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cajuncody

August Cross Over, is this okay?

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A friend of mine from day camp has a question. It seems that his grandson's pack wants to cross over the Webelos 2 in August becasue the den leader is moving out of state. His grandson still needs until October to meet the "time/age" part of the Arrow of Light and wouldn't be allowed to work on it after cross over. Also, isn't Webelos an 18 month program? Isn't this too early to send boys to Boy Scouts? School starts here in a couple of weeks for these boys to be in 5th grade and they want to cross over at the first pack meeting for the school year. Sounds wrong to me but I don't have any specifics to help him out with. What say ye of the forum?

Kristi

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Cross over or AoL? I know, most groups seem to use them interchangably, that's why I ask.

 

Do the boys already have their AoL? Have they completed everything they need to to earn their AoL if they haven't already received it?

If the Oct boy doesn't meet the requirements to become a Boy Scout than he is still a Cub Scout - or at least still eligible to be one.

 

Is there no other adult willing to become a den leader for the last few months? How do the boys who meet the age/time requirement feel about it? They are the ones who would be shortchanged by crossing over now.

 

YiS

Michelle

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August is really early to be bridging into boy scouts. Most packs have their bridging ceremony in February or March.

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I can't see just one boy not meeting the age / time requirement (6 mos after 10 birthday) I think everyone is for it and shortchanging this requirement. This boys grandfather seems to know better and is not letting it slide for him. The other parents "voted" to do the arrow of light and cross over together at the same time in August which will in effect leave this boy behind unless he crosses over with out the AOL which would make him unable to earn it.

K

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Kristi,

 

I certainly can't speak to how the troop they would crossover to would feel about it. I am the new Scout ASM for our troop and while I will accept a new boy(s) any time, I'd prefer that they roughly crossover at the same time in the February to March time frame. Here is why. We use new scout patrols and we gear up with Troop Guides and plan a program that tries to move them thru the requirments.....in other words, First Class/First Year. There is always a boy that is going to miss summer camp or a monthly campout, but if we move them thru the requirements as a group, we keep them engaged and can do the requirements without having to go back to sqaure one. Bringing in new scouts in the middle of that process puts them way behind everyone else and disrupts what we are trying to do with the new scouts that crossed in February. We actually only run our new scout patrols for about 9 months and integrate them into our mixed aged patrols around November. We can and will take new boys thru out the year and just took one in last week, but I'm not quite sure how we are going to catch him up with all the others while we are busy moving them down the path.

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Kristi

 

The rules are that the boy must be EITHER:

 

at least 10 years old AND have earned the Arrow of Light

 

OR

 

11 years old

 

OR

 

at least 10 years old AND finished with 5th grade.

 

Consequently, technically, no - they should not be allowed to do this if the boy in question is just starting 5th grade and isn't 11 yet. Also, from the sound of it, he might actually like to earn his AoL and crossing him over early will prevent that since he can't work on a cub award as a boy scout - as you already know.

 

I've heard of people getting a special dispensation from their council to cross over early but I doubt it would be granted in a case like this. Don't know for sure though.

 

From the perspective of the troop that they'd be crossing into, how does the SM feel about it? I can't imagine s/he'd be too pleased. These boys are going to be that much younger than the typical winter/spring cross overs are, and at that age 6 months is a long time in terms of maturation processes. Also that essentially means the troop will have 2 groups of boys to get "up to speed" through the cross over process - one now, one later for boys from any other packs in the area. Might be a pain. And then there's the old insurance question and advancement toward rank question. If the SM allows this cross over to occur, what happens if one of these under-age boys gets hurt? Will BSA unit insurance cover it since they're technically not eligible to be boy scouts yet? And will they be allowed to start earning ranks? What happens on their Eagle paperwork, down the road several years, when the dates aren't right (boys earned rank awards before they were eligible to be boy scouts) and someone from district/council/national notices this? Yup, I think it could be a mess and much worse to sort out later on than these parents currently realize.

 

So how to solve it? Personally I'd like to see a parent or relative step up and serve as the W II den leader for a few months but maybe that's not going to happen. Is there a webelos I den in the pack? If so you can suggest they open up and become a mixed W I/ W II den for a few months. I've done it so I know it can work (though it takes more planning). Also I'd suggest the CM and CC really put his or her foot down and insist that they not have this kind of thing going on in their pack - even if it means referring the boys to another pack w/ a functional W II den instead.

 

Good luck.

 

Lisa'bob

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I agree with Lisa on the combined Webelos 1 and 2 approach. We had a boy who had dropped out of Webelos and came back right before our Web 2's were to cross over. He wanted to earn his AOL. He stayed with the pack, met with the Web 1's and worked on his AOL and crossed over in May after the rest of the boys crossed in February. Unfortunately, he ended up leaving his troop about a year ago.

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Its good to have a tradition in your Pack that dictates when Crossover will occur. In our Pack, crossover occurs in February during our Blue & Gold banquet. Thats our tradition and it works well for us and it keeps the boys together as a den. We dont waver from this tradition.

 

That being said, there is nothing we can do if a boy wants to move on to Boy Scouts and meets the minimum age/grade requirements. Still, I would discourage your Webelos from crossing over now. Two reasons: 1) They are too young and its better to wait until they get closer to 11 years of age. 2) It breaks up the Web 2 den and leaves behind those boys that enjoyed the friendship.

 

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Here is something that has come up in our troop along the same lines. We have a boy whose two older brothers are in the troop already. He is a Web I this year, however, his father says he will be 11 before February (I have not verified this) and wants to cross him into the troop with the Web IIs from this year, thus skipping the entire second year of Webelos. Even if he were to stay in the pack he wouldn't do anything with his den (his brother crossed this year and his den leader didn't see him for over a year-just showed up at Blue and Gold to cross over). This is strictly a convenience thing for his father. He is a grade behind all the boys crossing over this year and I don't know how well he would know any of them. My younger son is part of the group crossing over this year and has tried to befriend this boy on family campouts.

 

Just a personal rant here (not BSA bylaws or anything), but I am a little frustrated that my son went through the full five years of Cubs because of his age, even though it wasn't "convenient" for me, meanwhile this boy because of his age gets to skip out on a year.

 

Okay, done ranting.

 

Any thoughts on how to handle this situation and get the boy to either assimilate with the boys he would be crossing with (I am assuming if he is 11 he would be allowed to cross over).

 

Bill

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Once the boy is 11 years old, barring special circumstances, I do not think that he can be rechartered as a Cub Scout anyway. Scoutnet will not accept the registration at the Cub level.

 

The dad can register him with any Troop at any time after he turns 11 years old. He does not need the permission of the Pack, does not need to earn AOL, & it really does not matter if he knows anyone in the Troop either. If the SM accepts his application he is in the Troop. After that it is up to the Troop how they want to handle him.

 

It is a shame he has not participated more. Hopefully his den can get a den camping trip in before February. He most likely will be a bit lost in Boy Scouts because he is not really prepared. Then again, he has 2 older brothers in the Troop so he wil know someone & maybe he has been doing stuff at home with them.

 

If he manages to earn the Webelos badge that would be great. He can receive that before he crosses over. I would make a point, however, to have completely separate AOL & crossover ceremonies.

 

Also, unless your Pack's program was unusually bad, there is really no need to feel upset about being "forced" to be a member for a year more than this other boy. The other boy is the one who is being shortchanged, not your son.

 

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        Two issues here so the original post first. Had a similar problem some years back with our pack. Parents wanted to cross over in September to free them from having to run a Webelos II program. In our instance all the boys met the age requirement to earn the AOL by September. None of the boys lasted two years with the troop! They were not ready to take over responsibility for their program despite the effort of two really good troop guides. If the boys in cajuncody's example are not eligible to earn the AOL then it is a disservice to even suggest a September cross over.

         As to pargolf's scenario, if the boy in question will be 11 before Feb then he actually should cross over with the group in February. Technically he can remain registered with the pack for 6 months after his 11th. birthday but that would leave him crossing over alone and several months behind his closest group. Personally he should be treated like a boy who joins Cub Scouts as a Webelos II and is fast tracked for Webelos Badge and AOL. He can earn both if he wants to put in the effort but it usually takes an adult to work with him to keep him on track.

LongHaul

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I'm of two minds about the boy in pargolf's post. On one hand, I really get annoyed w/ parents who are more interested in their own convenience than in their children. I have to wonder why on earth they evevn signed the boy up for cubs if they didn't plan to take him to the meetings? On the other hand, there are some boys who just never really click with the cub program, yet who can't wait to be boy scouts. Not a lot of them, I'll grant (esp if the cub pack is running a decent program to start with), but some. So if this boy hardly ever goes to cubs anyway then forcing him to stay for another year even though he isn't interested is not a service to him. If what the boy really wants is to join the troop, and he meets the joining requirements (is old enough), then maybe we serve him better by letting him. And so what if he joins a year before his school grade mates? This is part of life that isn't a race. Also I don't think you need to worry too much about assimilation; if he is active in the troop he'll most likely make friends with the boys soon enough. A couple of campouts will do that.

 

Lisa'bob

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"He most likely will be a bit lost in Boy Scouts because he is not really prepared."

ScoutNut,

Preparation for what?  There are no prerequisites to join Boy Scouts other than the age/grade requriement.  Imposing other requirements is improper.  I'm sure you know this, but I often feel many adult leaders and parents do not.

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If they meet the joining requirments for Boy Scouts, then officially they could join and I would see no reason for them staying if they did not want to. If (he) they want to finish up the AOL, go with the combined den approach. The cub scout program is geared to ages for a reason. My concern would be if the boys are emotionally ready. Since i don't know them, I am not even going to guess. The jump to a boy led troop for a beginning 5th grader may be big and it might end up being a big disservice to them.

What does the SM of the troop have to say?

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