My good friend liamstliam
posted about this in his journal last night and frankly I am appalled. Apparently the PTB (powers that be) have decided that youth should no longer be allowed to attend classes w/o a parent or guardian present. Despite that fact that they may fight (heavy weapons) on the list field and drive into and out of Pennsic (with a proper drivers license). This policy will severely cripple the enthusiasm and attendance of the next generation.
If you are active in the SCA - please take a moment to read this and write to the addresses included. I've enclosed to letters that are being written as examples.
New Pennsic University policy this year:
No youths under the age of 18 may attend activities in an A&S venue without
a parent or legal guardian.
Among other things, that means classes in public A&S tents.
Someone wrote to the Pennsic Mayor, and his response was:
"As an official staffer, please refer them to Mistress Chai, Deputy Mayor of
Cultural Affairs. She and Ardenia, Deputy Mayor of Event Resources and
Society Youth Officer, worked this policy out after much deliberation."
Chai is at firstname.lastname@example.org
Ardenia's is email@example.com
In another e-mail, someone suggested the following addresses as well.
SCA Board of Directors:
Ombudsman for Legal Committee:
Baron Aaron Palomides of Buckminster
Aaron L. (Rusty) Lloyd
Ombudsman for A&S:
Dux Lucius Aurelius Valharic
Personally, I see this as extremely ill-advised. I think it will badly damage the future of the Society, particularly if it becomes a Society rule, not use a Pennsic rule.
I think it also sends an unfortunate message you our youth, especially our middle teen-agers, that we do not trust them.
I believe I understand the genesis of the rule, and I hope to hear back on that.
I could rant for another 50 lines with the reasons I think this is wrong.
I think the important thing right now is to see if we can get this changed before Pennsic. That’s why I included the addresses.
I would also comment that I think this issue is far more important than cannons at 8 a.m.
I am not suggesting that our discussion rival that one, but in this case I do think it’s worth writing a letter or two.
I am not suggesting mailing to all those addresses, but I do think a couple are worth it.
This is evilnicola
letter - very powerful as she is only 23 years old and quite accomplished:
I am a baroness of the court, companion of the order of the Silver Crescent (East Kingdom Service Award), companion of the order of the Tyger's Cub (East Kingdom Youth Award), Companion of the Queen's Order of Courtesy, and twice recipient of the Queen's Honor of Distinction.
I am also 23.
I am a heavy fighter, a youth marshal, and have been a head lady-in-waiting to the Queen. I host a party for teenagers in East Kingdom Royal every Pennsic.
Growing up in the SCA, I was given many opportunities that allowed me to become the active and committed member of the SCA that I am today. Adults allowed me to volunteer at events, such as Pennsic Lost and Found, in kitchens, on list fields assisting the MoLs, and in many other places. Mistress Ardenia herself helped me to create the East Kingdom Teen Party when I was 15.
When I wanted to learn more about aspects of the SCA that my parents and household couldn't help me with, I was able to attend classes at Pennsic to learn them, cementing my interest in the SCA. I spent one Pennsic attending drumming class every single day, saving up my ice-run money to buy my own doumbek. When I became interested in viking culture, I was able to learn about it from someone else who was deeply interested.
Disallowing those under 18 to attend classes on their own is a great way to alienate teenagers and drive them away from our society. It will not keep anyone safer. Those teens who wanted to attend classes, but are not able to because Mom and Dad are on the fighting field, or working security or any number of other reasons, will have nothing constructive to do.
The youth of our society are our future. Every time rules such as this are passed, we push out the next generation of scadians, driving them to find different hobbies, where they are allowed to participate.
It also seems highly hypocritical that 16 and 17 year-olds who are authorized in their own kingdom can fight on the heavy list field with the adults this Pennsic, but can't attend a class on, say, tablet weaving, by themselves.
Baroness Leonete D'Angely.
And from jtdiii
I have recently caught wind of grumbling from several camp members who were upset about a rule change that the A&S community has implemented:
1. New this Pennsic: no youth under the age of 18 may attend activities
in an A&S venue without a parent or legal guardian.
While this may be a well intentioned policy, like too many other recent policy decisions of Pennsic and the SCA as a whole, it is being implemented poorly and with insufficient notice and consideration.
First and foremost a major change such as this should be made early and with sufficient notice that parents who might be affected can arrange other plans. slipping it in without advanced warning after the pre-registration period is over, on an out of the way web page that most Pennsic attendees will not even read is not sufficient notice.
You might also want to explain to the populace why 16 and 17 year olds can fight heavy with authorizations, \are allowed to drive cars around and out of the camp unsupervised, but they cannot be trusted to take a basket weaving class? Will you also be requiring similar parental supervision for all other under 18 year old activities? If not, please explain why they do not require similar supervision. Why is a class, A&S point or an A&S exhibit now so dangerous that a seventeen year old now needs parental supervision?
In the past, I have had A&S classes held in my camp , does this now mean that if one is held again, I have to tell the teenagers who live in our camp or who visit from the one next door, whose parents might not be around, that they now have to leave camp?
In previous years, older teenagers were allowed to wander during the day without parental supervision. Has this policy changed? Or is it that if a class starts at the Performing Arts Tent, the Dance tent, Youth Point, or Heralds point, that unaccompanied teenagers are expected to leave those areas? Or is it that an unaccompanied minor may no longer enter any of those locations because a class may be held there?
You have just made a major detrimental change in how welcoming the SCA is to teenagers and their parents. Effectively you have made all older teenagers less able to entertain themselves in a productive and inclusive manner. All this will do is to increase the number of teenagers who hang out at the bath house or along the busker alley getting in trouble.
One of the things about the SCA that used to convince children of members to stay in the SCA is that we trusted them and did not treat them as incompetants who needed to be monitored at all times. I am disappointed to see that the A&S community has chosen to be amongst the leaders in driving away future Scadians.
John McGuire, OL, OP
take a moment of your time and write to them if you feel this is a bad idea. I will repost my letter once it's finished.