I think that letter was pretty confrontational, and I would be seriously POed to receive something like that from my local council. It reeks of “we don’t think this is serious”, which is inexcusable, IMHO.
San Diego-Imperial Council has ordered everything to shutdown for March. I know of a few units that are having small leader meetings and one is taking a long planned canoe trip.
The important part is to make sure the background work doesn’t stop. It is critical that the leadership continue to communicate, whether via email, text, phone or meeting software. You can get limited use Zoom, GoToMeeting, WebEx, Zoom and a bunch of others to hold meetings remotely. We are going to have one of our Council meetings using GoToMeeting webinar software so we don’t loose momentum.
I would also encourage leaders to use this time to catch up on their training. All direct leader recommended training except BALOO and IOLS can be taken online. And you don’t have to take all of it at once. A module a day gets the job done in a couple of weeks.
A lot of our units have been circulating this type of idea in Rancho Our-name-is-too-long-for-the-patch District in north county SDIC, @RobertWright3. Merit badge counseling by GoToMeeting/Google Duo are pretty good for many MBs. Put it on speaker and have a parent sit at the table with the scout, and you can get a lot covered.
I give a lot of credit to our county’s public health officer. She has been out in front of things from an early stage. I think that her leadership on the professional side has made it a lot easier for council and the various units to make informed decisions and explain them to our youth and adults.
I totally agree. It is odd, especially with the current situation, that the letter was dated. His assertions that the National BSA and council are not “governing agencies for your program” is false. Especially when it comes to health and safety, council and national DO govern actives, meeting criteria, etc. To say otherwise is not true.
Hi, Charley - I’m in your next door District. My granddaughter, who is a newly minted Lion Scout in Pack 650, was bummed out then the Pinewood Derby was cancelled on the day of the event. She doesn’t really understand all of this. That is one of the biggest loses from all this. The Cubs and Scouts lose out on the activities.
Yeah, each group of scouts seems to be dealing with different stressors. I’ve noticed that the youngest ones I interact with are missing the routine and the major events they were looking forward to, just as you described. The older ones are sweating “deadlines” of various types.
I’m starting to wish I had better qualifications as a counselor than being a licensed structural engineer. There’s a lot of “Take a deep breath. Remember that everyone knows we’re involuntarily out of classes/meetings/etc, so there’s going to be some consideration for that in terms of deadlines. Folks just haven’t figured out what that will look like yet. Let’s try to keep things moving by doing this…” If nothing else, I’m developing a better bedside manner. At least I hope so.
At the risk of committing the 'net faux pas of replying to myself, I just received this Cub Scout resource via a member of our troop committee, who got it from one of the local Cub Roundtable Commissioners. Figured I’d pass it around for anyone it might help.
San Francisco Bay Area, California
Public health order (16 March 2020) extracts:
Stay Home. No social gatherings to protect your health and the community. Essential activities, businesses, infrastructure, and governmental functions will continue.
On March 16, the Public health officers of Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, San Mateo, and Santa Clara counties announced, with the City of Berkeley, a legal order directing their respective residents to shelter at home for three weeks beginning March 17. The order limits activity, travel and business functions to only the most essential needs. The guidance comes after substantial input from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and best practices from other health officials around the world. Scientific evidence shows social distancing is one of the most effective approaches to slow the transmission of communicable disease. The shelter-at-home order follows new data of increasing local transmission of COVID-19, including 258 confirmed cases of COVID-19 with 4 deaths shared by the seven jurisdictions, as of March 15. The Bay Area’s collected confirmed cases is more than half of California’s case count. This does not account for the rapidly increasing number of assumed cases of community transmission. As testing capacity increases, the number of laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 cases is expected to increase markedly. “Temporarily changing our routine is absolutely necessary to slow the spread of this pandemic,” said Dr. Sara Cody, Santa Clara County Public Health Officer.
The order defines essential activities as necessary for the health and safety for individuals and their families. Essential businesses allowed to operate during the recommended action include health care operations; businesses that provide food, shelter, and social services, and other necessities of life for economically disadvantaged or otherwise needy individuals; fresh and non-perishable food retailers (including convenience stores); pharmacies; child care facilities; gas stations; banks; laundry businesses and services necessary for maintaining the safety, sanitation and essential operation of a residence. In addition, health care, law and safety, and essential government functions will continue under the recommended action.
ours has suspended everything and at council level til may 11th
My Council (Twin Rivers) has suspended all District and Council sponsored activities as we have confirmed cases in our county. Our local schools and religious centers (churches and synagogues) are closed for at least 2 weeks. So, my Pack and Troops won’t be meeting for at least 2 weeks. (I suspect that this will be extended far into April.)
This is a highly contagious disease that spreads much more easily than the flu. The information from medical experts is that many may have already been infected with mild symptoms and not know of their status, spreading the virus further. (I’ve seen multiple cases of this reported in the news.) So the danger is that having in person scout activities could spread the disease even more without knowing that we are potentially risking the health of our community.
The best thing to do now is to try and limit the spread of the disease (#flattenthecurve). To me this means suspending all in person youth activities for the time being.
As a scouter in Europe, a week ahead of where you are in terms of Covid-19 cases in the Americas, PLEASE CANCEL for the next six weeks and do things online. We started cancelling as of last week and then this weekend countries have starting shutting everything down. IKEA is closed, bars were closed in Ireland for St. Patrick’s day!
If you have a pinewood derby coming up, get the kids to deliver their cars and run the derby on video if you must. If you are a troop, launch some merit badges.
Our chartered organization, scout council, and state governor are restricting all meetings to fewer than 10 persons. Our pack is on hiatus.
In Texas our governor has pretty much solved any fence sitting. If you have more than 10 people you can’t meet in person. Our council came out about the time schools were canceling suggesting that all units cancel for the rest of March.
I am not working on virtual meetings with my troop.
Many charters think you just meet at their institution. Most leaders would think that if the situation was that the charter would not let you meet there because of the Virus, maybe they should not meet. If they still don’t know what to do talk with the COR he represents the charted institution. If he too is confused, maybe you need to ask the leader of your chartered institution. My executive director did not know that we were just like the Sunday School from a legal standpoint. We had been at the same chartered institution for 105 years.
I wonder who signed the THE ANNUAL UNIT CHARTER AGREEMENT for the chartered organization. It states (in part):
The Chartered Organization, as a duly constituted organization that serves youth, desires to use the program(s) of the BSA to further its mission respecting the youth it supports
Actually we have been there longer than anyone in the bldg. has been alive. The Rabbi signs the charter. The executive director told me to give it to her to review since he did not read it… She would then give it to him. I had a long talk with her and the synagogue’s attorney. I actually asked them to watch COR training on You Tube. When we had this discussion I found out that they wanted FBI background checks and urine drug screens since we were working with children. Better late than never.
In Illinois, we’re under a “shelter in place” order… but that doesn’t many any Scout program has to suspend all operations, even if some activities are no longer possible. In fact, we posted this on our district Facebook page last night:
“So are the Cub Scouts shut down?” Given the “shelter in place” order we’re all living with in Illinois, we should forgive people for asking. But the answer should be: “Absolutely not!”
For starters, Cub Scout units can still meet virtually, just like Scout Troops and Venturing Crews. Need some hints on how to do it? Check here:
Advancement can continue as well:
Through July 31, 2020, parents and other adults in the Cub Scout’s family, may sign off on Webelos and Arrow of Light requirements. (If possible, we strongly encourage that parents use the Scouting App or ScoutBook to record the completion of their child’s requirements.)
Cub Scouts can also 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.
So if anyone asks… be prepared to tell 'em, “ABSOLUTELY NOT!”
Unit leaders - If you’ve got any questions, just check with your commissioner!
Our council now has updated guidance and it is reviewed weekly. We update the guidance as new information becomes available. This is a dynamic situation and we meet weekly, if not more frequently, to provide guidance to unit leaders. https://www.ctyankee.org/council-news/march-19-covid-19-update/
After our Council (San Diego-Imperial) suspended activities, we have gotten creating using web based meeting software. We had 3 Eagle Boards of Review, a Council Commissioner meeting, District meetings and will have a virtual Roundtable for our District next week. My daughter, a Lions Den Leader, held a virtual meeting for her den using Zoom and following YPT guidelines. I have it on excellent authority from my granddaughter, that Boom-Chicka-Boom is great fun when done virtually.
Done let Scouting activities die during this sequestering. Use virtual meetings to keep things going. Just remember to use YPT guidelines. They are posted on scouting.org.
This topic was automatically closed 7 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.