After more than 100 years as “Boy Scouts,” for boys, the Boy Scouts of America announced they would be changing one of their landmark programs to accommodate girls. Starting next February, their program for kids 11-17 years old will simply be “Scouts BSA.” Girls will now be able to join the older group and advance to the highest rank, Eagle Scout. Boy Scouts of America welcomed girls into the Cub Scouts program last fall.
Michael Surbaugh, chief scout executive of the Boy Scouts of America, said in a statement, “As we enter a new era for our organization, it is important that all youth can see themselves in Scouting in every way possible. That is why it is important that the name for our Scouting program for older youth remain consistent with the single name approach used for the Cub Scouts.”
On the surface, this looks very inclusive, accepting, and even charming. As a mother who grew up a tomboy, (Are we allowed to use that word?) and who has two boys, and two girls (one of which is also a tomboy), I can see why this seems like a good idea superficially. If there were no similar organizations for girls, it might make sense to press for gender inclusivity. But there are Girl Scouts, and in fact, they didn’t quite care for this change.