GRAPEVINE, Texas -

 The Boy Scouts of America will vote Thursday on whether to allow openly gay scouts in its ranks.

The organization has started its meeting in which members of its national council will decide whether to change the group's long-standing ban on openly gay boys.

BSA is holding its annual meeting in Grapevine, Texas, near its suburban Dallas headquarters.

About 1,400 voting members on the council are expected to vote on a proposed resolution that would allow gay Scouts, while leaving in place a ban on gay leaders.

Discussion of the policy has split conservatives who denounce the proposal and gay-rights supporters who say they welcome the possible change but want the ban on adult leaders to be lifted as well.

About two dozen people calling on members to vote "no" stood outside the resort, while supporters of the change met across the street.