In October 2017, the Boy Scouts of America announced that it would begin allowing girls into all of its programs, marking a historic shift for the all-male organization founded in 1910. Now, the Boy Scouts of America is changing its name to reflect its new members. According to the AP, the Boy Scouts, the flagship program for older kids, will now be known as Scouts BSA.
Cub Scout programs, designed for kids from kindergarten to fifth grade, will start accepting girls this year. (More than 3000 girls have signed up already.) The Boy Scouts, designed for ages 11 to 17, will become Scouts BSA in February 2019. When the mixed-gender Scouts BSA program launches, it will give girls an opportunity to earn the Eagle Scout rank for the first time.
Girls had previously been allowed to participate in some Boy Scout activities, such as tagging along on Boy Scout trips with their brothers, and joining the co-ed Venturing outdoor adventure program. But they haven’t been able to earn the same badges and ranks as the boys before now.
Both the new Cub Scout and the new Scout BSA programs will still involve a degree of gender separation. Dens, the smaller groups of Scouts who are at the same rank, will be either all-boy or all-girl. Packs, the larger local organizations that encompass all the dens, can be mixed gender.
The national organization’s name will remain the Boy Scouts of America.