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Thread: Scouting in Schools

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    Scouting in Schools

    Bullish article in this weeks Sunday Times about the merits of Scouting within Schools - with the TSA apparently keen to expand this. Theve just worked out its a goodway to build confident kids...

    So why s the accompanying picture showing youngsters in school uniform wearing just a necker.

    It also appears their "badges" are stickers.

    So as a movement - is the Scouting in Schools model the way forward?

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    a quiver full of barbs merryweather's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by scarlet pimp View Post
    Bullish article in this weeks Sunday Times about the merits of Scouting within Schools - with the TSA apparently keen to expand this. Theve just worked out its a goodway to build confident kids...

    So why is the accompanying picture showing youngsters in school uniform wearing just a necker.

    It also appears their "badges" are stickers.

    So as a movement - is the Scouting in Schools model the way forward?
    read here: http://scouts.org.uk/news/2015/06/ne...g-for-schools/

    imo, it is one possible way forward among many ways.

    someone once said: 'We need to be willing to move on from some of the tried and trusted ways we have used in the past.

    i would prefer: we always need to be willing to explore new ways to grow scouting alongside many of our tried and trusted ways.

    but then i'm just the occupant of cubicle no. 4!

    TM
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    Interesting the TSA article shows beavers in uniform but the Sunday times has children in their school uniform with neckers

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    it is interesting that it focuses on primary schools rather that challenging the Governments plan to finance Combined Cadet Forces in every secondary school head on. No Scout Expansion Fund to match the Cadet Expansion Funding.

    Are we conceding that scouting is just for little kids who will want to join the more adventurous Cadets when they are old enough?

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    Senior Member big chris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Ransley View Post
    it is interesting that it focuses on primary schools rather that challenging the Governments plan to finance Combined Cadet Forces in every secondary school head on. No Scout Expansion Fund to match the Cadet Expansion Funding.

    Are we conceding that scouting is just for little kids who will want to join the more adventurous Cadets when they are old enough?
    no... we are chasing numbers and little kids are easier to sign up to stuff and less likely to complain if it is compulsory. Also... it is easier to run beavers and cubs then scout and explorers so we def get more numbers this way.

    it is all about numbers.

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    Senior Member Kastor's Avatar
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    To get more kids we need more adults - are we getting the message yet?

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    Quote Originally Posted by big chris View Post
    no... we are chasing numbers and little kids are easier to sign up to stuff and less likely to complain if it is compulsory. Also... it is easier to run beavers and cubs then scout and explorers so we def get more numbers this way.

    it is all about numbers.
    Sorry but I really thought you were better than this Chris,- All sections have their own quirks and demands. I don't believe any is easier than the other if you do it properly.

    The challenges are different and unique to each section.
    Roger Woods
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    a quiver full of barbs merryweather's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by big chris View Post
    no... we are chasing numbers and little kids are easier to sign up to stuff and less likely to complain if it is compulsory. Also... it is easier to run beavers and cubs then scout and explorers so we def get more numbers this way.

    it is all about numbers.
    what a very cynical reply!

    very curt, to the point, and typical of big chris!

    but actually the implied 'warnings' that big chris puts forward are things which should not be lightly dismissed. it may be cynical - it wouldn't be big chris if it wasn't! but i think he makes (implies) some good points.

    let's be honest this is a number chasing project; a key aim is supporting growth! that in itself is not a bad thing to do. we do need to build numbers, but we also need to build quality, diversity and accessibility; everything is linked.

    i broadly welcome such projects, however, i have some concerns.

    scouting is one hour a week! well we all know that isn't true. scouting is one hour a week on a friday; it's also a few hours more on the hike on saturday; it's a weekend away on camp every term; it's saturday night next week at the swimming gala; it's wednesday afternoon in half-term visiting the buddhist centre; and lot's more. we might not talk much more about a 'balanced programme' but we all recognise that scouting does not happen in just one time slot in just one location. so my question is for these school projects, what are they doing to engage the kids in scouting beyond the 1h friday lunchtime? isn't there a risk that not engaging in scouting beyond that time and location that the project will be seen merely as a 'taster' and we all know that taster projects generally have short shelf-lives?

    what about the wider community? one of the historically strong strengths of scouting is its central foundation within the community. scouting takes place in many village halls, church halls, community centres and HQs based in well-known places in the community. many of our scout groups work hard to be at the centre of the community. our leader teams come from all parts of the community. what is being done in these projects to see that the scouting has a strong link with the community and not just a link through the school? will the kids doing the scouting activities get to meet and work with people who are not teachers or school-workers?

    what about identity? my scout group has a clear identity, with clear aims and objectives known to the wider community. we are known for who and what we are. we are 1st 'auchtermuchty' scout group who meet at the church hall.....we are not a bunch of young people who meet at the church hall who undertake a range of activities.... are these school scouting projects going to get beyond the school gate? i just looked at the website of one of the schools taking part and i don't see any mention of scouting! are these school projects going to have a clear scouting identity and not be simply subsumed into the extra-curriculum as yet another 'lunchtime club'?

    and what about establishing scouting careers? what does a young person do when they've progressed through beavers from Y1 to cubs in Y6 and now it's time to move on to 'big school'; is that the end of scoutng for them? what happens now? do we now have to create a new group 'outside' of the school? do we move the cubs over into a community group? could the community-based group cope with an extra 30 young people joining next september? how are these school projects managed within the scouting provision within the district, or are they not?

    where is the money coming from to support these groups? pupil premium? what happens if the money runs out?

    single section scout 'groups' traditionally struggle. fact. what is being done to 'extend' these groups? are they linked to a community-based group to provide for progression? how do we see progression happening?

    what about participation? do young people have a choice not to take part in scouting and to do something else?

    what is the risk of these scouting projects becoming islands?

    is the project just aimed at primary schools or will it be going into secondary? what do people see as being the big challenges there?

    when we introduced explorer scouting into the programme over a decade ago, i think we missed a trick in not engaging with secondary schools to highlight the explorer programme, particularly in supporting such aspects such as YLs and DofE. over the years i've had a number of young people from local secondary schools come to my group looking for opportunities to undertake their DofE volunteering award. (we accommodated all of them and all are in explorers and still doing YLs.) they all knew about us from either their time in scouts or through friends; they did not find us because of any information the school had given them. in fact most of the schools do not give any suggestions of volunteering opportunities above what is given out on DofE web pages and AFAIAA none have any formal links/contacts with scouting locally. how many DESCs, fro example, go into secondary schools to talk to award units about DofE opportunities in scouting?

    cue song by johnny nash.

    i think big chris is understandably cynical.

    TM
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    thanks tm,

    On my computer now so here is my evidence for my view:

    http://scouts.org.uk/news/2015/06/ne...g-for-schools/

    " ‘If we want a step change in growth, then we have to look seriously about working in partnership. We need to be willing to move on from some of the tried and trusted ways we have used in the past.’"

    do we want a step change in growth? is that necc. a good thing? why do we want to move on from the tried and trusted ways that we have tried and we trust (because they work)?

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by roger-uk View Post
    Sorry but I really thought you were better than this Chris,- All sections have their own quirks and demands. I don't believe any is easier than the other if you do it properly.

    The challenges are different and unique to each section.
    A good explorer leader or a scout leader needs (imo) to put more time into their section (especially at weekends) than a good cub or beaver leader.

    I think that it is easier to sign up a beaver or cub leader than a scout leader for that reason.

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    Very Old Member BigBadBaloo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by big chris View Post
    ...............A good explorer leader or a scout leader needs (imo) to put more time into their section (especially at weekends) than a good cub or beaver leader.

    I think that it is easier to sign up a beaver or cub leader than a scout leader for that reason.
    Not sure my Cub leadership team would agree with you there!
    Peter

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    To see a record of how schools work with outside schemes you could take DofE as a sample.

    Around my way school DofE has a very poor reputation. Yes the kids do it, but you see them all traipsing along the same route the school has used for the last n years, with inadequate kit, navigating by following the group in front of them.

    The DofE may have good numbers by using schools but is it really what the scheme intended?
    To get more kids we need more adults - are we getting the message yet?

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    Quote Originally Posted by big chris View Post
    A good explorer leader or a scout leader needs (imo) to put more time into their section (especially at weekends) than a good cub or beaver leader.

    I think that it is easier to sign up a beaver or cub leader than a scout leader for that reason.
    I would argue that on average Beaver and Cub sections tend to be bigger (at least in my experience), and so are a more sensible target if you are chasing numbers. I wouldn't say that is because running those sections is any easier/harder.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Kastor View Post
    Around my way school DofE has a very poor reputation. Yes the kids do it, but you see them all traipsing along the same route the school has used for the last n years, with inadequate kit, navigating by following the group in front of them.
    I'll contrast that with my school, where we *weren't allowed* to use the same route as other groups. We were given a point close to the start of the route where we *had* to diverge. The equipment was good (as far as I can remember) if somewhat well used.

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    Quote Originally Posted by big chris View Post
    thanks tm,

    On my computer now so here is my evidence for my view:

    http://scouts.org.uk/news/2015/06/ne...g-for-schools/

    " ‘If we want a step change in growth, then we have to look seriously about working in partnership. We need to be willing to move on from some of the tried and trusted ways we have used in the past.’"

    do we want a step change in growth? is that necc. a good thing? why do we want to move on from the tried and trusted ways that we have tried and we trust (because they work)?
    i refer you to my comments in post #2 in response to the comments you also refer to.

    i disagree with the comment which i referred to in my earlier post.

    i do believe we need to look at scouting in schools and more especially how schools and scouting can best interact to provide mutual benefits. however, i do not believe that scouting should be moved, or look to move, into the curriculum as happens in some countries.

    scouting is a much wider educational movement and concept that in this country is firmly grounded within the community and which is quite different in outlook to the much narrower educational focus within schools, which is much more curriculum focused.

    we share with schools an interest and many objective in extra-curricular activities in promoting development in young people, but there is a clear difference. our activities - which can be very similar to a school's extra-curricular activities - have a singular focus in developing the young person in partnership with families within the community. a school's extra-curricular activities share many aims, however, they have, imo, an aim to support the curriculum. if you move scouting into schools you risk moving it into the curriculum. scouting does not belong in the curriculum in this country.

    i have no issues with a scout group being based at a school or in a school. in my youth i was a scout in a school troop. membership was voluntary and all its activities were truly outside of the curriculum. it took part in district activities, parents supported the group, and it had a full programme and was not simply just a lunchtime club.

    there are many areas which schools and scouting could share to bring mutual benefits.

    i would like to know more about these projects (and have some of the questions i posed above answered!)

    however, it would be wrong and damaging to put scouting in between maths and english and just after science!

    A good explorer leader or a scout leader needs (imo) to put more time into their section (especially at weekends) than a good cub or beaver leader.

    I think that it is easier to sign up a beaver or cub leader than a scout leader for that reason.
    disagree!

    there is no hierarchy of commitment!

    TM
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigBadBaloo View Post
    Not sure my Cub leadership team would agree with you there!
    They might if they ran Explorers for any length of time !

    - - - Updated - - -

    Locally we had a public school start Beavers and in due course Cubs. Membership was mandatory. Scouts never followed.
    The new group did not mix or take part in District activities or meetings. The Group met about 100yds from the Scout HQ but it may as well have been 100 miles. A new Head started and he cancelled the Group.

    If School are to start Groups then they should be wearing the uniform and badge - not putting on a necker and using stickers - or TSA should be moving from uniform and badges (are we not already moving from uniform?).

    Speaking personally i think YP benefit from having Scouting as a optional additional offer. Scouting with different people in a different place.

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    Senior Member Kastor's Avatar
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    A bit more blurb - http://horizon-tkat.org/91/4th-swanley-horizon

    It look like it is compulsory for all students.

    It will be interesting to see if they comply with the POR requirement that Beavers need to be offered a nights away as it says "Our older children will have the chance to go on a residential trip!" which seems to say younger ones won't.
    Last edited by Kastor; 15-10-2015 at 12:35 PM.
    To get more kids we need more adults - are we getting the message yet?

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