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8.0.3.0 Particulars for the Eagle Scout Rank

The particulars below pertain only to the Eagle Scout rank.

1. Council advancement committees must determine—and make known—method(s) for conducting Eagle Scout boards of review: whether unit committees or the council or district advancement committees administer them, and also how board chair persons are selected.

2. If conducted at the unit level, at least one district or council representative must serve as a member. If the unit requests it, more than one may do so.

3. There shall be no fewer than three and no more than six members, all at least 21 years old. They need not be on an advancement committee or registered with the Boy Scouts of America, but they must have an understanding of the rank and the purpose and importance of the review.

4. A board of review shall not occur until after the local council has verified the application.

5. The chair works with all involved parties to schedule the date, time, and place. Eagle boards are often held in more formal settings than a home or troop meeting site.

6. A board of review must not be denied or postponed due to unresponsive references. See "References Contacted," 9.0.1.7.

7. If a unit leader or unit committee chair fails to approve an application, the candidate is still granted aboard of review, but the lack of approval may be considered in the decision. See "Initiating Eagle Scout Board of Review Under Disputed Circumstances," 8.0.3.2.

8. To go over the application, references, and service project workbook, members should convene at least 30 minutes before the scheduled board of review.

9. Eagle boards generally last 30 minutes or somewhat longer. This is the highest rank a Scout may achieve; there should be a discussion of his successes, experiences, and future plans, but rarely should one last longer than 45 minutes.

10. An Eagle candidate may have only one board of review (though it may be adjourned and reconvened).Subsequent action falls under the appeals process. (See "Appealing a Decision," 8.0.4.0.)

11. The Eagle Scout medal or patch must not be sold or otherwise provided to any unit or to the Scout, nor should the court of honor be scheduled until after the certificate is received at the council service center from the national Advancement Team.

An Eagle Scout board of review shall not be denied or postponed due to unresponsive references.


8.0.3.1 Eagle Scout Board of Review Beyond the 18th Birthday

1. An Eagle Scout board of review may occur, without special approval, within three months after a Scout's 18th birthday. If a board of review is to be held three to six months afterward, the local council must pre approve it. To initiate approval, the candidate, his parent or guardian, the unit leader, or a unit committee member attaches to the application a statement explaining the delay.

2. To hold a board beyond six months after the 18th birthday, the candidate, his parent or guardian, the unit leader, or a unit committee member must petition the National Advancement Team for authority to do so. The request must explain the reason for the delay, and it must be processed through the local council and sent to the National Advancement Team with a copy of the application. A position statement from the Scout executive, designee, or council advancement committee must be included.

3. It is possible for those who completed the requirements for the Eagle Scout rank in their youth, but never received it, to obtain credentials necessary for acquiring it. If a board of review was not held, and the individual met the BSA membership eligibility rules in effect at the time, then a board of review may be requested. In any case, all requirements must have been completed before age 18. Using the Belated Eagle Scout application, No.512-076 (see 11.3.0.0), evidence of completion must be submitted to the National Advancement Team through the local council where the individual resides. An Eagle Scout Rank Application signed at the time work was finished can serve as evidence of requirements such as active participation, Scout spirit, or positions of responsibility. Blue cards, advancement reports, or troop records may be used for merit badges. Because of their availability on the Internet, actual merit badges or sashes are not normally accepted. Only when documentation is verified as complete and compelling shall credentials be released or permission granted for aboard of review. Requirements in effect at the time of membership are used, but regardless the practices of the day, all must have been accomplished by age 18.


 

8.0.3.2 Initiating Eagle Scout Board of Review Under Disputed Circumstances

A board of review under disputed circumstances is available only for the Eagle Scout rank. It is held at the district or council level. Volunteers from the candidate's unit are not involved. It is indicated when a unit leader or committee chair does not sign the application, if a unit leader (Scoutmaster) conference is denied, if it is thought a unit will not provide a fair hearing, or if the unit leader or project beneficiary refuses to sign final approval for what might be considered a satisfactorily completed service project. See "Evaluating the Project After Completion," 9.0.2.13. The process outlined below, for a board of review under disputed circumstances, also applies in councils where Eagle boards of review are already held at the council or district level.

If a unit leader or committee chair does not agree a Scout has met the requirements, then before a board of review is held, he or she should confer with the Scout and his parents and come to an understanding of all viewpoints. Guidance should also be sought from the district or council advancement chair to assure expectations are not more than are actually required. If the leader or chair remains unconvinced, then they may deny approval of the Eagle Scout Rank Application. In this case, the application is returned to the Scout or his parent or guardian, who may then choose to request a board of review under disputed circumstances.

In any case, if a Scout or his parent or guardian has legitimate concern that a unit cannot deliver a fair hearing, one of them may write a letter explaining the reasons and request a board of review under disputed circumstances. The letter is attached to the completed Eagle Scout application and sent with the service project workbook to the council service center. The council advancement chair or staff advisor, or other designated volunteer or professional, should notify the unit leader or unit committee chair that the request has been received ,and then guide the process through the council or district advancement committee according to local practices. After the board has met, the unit leader or unit committee chair should be informed of the decision.

It should be rare that a council or district would deny a request for a board of review under disputed circumstances. However, the request may be denied if it is deemed frivolous, or any concerns about the unit's inability to deliver a fair hearing are deemed invalid. In that case, the initial board of review must be held according to local council practices (not under disputed circumstances).If that board decides not to approve, the Scout may appeal the decision (see "Appealing a Decision," 8.0.4.0).

Procedures for a board of review under disputed circumstances, including the option for the Scout or his parent or guardian to appeal the decision, are the same as for any Eagle Scout board. The members should be well versed in related policies and organized in advance so they can research background and facts. Written statements or telephone interview summaries must be obtained from the unit leader, knowledgeable committee members, a representative of the service project beneficiary (if applicable), and others familiar with the case. Every effort should be made to have balanced representation. Only review-board members and administrators with a need to know may see the evidence. The review is like any other for Eagle, but with extra attention to the concerns at issue. Afterward, all statements, summaries, or notes are sent to the council and then destroyed once any appeal efforts are concluded. Note that in councils where Eagle boards of review are already held at the council or district level, the time and effort put into researching the background and facts maybe the only real difference from a typical board of review.

If a board of review under disputed circumstances approves a candidate, his application goes through the process as outlined under "The Eagle Scout Rank Application Process," 9.0.1.0. The board must attach a letter to the application indicating it may be processed without the signature of the unit leader or unit committee chair, the date of the Scoutmaster conference if it had been denied, or the date of the final Eagle service project signature if that was at issue.


8.0.4.0 Appealing a Decision

Adverse decisions for Star and Life ranks can be appealed to the local council. Should this occur, the National Advancement Team is available for advice only. Adverse decisions for Tenderfoot, Second Class, First Class, and Eagle Palms are not appealable. The National Council reviews appeals only for the Eagle Scout rank.

All interviews, deliberations, conversations, and related details in summaries and statements are kept confidential to appeals board members and those assigned oversight, such as the designated appeals coordinator or staff advisor. Others' knowledge should be limited to overview information as required for reports to advancement committees.

If a board of review or a board of review under disputed circumstances does not recommend a candidate for rank advancement, only the Scout or his parent or guardian may appeal the decision to the local council.


8.0.4.1 Filing and Processing an Appeal

1. The Scout should have received communication from the board of review advising actions that could lead to advancement and explaining appeal procedures. If this was not received, the Scout or his parent or guardian should contact the council advancement chair, staff advisor for advancement, or the Scout executive to request it. To initiate the appeal, the Scout or his parent or guardian prepares a letter notifying the local council of the appeal. It should detail the reasons it is believed the Scout met all the requirements and should not have been denied. The letter is sent to the council service center, to the attention of the council advancement committee. The communication from the board of review mentioned above should be attached.

2. To assure all appeal requests are handled consistently throughout the council, they are first routed to the council advancement committee.

3. The council advancement committee, through its chair or a designated member or its staff advisor, coordinates the appeals process. This designated appeals coordinator's primary role is to get the paperwork in the right place and orient and guide those who will hear the appeal.

4. The council-designated appeals coordinator routes a copy of the request to the district or council advancement committee according to local practices. It is recommended that appeals of a unit decision go to the district, and those elevated from a district go to the council. This allows an additional step before the National Advancement Team is involved.

5. For appeals heard by a district, the district advancement chair and district staff advisor (usually the district executive) must agree on appeal-board members. The council advancement chair and staff advisor have the authority to approve them (or to call for different members) should they believe this action will lead to more equitable appeals consideration.

6. If the appeal is to be heard by the council, then the council advancement chair and staff advisor must agree on appeal-board members.

7. There shall be an odd number of appeal-board members—either three or five. A board chair may be one of these voting members, or serve additionally with no vote. All must be objective volunteers with thorough knowledge of advancement and appeals procedures. The council-designated appeals coordinator may be present and provide advice. No other guests, including the candidate's parents or guardians, are allowed. If the Scout is being interviewed, and the parents insist on attending with him, see "Conducting the Board of Review," 8.0.1.0.

8. An appeal board is not another board of review. It focuses only on the issues that brought about rejection at the lower level(s). A majority is sufficient for a decision.

9. If an appeal is rejected at the district level, the Scout or his parent or guardian may appeal to the council advancement committee.

10. If a council-level Eagle Scout board of review or appeal board rejects a candidate, then he or his parent or guardian may appeal through the local council to the National Advancement Team.

11. A decision at any level that finds in favor of a Scout shall be final. Units, districts, and councils are not allowed to appeal them. Similarly, decisions for rejection delivered through the national Advancement Team are final. For rulings in favor of a Scout, the date of the original board—not the appeal board—is the effective date of advancement.


8.0.4.2 Appeal Board Must Research the Case

To allow time to research background and facts, appeal-board members must be organized in advance. Written statements or telephone interview summaries are obtained from those with pertinent knowledge of the case. These individuals might include the unit leader and assistants, parent(s) or guardian(s), unit committee members, and, as applicable, a representative of the chartered organization or Eagle service project beneficiary. Every effort should be made to have balanced representation. Only appeal-board members and administrators with a need to know may see the evidence. If a face-to-face meeting with the Scout is impractical, extra care should be taken to collect information from his perspective. After the meeting, any notes are filed with the council and destroyed once the appeal is resolved. A written report setting out the details of the appeal and the reasons for the decision shall be prepared and forwarded to the council Scout executive. A copy is sent to the Scout who brought the appeal.

Appeals to be forwarded to the National Advancement Team are processed through the local council. A designated appeals coordinator combines, into a packet, the Eagle Scout application and service project workbook (if at issue); all letters, statements, and interview summaries; and any reports or minutes from the original board of review and appeal board(s) held. The packet is covered by a letter from the Scout executive(not designee) briefly summarizing  the facts and stating the council's position.

 

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