After 108 years of being a male-only organization, girls can now join a Boy Scouts’ troop. In 2018, girls were allowed to join the single-gender troops and starting this year, girls can begin to earn the coveted Eagle ranking once only open to boys. The first female-group is anticipated to make Eagle status by 2020.
More than 77,000 girls have joined Cub Scouts, many of whom are thought to be female relatives of males already in the troop. Voices who have opposed the change still claim that this is a poor management move on the part of the Scouting organization and an attempt to increase funding.
Are there differences between what Scouts do in Girl Scouts vs. (Boy) Scouts? The simple answer is yes, but the divide is anticipated to be shortened now that these structural changes underway with females being permitted to join both Girl Scouts and a co-ed Scout Troop at the same time.
Feminism wins another battle and even though there may be less single-gender places for boys, ‘girls only’ is still the way things remain for Girl Scouts everywhere. Despite Scouts opening the doors to both male and female genders, young females who wish to remain connected with a strong sisterhood have those values upheld with GSUSA.
The focus and intention of each organization is “leadership.” however, not all leadership styles are one-size fits all as demonstrated by BSA and GSUSA. Both scouting organizations teach children and adults that some organizations will adjust to the times, no matter how popular their decision maybe while others remain the same, and yes, this can involve the topic of gender.
There’s a strong push for females to have the same opportunities found in society including Scouts. Co-ed Scout can be positive for women, but it’s sad for boys. There’s something to be said about all-male environments where mentorship takes place.
Males and young men who need this will have to find a new place to create this type of tradition, but that’s not the case with Girl Scouts. GSUSA is determined to remain female-strong.
On whether or not boys will be allowed to join GSUSA, the Girl Scouts of Gateway Council states “Girl Scouts is the world’s single best leadership development program for girls. Our mission is to serve girls, and girls only, and to foster their amazing leadership potential.”