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Dear Cradle of Liberty Scouting Family,
This morning, while addressing the Boy Scouts of America National Annual Business Meeting, our National President, Dr. Robert Gates, informed the membership that the National Board of Directors will be examining the national membership standards policy for adult leaders. Please note that no change to the current policy was made today and no timetable for this review has been set.
As more information becomes available, I will be sure to keep you posted. While I expect this announcement will generate much discussion and media interest, I know that the dedicated Scouters of the Cradle of Liberty Council will remain singularly focused on continuing to deliver the highest quality program to our young people. To assist in that effort, please direct all media inquiries to my attention at Daniel.Templar@scouting.org.
Your continued dedication and commitment to the Scouting program are deeply appreciated by the entire Cradle of Liberty community - THANK YOU!
The video, as well as the text of Dr. Gates' speech, is available at:
Most Sincerely Yours in Scouting,
Daniel A. Templar
Scout Executive / Chief Executive Officer
Cradle of Liberty Council, Boy Scouts of America
We are deeply saddened to share the news of the passing of Dr. John “Jack” Templeton. Jack passed away on Saturday, May 16 at the age of 75.
Dr. Templeton was a long-time supporter of the Scouting program, both personally and professionally. He was one of the longest-tenured members of the Cradle of Liberty Council’s Board of Directors. He also served as the chair of the council’s Health & Safety Committee, and continued to attend their annual summer camp visitations until 2013. Resica Falls Scout Reservation held a special place in his heart, and as such he led a campaign to fund the expansion of the dining hall to accommodate Resica’s growing summer camp attendance. The addition was complete in 2010 and the dining hall was renamed for his father, Sir John Templeton. Dr. Templeton rarely missed an Eagle Dinner, and would always bring colleagues to join him as mentors to Eagle Scouts who were interested in the medical profession. Dr. Templeton and his wife Pina were also responsible for providing seed funds to launch some of the largest council initiatives in recent history, including the redevelopment of ScoutReach, the initial Quality Unit Executive program, and the Planning Study for the Capital Campaign.
Dr. Templeton was President & Chairman of the John Templeton Foundation, which has funded two major research studies on Scouting: Cradle of Liberty Council’s current study with Tufts University on Scouting’s impact on character development, and the 2010-2012 national study on Eagle Scouts conducted by Baylor University. The results of these studies will continue to have a far-reaching impact on the way we share Scouting’s story for years to come.
Jack was a dear, dear friend to the Scouts who truly believed in the values and mission of the Boy Scouts of America. He will most certainly be missed.
Visitation will be held on Wednesday, May 27, from 5pm to 7pm at Chadwick and McKinney Funeral Home, 30 East Athens Avenue in Ardmore.
Child Protective Services Law and its Impact on Volunteers in the Cradle of Liberty Council
Recently the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania passed a new law known as the Child Protective Services Law. The intent of this law is to protect the youth of Pennsylvania. All youth serving organizations within the Commonwealth are covered under this new law. Volunteers, registered and unregistered, in the Cradle of Liberty Council are affected in two ways; we are mandated child abuse reporters and required to provide background check clearances. Please review this information and take the required action.
MANDATED REPORTER OF CHILD ABUSE
The first is that all volunteers, registered and unregistered, over the age of 18 are now mandated reporters of child abuse. The law requires direct reporting from the individual suspecting or witnessing child abuse immediately. After reporting the suspected abuse to the state the individual shall contact the Scout executive. The Commonwealth has created a portal for reporting purposes: www.compass.state.pa.us/cwis or 800-932-0313.
BACKGROUND CHECK CLEARANCES
The second is that all volunteers, registered and unregistered, in the Cradle of Liberty Council are required to submit background check clearances and renew these clearances every three years.
Who is required to comply with the new Pennsylvania law?
All registered unit, district, and council Scouters regardless of their position responsibilities must have proper clearances including Tiger parents.
All non‐registered adults who may have care, supervision, guidance or control of children, or routine interaction with children must have proper clearances and should be encouraged to become registered Scouters. The following serve as examples of adults in this category:
- Parent or any other adult, who stays for a meeting and ends up assisting with projects being worked on, serving snacks, or monitoring restroom breaks.
- Parent or any other adult that lends a helping hand at a meeting or activity (such as Pinewood Derby, Day Camp, field trip, camping weekend, etc.).
- Parent or any other adult that acts as a driver for Scouts other than his/her own child.
These examples are not inclusive of all possibilities, but are examples to help you begin to think about the way your unit uses non‐registered adults where they are given responsibility for the care, supervision, guidance, or control of children or routine interaction with children.
Whose responsibility is it to ensure background check clearances are obtained?
It is the responsibility of the unit committee chair and chartered organization representative to ensure that compliance is handled before the volunteer service begins. At the district level it is the responsibility of the district chair and district executive. At the council level it is the responsibility of the council president and the Scout executive. Moreover, a new volunteer will not be registered until the council has evidence of compliance.
Volunteers must provide the following clearances
- Report of Criminal History from the Pennsylvania State Police (PSP), $10, 10-15 minutes: epatch.state.pa.us/Home.jsp
- Child Abuse History Clearance from the Department of Human Services, $10, 20-30 minutes: www.compass.state.pa.us/cwis/public/home
- Fingerprint based FBI criminal history clearance submitted through the Department of Human Services, $27.50, 5-10 minutes online and 10-15 minutes at the fingerprinting location: www.pa.cogentid.com/index_dpwNew.htm
- Volunteers who have resided in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for the past 10 years can submit a Disclosure Statement for Volunteers in lieu of the Fingerprint based FBI Clearance: keepkidssafe.pa.gov/cs/groups/webcontent/documents/document/c_160267.pdf
How long does it take the Commonwealth to process the clearances?
Some of the clearances come back within a few minutes, however, some may take as long as 4-6 weeks.
Timeline to provide the clearances
- All new volunteers who begin their volunteer service on or after July 1, 2015 must comply prior to the volunteer participating in any activity where he or she will provide care, supervision, guidance or control of children, or routine interaction with children.
- Council and district leadership, commissioners and merit badge counselors will need to be in compliance prior to September 30, 2015.
- Current volunteers, except those above, must comply prior to rechartering in December 2015.
How to Submit Clearances to the Cradle of Liberty Council
Volunteers must upload copies of their required documents to the Background Check System. In order to ensure that your files are properly received and recorded, please secure all your documentation before visiting this link and upload all of your files at the same time. Clearances obtained for other volunteer or employment organizations may be submitted if they are current and meet the guidelines.
Upload your clearances here: http://ow.ly/MBGOE
RESOURCES FOR FURTHER INFORMATION
- Pennsylvania Website on Child Protection: www.keepkidssafe.pa.gov
- Pennsylvania Volunteer FAQ: keepkidssafe.pa.gov/cs/groups/webcontent/documents/document/c_135249.pdf
- Pennsylvania Mandated Reporter FAQ: keepkidssafe.pa.gov/cs/groups/webcontent/documents/document/c_137646.pdf
- BSA Volunteer FAQ
We understand there may be a number of challenges in the first year of complying with this new law. Together, we can achieve a smooth transition. We appreciate your diligence in completing these checks in a timely fashion. If you need assistance or have questions, please contact:
We are pleased to announce the selection of Daniel A. Templar as Scout Executive of the Cradle of Liberty Council, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, effective May 16, 2015.
Dan began his Scouting career in 1996 as a District Executive at the Hiawatha Council in Syracuse, New York. He was promoted in 1999 to the position of Field Director at the Hiawatha Seaway Council following the merger of the Hiawatha and Seaway Valley Councils. In addition to managing the field service team, Dan served as the Assistant Reservation Director and then Reservation Director of the Siabattis Scout Reservation in Long Lake, New York.
In 2002, Dan was promoted to serve as the Assistant Scout Executive for the Pioneer Valley Council in Chicopee, Massachusetts. Among Dan’s achievements for the Pioneer Valley Council were three consecutive years of membership growth, an increase in the net return of Council special events by 12%, an increase in Friends of Scouting revenue of 17%, and an increase in net camping revenue of 44%.
In 2005, Dan was selected to serve as the Scout Executive for the Burlington County Council in Rancocas, New Jersey. During his tenure, the council experienced nearly annual growth in membership and was a regular Quality Council and Journey to Excellence Gold achiever with increased scores each year.
Dan currently serves as Scout Executive of the Garden State Council in Westampton, New Jersey, which is a result of the 2013 merger of Burlington County Council and Southern New Jersey Council. This new council is continuously recognized by the National organization as a leader in innovation and program delivery. The council has created annual operating fund surpluses in excess of 6% of expenses in each year, resulting in the council’s ability to repay all loans that were inherited through the merger, increase its total net assets by more than 13%, and also begin making many much-needed capital improvements at Roosevelt Scout Reservation. Along with strong financial controls, Dan has successfully implemented a 100% direct contact leader training requirement, and has seen summer camp attendance rise nearly 30%. Dan also spearheaded the efforts to bring Scouting programs into the city of Camden, New Jersey, including partnerships with community and political leaders, a new unit initiative and the recovery of lost funding sources.
Dan received his Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from Bradley University located in Peoria, Illinois. He and his wife, Andria have two children. Dan enjoys spending time with his family and friends, golfing and camping.
Please join us in welcoming Dan to the Cradle of Liberty Council as our new Scout executive!
Contact: Cradle of Liberty Council, Boy Scouts of America
BOY SCOUTS AWARDED GRANT TO PROTECT GOLDEN-WINGED
USDA Grant Creates Bird Habitat at Cradle of Liberty Council’s Resica Falls Camp
WAYNE, PA (October 8, 2013) — The Cradle of Liberty Council of the Boy Scouts of America has been awarded a federal conservation grant through the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) to create and improve the habitat for the golden-winged warbler, an at-risk species, at its Resica Falls Scout Camp in East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania.
The golden-winged warbler (Vermivora chrysoptera) is a migratory species that breeds in the Northeastern United States, preferring early successional habitats for nesting. The vast forested lands, grasslands, and forb-rich landscape of the Appalachian Mountains was once considered a population stronghold for the golden-winged warbler. Today, however, the population is at risk to be listed as an endangered species. Recently-abandoned farm fields and clear-cuts are ideal habitats; however, they do not last long, and the warbler often quickly disappears from an area.
The Cradle of Liberty Council Conservation Committee, chaired by volunteer Scouter and Eagle Scout Robert Hartman, is charged with overseeing the forestry stewardship initiatives for the council’s two camps which comprise 6,000 acres of Pennsylvania forest land. Over the last three years, the committee has been executing upon professionally prepared forestry stewardship plans designed to improve the forest growth rates and quality of the council’s woodlands. The golden-winged warbler program is a perfect fit for the Resica Falls environment. Hartman states, “Providing a natural breeding habitat for the warbler aligns with the Boy Scouts of America Outdoor Code in which every Scout and Scout leader promises to be conservation minded.”
Hartman and council executive board member Tom Leidy, along with our consulting forester Josh Flad of Woodland Management Services, Inc., applied for and received funding for this special program, which is a joint effort of the USDA-NRCS and Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP). The goal is to create approximately 100 acres of shrubby fields and patchy scrublands on the Resica Falls Scout Reservation.
There will be a three-year program to create this habitat for the warbler. Year one will involve cutting invasive plants, shrubs, and small less desirable trees using a specialized “forestry mower.” Year two will involve treating the heavy fern cover with herbicides. Finally, year three will be cutting the remaining pole-sized patches of trees to meet the habitat requirement.
It is hoped that this habitat will draw warblers to the property during their summer breeding period. The warbler loves insects and spiders, so for the Boy Scouts hiking the vast trails of Resica Falls Scout Reservation in the summer, the golden-winged warbler may very well help prevent one more bug bite!
ABOUT THE COLBSA: The Cradle of Liberty Council, Boy Scouts of America (COLBSA), serves Philadelphia, Delaware, and Montgomery Counties, providing programs for more than 17,000 youth in over 500 units. In the City of Philadelphia, the council serves nearly 5,000 youth through its traditional and outreach programs. Additionally, through the Exploring and Learning for Life programs, young men and women are provided with internships and exposed to work based opportunities to help them better prepare for college and become a successful member of the work force. For more information visit: www.colbsa.org or to join Scouting programs in your area visit www.beascout.org
Top leadership from Scouting Councils across the nation gathered together during the last week of August at an annual meeting to discuss relevant matters facing the Scouting Movement. Among these topics were improving volunteer resources and program development. The National Council of the Boy Scouts of America has been working to create tools and resources aimed at enabling volunteers to better organize and operate strong, healthy units, as well as preserving Scouting’s relevancy for the next 100 years. Some of these advancements are:
Enhanced MyScouting Tools such as Training Manager, Organization Manager and Member Manager.Concentrated Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) initiatives such as the Nova and Supernova awards New Merit Badges such as Sustainability, Programming, and Game Design Redevelopment of the Cub Scout Program
As a result of this focus to keep programming and resources current in the 21st Century, as well as develop new and innovative models, program and administrative costs have increased faster than anticipated. In order to continue to provide programs and resources of the highest caliber, the annual membership fee will be $24. The fee increase will go into effect for the 2014 rechartering cycle. Cradle of Liberty Council understands the timing of this change will present some challenges in the upcoming recharter cycle. It is not the intention of the National BSA or Cradle of Liberty Council to inconvenience Scouting members but to provide programs of the highest quality to the youth of our community in a “thrifty” manner.
We hope that you will agree that a $24 (or $2/month) annual fee remains considerably lower than most other youth activities. Scouting is a proven vehicle for young people to try new things, develop a sense of service to others, build self-confidence, and reinforce ethical standards.
If you have any questions or need assistance, please feel free to contact your local Scouting Executive at 610-688-6900. The staff at Cradle of Liberty Council will be happy to assist you throughout this time of transition and provide you with fundraising opportunities that will help to offset this rise in cost. Thank you for all of the time, effort and resources you continue to provide to Scouting, making it America’s premier youth serving organization.
Yours in Scouting,
Steve Kelly,Vice-Chairman of Membership
Cradle of Liberty Council, Boy Scouts of America
May 3, 2013
Dear Board Members, District Leaders and Unit Scouters,
After nearly 10 years of legal disputes, the Cradle of Liberty Council and the City of Philadelphia have reached a settlement regarding the Boy Scout office at 22nd & Winter Streets in Philadelphia.
The settlement involves the Council’s professional staff vacating the property by June 30th, and the Scout Shop vacating by October 31st. In turn, the City will pay the Council $825,000 for capital improvements we have made to the building over the years.
Vacating the office was not an easy decision to make. Our Board has discussed this issue in-depth for many years and has decided that this settlement is in the best interests of Scouting and our youth. Although we won a favorable decision in a lower court in 2010, litigation has continued ever since with an appeal filed by the City, diverting our ability to serve Scouts in the City of Philadelphia as well as throughout the Council. In addition, the trial court judge informed us that, even though we may win future cases, the City could still find ways to evict the Scouts legally from the building. With the recently announced decision by the National BSA to change its membership policy only with respect to youth members, our Council faced the real prospect that we would ultimately need to leave the building under much less favorable terms.
Our goal has been and always will be to do what is best to serve the youth in the City of Philadelphia and throughout our Council. After much deliberation, the Council’s Board entered into settlement discussions with the City and reached this agreement that we believe will strengthen our ability to serve youth. We intend to use the funds in this settlement to support our city-based programs, and intend to purchase or lease a new administrative center to serve our Philadelphia Scouts and leaders. We will communicate our progress in securing a new office location through our on-line newsletter, the BSA Today, as these plans are finalized.
Attached you will find some further background information about this settlement, as well as some background information that you may find helpful. We realize you may have additional questions related to this decision. Please feel free to call or email your questions to Michael Oehmke, Director of Support Services at 484-654-9226 or email@example.com.
In conclusion, we want you to know that your Council leadership has fought long and hard to preserve the Marks Building for use as the Council’s headquarters. We realize the historic value in the building and how many of us have strong sentimental attachments to the building.
But we also realize that Scouting does not happen in an office – it happens in church basements, school lunchrooms, and parents’ homes. The more time and money we spent fighting the City for a building, the less time and money we were spending on supporting our Scouts. In the end, we have decided that it is the best interest of Scouting to end this litigation and focus on serving the Scouts and families of our council.
We hope you understand why we have made this decision, and we look forward to the continued growth of Scouting in the future.
Yours in Scouting,
Rod Henkels Chuck Bolger Tom Harrington
Board Chairman Council Commissioner Scout Executive & CEO
To learn more about the history of the Marks Building, click here
To download a copy of the letter above, click here
For 103 years, the Boy Scouts of America has been a part of the fabric of this nation, with a focus on working together to deliver the nation's foremost youth program of character development and values-based leadership training.
Based on growing input from within the Scouting family, the BSA leadership chose to conduct an additional review of the organization's long-standing membership policy and its impact on Scouting's mission. This review created an outpouring of feedback from the Scouting family and the American public, from both those who agree with the current policy and those who support a change.
Today, following this review, the most comprehensive listening exercise in Scouting's history the approximate 1,400 voting members of the Boy Scouts of America's National Council approved a resolution to remove the restriction denying membership to youth on the basis of sexual orientation alone. The resolution also reinforces that Scouting is a youth program, and any sexual conduct, whether heterosexual or homosexual, by youth of Scouting age is contrary to the virtues of Scouting. A change to the current membership policy for adult leaders was not under consideration; thus, the policy for adults remains in place. The BSA thanks all the national voting members who participated in this process and vote.
This policy change is effective Jan. 1, 2014, allowing the Boy Scouts of America the transition time needed to communicate and implement this policy to its approximately 116,000 Scouting units.
The Boy Scouts of America will not sacrifice its mission, or the youth served by the movement, by allowing the organization to be consumed by a single, divisive, and unresolved societal issue. As the National Executive Committee just completed a lengthy review process, there are no plans for further review on this matter.
While people have different opinions about this policy, we can all agree that kids are better off when they are in Scouting. Going forward, our Scouting family will continue to focus on reaching and serving youth in order to help them grow into good, strong citizens. America's youth need Scouting, and by focusing on the goals that unite us, we can continue to accomplish incredible things for young people and the communities we serve.
Comments or questions -Thomas.Harrington@scouting.org
Yours in Scouting,
Thomas R. Harrington
Scout Executive & CEO
The first quarter financial statements were approved by the Executive Board on May 8th, 2013. Our final statements from 2011 and/or 2012 are available upon request by contacting the general office line: 610-688-6900.
Note from the research team at Tufts University:
We would like to offer our sincere thanks to the Cradle of Liberty Council for their continued support, and to all the families and Scout leaders who have made this study possible. We have been welcomed into your Den and Pack meetings, District-wide Roundtables, and other Council-wide celebrations of Scouting! With funding from the John Templeton Foundation and the support of staff and volunteers in the Cradle of Liberty Council, we are continuing our exciting study of the impact of Scouting on the academic and personal development of Cub Scouts.
The Tufts Team, with the invaluable assistance of Pack leaders, has gathered pertinent information from Scouts, parents, and leaders throughout the Cradle of Liberty Council. We have completed our first round of data collection in January, and have already begun preparing for Wave 2. Through interviews, short-answer surveys, and focus groups discussions, leaders have shared their views about the role of Scouting in the development of character, as well as of the overall impact of Scouting on youth. We have also received thoughtful feedback on how to improve our data collection process. This information will be incredibly helpful as we plan for future waves of this study.
For those who participated in Wave 1, we will be contacting you in the near future about the upcoming second wave of data collection with Scouts, which will begin in May 2013. We are committed to meeting the unique needs of each unit so that participating in the study is as easy as possible.
From all of us at the Tufts Team, thank you so much for your support! We look forward to seeing many of you at Scouting events in the near future!
News article about the study from Tufts - click here to read this article