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chartering a boy scout troop

9 years 10 months ago #155388 by Rockne
Hi Patricia -

I don't think anyone here is questioning the value of scouting, but -- since you sound in the know -- why is scouting the only organization that needs this kind of sign-off by a totally different non-profit? I still don't get that.

Any insight?


PTO Today Founder
9 years 10 months ago - 9 years 9 months ago #155389 by
no extra insight of in's and out's, maybe the previous info by contacting The Boy (Cub Scouts) will help w/addt. insight-not that savy - wish I was-trying. Sorry if I can off wrong.
9 years 10 months ago #155422 by Chuck
Replied by Chuck on topic Re:chartering a boy scout troop
A big difference between chartering a scouting program and chartering the Cancer Society or any other organization is that the boys who are the children of the parents who make up the Parent Teacher Organization are also those who benefit from the chartered Scout organization. Every parent of a Scout in the chartered scouting program, is also a member of the PTO. This is a unique organizational relationship that does in fact make scouting programs different. There is a great symbiosis that exists when scouting programs are sponsored by the PTO for the boys involved. By being apart from a religious organization, a PTO-sponsored scouting program also enables participation by boys who may not practice any particular religion. I think any PTO with the opportunity should welcome the chance to influence and monitor the scouting program for its kids, rather than send that out to some other place. The PTO exists for the kids of that school and scouting has an important influence on those kids and involves the very same parents.

The fret about liability is overplayed. The Boy Scouts provide umbrella liability insurance that protects the leaders and members of any chartering organization. The Boy Scouts probably go farther and work harder at vetting and training adults who will be in contact with boys than any other organization. All adults in Scout leadership are required to be background-checked and certified in youth protection training. All senior Scout leaders must complete long and detailed training on safety and procedures. These standards are the highest anywhere. I doubt that most PTOs require background checks and certifications for its members who are placed in control of children. I am constantly amazed at how worried people can get over one of the most safely run organizations in the world, yet they daily accept the risk of driving their car to and from work with yokels driving a few feet away who may be intoxicated. A boy's character and development is certainly worth no less of a risk.
9 years 9 months ago #155427 by Rockne
Replied by Rockne on topic Re:chartering a boy scout troop
Hi Chuck -

That's good information. Thank you. Especially the info about the liability umbrella. I can tell you that a *ton* of PTOs and PTAs get confused on that, so I'd suggest that the scouts provide better materials re: chartering organizations to those prospective charetring organizations.

While I think your answers are helpful, I'm still not entiely convinced. Why is it that scouts require a third-party chartering organization (whereas as far as I know no other orgs do)? This is a fundamental question for me.

And then even if we answer that first question, I still question why the PTO would be the right starting point. It almost sounds like in your description that the chartered troop would be like a school club akin to the basketball team or the debate team or the ski club. An optional extra-curricular organization for kids at the XYZ school. All of those (including scouts) are great. But those others wouldn't be chartered by the PTO; they'd be chartered, in effect, by the school or the district. Shouldn't scouts go that way if they want to be a schol-based scout troop. It's just not the PTO's role to start/oversee/charter *other* school clubs. The PTO is in and of itself basically a school organization (of a different kind).

Interesting discussion.
9 years 9 months ago #155431 by Not Convinced
Replied by Not Convinced on topic Re:chartering a boy scout troop
I, too, have many questions regarding the Boy Scouts requiring a 3rd party organization to charter them. EXACTLY, what is the reason? The poster above is obviously very involved in the organization so he has provided some standard pc Boy Scouts responses. However, I too would like to know why a) school districts refuse to charter them and b) National PTAs are refusing to charter them. Can't just be liability issues..There are so many questions that cannot be easily explained away. I know firsthand that our local boy scout troop who asked for our pto to charter them had NOT and does NOT conduct background investigations on ANY of their leaders, which means there is no oversight at a higher level. Also, the boy scouts may offer liability coverage on the chartering organizations. However, read the fine print....the coverage is only secondary to any other insurance the charter organization has in place. They may want you to think they are fulling protecting their charters, but clearly this isn't the case. So, if a liability claim were to arise, your chartering organization (which so far we have been referring to as PTO/PTA) would have to spend the PTO/PTA money defending the Boy Scouts claims. Does anyone see a major conflict of interest here?
9 years 9 months ago #155432 by CA PTO President
Replied by CA PTO President on topic Re:chartering a boy scout troop
Chuck, your post regarding liability being overplayed, in my opinion, is careless. Look at the frequency of sexual misconduct claims performed by various Boy Scout leaders and perhaps that is the real reason why so many pto/ptas are backing off of the charters. You never did address the true reason why Boy Scouts requires a 3rd party charter organization and people would like to know. With regard to having parents involved in ptas who with no background checks, our district requires ALL parents who work in any capacity on school property to be fingerprinted by the school district. This fingerprinting runs through the Department of Justice database and uncovers all misdemeanor and felony convictions.
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