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AIBU to think that 9 months' notice should be enough for a club...

(51 Posts)
BashfulBunny Fri 10-Nov-17 12:10:17

Apparently 9 months notice isn't enough to join Beavers as by the time my son will reach the top of the waiting list, he'll be too old to join. He's currently 4.5, Beavers goes up to age 8.

This is not a complaint about Scouts. I know it is run by volunteers, I have volunteered to help if they need more people. My son has just started school and I thought one extra-curricular activity starting next summer would be a gentle way to get him involved in things that his school friends might do.

But AIBU to think the world is mad these days that you have to sign up for everything the instant you are pregnant otherwise 50million tiger mothers will have got there first.

HighwayDragon1 Fri 10-Nov-17 12:12:19

This is standard in most places, took nearly a year and a half to get DD into Rainbows, she was there for a couple of months then moved up to brownies.

Tidypidy Fri 10-Nov-17 12:15:06

Same here. My daughter skipped cubs altogether and went straight in to scouts.

RedSkyAtNight Fri 10-Nov-17 12:18:04

It's an indication of supply and demand. Why not volunteer to train up and start your own Beaver unit?

irregularegular Fri 10-Nov-17 12:21:36

It's a shame, but quite normal for Beavers/Rainbows etc and I am not sure what could be done about it? Don't allow people to sign up more than a year in advance? But then you'd have some people having an advantage by knowing the exact date to sign up and being poised ready to go. And it would be still be oversubscribed, just maybe by different people.

Some parents will just have to volunteer to start another group if it is very oversubscribed.

I manage the waiting list locally for Rainbows/brownies/guides and it is a shame when girls can't have a place, but it can't really be helped I am afraid. I have stopped girls who have their names down very early starting earlier than the rest of their year group, which overall slightly increases the number of places (as girls don't stay quite as long) but that is the best I have come up with.

WillowySnicket Fri 10-Nov-17 12:29:17

I didn't realise rainbows started at 5 (thought it was 3...not from the U.K. do had no experience!). Called when my DD was 2.5 to register her and was told "PHEW, so glad you called as you have the last slot!" 2.5 year waiting list😱

hotbutteredcrumpetsandtea Fri 10-Nov-17 12:31:51

I wanted to get my DC into scouts, turns out I'd have to have had them on a waiting list practically before I was born, let alone them!

If I was able or willing to volunteer to help start a new scout chapter in my area my children would go to the top of the list, same as anyone who will do it. But no-one does, they just complain about not being able to get them in.

If you want your kid to go to Beavers, volunteer to help run it.

CannotEvenThink Fri 10-Nov-17 12:33:50

Yes waiting lists very common and because volunteer run there ate differences how people do them. I used to run rainbows and I went by age not when they joined and managed to give pretty much everyone 2 terms in rainbows. Doesn't sound much but meant they could feed into brownies rather than having some people spend 2 years in rainbows and others never getting in and languishing on the brownie list instead.
Currently doing beavers and we have no waiting list at the moment.

BiddyPop Fri 10-Nov-17 12:38:09

Our Cubs (we don't have Beavers) start at 8.5 and there are DCs whose names are down from less than 1 year old who don't get in. We have 2 Cub packs, but not enough leaders to open a 3rd. And not enough leaders to take on more for the Scouts following on (there are currently 58 in 1 scout pack, and over 40 in the other). We probably could barely consider a 3rd pack in either case anyway as there are only so many nights the Den is available, between the 4 Sections and annual Navigation course needing another night all winter, and other Leader training and meetings etc in the small space.

I believe it is similar with a lot of other Guide/Scout Groups locally, as well as a few specific sports clubs (some hockey and soccer clubs you can only get in on the basis of family having been in - and not even all of those!). There is just such demand for DC places, and not enough availability of coaches/leaders etc. And almost all of those clubs run on voluntary coaching/leadership.

disahsterdahling Fri 10-Nov-17 12:38:24

If you want your kid to go to Beavers, volunteer to help run it

The OP has said that they would volunteer.

I'm surprised she cant get a place on that basis. Where I am, if you volunteer, you get a place. No need to set up a completely new unit though I suppose if it's already very large there may simply not be any space for more people, even if there is a whole army of willing volunteers.

It's the people who won't whose kids have to sit on the waiting list. Fair enough.

Osolea Fri 10-Nov-17 12:38:38

It's worth keeping his name on the list, and sending emails or making calls every so often to check his place on the list so they know you're still keen.

There can be a lot of movement, and people put their names down for things like this then don't bother to take their names off the list if they move/get a place at another unit/choose a different activity instead etc, so there's still a chance that your son could get a place, even if not as soon as he's old enough.

hotbutteredcrumpetsandtea Fri 10-Nov-17 12:39:17

Yes, but will they volunteer to start a new branch? Because that is what you need to do. Volunteering to help the odd time with the current one is neither here nr there.

SleepFreeZone Fri 10-Nov-17 12:42:12

We've been on the waiting list for Beavers for six months so far and my son isn't even five yet! (They don't start till 6). That's how I booked up it gets ahdvi completely understand as it's run by volunteers. God bless them.

RedSkyAtNight Fri 10-Nov-17 12:43:08

(previous Brownie leader) just offering to help out occasionally won't be good enough. Even if she was prepared to help out every week (which means getting involved with planning and organizing, not simply being a body in the hall), they would want some indication of commitment before they let her child start (starting from now probably). Too many parents think they can get their child in by offering to help and then turn up twice before deciding they can't do it any more, or just stand in the corner and drink coffee.

MomToWedThorFriday Fri 10-Nov-17 12:45:39

I registered my DD for rainbows before she was even 2, because when DS1 left beavers I asked if I should put DS2 on the list (then 3) and they told me yes as he’d have the last slot! It’s mental, but it is what it is.

TipBoov Fri 10-Nov-17 12:46:44

My son has been on the waiting list for beavers since he was 2 and it's unlikely that there will be a space available when he turns 6!

BashfulBunny Fri 10-Nov-17 12:48:19

For those who say set up a new branch - I have 2.5 year old triplets as well, so that's a little beyond my capacity at the moment grin.

I have said I'm happy to volunteer to help and I have almost 2 decades of experience as a trustee and/or senior manager in charities so have offered to help at that level as well.

Sadly they have said they won't take his name for a waiting list as there is no point...

Glumglowworm Fri 10-Nov-17 12:48:22

I'm a Brownie leader and it's not like that in my district, I know we're lucky. We do have a waiting list but girls normally wait less than six months after turning 7 before a place is available (brownies is 7-10 years old). It varies hugely geographically.

I agree with PP that offering to volunteer normally gets you to the top of the list, so surprised that's not the case. But possibly they've been burned before by people promising to volunteer to get their child in and then not bothering.

Starting a new pack is a huge commitment and not something you can do alone, since you'll need a minimum number of adults. But assuming lots of other families are in the same position as you, it is doable. Although as a PP said, it can then cause issues moving to the next section if you have loads more beavers than spaces at cubs (I think I have that the right way round, apologies if not). But it does sound like a new pack is desperately needed in your area! If you'd be willing to take that on, speak to the existing beaver leaders to find out how to get started and who to contact.

Changebagsandgladrags Fri 10-Nov-17 12:48:39

I would have a look at groups further away. We moved house and both our DCs had been in waiting lists at our old place. Moved house and of course they went to the end of the list again.

We looked at other groups and found they could get into a group 6 miles away straight away.

Glumglowworm Fri 10-Nov-17 12:49:45

Sorry cross posted. If they won't even take his name for beavers then put him down now for cubs, surely 4 years is enough time!

Missingstreetlife Fri 10-Nov-17 12:50:50

Woodcraft folk?

Dionysuss Fri 10-Nov-17 12:51:04

DD1&2 are in an amazing scout pack. They waiting list is very long, and if you don't have a space in Beavers, you are extremely unlikely to get into their cub or scout pack as all the spaces are taking by younger ones moving on.

DD1 was put onto the waiting list just after she started nursery school during a chat with another parent who was the beaver leader. I completely forgot until I got a phone call just before her 6th birthday saying her space has become available.

Tubbyinthehottub Fri 10-Nov-17 12:51:54

It is normal for Beavers to have a long waiting list but I’d ask them to reconsider putting him on it anyway because you never know. At ours the existing Beavers move up to the cubs in the same group so at least if he’s on the list there’s a chance he could get into cubs as people may drop out once they reach that age for any number of reasons. If it doesn’t work that way where you are, get on the cubs waiting list!

wonkylegs Fri 10-Nov-17 12:53:26

It's not like that everywhere we had no problems getting DS into beavers and even moving him to another group (had some issues with some of the kids dominating the group) . Some groups in our district are full but they will let you know which ones aren't and welcome everyone especially those with helpful parents.

Viviennemary Fri 10-Nov-17 12:54:40

That would annoy me too. You could look to see if there is a group in a nearby area to you. Or get together and start a new group. Waiting list from two and still not got in. That is pretty grim. Running those groups is time consuming and I admire the people who do it. Not sure I'd want to make the commitment every single week.

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