We promise a great deal to a boy when he joins Boy Scouting. We make it the promise of learning, fun, excitement, and outdoor adventure. We also promise ourselves that through Scouting’s educational program we will try to help each Scout that participates to become a citizen of fine character – physically strong, mentally awake, and morally straight.
The Scouting Ranks –
Scout –when a boy enters Boy Scouts, he begins to develop these characteristics by understanding the Codes by which a Scout lives – the Scout Oath & Law, the Motto, Slogan and Outdoor Code. When he knows what the Scout badge represents, we reward him with the basic trefoil badge, a badge that means he can point the right way in life.
Tenderfoot – He begins to develop his personal responsibility and self-reliance through outdoor skills such as hiking, camping, and cooking & the basics of how to save a life through the first aid program. For his efforts he is awarded the trefoil badge.
Second Class – When he becomes more involved with the operations of the troop, he acquires more advanced skills. For this effort, the boy is awarded the ribbon and knot to remind him to cheerfully serve others.
First Class - As the Scout badge builds from Tenderfoot to First Class, the Scout grows in confidence, knowledge, and skill. When he proudly displays the first class badge, he has not only learned how to survive in the great outdoors, but has developed the basic values he will follow for the rest of his life; the values define in the Scout Oath & Law.
The program established by Troop 870 provides an opportunity for every Scout to advance through the rank of First Class within his first year. The experts tell us that the boys who go the farthest and stay the longest are usually the ones, who obtain the rank of First Class in the first year, but this is not a rule, a boy should progress at his own pace. Unlike Cub Scouts, advancement for a Boy Scout is his own responsibility. Please review the requirement from within the Scout Handbook and help him plan a schedule for his advancement based on his abilities. Investing that time can prevent many conflicts and much confusion later.
The advancement records are kept by the Committee Chairman for Advancement. When a scout finishes a requirement as given in his handbook, he should approach a Star, Life, Eagle Scout, or a registered adult and ask for that requirement to be signed off for the ranks of Tenderfoot through First Class.
The rank requirements of Star, Life, and Eagle will only be signed off by a registered adult. These ranks are award by satisfying tenure in a leadership role and merit badge development. When satisfied that that requirement has been met, the evaluator will date and sign that particular segment of the Scout’s book. While the troop keeps a database of record on the Scouts advancement, the book is the “official” record and should be treated as such. For when it is time to review the handbook for Eagle rank, all items must be filled out and in order.
When a Scout has completed all of the requirements for advancement to the next rank, he schedules a Scoutmaster’s Conference. One of the proprietary requirements for which a Scoutmaster signs, is “Scout Spirit.” This is somewhat a subject evaluation covering attitude and how well a Scout takes advantage of a challenge. After the SM conference, the Scout schedules a Board of Review with the Committee’s Advancement Chairperson. The Board of Review is typically held on meeting nights and is subject to a cut off timeline at the Committee’s desecration before an upcoming Court of Honor. When a Scout has passed the review by a Committee, the achievement will be recorded in the Troop database and back up records are maintained by the Advancement Chairperson. The rank advancement will be announced at that or the next weekly meeting and will be awarded at the next Court of Honor ceremony.
In addition to BSA requirements for rank advancement, Troop 870 expects minimal levels of participation to be considered as a sign of “Scout Spirit”. There are three general areas in which a scout’s participation is taken into account in measuring spirit for advancement eligibility. A minimum level of 50% participation is expected for (1) weekly meetings, (2) outdoor activities, and (3) Eagle projects and other troop service projects. If a scout finds that school, sports or other activities prevent them from full participation in the scouting program through the course of the year, we understand. There are many outlets that also display scout spirit in many ways. A scout should confer with the Scoutmaster before their attendance falls below the minimum attendance level as such situations arise. Participation in other Scouting events such as Order of the Arrow, Den Chief to a Cub Scout Pack, or a high adventure elsewhere that directly conflict with troop related activities will be considered the same as participation in troop events.