Hello Troop 250,
Hope everyone is having a good summer. As you have surely noticed, membership in our Troop has been steadily declining over the past 2 years. Our older boys are moving on, and unfortunately, we have not had enough new Scouts join us to keep our numbers up. We are now down to about 12 active Scouts and with a few exceptions, have been averaging 5-7 Scouts who sign up for Troop activities – which means we do not have enough for the Troop to operate in a way that gives our boys a meaningful learning experience in Scouting.
The crucial thing we are missing is the ability to use the Patrol Method. A patrol should be a small group (about five to seven Scouts) because this is the natural way boys work together. These patrols are more important than the Troop itself. Patrols should be kept intact under all circumstances, including working, tenting, learning, cooking, and surviving together. In a Patrol the Scouts learn to work with others, while the Patrol leader learns responsibility for others. Both must give up part of their personal interest for this. Over the past 12 to 18 months, our dwindling membership has forced us to group Scouts together differently for each campout or event just to form Patrol groups. This also makes it more difficult for Scouts to complete rank requirements and advance to the next Scout Rank. Most Scouts in our Troop probably are no longer sure what Patrol they are in – or even who their Patrol leader is – because it is different every time.
For this reason, the active members of the Troop 250 Committee have made the difficult decision that it would be in our Scouts’ best interest to consider merging with another Troop. We have spoken with several Troops, and have found that Troop 387 seems to be the best fit. T387’s culture and beliefs are similar to T250. Adults are there to guide but not run the Troop, and Scouts are expected to handle their own affairs and advancement responsibilities. They meet on Monday nights from 7:00 to 8:30 at Martin United Methodist; Troop meetings generally include a skills presentation as well as time for a separate Patrol Meetings. They have quite a few adults who are active in the Troop, as Eagle Coaches and also at the District level. They would love to have new adults from T250 step up to help as well.
T250’s PLC and Annual Planning Meeting was scheduled for Tuesday, August 8. Instead, our PLC will participate in T387’s PLC on Monday the 7th. T387 already has their 2017-2018 activity calendar completed, so this will just be a normal PLC meeting. T387 has some VERY cool activities planned for the coming year.
Monday, August 7th will also be our first Regular Troop Meeting at Martin Methodist – this will give our Scouts a chance to meet Troop 387 Scouts and learn more about them while the PLC has their meeting to plan the coming month. They have not yet decided where to go for Summer Camp, so we will have some input there.
P.S. – send Mr. Henning an email if you did not receive this message by email and would like to see T387’s calendar. Scoutmaster@Troop250.org
We have 4-5 Scouts who are working on or have expressed an interest in starting their Eagle Project. Troop 250’s Charter remains valid and in effect through December 31, 2017, so merging with another Troop will not delay or prevent Life Scouts from finishing their project as members of Troop 250 as long as they complete their Eagle Rank Requirements, Merit Badges, and Project, AND ALL DOCUMENTS ARE SIGNED OFF before January 1, 2018. That said, Scouts working on their projects should plan on attending T387 Troop meetings and events to get to know them – especially if they plan to ask for Scouts to help with their project. And, just like Troop 250, if anyone there are several Eagle Coaches in Troop 387, and they follow the same BSA approved processes and guidelines as T250.
T387 Troop elections are scheduled for August 21, but could be postponed to August 28 if Troop 250 Scouts would like to run for a Leadership position. There will be more info available at the Troop meeting on August 7.
BSA Scout and Adult Applications: all registered Scouts and Adults will need to complete a BSA Application to transfer from T250 to T387. Scouts who will to complete their Eagle project thru 250 should NOT transfer until after they finish.
BSA Health Forms: if you did not go to Summer Camp this year, you will also need to bring a new BSA Health Form – Parts A & B only. These can be found on the Troop 250 website under Documents.
Troop 250 Committee Members and Adults – Troop 387 Committee meets on the third Thursday of each months. All Troop 250 parents are invited to attend the meeting on Thursday, August 17. They will have a short “Intro to 387” presentation for us. It will be a great opportunity for each parent to meet their 387’s leadership team and learn more about how they operate.
There are also several Scouts who need a Scoutmaster’s Conference and/or Board of Review for their next rank. We will make every effort to get these done before we transition to another Troop. Scouts who need a SC and/or BoR should send Mr. Henning an email at Scoutmaster@Troop250.org as soon as possible so we can get it on the calendar.
We would like to thank all the adults who have volunteered their time and efforts over the years to keep Troop 250 running – especially Mr Burgart, Mr Brown, Mr Long and Mr Gladstone.