Local Scout Leaders React To Boy Scout Inclusion Announcement

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - For more than a century the Boy Scouts of America has helped develop countless young men. 

Wednesday's announcement that the organization will begin accepting young girls next year is a big change, but then again it's not. 

"For the boy scout age program which is 11 to 18, that will stay a single gender program," said Larry Brown.  

Brown is the CEO for the Boy Scouts of Middle Tennessee. He said adding young girls means adding an entirely new program for girls only. "It would be the same program, girls would be able to earn their eagle scout rank just like boys can now," Brown said. 

However, the program may not exist in middle Tennessee at all. "We're not looking to go out and recruit girls here in the Middle Tennessee council. If a parent has a child that is a sibling to a member of the program we'll work with them on that, but that's a case by case basis," Brown explained. 

He said this decision was made, in part, by the organizations close relationship with the Girl Scouts of America in Middle Tennessee. 

"I don't think we have to wake up tomorrow feeling challenged that the boy scouts are going to offer something the girl scouts are not offering. The good news in middle Tennessee is that we're offering the same," Girl Scouts of Middle Tennessee CEO Agenia Clark said. “When you look at the development of children, there is a uniqueness in what the learning styles are that are most effective for girls and the learning styles that are most effective for boys.”

"We've worked together for 100 years and we'll continue to work together to serve young people," Brown said. “If people come to us and say we’d like to start a program for our girls where our girls can earn the Eagle Scout rank, then we’ll start that program with them.”

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