Friday, January 4, 2013

University of Scouting - Varsity

I am so frustrated.  Created 9 classes for this years University and found teachers for all the classes.  So here is part of my frustration.

  • Instead of telling me they are canceling classes, staff have just chosen to close them without letting the teacher know (or me know who is coordinating the classes and communicating with the teachers).  2 classes were cancelled.  Granted they were cancelled due to attendance but I am just now letting a teacher know one day before the event that his class is cancelled.  
  • I can't get the chancellor of Scouting (why don't they create a chancellor over Varsity) to communicate with me or the teachers.  Multiple times I have heard that emails bounce back.  OK, I email them and they respond.  Do obviously there is an issue.
  • This is probably the hugest - we have 7 Stakes in our Council if I remember right.  Average ward congregations in each stake is about 8 (my Stake has 13).  Multiple 8 X 7 and you get 56 Varsity Coaches in our Council AT LEAST!!!  Want to know how many active Varsity Coaches are actually coming to the University of Scouting?  4.  Four.  F O U R!!!  That is (I hope my math is right!) .7%!!  That isn't even 1 stinking percent.  3 of those 4 are actually teaching classes!!  

When are LDS Scouters going to wake the heck up and get some continuing education?? 

When is enough enough for me and my personal time to create these classes that are basically not being attended?

What is the point of me going if there are not Varsity specific classes?


Clarke Green said...

I hear you, it's really frustrating isn't it?
My answer was to give up. Training has always been a big concern, it's pulling teeth to get people to a training event, the ones that do attend form a self-selected sample just like a church choir, it's not the folks who most need the training.
In my opinion the days of effective event-based training have been over for some time now. Scouting universities are a good idea but I've encountered the same disorganization and general indifference in our council. As the JTE standards and, I would imagine within the next few years training required to register as a leader, create more demand for training we'll have to get a lot smarter. I think part of the answer is moving away from big event training to much smaller groups at the town or unit level. To my mind we ought to establish training week or training month and concentrate all our efforts on having training available in as many places and in as many forms as possible that month. Take that month, break the training down from one location to as many locations as possible.

Fishgutts said...

I don't want to give up Clarke. I don't. But I am think I am at the point whether it is either me or my mental health. I have dropped a lot of things this year due to frustration (training committee and a chair that doesn't even recognize me, Varsity Huddle at Roundtable because no one shows up after I spend at least 3 hours planning and preparing and now University of Scouting). With my last Wood Badge course on top of that, I had to release myself from some stuff.

Training is do difficult. I asked a friend at National if I could help rewrite the syllabus for Varsity Leader Specific Training (VLST) and she told me not to bother because the BSA was working on rewriting all training material. I wonder how long it is going to be before we see it.

Training is the foundation though of a good leader. If a leader doesn't see the point, I personally don't think they will be a good leader. It is just so sad that some don't think they need it!!!

Clarke Green said...

Don't give up on training folks, just give up on trying to do it well according to the traditional approaches of big events. If every experienced Scouter made it a point to help two or three others on a one-to-one basis we wouldn't have a training problem.
My goal is to get two or three new Scouters fully trained this year. That's a lot more realistic than worrying about training everyone.

Fishgutts said...

Clarke - I think I originally misunderstood you. Not hard for a knucklehead like me.

I like your idea!!