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Parental guidance: How Scouters can deal with those unruly moms and dads

scoutcast-logo1For many Scout leaders, it’s not the Scouts that’ll turn hair gray — it’s their parents.

The team behind ScoutCast recently asked 56 experienced Scoutmasters from across the country this question: “What do you know now that you wish you knew as a new Scoutmaster?”

The overwhelming response was not handling issues with Scouts but with their parents.

So with the help of Zach Chopp-Adams, who has been a Scoutmaster or assistant Scoutmaster since he was only 18 years old and serves as Advisor for the new Section C2 in the Michigan Crossroads Council, the November ScoutCast teaches you how grown-ups can be the problem and how to handle it when they are.

Listen to the November ScoutCast here.

Cub Scout leaders, don’t miss this month’s CubCast. Details after the jump.

November 2013 CubCast: Journey to Excellence

cubcast-logoSimply stated, Journey to Excellence is the BSA’s council performance recognition program that measures and rewards the success for our units, districts, and councils.

But, seriously, what does that mean? What does that entail? Perhaps you’re already performing at the Gold level and wonder why you need to listen to this episode.

Because Kevin Steffy, Director of Field Service with the Longhorn Council in Ft. Worth, Texas and JTE expert, clarifies it all (and even shares the changes coming in 2014) to make sure you’re reaping all the benefits of a great Scouting experience as you travel on this journey.

Listen here.

7 Comments on Parental guidance: How Scouters can deal with those unruly moms and dads

  1. Kelly Horton // November 8, 2013 at 4:41 pm // Reply

    If parents are out of control and are abusive to the scouts or the scouter, ask them to leave. This is what happens in Youth Sports Events. Why should it be tolerated in the BSA? Don’t deny another group working with the youth another new member.

    I considered it to be bullying and the BSA has a zero tolerance policy for this? If they are asked to leave, usually you will get the complements from other parents, leaders, and the boys. They usually have a second statement like, “Why didn’t we do this along time ago.”

  2. BSA is sometimes called Babysitters of America. I am reminded of the parents who act as if they are paying for a service and letting you know that they are not getting what they are expecting. I also am reminded of parents that sit on a committee and offer nothing but commentary on how well or poor some other adult performed in their volunteer work for the troop.

  3. I know of a Scout who was not allowed to transfer into a troop b/c of a parent’s reputation for becoming “too involved.”

  4. Regarding parent problems: when I was a District Executive, a unit contacted me explaining that one parent was extremely disruptive of the units program, offended all of the other parents, and in general was going to destroy their program. Since a Scout’s parents can’t be denied access to their child at Scout programs according to youth protection practices and BSA rules, [“All aspects of the Scouting program are open to observation by parents and leaders.”] I decided to tell the parents:

    Their son would have to be removed from the unit since everyone on the unit committee agreed that in spite of attempts to work with the family the mother’s behavior was totally unacceptable, but BSA rules did not allow for banning a parent but did allow for the removal of their son from the unit.

    As I expected, the family quickly appealed to have their son kept in the unit and the mother promised to never attend any Scout events. As soon as it became about their son and not the mother, better judgement prevailed.

  5. There is currently a problem with an Eagle project in our Council because a grandparent would not sit down and be quiet. I will not name the Council to protect myself.

  6. As a Secretary for the Troop Committee and a volunteer leader for the past 12 or so years, if a parent is disruptive for any reason, it is better to move the children to another room with a few adults and another few stay with the disruptive parent and try to figure out what the issue is. Sometimes communication needs addressed by the troop, the child, and/or the parent in question. Our troop sends schedules out every month and e-mails the parents the same schedule. If the kid doesn’t participate, the kid doesn’t get advancements. The child assumes responsibility in Boy Scouts, not the parent!

  7. we lost a tiger because his parents were divorced and den meetings were not on dad’s night. both parents came to each meeting. Dad was enthusiastic, but mom did not want to be there. Try being a brand new den leader dealing with that. They quit before the pinewood derby.

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