In Lord Baden-Powell's book "Scouting for Boys" he wrote that he encouraged boys to get together in “little gangs” and try out the ideas published in the book.
That is what a Patrol is - a small gang of friends.
As Scouting grew, the gangs grouped together under an adult advisor - the Troop Scouter, and later Groups, Districts, Regions, Countries grew to cope with the vast organisation that sprang up.
- Members of the Patrol feel they belong - they have a place that is theirs and they feel welcome - there is a Patrol Spirit.
- It is an ideal way of organising and controlling people as the small numbers with one person in charge makes sure things are done correctly.
- It is an ideal way of educating people as the leader passes their knowledge on to those below them and later checks that they put it into practice.
- It provides an opportunity to train for leadership - everyone gets a turn.
- Everyone has a chance to have a say as it is a democracy setup.
The above 5 points are some of the reasons BP said we should work on the "Patrol System" in Scouts. The troop scouter empowers the patrol leader to make the system work. Failure to make the Patrol System work is FAILURE! Unless the patrol leader gives each member responsibility, encouragement and leadership, the Patrol will be a failure. SUCCESS will came GRADUALLY from the patrol leaders determination to make it work.