By Stewart Schow
Feb 16, 2017

Varsity Scout Leaders Day Book Day 17: Training Young Men Youth Leadership (part 1)

The Task: Learn about training available to your youth

As a new Varsity Coach you need to ask yourself these questions.  How do I learn my Job as a Varsity Coach?  What Training courses are available?  And right along with that question is this question.  “How do my young men in the Varsity Team (Teachers quorum) learn what they need to do to be members of the Varsity Team (Teachers Quorum)?

For those whose sponsors are the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, look for a moment at Doctrine and Covenants 107:86:

“And also the duty of the president over the office of the teachers is to preside over twenty-four of the teachers, and to sit in council with them, teaching them the duties of their office as given in the covenants.,”

So I ask now.  What is the responsibility of the Varsity Coach to learn and to teach the duty of the teacher’s quorum member?  Handbook 2 8.3.2 states “Aaronic Priesthood quorum leaders “sit in council” with quorum members, “teaching them the duties of their office” (See D& C 107:85-86). They, the quorum leaders, seek inspiration in fulfilling their responsibilities.  They also receive instruction and guidance from the bishopric and quorum advisors.

Quorum PresidentAaronic Priesthood quorum presidents hold the priesthood keys to direct the work of the quorums over which they preside.”   Who then is responsible to run the quorum, to approve activities, to ask other quorum member to serve in the Teacher Quorum (Varsity Team)?  The Teachers Quorum President then has that responsibility and blessing.  How do you, then, as a Quorum Advisor or Coach help to teach the quorum through the Quorum President?

In the Varsity Scout Guidebook, (item: 34827), on page 116 under the title “Leadership” it state this:

“Varsity Scouts learn leadership by receiving training form the Coach and other adults on their team, and by serving as leaders in roles of increasing responsibility.  Adult advisers are there to provide guidance and to serve as sounding boards along the way, but ultimately scouts can only master leadership if they are given real opportunities to take charge of situations and see them through.”

So what are the tools you as an advisor can use to train your young men?   Chapter 14 of the Varsity Leaders Guide is a complete lesson on leadership that is to be used “whenever a majority of the team leadership changes”   “It is a one-day training session led by the team Coach and captain.”  “The introduction to leadership is extremely important, for it gives each new team leader the clear message that an adult believes he has the ability to fill the responsibility and that the adult will support him, guide him and help him succeed.”

Varsity All Stars Feature

In addition to the unit training, district and councils offer additional training to help young men learn the leadership skills.

  • The District should schedule Varsity Vision trainings.  A one day or overnight training for both adult leaders and youth leaders to learn how a Varsity Team (Teacher Quorum) works.
  • Districts also offer Varsity All-Stars. A week of High-Adventure Leadership activities while learning the Varsity Scout program! Eleven leadership skills are taught and applied in a wilderness setting. Youth are instructed in how to utilize the resources and tools available to Varsity Scouts.
  • The Council should offer National Youth Leadership (NYLT) courses for training youth leaders using a concept called servant leadership.  This course brings together youth from the council to do leadership training.  As a result other ideas of leadership are shared.
  • National Boy Scouts provide National Advanced Youth Leadership Experience (NAYLE) training for youth leaders.  Each of these activities provide additional ways of learning leadership skill and abilities.  You can learn more about each of these experiences by Googling NYLT and your Council name or NAYLE.

If you are interested in your own personal leadership training consider Wood badge.  This training is offered by National through councils to all adult leaders in Boy Scouting and focusing on what is called servant leadership.  This too can be searched on google and look up councils who are offering Wood badge sessions. (To learn more about adult leader courses go to Day Book 18: Adult Training.)

When we started this discussion we were looking at training for adults and youth to better understand their responsibilities.  You should now understand the Boy Scout of American offers many leadership training opportunities.  For those in the LDS units there is training offered on for Quorum presidencies.  There are many videos available to use in training leaders.  Look to your own charter organization for leadership training materials.

Take the time to look up and learn about the leadership training resources that are available to unit leaders.

This weekly blog series will help any new Varsity Scout leader get well trained in 90 days using this unique program that serves Teacher-aged young men:

MOnth one

Week 1 Week 2
Week 3  Week 4
  • Day 22: Stop-Start-Continue
  • Day 23: Information Resources
  • Day 24: Leave no Trace
  • Day 25: Safety Certifications
  • Day 26: The Yearly Planning Event
  • Day 27: Unfolding the Yearly Plan
  • Day 28: Whole System Review

Stewart Schow

Author: Stewart Schow  | Utah National Parks Council Varsity Scout Committee Chairman

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