Quality Programme Checker

Quality Programme Checker

Working out how to bounce back from lockdown

by Rob Cochrane, Cub Support Team

Feeling stuck in a rut? Maybe a bit overwhelmed by all this ‘Balanced Programme’ lark? Not sure what to do next? 

So was I during the half-term break when we sat down to plan the coming term. Lockdown threw off track all our long-term plans and goals. With no camps or big events to look forward to in the near future, we felt well and truly adrift. We’d even forgotten a lot of what makes a Quality Program. 

Every week since March seems to have been a ‘make-it-up-as-you-go’ situation for us, so we were well and truly rusty on all things ‘youth shaped’ and ‘skills for life’. 

Enter the Quality Programme Checker. The Quality Programme Checker is a reviewing tool to help you see just how ‘Quality’ your programme is. It asks you a series of questions about what you’ve done. You either answer Red, Amber, or Green, depending on your answer. If you score a Green, it means you’re meeting The Scouts target for that thing. Yellow means you’re doing OK and Red means there’s room for improvement. It’s actually a really handy tool for working out whether you’re managing to squeeze in all of the requirements for a Balanced Program. 

To help us work out what we should plan for the coming term, we used the Quality Program Checker to review everything we had done so far in 2020. This meant digging out the programme records and being honest with ourselves about what we did and didn’t manage to do. 

We got some really mixed results, which clearly showed us our strengths and areas for improvement. We scored Green for a few things. Surprisingly, we got Green for Nights Away in 2020 (We did a camp at home during lockdown, and took part in ScotJ@m)! We also got Green for ‘meetings outside your normal meeting place’. We were Yellow for ‘Youth Involvement’, having not had a proper Pack Forum for a while. We also got Yellow for the number of Cheif Scout Silver awards handed out, and for Challenge Awards too. A Red Score for Activity Badges showed that we were neglecting our badge admin and needed to think more about incorporating these. 

Armed with these results, we were able to plan our Winter Term confident in the knowledge that it was making up for lost time, and was helping us to meet our new targets. We’ve got a big focus on clearing our badge backlog just now, and are working hard to achieve lots of the wee round ones in the run-up to Christmas. 

The Quality Programme Checker was a great tool for helping us to feel confident again in program planning. It also has been invaluable in ensuring our Cubs miss as few opportunities as possible. I was really impressed by how helpful it was and how easy it was to use. I reviewed two-thirds of a year in less than 30 minutes! Also, as a bonus, completing the Quality Programme Checker is one of the validation criteria for Module 12a/12b. All around, it’s a winner winner chicken dinner situation, and I highly recommend every Cub Leader gives it a go if you’re struggling to decide how to bounce back from Lockdown. 

You can find out more about the Quality Programme Checker and how to use it in your section here.