Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Beavah

Should the US move to a one-unit approach?

Recommended Posts

Basementdweller ... What you describe is what I was thinking of as the concept. The only difference is there is no "join" situation. Just continue into the Boy Scout ranks, similar to continuing into the Wolf, Bear, Webelos or other ranks. Good concept too on events. The only important role is that the units need to still meet separately as different ages need different things. But, I'd argue Webelos need to meet separate from Cubs because Cub Scouts now starts at Kindergarten and that's too big of a difference between Webelos and K.

 

Cambridgeskip ... "Group Scout Leader" ... I like that concept. Keep the unit leaders, but move the committee up a bit into a group committee. I see the UK also has a concept of a Group Executive Committee that includes the unit leaders and other key persons. That concept seems correct.

 

Right now it just seems broken when a charter org provides a pack, a troop and a crew but then administers them separately. It just seems self-defeating. Of course then can do differently, if they realize it's important.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Fred,

 

Ideally that is how it's suppose to run via the the current charter system. Think of the COR as a group leader, and to help coodinate the units.

 

Problems are the following

1) CORs don't really do their jobs. On the unit level, unless the COR is also teh CC, I've only seen 1, and she was the IH and COR.

 

2) In my neck of the woods, there is a VERY strong anti Cub Scout bias, where some units do not have anything to do with the pack until crossover. Heck I remember the troop associated with my old pack was ticked off because they did not get any Webelos the year I moved up to Boy Scouts. And the reason: They would not do anything with us.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't think the COR job description is the same as a group leader concept. COR is more representative of the CO and signs off on the leaders. But not really an involved executive role. The Group Leader concept seems more involved in getting the program running in a specific direction. There is overlap but a definit difference.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As a Cub Leader, COR/CC for the Pack, COR for the Troop, soon to have kids in both programs, I would LOVE to see the units combined administratively.

 

How much easier would it be if we had 1 Popcorn Kernel. 1 Treasurer. 1 person handling ordering advancements, etc. All the stuff behind the scenes that isn't directly program related is duplicated.

 

But mroe importantly, By the time I get a parent up to speed as a cub leader, and they start to really get invested in the program... Their son crosses over to the troop. Because they are seen as different programs, it's REALLY hard to get them to come back and volunteer at the pack level. Likewise, I know several cub parents that are waiting to volunteer until their son is in the troop. They may have skills like EMT experience, or experience as an NRA Rangemaster / Instructor that the troop could really use... But since their son is in blue, they aren't involved at the troop level.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

At a Canadian camp this summer, our troop camped next to a Sea Scout unit from an island adjacent to Montreal. At least that's how they described themselves. Co-ed, multi-age. Their camp contigent had 10 to 16 year olds in camp, but they also had a few age 16 and up members that were part of camp staff. After checking out their website, when I got home, I realized they are really a Scout group, from Beavers to Rovers. Seems like there is a group committee, not unit committees. Looked like the system works well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've seen a couple troop+crew committees operating under one chair. When it works, it works great. Never seen a pack+troop combination, but don't see why it can't happen.

 

Still the social transition from elementary to middle school is huge around here. Schedules are radically different. Our MS and HS share the same facility, so there is a big break that makes it difficult for a parent to adjust. If you have two kids, all of a sudden you're pulled in two different directions just to keep on an even keel with school. No matter how scouting is configured, you're not getting a lot of time out of those folks unless they're insane, or until they get their kids back in the same building.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know of a troop and a pack in my district that have a combined committee, dual registered as troop and pack committee members/chair. It works very well for them, and there is a strong bond between the units. They have a strong committee chair that makes sure it works.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This terrifies all the elitist SM and CC.

 

All those troops that don't have Pack associated with them and try to snipe Webelos 2 at the crossover time.

 

 

Someone said that Packs have 5 years in the cubs and should be able to pick where they go......As the Packs previous tiger, wolf, bear webelos den leader, Acting CC, ACM, CM and Popcorn Kernel....I have a stake in the boys and where they go too.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I see benefits and dowsides to a one-unit approach...

 

1) would it mean you MUST have a troop for your pack? Or can multiple packs still feed a given troop? The attrition issue cited would be cause for concern.

 

2) If you have a well run pack and a poorly run troop, or vice versa... do you have a chance to opt out? to another unit? I wouldn't want to be a CM forced into feeding boys into a failing troop, or a SM trying to pull cubs from a lethargic pack.

 

3) I don't think this would make unit volunteer positions any easier to fill. You either have an awards chair for 40-50 boys, or you have one for the 100+ combined unit. You either need co-chairs or face burnout problems at that point.

 

4) Same issue for fundraising. Do the younger and older sections do their own and operate their own budgets? If not, WHO gets to decide if unit $$ goes towards funding the new pinewood derby track, or a Philmont Trek for the older boys? I see HUGE opportunity for unit infighting with regards to funds for program.

 

5) Not sure if the "Boy Scout" (older) scouts would want to lead mentor the younger guys. We (as an overall organization) have a hard time getting older scouts to teach younger scouts and also to serve as Den Chiefs for cub packs. I don't see this changing if you throw them all in one unit. Maybe I'm off base on this, but my gut tells me otherwise.

 

The pro's - you get continuity in the program, you can utilize good leaders and volunteers at multiple levels of the program simultaneously.

 

The con's - more leader burn-out as jobs are the same, just more kids on the roster to keep track of. Potential for infighting with regards to fundraising and appropriations for program.

 

Dean

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Of course - you all realize this is how many LDS units function now.

 

One committee, one committee chair, one CoR. The SM is basically the senior adult leader for all programs (GSM). Young men move seamlessly between programs - to the point that Varsity & Venturers still refer to themselves as "scouts".

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

DeanRx wrote: "would it mean you MUST have a troop for your pack?" ... Our pack has no parrallel troop. I'd hope we could change our charter to be chartered under the same organization that hosts a troop. They would just host multiple packs.

 

DeanRx wrote: "I wouldn't want to be a CM forced into feeding boys into a failing troop" ... I'd bet that units that create successful troops would also have successful packs. And vice versa. ... PLUS, any scout at any time can change membership to another unit. I'd rather see the emphasis on changing to a unit that matches your needs and less on shopping for a unit when you become a Webelos scout.

 

DeanRx wrote: "I don't see this changing if you throw them all in one unit." ... I'd see it as one unit, but not one program. You'd have a Cub Scout program for the K-3rd grade. You have a Webelos program for the 4th & 5th graders. A Boy Scout program for older scouts. They'd come together a few times a year for a picnic or a B&G banquet. But generally, each sub-group focuses on age / program appropriate materials.

 

...

 

Basementdweller mentioned the stake in where Webelos cross over into. My question is why do we emphasize Webelos shopping for a troop, but not emphasize Tigers, Wolves, and Bears shopping for a better pack each year. IMHO, I don't see any difference. If your happy, you'll continue in the same unit. If your not happy with your unit, switch or help it improve.(This message has been edited by fred8033)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd bet that units that create successful troops would also have successful packs. And vice versa. ... PLUS, any scout at any time can change membership to another unit. I'd rather see the emphasis on changing to a unit that matches your needs and less on shopping for a unit when you become a Webelos scout.

 

Not necessarily. I've seen troops suffer and die because the pack that is also charted to the CO was horrible. In one instance everyone actively involved with the troop, including the COR who was duel enrolled as an ASM, was complaining about the situation and the leaders causing the mass exodus, but no one wanted to do anything to fix the problem. They wanted me, the professional, to remove the leaders and get new ones. But that is the job of the CO and COR.

 

And I've seen it where the pack is excellent, but the troop is faltering. The problem getting so bad that the pack, instead of promoting the CO's troop which led to the scouts leaving altogether, they promoted another troop.

 

Unfortunately, I am seeing this with the troop associated with my pack currently.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Eagle92 ... Those mixed results are because the units are run separately. If the troop and pack were more tightly linked, with the same leaders, same planning and same oversight, then it would be easier to help the units. The examples you give where the troop is healthy and the pack is in trouble, or vice versa, is because the units are separate. If it was one integrated unit, there would be an improved chance for the success of both.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Again, not necessarily.

 

You do have folks, especially long term Scouters who are not current with the modern CS program, who do have a anti-CS bias. I've been told, "Cubs don't need to camp," and this is coming from someone on the council camping committee and is a 4 beader who should know better. You have folks who don't want anything to do with Cubs until they are Webelos IIs, if then. I know of some troops that won't do anything with a pack until crossover.

 

Further the challenges and leadership issues are different at the two levels. I speak from first hand expereince that when my district had no CS RT, and I went to the BS one to get info and what not, 85-95% of what was going on had nothing to do with me and the Cub Scout program. So why would a combined pack/troop committee work well when they ARE so many differences?

 

 

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  

×