BSA Troop 368

Farmington Presbyterian Church
Germantown, Tennessee



Who is Troop 368?

Troop 368 is chartered by Farmington Presbyterian Church of Germantown, Tennessee. The Scoutmaster is David Smith (901-237-9182). Troop 368 is in the Eastern District of the Chickasaw Council.

Where and When does Troop 368 Meet?

Troop 368’s regular meetings are held at Farmington Presbyterian Church, 8245 Farmington Blvd., Germantown, TN every Monday night.
Meetings begin promptly at 7:00 PM and are usually over by 8:30 PM.
Class “A” uniforms are worn at each meeting.
Parents / guardians are welcome to attend the entire meeting and strongly encouraged to arrive by 8:15 PM so that they will hear the week’s important announcements and observe the closing ceremony.

Should a parent/guardian attend Troop meetings?

YES! This is a great opportunity to get to know other members of the Troop 368 family and to hear, first-hand, news of upcoming events and activities. Active parents are the single most important factor that will determine how successful their son will be in Scouting! Scouts whose parents were actively involved attended more than twice the number of activities and attained more than double the rank of Scouts with less involved parents. For more information on adult support, see page 14 and page 43. WARNING: The Scouts run the Troop meetings, not the adults. As a result, Scout meetings are characterized by noise, confusion, general chaos and FUN.

If my son has a question whom does he call?

Troop 368 follows BSA “boy-run” leadership philosophy. The Senior Patrol Leader runs the meetings and coordinates patrol activities with the Patrol Leaders. Your son is a member of a Patrol. His first point of contact should ALWAYS be with his Patrol Leader. If the Patrol Leader does not know the answer, the Patrol Leader should consult with the Senior Patrol Leader. Parents: Your first point of contact should be with the Troop Committee Chairman. The Scoutmaster’s first priority at the meetings is to the Scouts. It is highly recommended that parents wishing to speak with the Scoutmaster do so at any time other than Monday evenings. Also, many questions could be answered or asked at our Troop 368 website,
Sometimes things appear disorganized. Why is that?
Because of the “boy run” philosophy, most boys are just beginning to learn about leadership, how to plan, how to conduct themselves, and about responsibility and follow-through. Consequently, there are missed phone calls, partial communications, and last minute fire drills. If you or your son is unsure about what is supposed to happen, your son should call his Patrol Leader for guidance and clarification.

What is the Troop Committee?

The Troop Committee is made up of interested parents and other adults. The committee’s main priorities are approving Troop programs and activities as planned by the Patrol Leaders’ Council and Scoutmaster, and providing Troop program support as requested by the Scoutmaster, especially transportation and adult leadership for outings. The Troop Committee generally meets once per quarter during a troop meeting. All Parents are always welcome to attend any and all Committee meetings and are encouraged to join Troop 368’s committee.

Who can “sign-off” advancement requirements?

Parents can’t sign off on advancement requirements. Basic Scout skills for Tenderfoot, Second Class and First Class may be certified (signed off) by Scouts with the rank of Star or above or by uniformed adult leaders.
What do I bring to a campout?
Personal equipment such as a sleeping bag, backpack, mess kit, flashlight, and sleeping pad are the Scout’s responsibility. Scouts will need a good quality sleeping bag, sleeping pad, and eating utensils. Tents and cooking equipment are provided by the Troop. Scouts should strive to bring as little gear as possible and to pack it so that the Scout can carry all gear to his patrol’s campsite in a single trip.

What kind of food do we buy for campouts?

Each Patrol is responsible for menu planning, food purchasing and preparation for their individual Patrol. Patrols plan balanced meals, keeping in mind the basic food groups and making sure that the food will provide each Scout with the necessary energy they need for the challenges of camping. Unless a Scout has serious medical problems with certain food items, he will have to eat what is on the patrol menu. Considerations must be given to food packaging and containers. At times trash must be packed out; repacking food into labeled plastic bags is a great way to reduce packaging waste and food waste by only taking what the Patrol needs. Glass containers, prepared foods (canned, individually wrapped or pre-packaged) and food requiring refrigeration should be minimized. Foods subject to spoilage, soda, exotic, or expensive items should not be included.

Should a parent/guardian go on campouts?

Parents and guardians are welcome to attend all Troop events and activities. The primary aim of adult participation in campouts is to “act like Scouts.” Accordingly, adults follow the same campout rules as Scouts. The principal benefits of the outdoor program are Scouts gaining self-reliance and sense of accomplishment that come with individual achievement. Therefore, parents should refrain from assisting their son’s (or sons’) patrol(s) with camp activities. Adults should bring problems or concerns (and compliments!) to the attention of the Scoutmaster or the Committee Chairman. Adults camp in their own designated staff campsite. Adults do not share tents with Scouts, including their own sons.

What else do I need to know about campouts?

All planned camping trips or events will occur unless severe weather warnings are in effect. Yes, even in rain or freezing weather. The Committee Chairman and Scoutmaster will make the final decisions to cancel an event. By the way, the Troop assembles in the parking lot behind the church for camping.

Does a Scout have to attend every meeting and campout?

All Scouts are encouraged to be in regular attendance at all Troop and Patrol activities and campouts. Attendance at meetings and activities is considered necessary to demonstrate “Scout Spirit.” A Scout must be active in Troop meetings and campouts to be eligible for ANY advancement. Scouts sometimes have other activities that conflict with Scouting. That’s OK, just come back when you are done! Let the Patrol Leader know about the conflicts in advance. For more information see Participation Policy.

How does a Scout earn merit badges?

Work on a merit badge may be done at Troop meetings, in group outside meetings, on an individual basis (only with PRIOR Troop approval), at merit badge colleges, at winter camp or at summer camp. All merit badges require a merit badge counselor. A Scout of any rank may earn any merit badge. However, it is strongly suggested that Scouts below the rank of Star concentrate on skill learning for rank advancement.

How many merit badges are required to become an Eagle Scout?

For the rank of Eagle, a Scout must earn one from each of 12 required categories. Eagles must earn an additional nine optional badges for a total of 21. For more information see the Boy Scout Handbook.

How fast can a Scout earn Eagle?

To be most beneficial to the Scout, advancement should be neither too rapid nor too slow. There are seven ranks, from Scout through Eagle. The first four ranks (Scout, Tenderfoot, Second Class, and First Class) emphasize basic skills. The Troop’s goal is for each Scout to complete his First Class rank within one year of joining. The higher ranks (Star, Life, and Eagle) emphasize leadership and service. To advance, a Scout must be active, must do his best to live by the Scout Law and Promise, practice leadership, give service to others, learn Scout skills, and earn merit badges. The minimum time a Scout would need to complete his service time to qualify for Eagle is two years and four months. Troop 368 stresses Scouts to “Learn the Skill, Not Earn the Award.” By focusing in skill learning and demonstrating leadership and service, the Scout will fulfill all the aims of Scouting.

How do I know my Scout will be safe at meetings and activities?

The Troop operates under a “Safe Haven” policy at Troop meetings, on outings, and all Scout-related activities. Under this policy, all Troop activities constitute a Safe Haven, free from fear of physical and verbal abuse, where Scouts can take chances with new skills and ideas in a supportive atmosphere without fear of ridicule or retribution from other members of the Troop family. All Scouts and Scouters (adult leaders) are expected to live by the Scout Oath and Law. All activities that include adult leadership will strictly follow the Youth Protection and Safe Scouting guidelines as set forth by the Boy Scouts of America in the BSA publication The Guide to Safe Scouting. Adult leadership is always two deep, which means two leaders must be with the Scouts at all times.

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