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tyke

LDS Dropping Senior Youth Scouting

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Posted (edited)

There's that other shoe.

 

Conservatively that's 5.7 million in dues alone. No clue what FOS and "supply" revenue is, but for 180,000 boys it won't be small.

Edited by Col. Flagg

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No surprise here.  

 

I think a lot of churches will be dropping BSA.  They will make public statements that it has nothing to do with gay and transgender issues, to avoid bad press, and then drop the program.

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This article has a bit more detail, I think. Discussed other issues such as total membership numbers, fees, FOS and ownership/use of council camps in Utah.

 

This move will most certainly force BSA to get more aggressive with their need to increase membership; meaning, you can bet they will now open Boy Scouts to girls. The possibility of losing 480,000 Scouts will be a HUGE blow to BSA. One they won't be able to cover without a radical change to membership.

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Posted (edited)

I have to agree with DuctTape. It is sad to see so many youth leaving scouting but BSA made far too many accommodations for the LDS units and given the LDS church was too much control or voice in the organization and they pay greatly reduced fees and dues 

 

We need to refocus and get Scouting back in the hands of the volunteers, the unit level volunteers.  Too many paid scouters are completely out of touch with the units and the non LDS chartered units. 

Edited by Snow Owl
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Associated Press' article, published in Washington Post

 

That's an 8% hit on the national youth population enrolled in BSA.  These are the youth who go to Philmont, Jambo, Sea Base and Boundary Waters.  This is not something to brush off.

 

I think COL Flagg has one possible vision of the future, whether we like it or not.  I also think it's possible BSA will follow GSUSA in leaving the franchising/licensing model and go to direct membership.

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Posted (edited)
We need to refocus and get Scouting back in the hands of the volunteers, the unit level volunteers.  Too many paid scouters are completely out of touch with the units and the non LDS chartered units.

 

Good luck.  I think National will go the other way.  Corporate operation of o units with volunteers under supervision of the professional staff.

Edited by John-in-KC
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Shrinking the number of high paid professionals has been needed for a very long time.  For a program that states it is "volunteer run" BSA spends huge amounts of money on paid staff that have no contact with scouts (as in the youth).

 

I have no way of knowing the future, but I know the School that charters my units would drop BSA in a heartbeat if there was even more "supervision" from the corporate side of BSA.  To change a quote from Reagan;  The Professionals are not the solution to Scouting's problems, the Professionals ARE the problem.

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Here's the actual announcement from the LDS Church.

 

I am wondering what was so "difficult to implement" about the Venturing and Varsity programs within the LDS. Any LDS leaders out there who can chime in?

 

Also, won't this certainly impact the number of Eagles? As I understand how the LDS used Scouting, younger Scouts stayed in Boy Scouts through First Class (or 14). After 14, they moved to Venturing and got Eagle there. If that's right then these numbers are going to go down big time.

 

I wonder if LDS boys aged 14-18 will still enroll in Scouting elsewhere to get Eagle.

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Posted (edited)

I am a little curious about this statement in the article:
 

The church will allow those among the 185,000 or so older young men who want to continue to register with the Boy Scouts to pursue rank advancements, including Eagle Scout, with the troops in their congregations. That will be a decision left to the boys and their families.

 
It's my understanding that, prior to this change, the LDS Church required boys in its units to move from a Boy Scout Troop to a Varsity Team when they turned 14 and to a Venturing Crew when they turned 16.  I am presuming that some of these Varsity and Venturing members were/are still working on Star, Life and/or Eagle.  So what the LDS Church seems to be saying is that kids in a Boy Scout troop can stay in the troop past the age of 13, in order continue advancing through the Boy Scout ranks.  This raises a few questions.  Say a kid makes Eagle at 16 as a member of the troop.  Do they have to leave the troop immediately after making Eagle? Can they stay and get palms?  Or what?  And if they have to leave after they "finish advancing", that seems to fly in the face of all the hundreds of discussions we have had in this forum, about advancement not being one of the "purposes" of Scouting, and being only one of the "aims."  Why not just let the kids stay in the troop as long as the BSA lets them, which is the 18th birthday? We had one Scout who aged out at Second Class.  Another question is, while a Scout who is currently a Varsity Scout or Venturer (one of the "185,000 older young men") will apparently be able to register with an LDS troop "to pursue rank advancements", what about the kids who are  currently still in the troop and below the age of 14?  Will they have to leave when they turn 14?  And what about kids who are not yet old enough to be Boy Scouts?  When they join, will they have to leave when they turn 14?
 
I know we have some LDS Scouters in this forum, maybe they can shed some light on this.
 
The other thing that occurs to me is that if the LDS does not want to have Venture crews (or troops with Scouts aged 14 through 17), can't some other CO's get involved to accommodate the boys who are interested in these programs?  This change only affects units chartered to LDS churches.

Edited by NJCubScouter

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LOL, not one scouting organization in North America increased membership after it switched to include the other genders, lifestyle and non religious (3Gs). Accepting girls will make progressives happy, but it will not fix the membership or revenue struggles. In fact it will likely exacerbate the problems for the near future until National adjust the program to fit a more urban lifestyle.

 

As for civic organization vs. religious institutions, the political environment is discouraging civic organizations from getting into the outdoor youth programs. They will likely decrease their support instead of increase.

 

Ironically the religious institutions took on the BSA because their missions are similar for youth. The religious institutions, more than most civic COs, have the most motivation for a Scouting program simply because of the the BSA mission.

 

I think what the progressives really want is to change the BSA Mission so that religion isn't a critical element of the program. But going that direction will only add to the heated cultural tension, so it won't increase membership or funding either.

 

What scouting is today is as good as it will ever be. The future is less boy run (youth run), less outdoors, and less personal decision making. 

 

Barry

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