Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Mormon Tiger Mom

I coined a phrase yesterday.  Mormon Tiger Mom.  We all know these types of parents but yesterday a set of parents took it to a new level I have NEVER seen before.

I set up 5 Eagle Board of Reviews for one unit.  I set three for one day and two for another a week apart.  I set them out about 3 weeks due to Mother's Day and the fact that they all need a little more time to get me their reference letters.  I was then asked by the Advancement Chair if the boys would then be allowed to have their Eagle Court of Honor the week after the last Board.  I told her no.  No way.  It takes National 4-6 weeks (worse case) to process the applications and no Eagle Court of Honor should be set up until you receive word from National that the applications have been processed and approved.  The Advancement Chair then tells me that one of the Moms has already set up the Court of Honor for the 5 boys for one week after her own son's Board of Review.

Once this information is relayed to the parents, they flip.  And I mean they literally flip out.  They call our District Executive (who is new and doesn't know a whole lot about the process because he doesn't play a role in the process).  The conversation with the DE sort of leaves the impression with the parents that I am personally running behind (this comes into play later) and I must be overwhelmed and have too many Board of Review to do.  They also get the impression that it only takes two weeks to process applications by National.

I called my boss, the Advancement Chair and gave her the scoop.  She called Mom.  In the mean time.....

Mom asks the Scout's Father (husband) to call me and offer to help me do Boards so I can speed up the Board of Review time.  He calls me and it basically goes over like a lead balloon.  He tells me that he understands I am behind.  I ask him what gives him that impression.  He tells me that I scheduled his son's Board out 2 - 3 weeks and they already scheduled the Court of Honor one week after that.  I told him that you should NEVER schedule the Court of Honor before the Board of Review (I didn't want to bring up the fact that their son might not pass - I felt like they might get the impression that I was going to be bias which I am not.)  I told him that his son still doesn't have all his reference letters and I can't perform his Board without them and I scheduled it out to give him time to make sure people get me their letters.

I told Dad that even if I had all the reference letters and did his Board tonight there was no way he would be approved by the pre-set date.  National's Eagle software was being updated this week and no Eagle Rank Applications were being processed so there is probably going to be a small back log.  After explaining the whole process all I hear is "Oh..................."  So by the end of my conversation he was thanking me for all the hard work I do and the time I put into Scouting and my dedicated work ethic.

The conversation of my boss had with Mom went over about the same as Dad.

But here is the Mormon Tiger Mom kicker.  After the conversation with my boss and Mom and my conversation with Dad, Mom asked the Advancement Chair to call us both and ask us to speed up the process due to the fact that 2 of the 5 boys would be leaving for missions or college and thus allowing her son to have their Eagle Court of Honor again on the predetermined date.  Her last text message to the Advancement Chair was "We need to have this Eagle Court of Honor on X date and we have to do whatever it takes to get it done by then."

I told the Advancement Chair to stop communicating with her and if there are any other questions to please forward them to me or my boss.  If they try to break the rules, tell them I won't allow it.  Tell them to personally call me.

When are parents going to learn that using short cuts in this process will only lessen the Eagle for their son?  I can only imagine if this is the way the parents are about Eagle, what other corners have they cut?  Personally I don't want to do this boy's Eagle Board of Review but I will do it and I will do it with professionalism.  I don't get paid for doing this but at times a paycheck might lessen the fact that sometimes you have to deal with this kind of silly and unnecessary situation.

If Scout and parents had planned better by learning the process ahead of time, this wouldn't even be an issue.


Eric the Half-bee said...

You remind me of something that was ingrained in me, stated again and again, in ROTC and Active Duty: "Lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part."

So many issues here, I just want to crawl into a corner and look at my Precious.

Fishgutts said...

I seriously feel like a magnet for these kind of issues. I don't know what it is about me. I am put in the middle of the fire to put it out. I need to post an email I got this morning from the Scoutmaster begging for my forgiveness over the issue. I personally worked with him on a ticket which was a checklist on getting boys to Eagle including this process. Apparently they didn't read his guide. I know Mom was the puppet master in all of this but I am most upset with dad. Dad should have told wife to calm down and take a deep breath. And then another deep breath. And then another. Their kid is 14. He isn't 18. He is 14. And what is crazy is that this poor Scout has no idea that this has happened but probably knows Mom and Dad are tied a bit too tight. Thank Heaven for my Advancement Chair who has my back. And for their unit's Advancement Chair who asked me to help and their Scoutmaster that knows there are issues.