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No more Cub Scout awards?


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I'm somewhat confused with what I've been hearing regarding the new program launching later this year as pertains to Cub Scout awards like World Conservation, Outdoor Activity, Summertime Pack, etc. I understand that the Nova/Supernova awards are being discontinued at the national level, but will still be offered at the council level if the council so chooses. (Side note: I'm relocating soon to the Raleigh-Durham "Research Triangle" area, so I would HOPE that particular council keeps the STEM programs going!)

I've seen presentations on the new program say that very few scouts ever pursued the awards, so the award activities were being redesigned/repurposed into rank badge electives so that more scouts will do the activities. Does this mean that the awards are being phased out entirely and being transformed into electives? Or are the award requirements becoming electives with the intention to increase the award's visibility in the hopes that more scouts will earn them?

Thank you.

 

 

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38 minutes ago, MisterH said:

Does this mean that the awards are being phased out entirely and being transformed into electives?

Yes.

This was a part of the presentation at our council leadership summit yesterday.

20240203_104720.jpg

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6 hours ago, MikeS72 said:

Yes.

This was a part of the presentation at our council leadership summit yesterday.

20240203_104720.jpg

Wonder what the nationwide award rate is for scouts.   

Edited by Navybone
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6 hours ago, InquisitiveScouter said:

Do they have the "attachment" rates for Scouts BSA awards?

This was part of a presentation by Anthony Berger, who is the National Director of Cub Scout programs.  I do not recall anyone asking about the Scouts BSA rates.  This is the overall rate nationwide, which I am sure varies depending on district or council.  Here we see a lot of Cub earn the shooting sports awards at the many Cub camping events our council hosts.  My district also offers 5 -6 free shooting sports days each year.

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7 minutes ago, SSScout said:

See? This is what happens when the adults take over. It becomes award oriented rather than fun oriented.  

We make earning the awards fun 😜 

Fun with a purpose.

The purpose is to experience the personal growth (and other Scouting methods) reached while pursuing the award.  The award is simply a "tangible" milestone marking the intangibles we experience along the way...

Edited by InquisitiveScouter
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33 minutes ago, InquisitiveScouter said:

We make earning the awards fun 😜 

Fun with a purpose.

The purpose is to experience the personal growth (and other Scouting methods) reached while pursuing the award.  The award is simply a "tangible" milestone marking the intangibles we experience along the way...

My Cub Scouting days were back in the 1980s, with the yellow and red beads marking progress toward Wolf and Bear, and with the gold and silver arrow points for electives. While I had lots of fun, I especially loved getting a new bead or arrowhead because of the sense of progress and accomplishment it gave me. Plenty of the other boys in pack felt the same way.

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11 hours ago, InquisitiveScouter said:

Fun with a purpose.

Watch that .  BSA has gotten into trouble using that motto/slogan. It is copyrighted by  High Lights magazine.   

BSA wants us to use "GAME WITH A PURPOSE" 

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13 hours ago, MisterH said:

new bead or arrowhead because of the sense of progress and accomplishment it gave me. Plenty of the other boys in pack felt the same way.

You can't charge $3.50 for those beads!

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I want to echo what several people have said about Bobcat being a badge and an important first badge for scouts to learn the core of scouts and to receive something.

Maybe its just me and my appreciation of eclectic uniforms but I never loved the belt loops.  When I was a youth in the early 90's they were all sports so it kinda didn't matter?  At least my Den's were mostly sports.  Now they're the advancement which I think at the core is decent along with the electives though I think the Webelo pins are better as many kids (mine most of the time) don't wear the belt and as many said girls tend not to especially.

I think identical badge free (or one badge per year) uniforms are a bit plain and don't really exhibit scouts who go above and beyond earing awards from those who just check a few boxes and advance when they age up

We also used to do badge vests which my son's pack does not but I'm trying to bring back, again as a way for scouts who do more to see that visually

In a world where so much instant gratification online with "Achievements" and such encouraging Scouts to do extra is likely a great way to keep them engaged and keep them in the program

A lot of the updates from what I have read seem like good changes but some definitely seem a sterile

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I feel the biggest reason why awards like World Conservation and Nova were not undertaken by more Packs is because the requirements were not printed in the handbook! Most of our Pack leaders are new to scouting and didn't know they were available. They have their hands full getting through the rank requirements,. Then there are plenty of electives to do once the requirements are done, and those requirements are printed in the handbook.

The issue isn't whether the award is a patch or beltloop. After Lions were added to the program, plus the beltloops for Tigers, Wolves, and Bears... It doesn't leave much room for many more beltloops!

Edited by DannyG
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13 minutes ago, DannyG said:

Most of our Pack leaders are new to scouting and didn't know they were available.

I agree with this. There is a ton to the scouting program and you don't know what you don't know. On the other hand, when I was a new leader I took it upon myself to familiarize myself with Scoutbook, which led to me to all these awards, which led me to research. There HAS to be some type of proactivity on the volunteers side as well, or at the very least, show them where to look. 

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I often say, the Scouting program is a mile wide, and, if you choose a specific area, you can go a mile deep as well.

Ranks and requirements are the breadth... merit badges, awards, and further training (Kodiak, NYLT, NAYLE, etc) are the depth...

For adults, you can go even deeper in the training opportunities offered in Aquatics, Shooting Sports, High Adventure, Outdoor Ethics, STEM, etc, etc, etc...

I wholeheartedly concur with @OaklandAndy, in that most adult volunteers are simply ignorant of the opportunities Scouting offers for all ages.

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