succeed.

Does this sound like you or someone you know?

Spread the word and help us to support our Units.

Contact: Jenny Beyer 317-769-5060 or jenny.beyer52@gmail.com

 

 

unit comm postcard (1)

Indianapolis Scout Shop

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Remember that the Indianapolis Scout Shop is still here for your scouting and outdoor gear needs. If you are in need of advancements or camping gear just call the shop at 317-813-7070 or email us at 160indyss@scouting.org to make arrangements for pick up or delivery.

National BSA updates Covid FAQ

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National has issued new updates to their COVID FAQ as of this morning (4/13) related to virtual blue cards, rank advancement via videoconference, camping, merit badge requirements, etc.  foundhere

COVID-19 FAQ

UPDATED 4/13/20 – The most recent updates are indicated by a diamond in front of the question.

In-Person Unit Activities

Q: Should we hold in-person Scouting meetings, outings, or activities?

With safety in mind and based on guidance from national health officials, the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) is strongly advising that in-person meetings, activities, events and gatherings be suspended through the end of April. This applies to youth and adults out of an abundance of caution. Please also follow any restrictions outlined by your state and local health department or other local officials.

Q: What do we do about Scouts’ fundraising activities? 

The BSA is strongly advising that in-person activities be suspended through the end of April so any in-person fundraising should be postponed. If fundraising activities can be facilitated using digital methods while still adhering to applicable rules, then those activities may continue. For plans beyond that date, the BSA will continue to monitor the guidance as the COVID-19 pandemic evolves and will further update guidance accordingly.

Q: What is BSA’s policy on social distancing in a tenting environment when camping?

With safety in mind and based on guidance from national health officials, the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) is strongly advising that in-person meetings, activities, events and gatherings  be suspended through the end of April. This applies to youth and adults out of an abundance of caution. Please also follow any restrictions outlined by your state and local health department or other state and local authorities.

Beyond this timeframe, tent buddies should not participate if ill. There is no formal policy on social distancing in tents, just as there is no prohibition on tenting alone if logistics can accommodate that request.

Q: If council and district events are cancelled, how should units decide whether to cancel or postpone their own events?   

With safety in mind and based on guidance from national health officials, the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) is strongly advising that in-person meetings, activities, events and gatherings suspended through the end of April. If you council has cancelled events based upon local restrictions, then units should follow that guidance.

Q: What are the refund policies if I have already paid for an event that has been cancelled?

Event organizers typically set refund or cancellation policies.  Please reach out directly to those organizers.  In the case of attendance at a national high adventure base, contact them directly about your crew.

Camping this Summer

 

Q: What if I cannot get a new Part C, pre-placement exam because my healthcare provider is not taking well care exams now?

We are evaluating all options while being mindful of those who have valid exams as well as those new members and adults who may have never completed a Part C exam, state and local authority requirements, and the special review required by high adventure programs. In the interim, we recommend that council health supervisors, camp staff, and volunteers begin a conversation on local availability of well exams and alternatives that could be put in place.

Q: My Wilderness First Aid Course has been cancelled; can I still go on my trek? 

Current Wilderness First Aid (WFA) certification will continue to be required for all backcountry adventures. As a reminder, a current CPR/AED certification is a pre-requisite for a WFA course.

We are working with our partners at the American Red Cross and the Emergency Care and Safety Institute to look for solutions in response to the current situation.

Note: Online-only WFA courses do not meet the WFA requirement.  As we review the issue, we suggest you begin working with your council’s WFA trainers to develop a plan for classes during the month of May or early June.

Advancement

Q: How can advancement be tracked remotely?

Scouting units should use Scoutbook to record and track advancement.

To track advancement remotely, parents should:

  • Connect with their child’s member profile via an invitation that the unit leader sends within Scoutbook. You may also connect to your youth via the Scouting app “Add a Parent connection.”
  • Once a connection is made, the parent should use the Scouting app, found in both the App Store and on Google Play, to stay connected with their unit.
  • The Scouting app provides parents the ability to report any advancement that was completed at home.

Learn more about how to start using Scoutbook and how to connect parents to their Scouts at Scoutbook.com.

Advancement — Cub Scouts

Q: May parents sign off on Webelos and Arrow of Light requirements?

Yes. Through July 31, 2020, parents and other adults in the Cub Scout’s family, may sign off on Webelos and Arrow of Light requirements. We strongly encourage that parents use the Scouting App or ScoutBook to record completion of their child’s requirements.

Q: If my den is behind in advancement due to COVID-19, can my Cub Scout continue to work on advancement through the summer?

Yes. Cub Scouts can continue to work on their current den’s advancement through July 31, 2020.  This is to provide any additional time a Cub Scout needs to complete their badge of rank; if they earn their badge of rank prior to July 31, 2020, they may advance to the next rank.

♦ Q: Can the Arrow of Light (fifth-grade dens) requirements fulfill the requirement to visit a troop or attend a troop outing to function as a patrol? 

Yes. Two things to keep in mind, the standard of completion for Cub Scout advancement is “Do Your Best,” so given the circumstances, we want to look at the purpose behind the requirements. Remember that doing nothing is never doing your best.

Dens can visit a virtual troop meeting to see the patrol method and youth leadership in action. Since the den cannot attend a troop campout or outing, the idea is for the den to function as a patrol while attending the virtual troop meeting. During this time, a virtual den meeting where the den functions as a patrol can be done. Elect a patrol leader, pick a patrol name, play a virtual game together as a patrol. Plenty of opportunities to Do Your Best to meet the intention of the requirement. Remember to maintain all youth protection standards online.

Advancement — Scouts BSA, Venturing and Sea Scouts

♦ Q: Can merit badge counseling or Nova/Supernova counseling be done using digital technologies like Zoom or WebEx?

Yes, registered merit badge counselors or Nova counselors/Supernova mentors may work with youth using digital platforms, ensuring that all youth protection measures noted in the Guide to Safe Scouting and BSA’s social media guidelines are in place. In addition to youth protection, the advancement guidelines in Guide to Advancement (GTA) Section 7 are required.

♦ Q: Are merit badge counselors allowed to provide online instruction?
Yes. Merit badge counselors should follow the guidelines in the Guide to Advancement 7.0.3.2 and ensure you are adhering to all youth protection requirements and online communications guidelines. It is acceptable—and sometimes preferable—for merit badges to be taught in group settings, including online instruction. We currently allow group instruction at camp and merit badge midways, fairs, clinics, or similar events. These can be efficient methods, and interactive group discussions can support learning. Gathering a group online can also be beneficial. Guest experts and speakers that assist registered and approved counselors may be more willing to speak to a larger online audience. Slide shows, skits, demonstrations, panels, and various other techniques can also be employed, but as any teacher can attest, not everyone will learn all the material. Therefore, the standards we use to verify that each Scout has fulfilled requirements must not be relaxed. Merit badge counselors must be sure that each Scout has individually gained the knowledge intended. When accomplished, counselors can easily sign off requirements via ScoutBook.

Q: Can I connect directly with my Scouts/Venturers/Sea Scouts if I am a merit badge counselor?
Yes. In ScoutBook, merit badge counselors can now connect directly with the Scouts they are counseling; see https://discussions.scouting.org/t/march-23-2020-scoutbook-updates/165970 NOTE: Scouts/Venturers/Sea Scouts still must get approval from their leader, according to Guide to Advancement 7.0.3.0.  

Q: How will I know if a Scout/Venturer/Sea Scout has obtained approval from their leader to work on a merit badge?
In the member profile, you will see if the leader has signed off with their approval.

 

Q: What if my member profile shows that my merit badge counselor status has expired:
Check with your council. Local councils may need to upload their latest list of approved merit badge counselors.

Q: Will unit leaders know that a merit badge counselor has connected with one of their Scouts/Venturers/Sea Scouts?
Yes. The unit Key 3 will receive an email that includes the name of the merit badge counselor, the Scout, and the name of the merit badge.

Q: What if I have other merit badge/ScoutBook questions?
See https://help.scoutbook.com/knowledge-base/scoutbook-merit-badge-counselor-council-upload-faq/

♦ Q: What changes have been made to rank advancement/camping requirements given the need to maintain social distancing during this time?
We have implemented temporary changes, detailed below, to allow Scouts to complete rank requirements, detailed below, by video conferencing through September 1, 2020. This deadline will be re-evaluated as needed.
The goal when using video conferencing must be to preserve the ideals and intent of each requirement as best as possible. Scoutmasters or their designee(s) should remain mindful of the Methods of Scouting, such as the Patrol Method, before implementing the modified requirements listed below. Some advancement activities can be completed by video conferencing but not all. For example, virtual visits to a city council meeting, national historic landmarks, museums, and art galleries may be acceptable, but swimming, rifle shooting, and motorboating merit badges cannot be completed virtually.
Even when using video conferencing, all virtual campouts and activities should consist of as many elements found on a normal outdoor campout or activity as possible. The most significant difference is that patrol or troop members are not all in the same location. All existing youth protection policies and digital safety guidelines must be followed.
Tenderfoot rank requirements
1b. – Virtual patrol or troop campouts via video conferencing will be permitted.
2a. – During the same day as your virtual patrol or troop campout, assist in preparing one meal with the help of those with whom you live. Tell your patrol or troop why it was important for each person to share in meal preparation and cleanup.
2b. – During the same day as your virtual campout, demonstrate the appropriate method of safely cleaning items used to prepare, serve and eat a meal.
5a. – Explain the importance of the buddy system as it relates to your personal safety on outings and in your neighborhood. Verbally commit to following the buddy system on your next troop or patrol outing.
7a. – Tell how to display, raise, lower, and fold the U.S. flag.
Second Class rank requirements:
1a & 1c. – Virtual patrol or troop activities via video conferencing will be permitted.
3b. – Using a compass and map together, plan a 5-mile hike approved by your adult leader.
4. – Evidence of wild animals can be demonstrated with information or photos of your local area found online.
5c. – May be completed virtually via video conferencing on dry land.
7c. – Learn about the dangers of using drugs, alcohol and tobacco and other practices that could be harmful to your health. Discuss what you learned with your family and explain the dangers of substance addictions. Report to your Scoutmaster or other adult leader in your troop about which parts of the Scout Oath and Scout Law relate to what you learned.
8a. – May be completed virtually using video conferencing.
8d. – May be completed by comparing costs at three (3) online sites or locations.
First Class rank requirements:
1a – Virtual patrol or troop activities via video conferencing will be permitted.
2e. – On the same day as your virtual campout, serve as the cook. Supervise your assistant(s) in using a stove or building a cooking fire. Prepare the breakfast, lunch, and dinner planned in First Class requirement 2a. Supervise the cleanup.
4a. – By drawing, computer software, or other virtual methods, plan an orienteering course that would cover at least one mile. Explain why measuring the height and/or width of designated items (tree, tower, canyon, ditch, etc.) is helpful. Explain how you would complete your course using a real map and compass.
4b. – Scouts do not need to follow their route.
5a. – Evidence of native plants can be demonstrated with information or photos of your local area found online.
6e. – May be completed on dry land.
9a. – Visit may take place virtually or by phone.
9c. – Outings can include past or future plans.
10. – Invite the potential new member to a virtual meeting or future activity using video conferencing. 

♦ Q: Will virtual camping count toward Order of the Arrow nights camping?

No, virtual camping will not count toward the 15 nights camping required for membership in the Order of the Arrow.

 

♦ Q: Can merit badge requirements be adapted since some elements can’t be completed as stated right now?
The published guidelines for the methodology of the merit badge program and the role of the merit badge counselor is found in the Guide to Advancement, Section 7.0.0.0. It is important to remember that leaders and merit badge counselors must not make additions or deletions to requirements. The Scout is expected to meet the requirements as stated; however, in some cases, virtual “visits” may fulfill the intent of a requirement. When the requirement’s intent cannot be reached virtually, the requirements cannot be completed, and the Scout must wait to complete that badge/requirement. Merit badge counselors signing off on requirements must determine to the best of their ability if the Scout has demonstrated the intended outcome.
All existing youth protection policies and digital safety guidelines must be followed.

♦ Q: Does a Scout need a hard copy of a Blue Card when working on merit badges?
No. Since the introduction of Scoutbook, the BSA has offered Scouts two ways of recording merit badge requirement completion: The Blue Card and Scoutbook. Both remain authorized methods to record merit badge work. Scoutbook is a part of the BSA Internet Advancement system, which means that entering an advancement record in Scoutbook is the same as entering it in Internet Advancement. Anyone with a BSA member ID automatically has access to a Scoutbook account through their my.scouting account.

Q: May time missed due to canceled unit meetings count toward active participation requirements?

Yes. If youth are registered and in good standing, a disruption from COVID-19 virus can be the “noteworthy circumstance” that prevents participation. This policy has been in place for many years and is explained in GTA Topic 4.2.3.1.

Q: May time missed due to canceled unit meetings count toward position of responsibility requirements?

Yes. If youth are registered and unable to meet the expectations of their positions because of COVID-19 disruptions, then units may need to waive or rethink the expectations. Just as youth must not be held to unestablished expectations, they must not be held to expectations that are impossible to fulfill. See GTA Topic 4.2.3.4, “Positions of Responsibility,” with its six subtopics.

Q: Does the National Council grant extensions of time to complete rank requirements beyond the 18thbirthday for the Eagle or 21st birthday for Summit or Quartermaster?

Yes, but only for the Eagle Scout rank as described in GTA Topic 9.0.4.0 or for Venturing Summit or Sea Scout Quartermaster as described in GTA Topic 4.3.3.0. Unit leadership must become familiar with the five tests under 9.0.4.0. The tests were designed to accommodate such obstacles as those presented by COVID-19 disruptions.

Q: Will youth who are not yet Life Scouts be allowed to apply for an extension to earn the Eagle Scout rank?

Extensions are considered only for Scouts who are Life rank. If, once a Scout achieves Life rank, it turns out that COVID-19 disruptions along the way have left them with insufficient time to complete Eagle requirements, then this may be cited when the time comes to submit an extension request.

Q: May local councils grant extensions?

Normally, that is not allowed. However, due to the current situation—effective immediately and through September 30, 2020—council Scout executives may grant extensions, or delegate authority to the Council Advancement Committee to grant extensions under the following limitations:

  1. It can be established that COVID-19 disruptions were the only circumstances that delayed work on Eagle Scout/Summit/Quartermaster advancement requirements, such as the service project or merit badges. If any other causes were involved, the extension request must go to the National Council following the process outlined in the GTA.
  2. Extensions shall only be granted to youth in Scouts BSA who have already achieved Life rank.
  3. When the council receives a COVID-19-related request for a time extension, the council reviews the request and approves it if appropriate. A written response stating the outcome of the extension request must go to the youth. If approved, the notification must be attached to the youth’s Eagle/Summit/Quartermaster rank application. For Eagle, the extension must not exceed 3 months from the youth’s 18th birthday; for Summit/Quartermaster, the extension must not exceed 3 months from the youth’s 21st birthday.
  4. Upon turning 18, the Scout must submit a completed adult application and successfully complete YPT; their participant code will now be UP for SBSA or VP for Venturing and Sea Scouting.
  5. Extension requests for more than 3 months beyond the youth’s 18th/21st birthday must be sent to the National Service Center following the process outlined in the GTA.

Note: A “month” in BSA advancement is defined as a day from one month to the next. For example, March 5 to April 5.

The authority for councils to grant extensions is temporary, lasting only through Sept. 30, 2020.

Q: If youth have already received an extension, can they request additional time due to COVID-19?

Yes. Council Scout executives may grant extensions, or delegate authority to the Council Advancement Committee to grant extensions under the limitations listed above.

Q: What should be done while an extension request is being considered?

Youth should continue to work on advancement in so far as they are able—e.g., independently, or over the phone or videoconference—and at Scouting activities once they resume.

Q: Are extensions required when an Eagle/Summit/Quartermaster board of review must be delayed?

No. Councils may grant Eagle/Summit/Quartermaster boards of review up to six months after the youth’s 18th/21st birthday. See GTA Topic 8.0.3.1, “Eagle Scout Board of Review Beyond the 18th Birthday.”

See also, GTA Topic 8.0.1.6, “Boards of Review Through Videoconferencing.”

Q: Are electronic or digital signatures acceptable for rank advancement or for the Eagle/Summit/Quartermaster packets/applications?
Yes. Electronic or digital signatures will be accepted through September 30, 2020.

Q: How can a youth continue to work on advancement requirements if they don’t have internet or high-speed internet for videoconferencing?
Youth may take a picture of their completed activity/requirement and share the work with unit leaders. In keeping with youth protection policies, all communications from youth should be sent to at least two adults. See our Barriers to Abuse for details. Parents or guardians may send advancement work on behalf of their child.

 

Order of the Arrow Guidance

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Lowaneu Allanque Chapter

Order of the Arrow Guidance

ELECTIONSOA star

If Your Unit Has Not Held OA Elections in 2020:

The National OA Director has approved lodges to hold virtual unit elections through July 1, 2020.  Due to the cancellation of many induction events, candidates that were elected February 1, 2019 through July 1, 2020 will have 24 months from the date of election to complete their ordeal. There are no changes to the membership requirements. The following resources have been put together so that lodges may effectively implement virtual elections.

The following guidelines should be followed in order to conduct virtual unit elections.

  1. The Lodge and Council leadership must approve their lodge conducting virtual unit elections.
  2. The unit leader must agree to a virtual election.
  3. The Lodge Unit election team and the appropriate forms/videos must be able to be presented to unit members. (This assumes the use of some type of online meeting technology.)
  4. The unit leader should continue to validate those eligible for elections.
  5. A means to confidentially collect votes for eligible unit members must be available and used. NO OPEN VOTE COUNTING IS TO BE ALLOWED.
  6. Conduct your election in accordance with the Election to Ordeal process outlined on page 23 of the Guide for Officers and Advisers which can be found here.

If Your Unit Has Held OA Elections for 2020:

There will be no official call-out since the Spring Camporee has been cancelled.  Scoutmasters may reach out and inform the candidates.  Candidates will receive Ordeal Packets via email by the end of April.

All successful candidates will now have 24 months to attend an Ordeal.

 

ORDEALS

The West Area Ordeal scheduled April 24-26 at Camp Krietenstein will be rescheduled to later this year.

The Central Area Ordeal scheduled May 15-17th at Camp Belzer is still on the schedule but likely will be rescheduled.

 

OA Guidance

The Caring Center Food Drive

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With the yearly Scouting for Food drive on hold, here is an opportunity for troops, crews, pack or dens  to try organize a food drive or to get the word out to the community.

Jennifer Dolack jadolack@gmail.com is the liaison at St. Alphonsus.

5E93AF3AAEC64BB59A99C25E6203C6F3

Updates on Eagle extentions and more – from Byron on Scouting

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Advancement during COVID-19: Official details about Eagle extensions and more

The BSA has a message to young people concerned that the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak will prevent them from completing Eagle Scout rank requirements before their 18th birthday: Don’t worry; we’ve got your back.

During this unprecedented interruption to Scouting nationwide, the BSA has released new guidance on advancement during COVID-19. This includes:

  • Time extensions for qualifying Scouts and Venturers working on the Eagle Scout, Summit and Quartermaster awards. Local councils will have the authority to grant this extension through the end of September 2020.
  • The ability to accept electronic signatures for rank advancement and award applications — effective now through the end of September 2020.
  • An option to complete Scoutmaster conferences via videoconferencing. (Section 4.2.3.5 of the Guide to Advancement says Scoutmasters “should not” conduct Scoutmaster conferences online; it doesn’t say “must not.” The new COVID-19 guidance clarifies that this practice is OK, as long as Youth Protection rules are followed.)
  • An option for parents or other adults in a Cub Scout’s family to sign off on Webelos and Arrow of Light requirements — effective now through the end of July 2020.
  • An option for Scoutmasters to allow time missed during the COVID-19 outbreak to count toward requirements for participation and positions of responsibility.

Here’s what else you need to know.

Time extensions for Eagle Scout, Summit and Quartermaster awards

Normally granted only in rare circumstances, the BSA and its local councils will allow extensions for Life Scouts needing more time to finish their Eagle Scout requirements. The authority for councils to grant this extension is effective immediately and continues through Sept. 30, 2020.

Extensions also are available for Venturers needing to finish Summit Award requirements and Sea Scouts needing to finish Quartermaster Award requirements beyond their 21st birthday.

These extensions are reviewed case by case, and not all Scouts will qualify. To get an extension through a local council, Scouts must meet the following requirements:

  1. It can be established that COVID-19 disruptions were the only circumstances that delayed work on Eagle Scout/Summit/Quartermaster advancement requirements, such as the service project or merit badges. If any other causes were involved, the extension request must go to the National Council following the process outlined in the Guide to Advancement.
  2. Extensions shall only be granted to youth in Scouts BSA who have already achieved Life rank.
  3. When the council receives a COVID-19-related request for a time extension, the council reviews the request and approves it if appropriate. A written response stating the outcome of the extension request must go to the youth. If approved, the notification must be attached to the youth’s Eagle/Summit/Quartermaster rank application.
  4. For Eagle, the extension must not exceed 3 months from the youth’s 18th birthday; for Summit/Quartermaster, the extension must not exceed 3 months from the youth’s 21st.
  5. Upon turning 18, the Scout must submit a completed adult application and successfully complete Youth Protection training. Their participant code will now be UP for SBSA or VP for Venturing and Sea Scouting.
  6. Extension requests for more than 3 months beyond the youth’s 18th/21st birthday must be sent to the National Service Center following the process outlined in the GTA.

A note for council administrators: Once the council approves an extension, the council’s administrator will need to go into Member Manager to activate the COVID-19 extension. This will automatically add the three-month extension and allow the youth to continue working past their 18th/21st birthdays. (They’ll still need to be registered as UP/VP after “aging out.”) This flag will then show on the member’s profile.

For more guidance for Scouts BSA, Venturing and Sea Scouts advancement, read the complete FAQs.

Merit Badge Sundays at Fort Harrison State Park – April and May FULL! Considering adding more . . .

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NatureDue to an incredible response from our Scouting community, our April 5th & May 10th Merit Badge Sunday programs are FULL and no longer taking registrations. We are exploring adding a second class in response to the high demand! Please email the park naturalist at DAllison@DNR.IN.gov for more details.Merit Badge Sundays at Fort Harrison State Park — Every month scouts have the opportunity to work on a different Merit Badge. See attached Flyer.2020-MB-Sundays

Tread Lightly Trainer Course

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Tread Lightly Trainer Course

Saturday, May 9, 2020 (8:30 AM – 1:00 PM)

Golden-Burke Scout Center

7125 Fall Creek Rd., Indianapolis 46256

 

Highlights Include:

Introduction on the Principles of
Leave-No-Trace, Tread Lightly, Land Ethics
Comprehensive Tread Lightly Training
Teaching Skill Training

Fee: $15.00/person (Scouts 12y with SM/Adv. approval or Adults)
This will cover:
TL Trainer Notebook
Interactive Outdoor Ethics Presentations
Flyers for your Unit
Lunch
1. Attendees need to take the on-line TL Introduction Course(20 min) before the course – https://tread-lightly.teachable.com/p/online-awareness-course
2. Join TL at https://www.treadlightly.org/join-tread-lightly by paying $25
3. Prepare a 10min. TL presentation* which they will present to the group

OUTDOOR ETHICS GUIDE COURSE & LEAVE-NO-TRACE TRAINER COURSE

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OUTDOOR ETHICS GUIDE COURSE & LEAVE-NO-TRACE TRAINER COURSE

Camp Red Wing

5757 East Inlow Springs Road

Muncie, IN 47302

May 1-3, 2020

MUST PRE-REGISTER & PAY NON-REFUNDABLE FEE BY April 1, 2020

Leave No Trace is an educational, non-profit movement dedicated to the responsible enjoyment and active stewardship of the outdoors by all people, worldwide. The Leave No Trace concept is one that crosses all boundaries of the recreation spectrum and is applicable for anyone who enjoys spending time in the out-of-doors. The idea is simple – leave the places you enjoy as good as or better than you found them. Both skills and ethics are involved, as well as good decision-making. If people do something, even something simple, to help take care of the recreational resources they cherish, we will all benefit. Cleaner water, less campfire impacts, fewer negative encounters with wildlife, less damage/loss of cultural and historic artifacts are just a few of the benefits of adhering to Leave No Trace. For more information about Leave No Trace, check out: http://www.lnt.org

This course will allow participants to learn and practice the 7 principles of Leave No Trace. This course will also focus on the effective presentation of these principles. The course will pivot between both classroom and outdoor experiences and presentations. Participants will learn both front country and back country information.

Who Should Attend?:
This course is open to adult Scouters, Venturers, and Boy Scouts over the age of 14 who are interested in learning more about the 7 principles of Leave No Trace and how to effectively teach those principles and associated skills.  All participants who complete this course will be recognized as Leave No Trace Trainers by the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics.
Fee:
$55.00 – The course fee covers lodging, food, training materials and awards. Registration is limited to the first 20 participants and will close April 1, 2020.
Housing:
Participants will camp in a designated campsite Saturday night. Participants will need to provide their own camping equipment and bedding.
What to bring:
Please pack for a weekend camping trip.  You will need to supply all your personal gear including shelter, bedding, cup and mess kit.  Food will be provided.
Participant Presentation:
Each participant will be required to give a 15 minute presentation on a Leave No Trace topic provided by the course instructor.  Each participant will be contacted prior to the course and provided with a topic.

Highlights Include:

Outdoor Ethics Guide, Tread Lightly!, Land Ethics Course for Scouts 12 y & above/Adults
Fee $15 for course & OE Guide Notebook*(Fri 6-10 PM)
Attendees meet requirements for leading OE Awareness/Action Awards and youth are trained for the responsibilities as Outdoor Ethics Guides in their troop, team or crew.

https://www.scoutingevent.com/160-lntmay2020

Outdoor Ethics LeaveNoTrace

ICOO Karl E. Kelley Memorial Camp Scholarship

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ICOO Karl E. Kelley Memorial Camp Scholarship

David James “DJ” PreeceMemorial Scholarship to the ICOO Karl E. Kelley Memorial Youth Camp

2020 Camp dates are confirmed!  June 21 – 27, 2020

Scholarship application deadline is 11 PM EDT May 3rd, 2020.

For any boy or girl that has completed the 5th or 6th grade in the preceding school year.


About DJ Preece and the ICOO Karl E. Kelley Memorial Youth Camp

DJ Preece, passed away unexpectedly and suddenly following a brief 24 hour illness on September 12th, 2015.  He was 12 years old. This scholarship is intended to afford the opportunity to other students to experience what DJ emphatically stated to be the time of his life – a week at the Indiana Conservation Officer Organization (ICOO) Karl E. Kelley Memorial Youth Camp.

DJ was small in stature at 4 foot 3 inches tall, but he made up for it by living to enjoy everything he did, and by trying to make sure others did the same.  He did not do things to be the best – he did them to experience doing them. Along the way, he learned and enjoyed many things and made many people smile. One of the ICOO camp counselors wrote the following about DJ:

“I only got to be around DJ for a week but it was a week I will never forget thanks to him. By getting to see how DJ acted and how kind- hearted he was, I could tell that I was not the only one that enjoys being around him. DJ would always walk out of the tent in a good attitude and always came out smiling.

During the camp I would have never thought that a kid would ever get to me and change me, but I was wrong. As soon as I arrived home I told my parents about the camp and told them stories. The more and more stories I told, I figured out a common theme, which is that they all had to do with DJ. I was in shock when I heard the news [of his passing] and did not know what to say. Therefore, I decided to tell the people who were closest to him about my time with the most outgoing, kindhearted, and well-rounded person I was blessed to meet. I promise you that DJ may be gone but he will never be forgotten in my heart and many others.”

More about DJ Preece and his life can be found online on a memorial Facebook page here and via the Facebook link at the top of this page.

Detailed information about the camp can be found online here.

You can see more about the Karl E. Kelley Camp at the camp Facebook page here.

Many parents who have sent their child to the camp have stated their child came back changed – for the better.

Camp Dates for 2020 – June 21st through June 27th.

The camp begins on Sunday, June 21st and ends with a graduation ceremony on Saturday, June 27th.

Campers are required to spend the entire time at the camp, including overnight. Late arrivals and early departures are not permitted.

IMPORTANT!!

If you cannot attend during any portion of the camp, please do not apply for the scholarship.

Scholarship Application Eligibility

Application for this scholarship is open to any boy or girl that has completed the 5th or 6th grade in the preceding school year who completes and submits an application on or before the submission deadline.

Application Deadline 

Applications must be received by the foundation administrator no later than 11 PM EDT May 3rd, 2020.

What the Scholarship Covers for the Recipient

This scholarship covers the camp fee for a single recipient ONLY. What is included by the ICOO camp in this fee is detailed on the camp web site here.

PLEASE NOTE: The web site listed above has a link for a Camper Application – PLEASE DO NOT COMPLETE THE FORMS PROVIDED BY THIS LINK UNLESS YOU ARE NOTIFIED YOU ARE THE SELECTED SCHOLARSHIP RECIPIENTTHE CAMPER APPLICATION IS NOT AN APPLICATION FOR THIS SCHOLARSHIP NOR IS THIS SCHOLARSHIP APPLICATION FOR THE CAMP.

What the Scholarship DOES NOT Cover or Provide

This scholarship does not cover or provide anything not expressly stated as being covered or provided by the scholarship in the “What the Scholarship Covers for the Recipient” section above.

The camp fee is paid by the scholarship fund directly to the camp. No monies are or will be provided to the scholarship recipient or other party for any purpose. 

Transportation to and from the camp is not provided by the scholarship and is the responsibility of the recipient.

Scholarship is Non-Transferable

The scholarship is non-transferable by the recipient. If the scholarship recipient cannot attend the camp, they are required to notify the administrator of the foundation at administrator@iamdjfoundation.org as soon as they are aware they cannot attend and before the start of the camp. The administrator will then offer the opportunity to an alternate attendee selected by the foundation.

Liability and Obligations

The scholarship and/or the foundation and/or the family of David James Preece has no obligation to and/or liability for events, situations, actions, or outcomes beyond reserving a camper position, paying the camp fee, and selecting an individual who meets the requirements set forth by the ICOO Karl E. Kelley Memorial Youth Camp (the camp), to offer the opportunity to attend the camp. The scholarship and/or the foundation and/or the family of David James Preece is/are not liable for the failure of any ISP to deliver a scholarship application or for the failure of any Internet connection or email program to deliver an electronic version of the scholarship application.

Under no circumstances shall the scholarship and/or the foundation and/or the family of David James Preece have any obligation to and/or liability for events, situations, actions, or outcomes resulting from, or surrounding the act of participating in any role, capacity or function, the ICOO Karl E. Kelley Memorial Youth Camp by any person at any time.

It is the responsibility of the scholarship recipient and their legal guardian(s) to complete the ICOO Karl E. Kelley Memorial Youth Camp camper application and agree to and abide by any requirements or rules attached to that application. 

Recipient Selection

Submitting this scholarship application does not guarantee the applicant receipt of the scholarship. The recipient of the scholarship is selected solely by the foundation.  No other entity or person are involved in the selection process. Applicant grade level may be validated by the foundation. The recipient selection and any alternate recipient selection made by the foundation is final. Scholarship awards may be refused but not challenged.

Selection Criteria

The following criteria will be used, in this order of importance, to select the scholarship recipient:

1.       Entire application received on or before the deadline

2.       Application completed in its entirety

3.       Presently enrolled in the 5th or 6th grade

4.       The completeness of applicant answers to questions on the application form

5.       The quality of applicant answers to questions on the application form

District Meeting Dates 2020

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Please mark your calendars for the NSD Committee Mtg. (1st  Thursday of the month)  7:00-9:00 pm     Room 204 of Zionsville Town Hall,   1100 W. Oak St., Zionsville 46077.

[Feb.6, March 5, April 2, May 7, June 4, July 2, Aug.6, Sep.3, Oct.1, Nov.5, and Dec.3]

Updated Annual Health Form!

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from Bryan on Scouting
https://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2019/12/10/theres-an-updated-annual-health-and-medical-record-to-use-for-2020/?fbclid=IwAR1Aay2yCXgkaR4vp5REtjCUFTw044y3qD_DiI-13_0UwMryjwAijOM3mNM

There’s an updated Annual Health and Medical Record to use for 2020

Every few years, the BSA updates its Annual Health and Medical Record after consulting with health care professionals, Scout executives, council and camp health officers and other experts to ensure it is up-to-date and helpful.

This was one of those years, meaning a new form is available for everyone to use for 2020. Your AHMR is valid through the end of the 12th month after the date it was administered by your medical provider. For example, if you got your physical on Nov. 3, 2019, it’s valid until Nov. 30, 2020.

Next year will be a transition year, so you can use either the old or new form, but everyone in all Scouting programs must use the updated AHMR form starting Jan. 1, 2021. The old form will be obsolete at that date. So, the BSA recommends using the new form on your next physical exam or if you’re a new participant in 2020.

Since at least the 1930s, the BSA has required the use of standardized health and medical information. The last time this form was updated was in 2014. The changes made this year were minor, such as some conditions listed in the health history section.

You can download the new form here. The Annual Health and Medical Record is required for Scouts and adult leaders who want to go on Scouting events, campouts and high-adventure trips. Note that there are different parts to the AHMR:

  • Part A is an informed consent, release agreement and authorization that needs to be signed by every participant (or a parent and/or legal guardian for all youth under 18).
  • Part B is general information and a health history.
  • Part C is your pre-participation physical exam completed by a certified and licensed health care provider.

Which part must be completed?

  • For all Scouting events: Part A and B. Give the completed forms to your unit leader. This applies to all participants for all activities, day camps, local tours and weekend camping trips less than 72 hours.
  • For events or camps: Part A, B and C. A pre-participation physical is needed for resident, tour, or trek camps or for a Scouting event of more than 72 hours, such as Wood Badge and NYLT. The exam needs to be completed by a certified and licensed physician (M.D. or D.O.), nurse practitioner or physician assistant. If your camp has provided you with any supplemental risk information, or if your plans include attending one of the four national high-adventure bases, share the venue’s risk advisory with your medical provider when you are having your physical exam.
  • For high-adventure trips: Part A, B and C. Plus, each of the four national high-adventure bases (Florida Sea Base, Northern Tier, Philmont and the Summit Bechtel Reserve) has provided a supplemental risk advisory that explains in greater detail some of the risks inherent in that program. Please review these as some Scouts or leaders may not be physically or mentally able to handle the trek. Others arrive at a high-adventure base without discussing that base’s risk factors with their health care provider, meaning they have missing info at check-in that can slow down the process.

How do I fill it out?

Please review and complete the AHMR fully and carefully. If you have any questions how to review it, read this BSA Safety Moment or look at these frequently asked questions. Remember, these completed forms must be secure, so they are not to be digitized, scanned, emailed or stored electronically by unit leaders.

Advancement Reporting

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CALLING ALL UNITS!

PLEASE TURN IN YOUR ADVANCEMENT REPORTS!

Reminder: Advancement Reports should be turned in to the office on a regular basis.  The preferred timeline is monthly.  We recognize that this can be difficult for some Units.

However, we are making a plea for all Advancements for the year 2019 be turned in by Dec. 31.  This will help with our District records, keeping your Scout’s Advancements on track, and the Lange Challenge.

The Lange Challenge

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2019 Lange report formK3’s were recently sent a packet with a letter about the Lange challenge, JTE, and Scout Advancement. To summarize:

What is the “Lange Challenge?”  This is a very generous challenge grant that our Council receives with our help.  It is a program that honors the memory of Alexander “Skip” Lange and his belief that an active Scout is likely to stay in Scouting and earn their Eagle Scout Award.

In order to qualify for the grant we need Units to:

1.) Send in your 2019  weekend camping experiences conducted this year, as well as those your PLC anticipates conducting between now and December 31, 2019.  The goal is that 65% or more of our Troops are participating in 8 or more short term weekend experiences through out the course of the year. Send your camping outing list via email to camping@crossroadsbsa.org.

2.) Check your advancement records against the form sent in the mail.  Submit any changes to advancement@crossroadsbsa.org.   Continue to submit advancements as normal going forward.

3.) JTE – Please fill out the JTE Scorecard for 2019 and turn in with your recharter paperwork.

 

 

 

APPROVE APPLICATIONS ON My.Scouting Mobile App

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Approve Applications on My.Scouting Mobile App!

National 08/27/2019

Unit Leaders can now approve online applications in the Mobile app. Download the latest MyScouting app update at Google Play Store or the App Store. A previous release allowed leaders to take action on leads in the Mobile app.

Summer Camp 2020 – looking ahead

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Ransburg Summer Camp – 2020 Registration

  • Registering Your Troop for 2020

    Registration for each week of the Summer 2020 season will open during the corresponding Summer 2019 week, on Thursdays at 7pm. Troops in camp who would like to schedule time to walk the new campsite plan are encouraged to do so on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and as needed for the remainder of the week.  A 2020 selection worksheet will be available at Ransburg and Kreitenstein for those units in camp.  For the troops not on site this summer but planning to join us for summer 2020, our team is happy to facilitate a discussion of specific considerations and preferences your troop.

  • Registration for Week 3 opens today Thursday, June 20, 2019 at 7pm EST.

Cub Scout Camps – 2020

Cub Scout camp will be very different in 2020.  North Star Units should look at the image of the flyer and start planning for the 2020 summer.  Will your Unit go on multiple weeks so parents can attend different camps?  Will you divide and have dens go the week that works best for them?

More information is expected soon.  This is just a heads up on things to come 🙂

flyer available here Camp-2020-Brochure

camp 2020 a.jpg

IOLS Baloo Training

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From Kevin Neese

Remember IOLS training is REQUIRED for all Scoutmasters and Assistant Scoutmasters, and BALOO is required for for Cubscouts to conduct their own outdoor / camping program(s).
IOLS and BALOO training will be offered to adults attending SUMMER CAMP with their UNITS.
TURNING IN TRAINING –  IOLS/BALOO training done at camp.  Please retain your certificate from camp and send a copy of it to Kevin Neese so he can log your training into the data base.  The camp does not do that for you.
Other training dates that the Council is offering:
August 3-4, 2019
November  (will be the same dates as University of Scouting)
December 14-15, 2019
Here is the LINK to SIGN-UP for Introduction to Outdoor Leader Skills training and BALOO Training   https://scoutingevent.com/160-2019IOLS

Adult Training Reminders

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As we all know – training is an important part of Scouting.  Unfortunately, sometimes our training records can be hard to track.

Reminders: 1.) Anyone taking Classes (especially at summer camp) get a certificate and / or card and / or written documentation of the class completion.  Theoretically, all adults attending Summer Camp should be registered and thus have an ID # – but as we know, a lot of times the training sheets get lost and or don’t get recorded.

2.) Put your BSA id on any classroom training paperwork.  If you cannot find your card your BSA id is located on your YPT certificate and your my.scouting account.

 

Service Hours for St. Vincent House

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St. Vincent House strives to create a home-away-from-home for St. Vincent patient families from around the state of Indiana and beyond. Many of our patients come from long distances for treatment and stay for extended periods of time. One way our scouts can volunteer is.
Magnificent Meal Makers
  • Serve Breakfast (8:30 am to 9:30 am) or Dinner (6:30 pm – 7:30 pm) for the families. You will select recipes, bring food supplies, prepare meal for 30 guests
Please visit the St. Vincent House website for more information and to sign up https://give.stvincent.org/volunteerstvhouse

Merit Badge Counselor List and Procedures

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North Star has finished updating it’s Merit Badge Counselor list!  Kevin Neese, our Training Vice Chair, has sent all Key 3’s the updated list.  Please share with Scouts and families through your Scoutmaster or Advancement Chair as requested but do not put out on websites, etc.
Moving forward.  New procedures for Merit Badge Counselors.
  • Adding a new Merit Badge Counselor.  Fill out BSA Adult application.  Attach YPT.  Attach Merit Badge selections. Attach MBC training certificate.  TURN IN TO KEVIN NEESE.  He will then get the required District Signatures and turn in to Council when all paperwork in complete.
  • Adding and Deleting Merit Badges for an existing MBC.  Send add/delete requests to Kevin Neese.  He will process the requests.
  • 10 Merit Badge “rule” has been discontinued.  Any current MBC who would like to add Merit Badges to their redacted list needs to send Add list to Kevin.
A Merit Badge Counselor is: A trained adult, registered by and accountable to the Council and the District; they are an independent guide, instructor and / or coach for the Merit Badge(s) that they counsel.  A Counselors duty is to be satisfied that each Scout who comes to you as a counselor meets all the requirements for the merit badge you are counseling them on.  You are a coach, a guide, giving them positive reinforcement in the subject matter.  You are not to change the requirements or add additional requirements – you are there to help them over the different hurdles of the requirements.  Thus, helping the Scout to gain a deeper awareness of the subject matter of the Merit Badge.
As a Merit Badge Counselor, you are the coach, guide, and / or instructor – but you MUST allow the Scout to do the work themselves.
The last and MOST important duty of a Merit Badge Counselor is to follow Youth Protection Requirements.
A Scouts (and their parents / legal guardians) duties to a Merit Badge Counselor:
 Number one (1) remember that a Merit Badge Counselor is a VOLUNTEER, they are donating their time, talents, and experience – so a Scout is Courteous.  A Merit Badge Counselor may need to say NO to your request to counsel them on a Merit Badge (there are only 24 hours in a day).
Again, remember that a Merit Badge Counselor is a VOLUNTEER.  Some Merit Badges have cost associated with them (materials, entrance fees, rentals).  Don’t ask the Counselor to donate money and resources so that you can complete the Merit Badge requirements (unless the Counselor offers).
YOU are RESPONISBLE for completing the requirements, for doing the work, for being on time.   YOU are responsible for providing the signed Application to the Merit Badge to the Counselor.  You are also responsible in helping the Merit Badge Counselor maintain Youth Protection Requirements.  If contacting the Merit Badge Counselor by email, make sure to include a parent(s) and / or a leader on all emails.  If you are contacting the Merit Badge Counselor by phone, remember that you will need an Adult third party on the call to maintain Youth Protection Requirements.  Remember, it is very likely that the Merit Badge Counselor will need you to bring an Adult with you to face-to-face meeting so that Youth Protection Requirements are met.

Voyageur Scholarships

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Voyageur Canoe Training Adult Scholarship

What is Voyageur Canoe Training?  Why should an adult or youth take the training?  The Voyageur Canoe Training program prepares adults to take the Voyageur program back to troop and other youth groups to prepare for and conduct safe canoe outings including High Adventure trips.  The focus is teaching how to have FUN SAFELY while canoeing.  More information about the Voyageur program can be found here

Don & Diane Claffey have established the Claffey Voyageur Scholarship Fund to provide ongoing support to this program.  Scholarships in the amount of $50.00 will be awarded for each Voyageur adult training class starting with the Spring 2019 class.  The applicant must be a currently registered adult leader of a unit in the Crossroads of America Council, BSA.  To qualify for the scholarship they should have a financial need to attend adult Voyageur training.  Additionally, their unit should be planning to conduct both unit training and outings centered on canoeing and/or kayaking within the next two years.  The scholarship must be used within twelve months of the date the winner receives notification by the Voyageur Course Director, or the scholarship will be forfeited.  Other details are contained in the scholarship application Voyageur Adult Scholarship Form Fillable – 0419

A similar scholarship is planned for the Youth Voyageur Training (announcement pending).

 

Direct Contact Leader Training

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As we start we move towards summer I want to remind you about the council policy of requiring all Direct Contact Leaders to be trained for their respective leadership positions.  This policy will affect all Scouts BSA Direct Contact Leaders this year including new leaders that join with their Scout this spring.
Scouts BSA Direct Contact Leaders must be trained for their respective positions by December 31, 2019, to be registered for their positions in 2020.  Starting January 1, 2020 Scouts BSA Leaders who assume Direct Contact positions must complete position specific training by December 31 of that year.
To read the full required training policy click here.
All required training is available online at my.scouting.org with exception to Intro to Outdoor Leader Skills (IOLS) required for Scouts BSA.
Scoutmaster/Asst. Scoutmaster Training
Intro to Outdoor Leader Skills Training
  • Council provided training June 8-9 (Sat-Sun), Aug. 3-4 (Sat-Sun), Dec. 14-15 (Sat-Sun).  Click here to register for the Council provided IOLS training.
  • University of Scouting on Saturday, November 9
  • May be available at district camporees
For a list of other upcoming classroom trainings, check the Crossroads of America Council website at www.crossroadsbsa.org.  For Frequently Asked Questions about Direct Contact Leader training please click here.
Trained leaders lead to better unit program, better unit programs allow us to change more life’s and impact more communities.  Thank you for getting trained and all you do for Scouting.
Yours in Scouting,
Natalie Maenhout
Council Training Chair

Fireside Chat regarding District Merg 7/21

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Scouting Volunteers,

You recently received a communication from our Council Key 3 about a Crossroads of America Council reorganization.  To streamline operations, we are moving from 11 to 7 districts which means that 8 of our districts are consolidating to 4 districts.  This email is specifically to volunteers in the North Star and Del-Mi districts regarding consolidation.

I wanted to take this time to introduce myself.  I am in position unique from my colleagues, in that I have worked in both Districts prior to these changes. My name is Eddie Stahl and I am your District Director moving forward. I am joined on the district staff by Liv Fairchild, who will be your District Executive.  Liv and I are excited to help impact Scouting in this new District and have already begun working with key district volunteer leadership to move the consolidation forward.

In the near future you can expect an invitation to a Fireside Chat, where you will have the opportunity to ask questions and learn more about the reorganization. The date for the Chat in our district is July 21st at 6:30 PM.  You will also see your volunteer district leadership communicate about plans for Roundtable, District, and Commissioner staff meetings as well as future district activities.  We do intend to make the best use of technology that is available to us and many meetings will be virtual.

I appreciate your dedication to Scouting and look forward to working with each of you as we make Scouting the best youth organization in Central Indiana.  Please feel free to contact myself or Liv if you have any questions.

 

Eddie Stahl | District Director

BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA
Crossroads of America Council

Golden-Burke Scout Center

7125 Fall Creek Road North
Indianapolis, IN 46256
P: 317.813.7127 
C: 847.849.9349

eddie.stahl@scouting.org

Save the Date: Governor’s Luncheon 12/9/2020

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25th Annual Governor’s Luncheon for Scouting unnamedLeadership

Governor Eric Holcomb
Governor Eric Holcomb

Keynote Speaker
State of Indiana

James Morris
James Morris

Honorary Luncheon Chairman
Pacers Sports & Entertainment

 

 

20GLFS_Save-the-Date

The Congressional Award: An impressive honor Scouts can earn just by being Scouts – from Bryon on Scouting

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The Congressional Award: An impressive honor Scouts can earn just by being Scouts

In Congress, it’s the rare subject about which there’s unanimous agreement.

It’s the Congressional Award, the highest recognition Congress bestows on young people. To qualify, a young person must meet certain goals in four key areas: voluntary public service, personal development, physical fitness and expedition/exploration.

Are you thinking what I’m thinking? Yes, many of the activities young people enjoy in Scouting fit nicely into those four categories. Better yet, double-dipping is encouraged, meaning work on merit badges, rank requirements and Eagle projects counts toward the award.

This natural correlation explains why, in 1999, the BSA became partners with the Congressional Award Foundation, which remains Congress’ only charity.

As jobs and colleges become increasingly more competitive, the Congressional Award — along with a young person’s experience in Scouting — will look great on a résumé. That “something extra” is exactly what hiring managers and college admissions counselors want to see.

Scouts have been earning the Congressional Award ever since it was established in 1979. In 2019, at least 75 of the 538 Congressional Award Gold Medal recipients were Scouts. But I say it’s time to raise that number even higher. The award is noncompetitive, meaning anyone who properly completes the requirements will receive the award.

Important: Scouts must register first

Before you consider retroactively counting Scouting experience toward the award, let me point out one key statement from the Congressional Award site: “This is not an award for past accomplishments. Instead, you are honored for achieving your own challenging goals after registering for the program.”

That means your Scouts should register for the award as soon as possible after turning 13.5 years old, giving them the maximum amount of time to count Scouting requirements toward their progress.

But even if your Scout or Venturer is 16, 17 or older, all hope is not lost. They have until their 24th birthday to complete the requirements.

‘Things I was already doing in Scouting’

After registering, any qualifying activity — in school, Scouting or another extracurricular activity — can count toward the award. That fact is confirmed in the award’s FAQs: “If you belong to groups such as Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Venturing, 4-H, etc., your activities may often be used to achieve a particular goal.”

That was certainly the case for Eagle Scout Todd Christian, who earned the Congressional Award in 2019, at age 23.

“I completed all of the requirements for the program exclusively through the things I was already doing through Scouting,” he says.

Christian earned the Gold Medal, which is the highest of the Congressional Award’s six levels. That top honor includes an invite to the national award ceremony in Washington, D.C., where honorees meet other recipients as well as their congressional representatives. (Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s ceremony was held virtually.)

The Gold Medal requires at least 400 hours of volunteer time, 200 hours of personal development, 200 hours of physical fitness, and an expedition of at least five days and four nights.

“Essentially, anyone who completes a multiday trek as well as a comprehensive service project — what we call an Eagle project — has already overcome a major hurdle to receiving the top award,” Christian says.

The entry-level award — the Bronze Certificate — is within even closer reach for most Scouts. It requires 30 hours of volunteer service, 15 hours of personal development, 15 hours of physical fitness, and a one-day expedition or exploration.

“Virtually every Scout has met these requirements many times over, just by being a Scout,” Christian says.

Eagle Scout Cutler Shiver of Georgia (second from left) received the Congressional Award Gold Medal in 2019.
Eagle Scout Cutler Shiver of Georgia (second from left) received the Congressional Award Gold Medal in 2019.

How to earn the award and what to expect

Explore the program requirements here. Keep in mind that each level is cumulative, meaning time spent on one award carries over to the next. For example, completing 200 hours of service for the Silver Medal means you’re already halfway to the 400 needed for Gold.

Scouts who want to count their work in Scouting toward the Congressional Award should keep three things in mind:

  1. Scouts must register for the program before beginning to count work toward it.
  2. The minimum age to register is 13.5, and all goals must be met before turning 24.
  3. Scouts should document their work closely so it’s easy to share it with the Congressional Award program when it’s time to submit. Many Scouts already do this level of documentation when working on merit badges like Personal Management or projects like the Eagle Scout project.

Going for Gold?

Scouts like to aim high, so I’m guessing that many will be eyeing that Gold Medal. Christian shared a few examples of how Scouts might meet or exceed Gold Medal requirements just by enjoying all that Scouting has to offer.

  • 400 hours of voluntary service: Scouts spend a lot of time helping others and serving in
    leadership roles, and it’s surprising how quickly they accumulate more than 400 hours. Eagle Scout service projects could easily fulfill a large chunk of the 400 hours needed.
  • 200 hours of personal development: Scouts could register these hours by learning new skills, such as those taught in merit badges. It takes time, but it’s fun to pursue a new passion.
  • 200 hours of physical fitness: Working toward merit badges like Cycling, Swimming, Hiking, Backpacking and Athletics will give Scouts a good foundation for this requirement.
  • Four nights and five days on an “expedition or exploration”: A single trip to many BSA high-adventure bases would qualify, and Philmont Scout Ranch is mentioned by name in the FAQs. The primary requirement is that participants “plan, prepare and be responsible.”
  • 24 months of work toward the award: Scouts work for months toward lofty goals like the Eagle Scout Award, Quartermaster Award (Sea Scouts) or Summit Award (Venturing). All this time will count.

A Scouter’s role

While it is certainly appropriate to present this opportunity to your Scouts and Venturers, keep in mind that — like anything else in Scouting — the Scouts should take the lead.

But as a Scouter, you still play an important role.

Any young person wishing to earn the Congressional Award will need Advisors and Validators — adults who can help a young person navigate the program and verify completion of requirements.

According to the official FAQs, Scoutmasters are ideally suited for this role — with a few exceptions.

“Teachers, guidance counselors, coaches, club leaders and Scoutmasters would all make excellent Advisors and Validators,” according to the FAQs. “The only guideline in choosing an Advisor or Validator is that they cannot be your parent, relative or peer.”

The Congressional Award during COVID-19

Thankfully, Scouting has not been on pause during the coronavirus pandemic. Scouts are still having fun, earning merit badges and serving others.

Likewise, progress toward the Congressional Award can continue. For the official guidance on navigating the award during COVID-19, see this article from the Congressional Award Foundation.