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Welcome to the Troop 631 website!  Or ... the Troops 631 website, since this site hosts information about new Troop 631 for girls in Scouts BSA (establishing in 2019).

For an overview of Scouting, watch this video.  Or this one (with video from the May, 2010 Campout of the Century).  For contact information, please see About Us and How to Join on the menu bar on the left side of the page.  Interested in Joining?  You can contact the Scoutmaster or Troop Committee Chair.  In Scouts BSA, recognition is gained through leadership in the troop, attending and participating in its activities, living the ideals of Scouting, and proficiency in activities related to outdoor life, useful skills, and career exploration.  The methods of Scouting are Ideals, Patrols, Outdoor Programs, Advancement, Association with Adults, Personal Growth, Leadership Development and the Uniform, and each is important.

Once you Login, you can access calendar information, files of Troop Information, and links to useful resources, among other benefits.  Recent Troop events have included: Zipline Campout (Helen, GA); Climbing Campout at Rockfest; Orienteering Campout;  Space Camp Overnight; Ski Trek Weekend; Seabase; Cycling Campouts (King Center to Stone Mountain / Silver Comet); Pine Mountain (FDR State Park) Backpacking; Chattahoochee River Canoe Trek;  Flint River Canoe Campout;  Black Rock Mountain Winter Camping; Climbing “Lock in” at Stone Summit; Polaris Winter Camp at Lawhorn Scout Reservation, Molena; Caving Campout (Tennessee); Tallulah Gorge and High Falls State Park Camping; Shooting Sports Campout; a “Ride the Rails” Campout in North Carolina; Allatoona Aquatic Base Canoe weekends (Northern Tier Prep); and hundreds of hours of community service.  High Adventure Treks in recent years have included Seabase, Philmont, Northern Tier and the Summit.  Many photos at this photo site.  Also at our Facebook Page.

Got Updates? Send Emails communications@atlanta631.mytroop.us and/or activities@atlanta631.mytroop.us

Posted on Nov 20 2019 - 6:06pm

Got Updates?  To your contact information in the Roster?   Email communications@atlanta631.mytroop.us.  To activity attendance?  Email activities@atlanta631.mytroop.us (yes, sadly, once entered, you can't change your entry, but we can).   To announce something to the Troop?   Email communications@atlanta631.mytroop.us

If you think you're going to Black Rock Mountain ...

Posted on Nov 13 2019 - 6:56pm

... sign up for Black Rock Mountain.  See https://atlanta631.mytroop.us/node/9750.  With smaller attendance, we're opening this up to 4th Grade Webelos too.

Some Comments about Campout Communication and Planning and Such

Posted on Oct 24 2019 - 11:57am

So, the purpose of "Event Registration" is for every Scout and Parent to show the plan for attending the events the Troop Plans.  That means every Scout, and every Scout vouch for whether others in the family are going or not.

See, that way we all know who is going. 

How can that work?  How does it need to work?

For each event over on the right hand side ==== >

Click "Register", and under "Attending" click either "Yes" or "No", and we'll know your Plan.

And we'll know whether Scouts want to do these.   Otherwise, we won't know.

Right now, there's still very little response overall.  

Like, there is a campout in November.  Fewer than 25% have responded either way about it.

100% of Scouts fall in one of three categories:

(1) Yes, (2) No, (3) Maybe.

If "Yes", enter yes.  If "no", enter no.  If "Maybe", enter yes and add a "note" like "might need to visit Grandma".

Plans Change?  Cool.  Sign Up Anyway.  When they do change, email activities@atlanta631.mytroop.us.  

Another Note about Campout and Event Planning

Posted on Oct 9 2019 - 1:35pm

Right, so the message above shows that to help the Troop Plan, you'll click "Register" in each Event Registration category, and under "Attending" click either "Yes" or "No", and we'll know your Plan.

If "Yes", enter yes.   If "No", enter no.  If "Maybe", enter yes and add a "note" like "might need to visit Grandma".

Plans Change?  Cool.  Sign Up Anyway - best guess, yes/maybe or no.  When they do change, email activities@atlanta631.mytroop.us

Three other notes:

Patrol Leaders and Planners:  when you're planning meals/other matters for an event, and your Patrol Members tell you who is going or not going - be sure to check the Attendee List in the Calendar Items to be sure our Attendee List is consistent.  Email changes to activities@atlanta631.mytroop.us  That means:

  • If someone says "I'm going" but they are not a "yes" on the attendee list, either have them sign up, or, if they had a change, email activities@atlanta631.mytroop.us and tell us, and we'll update the list.
  • If someone says "I'm not going" but they are not a "no" on the attendee list, either have them sign up as "not attending", or, if they had a change, email activities@atlanta631.mytroop.us and tell us, and we'll update the list.
  • That way people who are not in your Patrol Meeting will see who is going or not.  Sort of helps with meal planning, car pools, etc., and making sure we have all of the needed medical forms. 

Second, signups will close no later than the Monday before the Weekend activity.  That is to allow for final planning on Monday night.  

  • Oh, cursed calendar!  But we might not know if we can go!  Whatever shall we do?  
  • You shall sign up "yes" and note "Maybe" in your comments, so that we are not surprised if you show up at the campout. 
  • Yes, you can still be a "maybe" on Monday night, but we all need to be in conversation about what will determine whether you show up.
  • No surprises.

Third, few late arrivals, and almost no early departures.  This has been stated in the past, but needs to be enforced in practice.  We want full Scout participation from those participating in these campouts, using the Patrol Method, and early departure hampers that, as do many examples of late arrivals.  What does this mean?  

  • If you want to arrive after Friday night, get approval from the Scoutmaster or designated Campmaster. 
    • Acceptable reasons for arriving on Saturday include:  Friday night commitments like Marching Band, so you can arrive early Saturday AM.
    • Unacceptable reasons for arriving on Saturday include:  I wanted to sleep in on Saturday.  Come on out Friday, and go to sleep early. 
    • Another unacceptable reason for arriving on Saturday would be:  I'm only showing up for dinner because I only need to do one more meal for some advancement signoff.  No, come the whole weekend, and do your share.  Cooking and Camping don't end after the Merit Badge is earned.    
  • If you want to depart early, get approval from the designated Campmaster and the SPL or acting SPL both, together.
    • They may say "no", and for very good reason.  
    • In the past, and in most any examples of early departure, those you abandon end up having to do a disproportionate share of the cleanup and packing and such. 
    • Now, there may be very good reason to have to depart early, but the designated Campmaster and the SPL or acting SPL both, together, will determine that. 
      • Maybe like you're getting your confirmation at Church that morning, or something. 
      • If granted exemption, expect to invest some extra cleanup duty during the weekend so that you've done your fair share.  
      • But the decision will be in the designated Campmaster and the SPL or acting SPL both, together.

That

Leader Background Checks - New Policy

Posted on Oct 9 2019 - 1:05pm

Registered Adult Leaders have received this message: 

The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) is committed first and foremost to keeping youth safe. Part of that commitment includes continually updating our youth protection policies to help ensure we are always on the forefront of youth safety.  One of the BSA’s many Barriers to Abuse is a mandatory criminal background check during the volunteer application process. The BSA will now also perform periodic rechecks of criminal backgrounds to support the continued safety of youth in our programs.  All volunteer leaders will need to sign a new background check authorization form to authorize new checks and these forms be returned to the Volunteer Service Center before (or as a part of) your Unit's charter renewal in order for leaders to remain registered.

All registered leaders with good emails in My.Scouting should have received a message including these instructions: "Please complete the process listed below at your earliest availability to help us continue to provide the safest environment possible for our Scouts and leaders. Please note that these steps must be completed before your 2020 annual registration [charter renewal] can be processed.

  1. Review the separate disclosure document linked that is being provided to you separately for your review. It is titled “Background Check Disclosure.”
  2. Once you have reviewed that, print the separate document titled “Additional Disclosures & Background Check Authorization.” Review the additional disclosures on that form, then complete and sign the Authorization using an ink/wet signature. Note: A print signature is required for this document. Electronic signatures will not be accepted.
  3. Turn in the signed “Additional Disclosures & Background Check Authorization” form promptly to your unit leader or local council service center. [Note: while "ink" or "wet" signatures are required, we are told that copies / pdfs of those may be delivered and will be accepted.]

If you choose to decline the background check, or if you do not complete the Additional Disclosures & Background Check Authorization form and return it to your unit leader or local council service center, your 2020 annual registration will not be processed. 

We are truly grateful for your continued commitment to keeping youth safe and for helping them learn, grow, and thrive through Scouting programs"

BSA Registration Fees to Increase for 2020 (Amount Not Yet Known)

Posted on Oct 9 2019 - 1:04pm

As you may have heard, and as Scout Executive Tracy Techau has advised Cubmasters, Scoutmasters, Committee Chairs, District Committee Members and Commissioners, the Atlanta Area Council was recently informed that there will be a National BSA membership fee increase.  Tracy noted that we anticipate learning the amount in late October and we understand that the timing of this announcement is difficult. 

The current membership fee of $33 goes directly to National BSA to fund program elements at a National level through the operation of the BSA National Service Center, which supports local councils that administer Scouting programs.  These operational elements and programs include:

  • program design, curriculum and resources like Handbooks, Leader Guides, Merit Badge pamphlets, and other guides
  • program support software like Scoutbook, Internet Advancement, My.Scouting and other resources
  • development, research and guidance to maintain safety and program standards (e.g., advancement, health and safety, etc.) to ensure consistency of the program throughout councils across the country
  • providing Youth Protection resources, training, and criminal background checks for all registered volunteers and staff - now on an ongoing basis for all leaders
  • training at the BSA National Service Center and other locations for local council volunteers and staff, with programs at a national training center at Philmont Scout Ranch, and at the Summit in West Virginia and Seabase in the Florida Keys
  • training development, programs and syllabi for both youth and adult participants in the BSA programs in councils across the country
  • technology upgrades and communications resources that keep Scouters informed, like websites, blogs and printed publications, like Scouting magazine and many brochures, guides and books
  • insurance coverage
  • development and maintenance of four year-round national high-adventure bases
  • delivery of national events like jamborees, National Eagle Scout Association and Order of the Arrow conferences, and National Council meetings
  • tools for camp and office planning and evaluation, extensive financial counseling, planned giving and fundraising information, and professional personnel support
  • design, development, distribution and sale of uniforms, equipment and program supplies
  • and many more investments to sustain Scouting.    

Families enjoy Scouting because of its high value and reasonable price. Even with an increase in the membership fee, Scouting will remain significantly less expensive than most youth programs in Metro-Atlanta, and certainly more impactful long-term.

Costs continue to increase especially at a substantial rate for insurance coverage.  For your information, a substantial part of the insurance increase is due to having paid for insurance, and using that insurance to make make the necessary claims to access proceeds to restore Philmont after the fire.  (More here about recovery efforts).

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