For those new to Cub Scouts, here is a breakdown of the Cub Scout Organizational structure
The Pack is a group that has been assigned a unique number, and it is made up of several dens. The Pack includes not only the boys in those dens, but also their families, and their leaders. The Packs meets once a month with Cub Scouts, leaders, parents and other family members attending. The Pack meeting is the climax of the month's den meetings and activities. It gives the dens something to look forward to and work toward.
This is a chance to recognize the boys, their parents, and their leaders.
A Cub Scout Pack is divided into smaller groups of about eight boys called dens, who meet weekly under the direction of adult Den Leaders and, in some cases, Boy Scout Den Chiefs. The Den Leaders are trained parent volunteers. The den allows boys to get to know each other better and engage in activities that would be difficult in a larger group. The den also provides leadership opportunities for the boys as they elect "denners" or help to teach each other.
Den meeting activities are planned around the monthly theme and include games, handicrafts, hikes and other outdoor fun, practicing skits and stunts in preparation for the next Pack meeting and taking part in simple ceremonies and songs. Sometimes work on advancement requirements is included, but most of that work is accomplished by the boys with their parents (see details on the Webelos rank for an exception). The Den Leaders may ask for special help occasionally from parents (helping with a meeting, sharing a special skill, or just providing a snack for the boys).
Dens are organized by rank, and ranks are organized by grade and age:
- Tiger Cub Dens
- Wolf Dens
- Bear Dens
- Webelos Dens
Grade and Age
Several years ago joining and advancement requirements for Cub Scouting were changed to a grade basis (with age as backup). Age is still used by some packs whose national organization has made that determination As a refresher, here are some age/grade requirements. Keep in mind that grade is the primary determination and age is the backup (note the work "or"):
- Tiger Cubs -- In the first grade, (or 7 years old)
- Cub Scouts (Wolves and Bears) -- In the second and third grade, (or 8 or 9 years old)
- Webelos Scouts -- In the fourth and fifth grade, (or 10 years old)
- ARROW OF LIGHT -- Six months since completing the fourth grade, or six months since turning 10.
- Boy Scouts -- Completed the fifth grade, or age 11, or have earned the Arrow of Light.
The Pack Leadership
The pack leadership consists of Den Leaders, Den Leader Coach, the Chartered Organization Representative, the Pack Committee Chairperson, the Pack Committee and the Cubmaster. These are adult positions.
The Pack Committee
The Pack Committee takes care of the administrative needs of the pack. It is organized and chaired by the Pack Committee Chairperson. The committee consists of at least three people and is responsible for:
- Finding a meeting place
- Setting the Pack policies in accordance with Boy Scouting and the chartered organization.
- Coordinating the Pack program with that of the charter organization.
- Assist with the annual Pack charter renewal.
- Is responsible for carrying out the policies and regulations of the Boy Scouts of America.
- Provides encouragement to leaders in carrying out the Pack program.
- Provides the finances and fundraising coordination for the Pack.
- Is responsible for Pack property.
- Is responsible for the quality of the adult leadership, that the leadership is recruited and trained. This is all adult leadership, including Cubmaster.
- Responsible for recommending this leadership to the charter organization for final approval.
- Coordination between the Pack and other scouting units.
A complete Pack Committee consists of the following people:
- Chartered Organization Representative
- Pack Committee Chair
- Public Relations
- Membership and Registration
- Sustaining Membership Enrollment Chairperson (a.k.a. Friends of Scouting)
Chartered Organization Representative
This person is the liaison between the Pack, the chartered organization, and the BSA. They make sure that the chartered organization is aware of what the Pack is doing, and coordinates activities between the chartered organization and the Pack. It is also the responsibility of the chartered organization representative to communicate any relevant policies that the charter organization has to the Pack committee.
A point that a new scouter often misses is that the chartered organization 'owns' the Pack, not the Pack committee. The Pack committee is simply an administrative arm of the chartered organization.
The Chartered Organization Representative is a voting member of the local BSA Council and District committees. As such, they represent the Pack on these committees.
If the chartered organization has more than one unit (e.g., a Pack and a Troop) the Chartered Organization Representative serves all.
Pack Committee Chairperson
The Pack Committee Chairperson organizes and facilitates the running of the Pack committee.
This person works with the Cubmaster and Chartered Organization Representative to make sure that the responsibilities of the Pack Committee are being met.
The Cubmaster, who is sometimes referred to as the unit leader, is up front. Most parents think they run the show all by themselves. Now you know different. So what does a Cubmaster do? Plenty! The Cubmaster is responsible for:
- Conducting the pack program which includes leading the monthly Pack
- meeting, with the help of the other leaders.
- Guiding, supporting, motivating, and inspire the other adult leaders. Make sure they receive training for their positions.
- Making sure the dens are functioning well.
- Planning the den and pack programs with the help of the other leaders.
- Coordinating the total Cub Scout program for the pack.
- Helping recruit den leaders and coaches.
- Establishing and maintaining good relationships with Boy Scout Troops.