Frequently Asked Questions




COMMUNICATIONS

Troop 419 uses the Troop’s Website: 

http://www.scouttroop419.org

 

We also send out e-mail messages to provide and distribute important information.  We need to have an active e-mail address for every Scout and their parents if you want to be in this information loop. Please check the Website and your e-mail frequently for updates. The Troop’s complete “Policies & Procedures” and a wealth of other important information are available on the Website.

SUMMER CAMP

In 2014, we will be attending Summer Camp at the Blue Ridge Scout Reservation in Pulaski, VA.  (Check the calendar on the website for exact dates)  Pulaski is near Blacksburg, VA and this is a World-class facility. Summer Camp is the highlight of the Scout year and a wonderful experience for every Scout young and old. The Troop strongly encourages all Scouts to attend. Parents often find camp relaxing and are also encouraged to come and stay for part or all of the week.

CAMPING / EQUIPMENT

Troop 419 plans at least one outing every month from September through June. The Troop has a large stock of equipment we use on our campouts and other outings.  We provide: tents, ground cloths (tarps), cooking equipment, water coolers, propane lanterns, tables, toilet paper, cleaning supplies, first aid supplies & shelters. All scouts are responsible to “be prepared” for these outings.  Appropriate clothing and gear are to be planned for and brought to each campout.  Packing lists for various types of outings are available on the Troop website. Senior Scouts will instruct the younger boys on what specific gear is needed and pack inspections will be held for all Scouts below the rank of First Class to make sure the Scout is prepared. Information about upcoming outings is made available on the Troop website months in advance of the trip. Scouts (and parents planning to attend) MUST sign up for these outings in advance, so we can plan and provide the appropriate gear and food. Sign up should be done directly on our Troop website.

TROOP MEETINGS

Troop 419 holds a regular meeting on most every Tuesday evening during the school year.  These take place from 6:45 to 8:15 PM at King’s Grant Presbyterian Church (745 Little Neck Road). Parents are welcome but not required to stay for the meetings. Troop 419 does welcome your involvement, though one of the fundamental aspects of Boy Scouting is that it is Boy led and as adults we do our best to stay out of the way during the meetings. We do not hold meetings when there is no school scheduled. Please check the Troop Calendar on the Website for the exact schedule.

UNIFORMS

All Scouts are expected to wear their full Class “A” uniform to all Troop Meetings. 

 

Class “A” Uniform

1. Shirt – official long or short-sleeve tan shirt

- With all appropriate patches and emblems

- With medals & ribbons on formal occasions only

2. Shorts – BSA official OR tan or green shorts

3. Pants – BSA official OR tan or green pant

4. Scout belt & buckle OR no belt if shorts or pants do not have belt loops

5. Scout socks or complementary colored socks

6. Scout hat (optional)

7. Merit Badge Sash

- Optional at informal occasions

8. Order of the Arrow Sash

- If Member, and only during OA functions

9. BSA International Neckerchief and slide

 

On some occasions, Troop 419 will require a Class “B” Uniform. The Troop will provide each incoming Scout with one Class “B” t-shirt, but other Scouting t-shirts are allowed and appropriate when Class “B” is required.


TROOP ORGANIZATION


TROOP COMMITTEE

The Boy Scout Troop Committee is responsible for conducting the business of the troop, setting policy, and helping the Scoutmaster and Scouts with the outdoor program and other planned activities. The committee also has the responsibility to provide adults for boards of review. This is an important responsibility and is one area were help is always needed and appreciated. The committee consists of parent volunteers who fulfill various roles on the committee.

For more information and position descriptions:

http://meritbadge.org/wiki/index.php/Troop_Committee

TROOP YOUTH LEADERSHIP & CHAIN OF COMMAND


The troop is actually run by its boy leaders. With the guidance of the Scoutmaster and his assistants, they plan the program, conduct troop meetings, and provide leadership among their peers.

Junior Leader Positions

  • Senior patrol leader (SPL) - top junior leader in the troop. He leads the patrol leaders' council and, in consultation with the Scoutmaster, appoints other junior leaders and assigns specific responsibilities as needed.
  • Assistant senior patrol leader (ASPL) - fills in for senior patrol leader in his absence. He is also responsible for training and giving direction to the quartermaster, scribe, troop historian, librarian, and instructors.
  • Troop Historian - collects and maintains troop memorabilia and information on former troop members.
  • Librarian - keeps troop books, pamphlets, magazines, audiovisuals, and merit badge counselor list available for use by troop members.
  • Instructor - teaches one or more advancement skills to troop members.
  • Chaplain Aide - assists in troop religious services and promotes religious emblems program.
  • Junior assistant Scoutmaster - a Scout 16 or older who supervises and supports other boy leaders as assigned.
  • Patrol leader - gives leadership to members of his patrol and represents them on the patrol leaders' council.
  • Assistant patrol leader - fills in for the patrol leader in his absence.
  • Venture crew chief - leader of a troop's Venture crew.
  • Varsity team captain - leader of a troop's Varsity team.
  • Troop guide - advisor and guide to the new Scout patrol.
  • Den chief - works with a Cub Scout den as a guide.
  • Quartermaster - responsible for troop supplies and equipment.
  • Scribe - the troop secretary.

PATROL LEADERS' COUNCIL

Boy Scouts is "Boy-Led." The Patrol Leaders' Council (PLC), not the adult leaders, is responsible for planning and conducting the troop's activities. The Scoutmaster (and assistant Scoutmasters) provide direction, coaching, and training that empowers the boy with the skills he will need to lead his troop. The Troop Committee provides resources to help the PLC.The PLC is made up of the Senior Patrol Leader, Assistant Senior Patrol Leader, Patrol Leaders, Troop Guide and other members of the SPL Staff. The PLC meets at least monthly to plann meetings and outings. All Scouts are encouraged to attend PLC meetings and offer their input. Most months the PLC meeting falls on the second Sunday of the month at 2:30 PM at King's Grant Presbyterian Church, but check the Troop Calendar to be sure of time and place.

BOY SCOUT HANDBOOK

Every Scout MUST have a Handbook. This should have their name clearly marked on the outside edge of the book pages.  All Advancement will be recorded in their book. A book cover is recommended and there is also a hardbound copy available. Scouts should bring their Scout Handbook to every meeting and camp out.

RANK ADVANCEMENT

Boy Scout Advancement is different from Cub Scouts.  Parents can no longer sign off completed requirements. The first Rank is “Scout” and all you have to do is simply read the joining requirements (chapter 1) and present yourself to an Adult Leader for a “Scoutmaster’s Conference”.  This and all other ranks & awards are presented at Troop Courts of Honor (COH).  These usually take place in September, December, March and June. The Troop uses a computer to track & record Scout Advancement.  It is every Scout’s responsibility to have his Rank Advancement & other Awards entered into the computer for them to be presented.

The ranks of Boy Scouts are:

Scout

Tenderfoot

Second Class

First Class

Star

Life

Eagle

 

Information about the ranks and their requirements are in the Boy Scout Handbook or can be found at:


http://meritbadge.org/wiki/index.php/Boy_Scout_Portal

 

 

MERIT BADGES

Merit Badges are the second main area of the Boy Scout advancement program. Unlike ranks, there is a degree of choice in the merit badge program. A sub-group of merit badges are known as Eagle required merit badges. To earn Eagle Scout, most of these badges must be earned although some are "either/or" badges. The remainder of the badges help with earning ranks as well as Eagle Palms after the Eagle Scout award has been earned. Boy Scouts may work on merit badges from they time they join a Scout troop until they turn 18 years old. There is no time limit for completion of merit badges other than age 18. For more information:

http://meritbadge.org/wiki/index.php/Boy_Scout_Portal

 

 

BOARDS OF REVIEW

Beyond the rank of “Scout” each boy must take part in a Board of Review (BOR) in order to advance. Troop 419 holds BORs on the first Tuesday of every month and it is the Scout’s responsibility to make sure they are scheduled when they need a BOR. Troop Parents will be called upon to help out with the Boards and the members of a Board of Review should have the following objectives in mind:

To make sure the Scout has completed the requirements for the rank.

To see how good an experience the Scout is having in the unit.

To encourage the Scout to progress further on the Trail to Eagle.

 

Additionally, the Board of Review provides "quality control" on advancement within the unit, it provides an opportunity for the Scout to develop and practice those skills needed in a interview situation, and it is an opportunity for the Scout to review his accomplishments.

 

More information can be found in the BOR Guide at:

http://www.scouttroop419.org/forms

 

COSTS & FEES

 

Annual dues of $75.00 per Scout are paid in December.  Camp out fees are determined based on the needs of the trip. The average outing costs $25 - $40 though the boys do sometimes take on outings such as skiing or whitewater rafting which can cost significantly more. All “expensive” trips are published well in advance and every effort is made to provide fund raising opportunities to allow the boys to pay their own way. A Scout is thrifty and we try to make every activity affordable. Further, it is the stated policy of the Troop 419 Committee that NO boy should be excluded for reasons of financial need. There are Campership dollars available and any boy willing to take on the fund raising opportunities provided will be allowed to participate. Troop 419 holds one primary annual fund raiser selling popcorn in the Fall. This fund raiser provides all of the operating funds needed for the Troop and allows for extra money to be distributed to the boys via their Individual Scout Account (ISA). Other fund raisers such as car washes occur as needed throughout the year with all the proceeds from these going directly to the Scout’s ISA.


TROOP CONTACTS/ROSTER

Members of Troop 419 will be provided with Troop Roster periodically. This will serve as a resource to contact the Boy Leadership of the Troop, other Scouts and/or parents. Parents should first direct questions to their Scout who can follow up with their Patrol Leader. Any Scoutmaster or adult leader in the Troop is available to answer questions, however it is essential that we begin to condition our boys to work through their chain of command and begin to take responsibility for their own activities. It is one of the essential skills gained in Boy Scouting and the hope is that parents will help encourage that process. Calls or emails to the Scoutmaster should be done for confirmation and back up. The Scout should always be the first source.

 

OTHER QUESTIONS

 

Boy Scouts open wonderful adventures and opportunities for every young man.  We realize that there are many new things to get used to and learn. Boy Scouting has its own language filled with acronyms and concepts only found in Scouting. We have tried to answer the most common questions but please do not hesitate to contact us and ask any of our Troop Leaders questions as they arise.