Crossing over or crossing out?


We’re losing Scouts.

 This is true in the Wotamalo District, across the W.D. Boyce Council, and throughout the Boy Scouts of America. In our district, around 40% of the registered Scouts leave the program each year. This tracks consistently with council-wide and national numbers.

Looking at the numbers closely, we know the stage at which we lose the most Scouts is when they are Webelos. Granted, competing interests like sports get more intense at this age. But it has been proven all over the BSA that a solid Webelo-to-Scout transition program keeps more boys in the program. More than 84% of boys transitioning with the help of such a program actually join a Troop.

To help your Pack or Troop with this critical issue, we have outlined a robust Webelo-to-Scout program and posted it to the Wotamalo District website ( Please download and share it!

Key point: This isn’t up to one or two people, it’s a team effort, including:

-          The Webelos Den Leader (of course)

-          The Webelos Den Chief (don’t forget this key person!)

-           The Scoutmaster (of the Troop fed by the Pack)

-          An Assistant Scoutmaster (with often-overlooked, yet important duties)

-          The Unit Commissioner  (there to help both units succeed)

The outline lists goals for each person and ideas for each month throughout the Scouting year. It may look like a lot of work on paper. But once begun, it generates an energy/momentum of its own that soon renders the whole process … if not effortless, then at least easier than imagined!

And the reward will be tremendous … instead of crossing out Scout names from a Pack roster, they’ll be crossing over to their new Troop with enthusiasm. And most of them will STAY THERE!



Eric Hoadley

Wotamalo District Commissioner

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