Back to School Night: 29 Days to Go

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At Back to School Night, new parents will be looking to answer the following questions:

  1. How much does Cub Scouts cost for the year?
  2. How does it fit with the family calendar?
  3. Does the Pack have a vision for its success?

To be able to answer these questions, your Pack Committee needs to be able to deliver 3 key documents to the prospective Cub parents:

  1. A document telling the parent how the program is paid for. This could be a budget for out of pocket expenses in neighborhoods with well-to-do families. This is more likely to be a statement of costs for each Cub and the role popcorn sales is used to defer the costs. This could be a statement describing how financial assistance is offered to families who need it. Your Unit Commissioner should be able to get you guidance for these items.
  2. A year-long calendar of Pack events. The dens should be meeting in early August to discuss with their den leaders what they would like to see the Pack to do. The den leaders should report those results for a mid-August Pack Committee meeting to schedule the year. The results should be listed on one sheet of paper and be specific about arrival times and departure times. For example, the North Star District fall family overnight at Indianapolis Motor Speedway should tell families to arrive at the track at a specific time and expect to leave by a specific time. This allows new families to put the event on their family calendars with specificity. This prevents double booking as easily. Successful packs are good at calendaring by habit because they simply say, “We customarily go to . . . in November so that we can . . . .” Newer or struggling packs can duplicate the clarity of vision by simply stating, “We are scheduled to go to . . . in November so that we can . . . .” Prospective families are looking for programs close to home that can clearly describe the program. They will avoid wishy-washy units that only say, “We are thinking about doing something this fall.”
  3. Having a vision statement for how the Pack will perform is very important. This vision statement is not a formalistic business plan gobbledy-gook. It is simply a some concrete goal that can be understood. To be a strong unit, look at the Journey to Excellence criteria for bronze, silver, and gold. Pick a level that makes sense to your Pack. Then tell prospective families what your goal is, “We plan on being a Gold Award Pack.” Most parent don’t know the criteria, and don’t care. They will be interested in knowing that the Pack has a vision of meeting the highest criteria. The statement could be focused on the boys, too. “We plan on each boy making rank by February’s Blue and Gold Banquet and going family overnight camping in the fall, in the spring, and at summer camp. We plan on attending {insert two Council Circuit of Fun Activities}.” The vision of success is contagious and exciting for prospective families.

Remember that part of your programming is already done for you. The Rocket Launch on September 12th and the Pack Family Overnight with District at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in October.

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One thought on “Back to School Night: 29 Days to Go

    […] you should have an annual calendar planned and printed for distribution. The calendar should be sure to include the September 12th Rocket Launch and Pack […]

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