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Covid Den chief

My son is a den chief for a Webelos den. He has been for going on 2 years . He has completed all requirements for his cords except the pack meetings. Unfortunately, due to Covid they have not had any pack meetings this year. Are there any ways around this or have new guidelines been established at this time so Scouts can achieve this?

They haven’t had ANY pack meetings, or no traditional pack meetings?

No pack meetings since Covid started and it is not likely they will until next fall. We are losing our Cubmaster due to a job move and so we are also facing some restructuring

What I’m really getting at is the definition of a pack meeting has stretched over the course of the pandemic. For some, that may include a virtual meeting. For others, it may be a pack wide activity involving stations around town. Or it may even be a set of instructions that everyone does on their own. Did he assist with any pack activities? Keep in mind, I’m not the one he has to convince.

The pack as a whole has done nothing. He has been at every virtual and in person meeting that has been held. The thing he is lacking is the actual pack meetings. The unfortunate part of the situation is we went from one cubmaster to another just prior to the pandemic then we are about to undergo another change. The pack is struggling so there haven’t been any pack activities only den activities

As I take a look at the actual requirements, is the one you are referring to “ 9. Assist the den at the monthly pack program”? I’m struck by the fact that it doesn’t actually say pack meeting. I wonder, could it be interpreted that the monthly pack program has been administered at the den level? Alternatively, the Guide to Advancement says that we can’t penalize scouts for their POR time toward their rank if the troop doesn’t meet for months at the time. This award is not necessarily the same situation… or is it?

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Yes, I am referring to 9, you bring up an interesting point. My son was able to advance but not without tackling this same topic. He would like to continue to see the den through until they crossover hopefully into ours Troop. In the meantime, he just wants to find a way to achieve his goal. I’m not sure this may be something I need to research at council level. Thank you for all your helpful thoughts

Did he assist the den at monthly pack programs prior to the COVID lockdowns?

He attended one, their final meeting in 2019, it’s been obsolete since. No opportunity

I would recommend having the Scout talk to the Den Leader and Cubmaster (outgoing / incoming) about it. It sounds like he has “Assist[ed] the den at the monthly pack program” to the extent that it is possible. It’s out of his control that the pack has not been having monthly meetings or programs since their last meeting in 2019. If they agree, they can sign off on the award and recommend approval to his Scoutmaster.

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Thank you for the ideas, I will approach them and see how it goes

This seems like it would fall under the Guide to Advancement section 4.2.3.1 (Active Participation) - “Regardless of a unit’s expectations or policy, if a unit takes time off it must count that time toward the Scout’s active participation requirement. The Scout must not be penalized because the unit has chosen not to meet or conduct other activities for a period of time.” (Mechanics of Advancement in Scouts BSA | Boy Scouts of America)

In this case, it the unit has not been holding monthly pack meetings this cannot be held against a scout for being unable to fulfill that portion of their requirement. I would review this with his Scoutmaster and get confirmation from the pack that these meetings have not been held during his tenure. Hopefully all parties will agree and he can receive his recognition.

I am the Advancement Chairman for both the Troop I am associated with as well as the District Advancement Chairman. This same situation occurred with a Den Chief in the Troop. I told him that as long as he was assisting the den in whatever activity methods used he was satisfying the requirements to the best of his ability. His den is crossing over to the Troop as soon as the Pack turns in the Arrow of Light advancement paperwork, hopefully next week. Good luck.

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