Organization's Strategic Decisions

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The purpose of this page is to document strategic decisions made throughout the organization's history that have a significant impact on the bylaws, policies, and procedures.


2011, Uniform

It has been over 20 years since the Scouts Canada uniform was reviewed, and our vision is clear – the uniform must reflect not only who Scouts has been, but also who Scouts Canada is today. The revitalized uniform respects the great heritage of Scouting and signals its bright future. It is a key component of our Action Plan for Canadian Scouting, and reflects our commitment to innovation and to meeting the changing needs of the members and Canada’s youth.

On March 25, 2011, Scouts Canada launched the new uniform in partnership with Joe Fresh Style, the country's leading youth clothing manufacturer. It will be available in Scout Shops as well as on September 1, 2011.

2012, Composition of the Board of Governors

On May 5, 2012 a special meeting was held at the Scouts Canada National Service Centre to vote on a proposed amendment to our By-law that defines composition of Scouts Canada's Board of Governors (BOG).

A number of us on the BOG have recognized for a long time our current Board structure is far from ideal. In fact, some would argue that it is neither manageable nor effective. The first issue relates to size. Before, the BOG had 23 members. Board membership is allocated to include youth representatives between the ages of 18 and 26, Geographic Representatives, Vice Chairs of the Board (Strategic and Finance), Past Chair of the Board, Chief Commissioner, and the Chief Executive Officer. Quite simply, the size of the Board as guided by our By-law has become cumbersome, and we are having trouble completing our workload in a timely manner. A committee of the Board has been exploring this for some time.

The second issue is optimization. The specific provision of geographic locations where Board members must reside makes it extremely difficult to recruit individuals who have the specialized expertise that the Board requires. For example, if a member from Ontario is coming to the end of their term, the next member has to be from Ontario. That means that even if we have a pressing requirement for a pension expert, and we find one in Nova Scotia who is ready to serve, we are unable bring them on to the Board. We would need to find someone from Ontario who was willing to serve, but may not have the expertise we need for optimal Board performance.

With the amendment, there was a hope to reduce the size of the Board to around 15 members. We want to relax the geographic provisions to ensure that we have representation from across the country while still allowing for "at large" members to be recruited and elected for specific purposes. We also want to add the National Youth Commissioner as an official voting member (currently the NYC sits in on meetings, but cannot vote). These changes are said to make the Board more effective, more nimble and more efficient.

2012, Rover Registration Fee

In 2012 the Board of Governors passed a motion to eliminate the Rover Scout registration fee for the 2012/2013 Scouting year and onward.

2013, One Scouts Canada

In March of 2013, Scouts Canada’s Volunteers participated in a national survey to kick-start our Strategic Plan, a roadmap that will focus our activity at every level of the organization over the next three to five years.

The Strategic Plan presents a vision of how Scouts Canada can leverage our member’s knowledge and their passion for the Movement to take Scouts Canada to new heights. Supported by the Strategic Plan, we will work as One Scouts Canada to create quality programs, deliver tremendous Scouting adventures and put youth on a great path forward in life. By working together as One Scouts Canada, more Canadian youth and their families will come to truly understand what we mean when we say “It starts with Scouts.”

Related documents:

2014, By-law Amendment

A Special Meeting of the members of Scouts Canada was held on Sunday, August 17, 2014, at 4:00 PM ET, at the Scouts Canada National Service Centre, 1345 Baseline Road, Ottawa, Ontario to consider a by-law amendment related to Scouts Canada’s governance structure.

A number of changes to Bylaw 2 were unanimously recommended by the Board of Governors. They relate to our Governance model, with the changes focused on making us more effective as an organization. These changes were approved by voting members of Scouts Canada, with voting results of 62 “yes”, 4 “no”.

Highlight of the changes included:

  • Split the current role of "Chief Commissioner and Chair of the Board of Governors" into two separate roles: National Commissioner and Chair of the Board of Governors.
  • With the splitting into two roles above, there are two additional changes as a result: add the National Commissioner as an Officer; change from current role of "Past Chief Commissioner and Chair of the Board of Governors" to "Past Chair of the Board of Governors."
  • Give the Executive Commissioner and the National Youth Commissioner the authority to vote on the Board of Governors.
  • Extend the maximum Term of Members at Large from 3 years to 6 years.

Related documents:

2015, Simplified Membership

At the beginning of spring registration in early May, all Scouters 18 years of age and over as of September 1 will receive an email notifying them that they have been renewed for next year. Scouters will remain members of Scouts Canada until: (1) A Scouter no longer wishes to be a member; (2) A Scouter has not met membership requirements for more than 90 days; (3) A Scouter’s membership has been terminated and he/she has been removed from Scouting. As long as a Scouter continues to meet Scouts Canada’s membership requirements (e.g. screening, training, annual Code of Conduct review), he/she will maintain their membership without the need to re-register.

In addition to the evergreen membership for Scouters, the membership fee for youth is now the same across the country.

2019, Group Support Model

Beginning in the 2019-20 Scouting Year, the Area Support Model will be transitioned to the new Group Support Model. Generally, Areas will remain the same. Please see the table below for a detailed breakdown of what is changing and what is staying the same.

What is staying the same? The people who provide support to Groups currently will largely remain the same. Area Commissioners and Area Youth Commissioners and other Area Support Scouters who want to continue providing support to Groups may be invited to do so as Group Support Scouters. Volunteers who coordinate Area events (such as Beaverees and Cuborees) can continue to do so. Area camp committees will continue to operate with the same volunteer teams. Area crests will continue to be a part of the formal uniform. Where they exist, these communities of practice can continue to operate as normal.

What is changing? The geography-based model of supporting Groups though an Area Key 3 will be transitioned to the Group Support Model. Relationship Managers (such as volunteers in the new Group Support Scouter role and current Scouting Relationship Managers) will replace Area Key 3s as the primary point of support for Groups.