Michael Brown wrote:
>The "problem" is that in some councils (and with some scouters), if
>something is not "Official" or "Required", they will not do it. Thus,
>if there is no "Official Wood Badge Refresher Course for those who did
>pre-21st Century WB", then such a course does not exist and they will
>not put it on. End of story. See you later.
>I've seen the same mind set with regards to Powder Horn. No mention
>in the Leadership Training book (still not in the latest one!), no
>official syllabus (ie with National Supply number on it), no article
>in Scouting (true), etc, thus it's not an official course.
>This is why I'd like to see such a course with the "Official BSA" seal
>of approval on it. Only then can you convince certain people to put
I don't necessarily see this as a "problem" as you have characterized it.
First, it is well within the mission, and the areas of responsibility
all Councils agree to, for National to be responsible for the
"development, production, and management of course curricula" such as
(and in particular) Wood Badge. Further, it should be obvious for
reasons I hope we all understand, and is embodied in the course
directors pledge ALL course directors sign before approval. If the 350±
Councils of the BSA felt a course like this "WB refresher" was a
priority worthy of their limited resources, they have the power and
influence to see it bumped to the front of the line. The BSA has stated
over and over it is their priority (vis-a-vis WB) to open this premiere
leadership course up to the adult volunteers of ALL programs, and to
encourage and push for 100% trained leadership, to include WB within 2
years of adult registration. Considering we have been (WB) training, at
best, 1% of BS adult leadership annually, this is an awesome goal which
I submit is far more worthy of all of our time and effort than
"refreshing" those who have already benefited from this training.
This is not to take anything away from your efforts to educate your past
WBer's on the new curriculum. If you feel your Council's efforts are
best served thru this experience, so be it. I would suggest though, if
you have WBer's who really want to know what the new curriculum is all
about, offer them a place on WB staff. Most Councils will be "behind the
8-ball" for some years to come trying to catch up with the demand for
this new course, especially when it comes to finding qualified staffers
to run them.
Second, you should feel good about the fact that "...some councils (and
with some scouters), if something is not "Official" or "Required", they
will not do it." This adds greatly to the integrity of the training (and
the Scouting program) and makes sure everyone is getting the same
information. That's not to say you shouldn't add to or enhance the
training experience, just that its good to start from a solid
foundation. We all have a fiduciary responsibility to put on this
program we call "Scouting" the way it is intended to be implemented,
including the training of the adult volunteer corps, and even if we
don't always agree with the priorities.
As for Powder Horn, it IS an "official" course and it DOES have a
syllabus. Until recently, all courses were run on a regional basis and
considered "pilot courses". Further, info on PH has been out for about 2
years now, and is in many of the "white papers" national sends out to
your Council, as well as some training materials and the "Here's
Venturing" guide (#33466) for Districts and Councils on pg.28 (2000 ed.)
under "Training", which in part states that "...the PH syllabus is
restricted to councils authorized by their region to run a course".
There is even a synopsis on BSA's website explaining the course's
purpose and content. Powder Horn courses are rare as yet for many
reasons. Since Venturing is still "new" there aren't enough trained
leaders and units yet to support a PH course in most councils. Also, the
logistics, expenses, and expertise needed to put on a PH course is far
more than that required for Wood Badge for instance, and consequently
they are rare and expensive. Most courses will exceed the $250.+
threshold in cost. Just be patient, they are coming. Look around your
region. I believe there are close to 10 courses scheduled nationally now
for the next 12 months. And our Council (Central Florida) has just been
approved for one in 2003 ...y'all come down and see us, ya hear!! For
more info, feel free to contact Bill Evans, Assoc. Director, Venturing
Division, at (972) 580-2427 or by e-mail at: <bevans@...
The above are, for the most part, just my opinions, your mileage may
vary. I hope the clarifications to Powder Horn are helpful.
"...usta be a Beaver, and a good 'ol Beaver too!"
(SR 189, SR 295, SR 345, SR 432, SR 442, PH Pilot #3)