Boy Scouts to welcome girls into all ranks for the first time

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Boy Scouts of America will allow girls to join all programs and ranks (KTRK)

For the first time in their more than 100-year history, Boy Scouts of America will now welcome girls to all ranks.

Today, the Boy Scouts of America Board of Directors unanimously approved to allow girls to join all their programs from Cub Scouts, up to earning the highest rank of Eagle Scout. The historic decision comes after years of receiving requests from families and girls.

"This decision is true to the BSA's mission and core values outlined in the Scout Oath and Law. The values of Scouting - trustworthy, loyal, helpful, kind, brave and reverent, for example - are important for both young men and women," said Michael Surbaugh, the BSA's Chief Scout Executive. "We believe it is critical to evolve how our programs meet the needs of families interested in positive and lifelong experiences for their children. We strive to bring what our organization does best - developing character and leadership for young people - to as many families and youth as possible as we help shape the next generation of leaders."



"The BSA's record of producing leaders with high character and integrity is amazing" said Randall Stephenson, BSA's national board chairman. "I've seen nothing that develops leadership skills and discipline like this organization. It is time to make these outstanding leadership development programs available to girls."

Starting in the 2018 program year, families can choose to sign up their sons and daughters for Cub Scouts. Existing packs may choose to establish a new girl pack, establish a pack that consists of girl dens and boy dens or remain an all-boy pack. Cub Scout dens will be single-gender - all boys or all girls. Using the same curriculum as the Boy Scouts program, the organization will also deliver a program for older girls, which will be announced in 2018 and projected to be available in 2019, that will enable them to earn the Eagle Scout rank. Visit the Boy Scouts Family Scouting page for more information.

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This decision expands the programs that the Boy Scouts of America offers for both boys and girls. The BSA has offered co-ed programs since 1971 through Exploring and the Venturing program, which celebrates its 20th anniversary in 2018. The STEM Scout pilot program is also available for both boys and girls.

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