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sgtron116

Assistant Cubmaster

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I am just curious what is the real role of the Assistant Cubmaster. I have noticed that it is a position that is kind of skipped over in some publications(e.g. Program Helps). I have read the description in the Cub Scout Leader Book, but how does it work in the real world.

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First, here is what is on the BSA website:

http://www.scouting.org/cubscouts/about/thepack/acmas.html

 

Every pack should have at least one assistant Cubmaster. In most packs, two or three will be helpful, allowing the Cubmaster to divide responsibilities. At least one assistant Cubmaster should be able to replace the Cubmaster's position in case of an emergency. The assistant Cubmaster is recommended by the Cubmaster, approved by the pack committee and chartered organization, and registered as an adult leader of the BSA.

 

Qualifications: Is at least 18 years old, subscribes to the Declaration of Religious Principle, and agrees to abide by the Scout Oath or Promise and the Scout Law. Possesses the moral, educational, and emotional qualities that the Boy Scouts of America deems necessary to afford positive leadership to youth.

 

Responsibilities: An assistant Cubmaster's responsibilities (as designated by the Cubmaster) are to

 

Help the Cubmaster as needed. Be ready to fill in for the Cubmaster, if necessary.

Complete Cubmaster Fast Start Training and position-specific Basic Leader Training. Attend monthly roundtables.

Participate in pack meetings.

Supervise den chiefs and see that they are trained.

Conduct the monthly den chief planning meeting for all den leaders, assistant den leaders, and den chiefs to plan and coordinate weekly den meetings and pack meeting participation.

Work with neighborhood troops that supply den chiefs and into which Webelos Scouts may graduate.

Help inform pack leaders of training opportunities and arrange for them to attend training sessions.

Work with the pack committee to develop and promote an ongoing plan for recruiting new boys.

Work with the Cubmaster and pack committee on pack reregistration.

Help with pack activities, such as dinners, derbies, bike safety workshops, service projects, etc.

Work with the pack committee on outings to see that the pack and dens qualify for the National Summertime Pack Award.

Participate in the annual pack program planning conference and pack leaders' meetings.

Promote the religious emblems program.

Support the policies of the BSA.

 

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PARSING TIME!!!!!!!!!

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Let's go through that, and we'll see that I wasn't so hot an ACM:

 

 

Help the Cubmaster as needed. Be ready to fill in for the Cubmaster, if necessary. This was perhaps my most important task. I'd help CM prepare the awards for presentation after they came in from the Scout Shop. You haven't seen disappointment until you've goofed on a 9 year old not getting the Arrow Point he deserves!

 

Complete Cubmaster Fast Start Training and position-specific Basic Leader Training. Attend monthly roundtables. Yes, this was part of the job, in part because RT is a GREAT place to meet and learn in my District! :) My Cub training is actually before the current NLE generation; it's on the to-do list to update.

Participate in pack meetings. Everything from set up to cleanup!

 

Supervise den chiefs and see that they are trained. BTW, this doesn't mean... be the Trainer of Den Chiefs. It's help them find the training. Frankly, we didn't do that good a job of finding Den Chiefs for our Dens. If I were to go back into a Pack, this would be perhaps THE priority the rest of the month!

 

Conduct the monthly den chief planning meeting for all den leaders, assistant den leaders, and den chiefs to plan and coordinate weekly den meetings and pack meeting participation. The Good Idea Fairy has obviously invaded Cub Scouting. When I was a youth member, the Den Mother (yes, I'm THAT old) and her Den Chief met together at a mutually agreeable time and place. Frankly, I think a DL and his/her DC should not need a lot of adult supervision. Besides, in the units I've seen, most DLs make Pack Committee if for no other reason than to visit with the Advancement Coordinator!

 

Work with neighborhood troops that supply den chiefs and into which Webelos Scouts may graduate. A lot of this actually falls on the Webelos II DL. That said, I think the ACM should coordinate with area Troops and get support needs on the table. OTOH, it is a symbiotic relationship: A good Troop details an ASM to reach back into area Packs and see how the Troop can help. It can be a win/win!

 

Help inform pack leaders of training opportunities and arrange for them to attend training sessions. In retrospect, this is too easy. Our Council calendar is usually pretty darn good about listing training.

 

Work with the pack committee to develop and promote an ongoing plan for recruiting new boys. Frankly, we relied on the annual School Night for Activities, and put leaders and Cubs, in Class A AND Class B uniforms (some stood the desk, some played games!) where they were visible to 1st-4th graders.

 

Work with the Cubmaster and pack committee on pack reregistration. Baloney. Too many cooks spoil the soup. One person... whoever works Packmaster, should be the point person on reahcarter!

 

Help with pack activities, such as dinners, derbies, bike safety workshops, service projects, etc. Comes right along with Pack meetings. The ACM is a pair of hands and legs to help get things done!

 

Work with the pack committee on outings to see that the pack and dens qualify for the National Summertime Pack Award. No, work with the CM. Program is program. Now, the family picnic that goes with the summer swim... yeah, that belongs to the Committee.

 

Participate in the annual pack program planning conference and pack leaders' meetings. AKA the August swim night. The kids play in the water, the leaders work the calendar. One of the nice things of Cubbing is between the elaborate pre-packaging of the National Program and KISMIF, it really does almost present itself!

 

Promote the religious emblems program. Our District has some great resources, it was below the line for us, but probably shouldn't be!

 

Support the policies of the BSA. OK. Got it. Follow the rules. Next!

 

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I've been ACM for several years. Here's my take.

 

I'm the key assistant to the pack. We've divided leadership in our pack between "executive" leaders and regular uniformed and non-uniformed leaders.

 

The exec team is CC, CM and ACM.

 

My responsibility is to help out in any way possible. The CM and I tag team a lot during pack meetings, to the point where our (mercifully) former unit commissioner wondered who the real leader was. We get along very well and bounce ideas to make a better program.

 

He's a good idea guy as am I but I'm a bit more organized and able to make stuff come together to make a great program for the kids.

 

In my opinion, the ACM is the guy who makes it happen.

 

We also have a succession plan for when he graduates. I would become CM but it would only be for one year so we're considering trying to develop another dad with younger kids to take our CM's place. It's really going to change the pack as he's been CM for 9 of the ten years our pack has existed.

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In my real world, the role the ACM plays is very dependent on the Cubmaster. A Cubmaster who is good at defining roles and delegating tasks can get tremendous value out of an ACM. When I was CM I had three ACMs, and I tried to give them as much as I could of the day-to-day work. If I were to do it over, I'd give them even more.

 

A good, valuable ACM will do more than just wait for assignments from the CM, though. He'll look around at the program and try to figure out where he can help. It can be any of the areas listed in the job description, or any of a myriad of other activities.

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I serve as an ACM and a Webelos Den Leader. I spend most of my time working the Den Leader role. In my ACM role, my 2 most important jobs are to help the CM with anything he needs to delegate to me and be ready fill in in for him at any given moment.

 

Much of the other ACM responsibilities listed by National are fine ideas but are really dependent on the needs of your Pack. They serve as good check list to make sure your Pack is providing a quality program. Some of them seem to overlap with other position duties, but I suppose that's intentional to make sure there are no gaps in program delivery.

 

Good luck and have fun!

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