Scouting - Fact or Fiction?

Statement You can't wear the Eagle badge on your uniform until you have your Eagle Court of Honor. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments Wrong- you can get out your needle and thread (advancement application kit) as soon as you get the letter from National. The advancement guide says that advancement is to be presented to the Scout at the first regularly scheduled troop meeting after it is earned, and there's no exception to this, not even Eagle.

Statement The ultimate goal for a Boy Scout is to earn the Eagle rank. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments Sorry, folks, but the goal is to build character, citizenship and fitness. Earning Eagle, or any rank, is just part of the "advancement" method of reaching those goals, which is only one of the eight methods used by the Boy Scout Program for achieving these goals.  The other methods are: ideals, patrols, outdoor program, association with adults, personal growth, leadership development and uniform.

Statement An Eagle Project must be at least XX hours. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments Here's what the "Advancement Committee Guide - Policies and Procedures" says: There is no minimum number of hours that must be spent on carrying out the project. The amount of time spent must be sufficient for the Scout to clearly demonstrate leadership skills.

Statement An Eagle service project must produce something tangible Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments Another case of making up a requirement that isn't in the book - this is wrong. An Eagle Project can be a service, which may be much more important than building some tangible object. For example, consider an Eagle whose project was to organize a reading program for visually impaired senior citizens where Scouts took turns visiting a senior center and reading news and literature. To some, this might be considered more relevant than houses for migrant birds.

Statement An Eagle project must be unique and original. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments Actually, on the application it says just the opposite, that the project need not be original. Often, in fact, the younger brother of an Eagle Scout will repeat his brother’s project as a way to expand its help and/or influence, and this is perfectly OK. And in some Troops, an Eagle Project started by one Scout may be continued by other Scouts so that the help rendered by the project continues for years; e.g., maintaining a hiking trail at a nature center with repeated improvements.

Statement Eagle projects must follow exactly what was planned, no deviations Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments Then why are there places in the Project Workbook to describe what, if any, changes were made? One of the reasons for leaving room for at-the-moment changes is that THIS IS HOW LIFE WORKS!

Statement A Scout must complete all merit badges before starting his Eagle Project. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments Absolutely not. A Scout may start an Eagle Project the day he achieves the rank of Life Scout.

Statement A Scout's leadership experience MUST include SPL before he can earn Eagle Scout rank. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments It doesn't say that in the requirements - read 'em again.

Statement Eagle Boards of Review must be before the Scout's 18th birthday. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments Nope, complete all the requirements before 18, but the EBOR can be after.

Statement There is a minimum age for Eagle Scouts. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments Well sort of. A boy must be at least 10 years old to join a Boy Scout troop, there's a 30 day requirement in Tenderfoot requirement 10b, at least 4 months between First Class and Star, 6 months between Star and Life, and 6 months between Life and Eagle. So the minimum age, while NOT A REQUIREMENT, would typically be 11 years and 5 months.

Statement You must be a member of the Order of the Arrow to attain the rank of Eagle Scout. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments Membership in the Order of the Arrow is by the selection of a Scout's fellow Scouts and not something a Scout can choose for himself. Being elected to the Order of the Arrow is not required for any rank advancement.

Statement The Eagle Application can't be accepted for processing after midnight the day before a Scout's 18th birthday. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments This one I actually heard in the Scout Office (attributed to the Council Advancement Chairman) - To compound it, they didn't even know that the correct answer is in the Advancement Committee Policies and Procedures.

Statement The Eagle Scout Leadership Service Project Workbook is sent to to the BSA National Office. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments Actually, the Eagle Scout Application itself is usually the only document sent to the national office, and, in many cases now, even that is done electronically.

Statement Only Scouts (in your Troop) can work on Eagle Projects and conversely, - Nobody but Scouts can work on Eagle Projects. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments There is no such restriction.

Statement The Scoutmaster must sign the Eagle Application in order for a Scout to have an Eagle Board of Review. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments Although it rarely takes place, an Eagle Board of Review may be held without the Scoutmaster's signature on the Eagle Scout rank application.

Statement Adult Eagle Scouts cannot wear their medal an Eagle Court of Honor. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments The Insignia Guide explicitly allows this. It's the cloth oval patch that cannot be worn by adults -- they should wear the red-white-and-blue square knot instead.

Statement It’s the responsibility of the EAGLE Board of Review to approve the manner in which the candidate’s Service Project was carried out. Fact or Fiction Fact Comments The final signatures in the project workbook attest to the project having been completed; however, the manner in which it was carried out, and the leadership demonstrated through it, is determined by the board of review’s members by reading the workbook and conversing with the Eagle candidate.

Statement All merit badges for Eagle must be earned before the Life Scout can begin his Eagle Service Project. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments Work toward the service project for Eagle can be begun the very morning after a Scout’s successful board of review for Life rank, if he wishes.

Statement The Eagle Service Project must be an original idea, not performed before in at least the Scout’s home District. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments The BSA does not require originality. The key purpose of the project is to provide an opportunity for the Scout to use and demonstrate the leadership skills he’s learned along the pathway toward Eagle.

Statement Two Scouts may lead the same Eagle Service Project, so long as they lead different phases of it. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments Each and every Eagle project must be led by a single, individual Scout, from beginning to end.

Statement The Troop Committee or Scoutmaster can stipulate additional requirements for the Eagle rank, in accordance with the Troop’s own policies. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments No rank or requirement can be altered, added, or removed by anyone. Only the BSA has the authority to change a requirement; no one else.

Statement The minimum number of hours for an Eagle Project is 100. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments There is no BSA “standard” for hours and no one has the authority to arbitrarily make up some number.

Statement Fund-raising is always inadmissible in Eagle Service Projects. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments Fund-raising to generate funds necessary to carry out a project is acceptable as a component of an Eagle project; fund-raising cannot be the sole purpose or goal of an Eagle project.

Statement Only other Scouts or their relatives can be “recruited” to help with an Eagle Service Project. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments Anyone can help an Eagle candidate with his project—Friends, siblings and cousins, neighbors, classmates, teammates, youth religious group members, and on and on. In fact, this is a very good thing to encourage, because it exposes more people to what Scouts do!

Statement The job of the District Advancement Committee is to rubber-stamp Eagle service project decisions made by the Scoutmaster, Troop Committee, and benefiting organization. Fact or Fiction Fiction Comments It used to be this way, but no longer. The District Advancement Committee in fact holds final sway on the acceptability of a service project intent and plan.

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