Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Eagle1993

Girls in Cub Scouts - Actions taken to date

Recommended Posts

As the Cub Scout program is the first impacted, I'm curious on what actions leaders have taken to date and interesting findings. Our pack has discussed this with our COR and our CO will discuss this topic at their upcoming board meeting. Our committee met and agreed to recommend going coed. We sent an email to our parents explaining the current status (no change) along with our committee recommendations and the CO plans.

 

There is a lot of concern of the damage this will do to GSUSA. Mixed feedback on how we should run dens (coed "on paper" separate) or pure single gender.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Background:  We have three units with two CO's that work together.  I'm CC and COR for the Troop, and COR for the Crew.  The Pack is a different CO.

 

Anyway, we're not sure what to do yet.  And the reason for that is the question about "what happens" at the middle school level.  My concern is going co-ed with the Pack (which I really don't think will be that difficult), but then not liking the way the middle-school-girl program develops (or not having the adult leadership to implement it).

 

I don't know how it will all shake out.  But my blurry crystal ball says that when the dust settles, we'll have:

 

Co-ed Cub Scout dens, from Lions to Bear;

Separate Webelos Dens, 4th and 5th grade (so a 2-year den, one for boys and one for girls);

A co-ed Troop, that's two troops on paper, with single-sex patrols;

A co-ed Venturing crew

 

But, who knows.  For better or worse, we live in interesting times.

 

Our CO's also host some GS troops.  I'm not sure where they all stand on this; some may wish to keep with what they're doing, others may want to go BSA.  Nobody's said they can't do both.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you run co-ed dens and the program specifies separate dens, then you're not running a BSA Cub Scout program. That's in addition to not being trustworthy or obedient.

 

Some may consider that harsh, but if you're going to skirt around a rule, it leads people to ask what else are you not doing correctly? YPT? Advancement?

  • Upvote 1
  • Downvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@@numbersnerd ... I doubt anything will come out to state an all girls Bear den and an all boys Bear den can't meet at the same time and place each having their own leader. Not sure how that is not Trustworthy. I'm assuming that is what Chrisos is thinking. We will follow the letter of the rules nationals comes out with... how we follow them will be up to our Pack. We already do that with multiple Tiger dens Who meet at the same time and place. I honestly don't know what direction we will take in terms of den meetings. We need to see the rules from Nationals and discuss with leaders.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@@numbersnerd ... I doubt anything will come out to state an all girls Bear den and an all boys Bear den can't meet at the same time and place each having their own leader. Not sure how that is not Trustworthy. I'm assuming that is what Chrisos is thinking. We will follow the letter of the rules nationals comes out with... how we follow them will be up to our Pack. We already do that with multiple Tiger dens Who meet at the same time and place. I honestly don't know what direction we will take in terms of den meetings. We need to see the rules from Nationals and discuss with leaders.

When you use phrases like " on paper", it brings up questions of integrity. Which is squarely in trustworthy territory.

 

Now, whether you are intending to ignore rules and policies when they are inconvenient or made a poor choice in wording I don't know. But I thought it worth commenting on for the benefit of others that might consider following such a path. In that vein it is also worth mentioning that the unit belongs to the CO. So abiding by their wishes as well as policy is more important than how you or the committee wants to run the program.

Edited by numbersnerd
  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you run co-ed dens and the program specifies separate dens, then you're not running a BSA Cub Scout program. That's in addition to not being trustworthy or obedient.

 

Some may consider that harsh, but if you're going to skirt around a rule, it leads people to ask what else are you not doing correctly? YPT? Advancement?

What a load of garbage. Look, in our pack we had a year where we had only one wolf. So his spent most of his time with the bear den so he wouldn't be lonely, but did the wolf requirements (technically he was in a den of one, with his dad as the wolf den leader, and he did do some of the activities on his own). So, were we not being trustworthy or obedient? Of course not, we were dealing with the issue the best we could. And it worked out, he and the bears had lots of fun. The next year we had three new bears, so he was with them in their own den (again with his father as den leader).

 

I don't think anyone would condemn having the lone wolf attend bear den meetings, but if it's a girl? Suddenly we are morally bankrupt?

 

There are lots of legitimate concerns with going coed, but throwing moral aspersions like this is not helpful, nor scout like.

Edited by Rick_in_CA
  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not saying we're planning to go out an intentionally "break the rules".  But what do you do when you're a small pack, you *want* to include girls, but only one or two show up for a given den?  Tell them no?  What if you get enough girls for a girls-only Wolf den, but not for a girls-only Bear den?  Tell the 2nd grade girls they can do Cub Scouts, but tell the 3rd grade ones they can't?

 

I've got a least a couple of families that have stated interested in their daughters being involved in cub scouts.  But unless there's some flexibility in implementation to be able to respond to a local pack's membership and leadership numbers, and some clarity as to what we're supposed to do at the Boy Scout level, I"m leaning to sticking with boys only.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you run co-ed dens and the program specifies separate dens, then you're not running a BSA Cub Scout program. That's in addition to not being trustworthy or obedient.

Some may consider that harsh, but if you're going to skirt around a rule, it leads people to ask what else are you not doing correctly? YPT? Advancement?

@@numbersnerd, allow me to reply with a folk song while my coffee brews ...

 

Momma don't allow no girls cub scouting 'round here.

Momma don't allow no two dens playing 'round here.

We don't care what momma don't allow,

We'll scout together anyhow.

No, momma don't allow no first class women 'round here.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The separate den policy is a challenge. Our pack has 60 boys and 8 dens today.

 

It's going to be tough for them to go co-ed. They will have to add at least 1 new den every year. They'll be 90-100 kids and 10-12 dems I'm no time. I'm not sure that's a good thing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have a current den with a boy girl fraternal twin. They have a single mother who is also the den leader. The girl has been attending den meetings for several years as a sibling. She has dropped out of Girl Scouts and would like to join our pack. Her mom emailed me the day the news came out. Will I force her to now attend different den meetings when the parents, both den leaders and her mother would object? I doubt the girls den would have many members... maybe 2-3 since they are older. Forcing a girl to leave her brother and their den who she has been an informal part of, a single mother to either quit leading her sons den or do double duty and to implement a policy the entire den objects to... is not Helpful, Friendly, Courteous, Kind or Cheerful. Perhaps you can say our solution is not Trustworthy... but I've already had discussions with our SE. Perhaps we are more Loyal to our current pack members than the spirit of the National policy. Yep... probably not fully Obiedent. I don't see Thrifty, Brave,Clean or a Reverent factoring in much. I'm sure we will have all Girl dens with 6-10 scouts that can meet separately. But I don't believe that will be the case in all situations and for someone to throw out accusations that we aren't following the Scout Law shows little knowledge of scouting or situational leadership.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's funny how policy is pushed aside by practicality in the field.

 

My $0.02

I couldn't agree more.

 

I think a lot of packs will be faced with either turning away girls or not following the spirit of the policy of single gender dens. Plus we have individual unique situations like the one I mentioned above. I honestly don't know what we will see but I do know we will need plans for these situations and a priority in our mission. Right now, our priority is serving all youth going forward which means we may have situations where we violate the spirit of BSA policy.

 

I'm curious if other Packs that have started discussion and decided to go coed but are willing to deny individual girls membership or force them into 1 - 2 person dens while there have stong all Boy dens with solid leaders.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Its interesting how this thread is playing out.  A lot of people are up in arms about the whole thing are still wringing their hands over how its going to affect people in the field and here it is, less than a week after the announcement, and there are already people in the field thinking about the practicalities and getting ready to do what they need to do to make it work.

 

If one looks at the fact sheet and faq, it makes clear that the options for Packs will be to remain an all boy pack, create all girl packs, or have co-ed packs with single gender dens (it also makes clear that there will be separate Troops for girls and boys - no co-ed troops as an option).  That will be the policy.  What is the BSA's means of enforcing that policy?  The Scout Law - in particular, as Numbersnerd points out - a Scout is Trustworthy.  The BSA is going to trust us to follow the policy.  They are going to trust that you don't run co-ed dens.

 

Is that going to be practicable?    Clearly not - we all know it won't be.  National knows it won't be.  But the policy is designed to be as simple as possible (really - how complicated is boy only packs, girl only packs and co-ed packs with single gender dens?) without delving into oodles of "what ifs?" (the kinds of questions the field, practicable folks like yourselves are already asking).

 

Every policy that the BSA has, every rule, every advancement requirement - everything - works on one principle - a Scout is Trustworthy.  They trust that Den Leaders won't just take a Cub Scouts handbook and sign off on every requirement without anything being done.  They trust that Packs will follow family camping guidelines.  They will trust that Packs will follow the policies on single gender dens - and if circumstances prevent it from being practicable, they'll do what they always do as long as it doesn't threaten the health and safety of the Cubs - turn a blind eye.  No one on the professional staff is going to be inspecting your units to make sure you comply, and the volunteer commissioner staff doesn't have any power to force you to comply.  Like the lone wolf in a bear den, things sometimes happen.

 

While a Scout is Trustworthy, there is another important component that comes in - The Scout Oath, specifically "On my Honor, I WILL DO MY BEST...to obey the Scout Law.

 

Its good to see folks discussing how to move forward - let's all remember that all we can really do is to do our best to make it happen.

  • Upvote 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@@CalicoPenn.

 

Great summary. While I am still interested in everyone's opinions on how this was announced and if it is a good idea, I have a pack to run and will be facing these issues head on sooner than later.

 

I wish the BSA either went all in coed or kept girls out. This policy is going to be a nightmare to implement. Our pack is faced with the options of our Trustworthiness being questioned or crushing the souls of young girls who may want to join. I know in 2-3 years we will figure this out... I just think they setup a very difficult starting point.

 

Right now, I would rather be fly fishing on the river for our annual salmon run instead of chasing down annual dues, planning our upcoming rain gutter regatta or any one of the hundreds of actions we all do in support of scouting. I do it because my dad did it for me when I was a kid and because I believe it is the best organization for kids to have fun while learning life skills.

 

I expect our CO to come back and state we are coed. I know our Pack and school and can anticipate the challenges and opportunities. As you stated, we will do our best to obey the scout law! I hope we can use these forums over the next few years to share best practices openly as we all face this transition.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

E93, I haven't called our COR or our IH or the pastor. Currently all three are women.

My guess is that thier stance will be if adults can step up, bring in the girls. But, don't sacrifice the boys in the process.

Nobody will like the extra paperwork.

 

My church declined to charter a pack last year. I asked the pastor and the education director if this shift changes things. I'll let you know if it does.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×