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Problems With Scouts

Defamation Law Discussion Forum

Problems With Scouts

Postby Deorward » Sat Dec 03, 2016 8:51 pm

I am president of our elemnetary school PTA.  The PTA has chartered the scouts for many years.  This year they are up for renewal.  The scouts submitted their renewal late and it was signed on behalf of PTA by one of the dads.  He is not a PTA member and had no authority to sign anything on behalf of PTA. The leaders are now harssing PTA, calling board members dictators and scout hater and encouraging people to boycott PTA sponsorred events. It is bordering on harassment and slander.  I am really surprised that a group that prides themselves in teaching boys repect and responsibility are acting like this.  They are threatening to come to the next PTA meeting and bring every scout they know and vote me out as president and cause us to vote them out so that we look bad as a PTA.  But they currently have found another charter already.  A local church has agred to charter them.  Who do I contact if a pack is behaving like this?

ANSWER: Hi Krista,

I am not sure that I completely understand your question.  Did the PTA decide to not charter the scouts this year or was there just a snafu with the paperwork? You said... "This year they are up for renewal."  The charter needs to be renewed every year.

You said... "He is not a PTA member and had no authority to sign anything on behalf of PTA."  If this is the case he is wrong and should not have done this.  I do know that sometimes it is very hard to get in touch with the person who needs to sign this, but that is not an excuse and it should have been done by the proper person.  Were you the PTA president the preceeding year?  One problem is that when there is a change in position often, it is sometimes hard to know who to contact or even if you know the name, how to contact them.  Certainly, it is much easier if the Charter Organization is a church, because you can go to a building and ask for the pastor.  When you have a Charter Organization such as a PTA then, you can go to the school, but they might not even know who the current president is or where they live, or how to contact them(especially shortly after an election).  I guess that my question here is whose name did he sign on the charter?  If it was your name, that would be totally wrong.  If it was the former president, then perhaps they had an agreement, that he could sign for him in order to save them both time.  If it was own name, then this would still be a problem.

You didn't describe if this was due to a "political correct" decision or had nothing to do with "political correctness" but if it was a "political correct" decision then it is my feeling that the PTA has opened up a "political" argument that should probably be meet with a political repercussions.  Again, I don't know if this is the case in this example but I think that many people are getting tired of "political correctness" and are beginning to rise against it.  It is my opinion that those who push their intolerant political opinions on others through "political correctness" are shocked when people openly object when others begin to fight back.  The normal reaction of someone who is not happy with the direction that an organization is heading, is to organize opposition and get them removed from office.  Then as new leaders they are subject to the same situation where if they take the organization to far in the other direction.  

You said... "Who do I contact if a pack is behaving like this?"  If the pack is acting out of order then you should contact the local council office and ask to speak to the District Executive who is in charge of that District(you will have to explain where the pack is located) and then they will speak to the pack leadership.

If you would like to give me more details in the situation, I would be happy to give a better answer.

Tom Newman,

scout043@aol.com

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

I'm sorry it is complicated.  I apologize for all the spelling errors.  I was typing quickly.  In the past the charter has been signed by the principal on behalf of PTA.  We have a new principal.  I am also the new PTA president this year  When the new principal was asked to sign, he looked over it and said he would like to discuss this with the PTA since he was new and the PTA, not the school is listed as the charter organization. From what I understand the scouts contacted the principal after their March 10 deadline had passed.  The scouts were upset that the new principal would not sign the paperwork right then.  They said they would be at the next PTA meeting and bring 300 scouts to protest.  Our PTA meetings typically have 10-15 people attend. The principal brought it to me and the board and we discussed it and did some research, asked questions and made some calls.  We wanted to understand what being the charter meant to our PTA. We thought it would be brought up for vote at the next meeting to vote as to whether PTA would charter them or not. At the next meeting, there were maybe 10 scout parents there.  When new business was discussed, it was brought about about the charter.  A representative from the boy scout council was there.  He was asked to be there by the scouts, it was not requested by the PTA.  He spoke up and said that the pack did not complete the paperwork on time and was no longer a unit so there was nothing to vote on.  So no vote was taken by the PTA.  The scouts said they would look into the paperwork issue and find a new charter.  But after the meeting the scouts have started to get mad and tell people that PTA voted against them and that they are scouts haters and they don't support scouts.  They are now planning on coming to the next PTA meeting and bringing every scout they know to vote me out as president and to make us vote on whether to charter them so when they get voted down, they can make us look bad.  I also don't think they realize that only  about 3 of them are PTA members and can actually vote. Because of their recent behavior, I do think the vote would be to no longer charter them.  They have broken things in the school during meetings, a dad threatened a staff member during a meeting and they are spreading lies about the PTA.  They have a new charter.   So, they won't be able to make a motion, in my opinion for us to charter them when we know they have a new charter already.  I'm not sure why they aren't moving on for the boys sake. They seem to be bent on causing division and problems within the PTA.  I have a call in to the local council.  One person I talked to said that they could send out a mediator from the scouts. It is hard for me to believe that a scout mediator could be impartial to both sides, but I am willing to give it a try. I guess I'm asking how can we get them to back off?  Do I need to file a complaint or call nation headquarters?
Deorward
 
Posts: 48
Joined: Tue Jan 14, 2014 11:12 am

Problems With Scouts

Postby Tommaso » Sun Dec 04, 2016 9:34 pm

Hi Krista,

Well I suppose that I jumped to some conclusions just as probably the local leaders did.  One thing that still troubles me is that you said... "He spoke up and said that the pack did not complete the paperwork on time and was no longer a unit so there was nothing to vote on."  Packs are late turning in paperwork all the time and it does not mean that they are no longer a unit.  The Council office continues to carry them but prompt them to get the paperwork turned in.

It seems that you had some legitimate questions and it does not seem that you were the problem in this case.  Perhaps you should sit down with the pack leaders and tell them the things that you just told me.  Most Boy Scout leaders are reasonable(although not all of them) and if you can tell them that you are not a scout hater it should quite things down.  I have never heard of a mediator with scouting, however, I am sure that this would be a reasonable person, who would be neutral because they would be concerned about the image of scouting in the community.  They would also have the respect of the pack leaders that you are having problems with.

I know that back in the late 80's or early 90's our pack was sponsored by an elementary school PTA.  Orders came from the superintendent that they wanted to discourage the PTA's from being charter reps.  When I started as a leader in 92 our charter organization was a church across town but we still met in the school.  This was a problem because we pretty much had to shut down the pack at the end of the school year.  When I started the troop I started it at our Church which is less than a mile from the school.  About two years later, I moved the charter for the Cub Pack to our Church too.  This meant that we had the option to hold meetings during the summer.  This was really better for us.  I would think that the pack leadership would be better off for this reason alone.

You should bring this point up as well as asking the questions that you had.

You asked... "Do I need to file a complaint or call nation headquarters?"  Calling National will probably not help you very much.  The Local Council will be your best bet in dealing with the problem.  If that fails you could threaten to take it to the local media, but I seriously doubt that step will be necessary.  

Please keep me posted as to how things turn out.  You can contact me directly at scout043@aol.com.

Yours in Scouting,

Tom Newman,

scout043@aol.com  
Tommaso
 
Posts: 34
Joined: Fri Mar 28, 2014 6:58 am

Problems With Scouts

Postby Glen » Tue Dec 13, 2016 10:31 pm

I am president of our elemnetary school PTA.  The PTA has chartered the scouts for many years.  This year they are up for renewal.  The scouts submitted their renewal late and it was signed on behalf of PTA by one of the dads.  He is not a PTA member and had no authority to sign anything on behalf of PTA. The leaders are now harssing PTA, calling board members dictators and scout hater and encouraging people to boycott PTA sponsorred events. It is bordering on harassment and slander.  I am really surprised that a group that prides themselves in teaching boys repect and responsibility are acting like this.  They are threatening to come to the next PTA meeting and bring every scout they know and vote me out as president and cause us to vote them out so that we look bad as a PTA.  But they currently have found another charter already.  A local church has agred to charter them.  Who do I contact if a pack is behaving like this?

ANSWER: Hi Krista,

I am not sure that I completely understand your question.  Did the PTA decide to not charter the scouts this year or was there just a snafu with the paperwork? You said... "This year they are up for renewal."  The charter needs to be renewed every year.

You said... "He is not a PTA member and had no authority to sign anything on behalf of PTA."  If this is the case he is wrong and should not have done this.  I do know that sometimes it is very hard to get in touch with the person who needs to sign this, but that is not an excuse and it should have been done by the proper person.  Were you the PTA president the preceeding year?  One problem is that when there is a change in position often, it is sometimes hard to know who to contact or even if you know the name, how to contact them.  Certainly, it is much easier if the Charter Organization is a church, because you can go to a building and ask for the pastor.  When you have a Charter Organization such as a PTA then, you can go to the school, but they might not even know who the current president is or where they live, or how to contact them(especially shortly after an election).  I guess that my question here is whose name did he sign on the charter?  If it was your name, that would be totally wrong.  If it was the former president, then perhaps they had an agreement, that he could sign for him in order to save them both time.  If it was own name, then this would still be a problem.

You didn't describe if this was due to a "political correct" decision or had nothing to do with "political correctness" but if it was a "political correct" decision then it is my feeling that the PTA has opened up a "political" argument that should probably be meet with a political repercussions.  Again, I don't know if this is the case in this example but I think that many people are getting tired of "political correctness" and are beginning to rise against it.  It is my opinion that those who push their intolerant political opinions on others through "political correctness" are shocked when people openly object when others begin to fight back.  The normal reaction of someone who is not happy with the direction that an organization is heading, is to organize opposition and get them removed from office.  Then as new leaders they are subject to the same situation where if they take the organization to far in the other direction.  

You said... "Who do I contact if a pack is behaving like this?"  If the pack is acting out of order then you should contact the local council office and ask to speak to the District Executive who is in charge of that District(you will have to explain where the pack is located) and then they will speak to the pack leadership.

If you would like to give me more details in the situation, I would be happy to give a better answer.

Tom Newman,

scout043@aol.com

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

I'm sorry it is complicated.  I apologize for all the spelling errors.  I was typing quickly.  In the past the charter has been signed by the principal on behalf of PTA.  We have a new principal.  I am also the new PTA president this year  When the new principal was asked to sign, he looked over it and said he would like to discuss this with the PTA since he was new and the PTA, not the school is listed as the charter organization. From what I understand the scouts contacted the principal after their March 10 deadline had passed.  The scouts were upset that the new principal would not sign the paperwork right then.  They said they would be at the next PTA meeting and bring 300 scouts to protest.  Our PTA meetings typically have 10-15 people attend. The principal brought it to me and the board and we discussed it and did some research, asked questions and made some calls.  We wanted to understand what being the charter meant to our PTA. We thought it would be brought up for vote at the next meeting to vote as to whether PTA would charter them or not. At the next meeting, there were maybe 10 scout parents there.  When new business was discussed, it was brought about about the charter.  A representative from the boy scout council was there.  He was asked to be there by the scouts, it was not requested by the PTA.  He spoke up and said that the pack did not complete the paperwork on time and was no longer a unit so there was nothing to vote on.  So no vote was taken by the PTA.  The scouts said they would look into the paperwork issue and find a new charter.  But after the meeting the scouts have started to get mad and tell people that PTA voted against them and that they are scouts haters and they don't support scouts.  They are now planning on coming to the next PTA meeting and bringing every scout they know to vote me out as president and to make us vote on whether to charter them so when they get voted down, they can make us look bad.  I also don't think they realize that only  about 3 of them are PTA members and can actually vote. Because of their recent behavior, I do think the vote would be to no longer charter them.  They have broken things in the school during meetings, a dad threatened a staff member during a meeting and they are spreading lies about the PTA.  They have a new charter.   So, they won't be able to make a motion, in my opinion for us to charter them when we know they have a new charter already.  I'm not sure why they aren't moving on for the boys sake. They seem to be bent on causing division and problems within the PTA.  I have a call in to the local council.  One person I talked to said that they could send out a mediator from the scouts. It is hard for me to believe that a scout mediator could be impartial to both sides, but I am willing to give it a try. I guess I'm asking how can we get them to back off?  Do I need to file a complaint or call nation headquarters?
Glen
 
Posts: 45
Joined: Sat Jan 04, 2014 5:27 am


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