Scouting is a year-round program administered by the adult leaders. Units should not be taking time
off during the summer or at other times of the year. Regardless of a unit’s expectations or policy, if a unit takes time off, then that time must count toward the Scout’s active participation requirement. The Scout must not be penalized because the unit has chosen not to meet or conduct other activities for a period of time.
Some troops take a break between summer camp and the resumption of school.
That’s fine, but what about those Scouts who are serving in a position of responsibility when this summer break occurs? Does their time still count even if their troop isn’t meeting?
The answer, contrary to the well-meaning policy of some Scout units, is yes.
I addressed this back in 2014 when Mike Lo Vecchio, a BSA expert on the matter, weighed in:
A Scout who is currently registered and has not been removed from his unit because of disciplinary reasons should not be penalized because his unit is inactive during the summer months.
Two years later, the same answer applies. I checked back with Lo Vecchio, and he writes:
Regardless of the unit’s expectations or their policy, they must count the time served even though the unit is not meeting.
How might this play out in a troop? Here’s an example, sent in an email to me from a district commissioner in Tennessee:
It is not unusual for troops in our council to take a five- or six-week break during the summer after summer camp in mid-June and before school resumes the first week of August.
In this case, a Star Scout working towards Life Scout filled a patrol leader position for five months before the troop began its summer break. The troop is contending that he only completed five of the six months of leadership required to be advanced and that he needs to have one more month in a leadership role to be eligible for advancement.
His father contends, based on your article, it is not the son’s fault that the troop takes a short summer break and that his son should be eligible for advancement.
The father is correct. And you can consider this blog to be the official source. Once more, here’s Lo Vecchio:
Simply, the Scout cannot be penalized because the unit is not active during the summer months.