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Relative Prestige of Adult Cub Scout vs Boy Scout Leaders

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"It says a lot about you."


Yes, it says that grandstanding moral exhibitionism is not among my selfish reasons for being involved in scouting. I'll let my moral betters bask in the warm glow of their own saintliness. Meanwhile I'll help Scouts other than my sons and help fellow Scouters, not because I'm saintly, but because I happen to be in the neighborhood for my own selfish reasons and doing scouting things anyway.


"are you anything other than a busy body parent??????"


Well yes I am. And thank you for adding "busy body parent" to the list of accolades fellow participants in this forum have awarded me. Since you ask, according to other participant in this forum, aside from your observation that I am a "busybody parent" I am also: a maker of "vague admonishments," a "troll," someone who "can't be bothered to take the time to learn what it's all about," a "hit and run poster," a person with a "chip on his shoulder," a person who makes "assertions based on zero facts," who needs to put on his "big kid boots," who is "obsessed" with his "rants," who makes "personal attacks," and who has a "sense of superiority."


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It's not that much of an issue in my district.


In my council? I honestly don't know.


To a certain extent, it is an issue with ALL scouters:


A few Wolf leaders smirk at Tiger leaders. A couple Webelos leaders might look down at Bear Leaders. Some Committee members kinda sneer at den leaders and CM's.


Some Boy Scout leaders give Cub Scout leaders patronizing looks. Every now and then, a crew leader acxts put out to be surrounded by boy scouters and cub scouters at RT.


But we are talking about a very, very small amount of people in our district who act this way.




Because in our council, our Cub Scouts by far outnumber troop , ship or crew numbers! This is in membership, camp attendance, fundraising, activity involvement.


When it comes to council camping, I ( as Cub Scout Worl Camp promotor - for our district) just have to say: "Hey we have a camp coming up! ..and people start grabbing camp registration forms.


The boy scout camp, on the other hand...they have to beg, plead, and really push it hard to get attendance.


Is this normal or typical?


Well, it doesn't sound that way based on the above posts.


Maybe it's our area? Maybe the parentys? Maybe the boy scout program needs work?


Or maybe parents see crossover as a staopping point?


I don'ty know.


But I do know this: most prestige is something that starts within. It's mostly egotistical and the most prestigious are only prestigious in their own minds.

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If you're an adult who is in it for the prestige, then you're in it for the wrong reasons. If you're worried about your level versus others, then you don't have enough to do. There is only one way to handle someone trying to play the "I'm better than you" prestige game, and that's to look them straight in the eye and laugh in their face, then ignore them forever more.


Want to see real prestige in Scouting? Check out the 12 SPL's gathering together on the first night of camporee to collect important information for the weekend. Check out the PLC meeting after a Troop meeting to go over plans. Check out the Den of Cub Scouts doing a flag ceremony on Veterans day. Watch a Police Explorer Post directing traffic at a community event. Watch a Venturing Crew climbing Mt. Katahdin at the end of a week long backpacking trip. Watch a Den Chief be awarded the Den Chief Service Award in front of his Pack and Den. Visit a Pack Meeting where Bobcats, Tigers, Wolves, Bears and Webelos are being recognized for their accomplishments. Visit a Troop Court-of Honor and watch a Tenderfoot (or any other rank) be recognized for his accomplishments. Check out the Sea Scouts racing in a regatta. Watch a Chapter Chief make an announcement at a Roundtable. Watch a Lodge Chief, and the other Lodge Officers, run a vibrant program for an OA Lodge full of youth and adults from all over the Council. Watch a Section Chief or National Chief address your Council's Executive Board. Watch a youth member quietly accept a heroism award. Attend a Court of Honor and watch a young person be awarded the Eagle Scout rank, the Venturing Silver award or the Sea Scouting Quartermaster Award.


Prestige? That's real prestige.

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"The red-headed step child of Scouts are the Sea Scouts, not Cub Scouts.




I know that every council is different so situations vary, except Sea Scouts being the redheaded step child. "


Eagle92, you put it too nicely. Sea Scouts are the black sheep of the redheaded step child family.

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I don't care about prestige. But I do care about being talked down to and/or getting condescending attitudes.

Agree.  Those that feel superior should remember that we are volunteers and do not consider anyone our bosses.  The work among us is a cooperative and collaborative effort and there is really no room for superior attitudes.  I solicit and appreciate advice from long-time Scouters and I usually seek it from the ones that are humble in spirit and generous in serving others.  An attitude of self-serving and arrogance really has no place in Scouting.  

Fortunately, our district leadership treats Cub Leaders respectfully and appreciates our willingness to step up.  The ones that treat us respectfully typically are the ones that have experienced Cub leadership themselves.  They also recognize that we feed Boy Scout Troops and we are usually the strongest participants with much of the recruiting in our district. 


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Jeff, I think it has less to do with a failure to recognize the part Cub Scouts play and the involvement required, but rather that some Boy Scout leaders see Cub Scout leaders intentionally or inadvertently turning Boy Scouts into Webelos III.


Think about like this: for as many BS leaders want to see Webelos adults crossing over with their sons to take positions in the Troop, there are others who think a mandatory 1 year break between CS and BS is necessary to "de-cub" the CS adults. So, in their view, CS leaders are appreciated as long as they are confined to Cub Scout Land...the moment they enter Boy Scout Land they are a distractor, if not an outright threat to the Patrol Method and the Boy Led Troop.


The troops I've been involved with have great relationships with their packs and their Webelos dens...but I can see the other point of view as well if that relationship isn't mutually supporting.

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Scoutfish writes:

"It's not that much of an issue in my district.


In my council? I honestly don't know."


Maybe it's because I'm so new but like Scoutfish says it doesn't seem to be a major problem in our district. I think perhaps some people just have their heads twisted around some issue that they can be dismissive. I guess there are people out there who could get some ego boost out of being a Super Scouter.


Most scouters in our area are too intent on putting in a good effort to worry about prestige. When we do pop our heads out of our own issues at a District or Council event I hear more "wow" than "sneer" from each other. Scout Show was a great event for that.

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I can see how this can play out:


Cub-Parent #1 crosses over, gets up in the face of boys and adults about how disorderly meetings are. How things have to change or they will find another troop for jr. How, "boy led can't possibly mean what's happening here." SM or CC spend much of their time telling parent to chill.


Cub-Parent #2: crosses over. Meek and teachable, ready to roll with the punches. But troop leader -- worn raw from the last experience -- decides to be preemptive, explain that boy-scouts is the next level up from cubs and the game changes, and maybe some time in the dugout will do the parent a world of good.


Is it any wonder that the message comes across as "You don't know Jack for all your years in the B-league!"?


I liked the way the troop CC explained it when my oldest crossed over. He had us sign up for summer camp and settle accounts for our boys individually in a separate room. Then he said "You understand if you come to camp, you won't be following your son from A to B to C like you did at Webelo's resident? You sit around talking to us adults. We stay away from the campfire until the boys are in bed. For meals you rotate as a guest at each patrol, not just your boy's. Your responsibility is to ask how the day is going. You eat what they cook without telling them how to cook it unless they ask for help. Except for your personal silverware, you don't help with the dishes. And, when the boys are off at program, there's really not much to do but sit by the edge of the lake and fish."


"Let me get this straight, I have a week where someone cooks my meals and nobody expects me to do much except catch bass and panfish? Where's that dotted line?"


I would like to think that he would have made the same offer if I were female, but even if he didn't, I liked his style and have since used it with both moms and dads. That is: less talk of position, more talk of tasks.

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In my own experience I've seen the pecking order on the unit level. I joined a pack as 'a dad' and found myself Cubmaster about a month later. As I began to meet the adult leaders in the troop it became painfully clear that they had little to no interest in the pack that fed them with boys for the troop. I warned them that I was going to run a program that would double the size of the pack in 2 years and they better be ready for a LOT of scouts.


They didn't catch on, ended up leaving when the troop exploded growth wise and now I'm a Webelos Den Leader and Troop Committee chair. The pack has changed CM 3 times since I stepped down and continues to grow. It also has a great connection with the Troop and our Webelos start visiting Troop events the moment they become that year.


People that don't get the connection between the incredible importance of a strong pack to feed your troop amaze me.

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I don't know about prestige, but it's extremely easy to witness that some of the most seasoned and presumably respected posters here who are solely affiliated with the Boy Scout program do not give any kudus...er, sorry, "kudos," to Cub Scout leaders and Cub Scouting in general.

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Scouts of all levels are the cowboys in this rodeo; we're the clowns. So get down off your high horse and let's keep 'em safe and keep their show rollin'.


Cub Scout Scouters looked down on? I can't figure that. Even if it promised rock-star prestige, complete with a bevy of nubile groupies, I'd balk at returning to Cub Scouts as anything other than a guest to give a beleaguered DL a respite from the routine. But it ain't because I look down on them, it's because I'm not up to it.

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