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Site updated 18-SEP-2017
Adult Leader Training
Training Required for All Positions
Guide to Advancement
Guide to Awards & Insignia
Health & Safety Training
Online Safety Training
- NetSmartz -- Scouting's partner in online safety education
Service Project Training
- Scouting Service Project Volunteer Time Sheet (PDF)
- Keep track of all volunteer work hours contributed to any Scouting service project
- Sort volunteers by Scout/Youth and Scouter/Adult
- Record Scouts' service project work for rank advancement
- Record unit's service project work for the Journey to Excellence award
Cub Scout Training
Boy Scout Training
"Trained" Leader Emblem
- Fast Start Training for your position -- Online or instructor led
- Youth Protection Training -- Online or instructor led
- Position-Specific Training -- Instructor led
- New Leader Essentials -- Instructor led
Adult Training Awards
- Unit Leaders
- The following Training Awards and Keys recognize Scouters for tenure, training,
and leadership performance in their units.
- Den Leader Training Award
- Scouter's Training Awards
Cub Scouting, Boy Scouting, Varsity Scouting, Venturing, Sea Scouting
Cubmaster, Scoutmaster, Coach, Advisor, Skipper
- District Committee Members
- The District Committee Scouter's Training Award and District Committee Key
recognize Scouters for tenure, training, and leadership performance while
serving on the District Committee.
- The requirements for each of these awards are listed on the relevant "Progress Record,"
all of which can be downloaded as PDF files from the "Training for Adults" page
on Scouting.org. To find them, just scroll down to near the bottom of the page.
Outdoor Ethics -- Leave No Trace Training
Other Ways to Increase Your Scouting Knowledge and Improve Your Unit's Scouting Program
- University of Scouting - Spring (Mar.)
- College of Commissioner Science - Fall (Sep./Oct.)
- Wood Badge Training [dead link]
Key 3 Guides
These three official BSA guides are your "go to" sources for Scouting information.
Keep the PDF or hardcopy editions handy and you'll be able to find answers to
your Scouting questions when you need them.
- Guide to Advancement -- Answers to questions about advancement for all programs
- Guide to Safe Scouting -- Overview of Scouting safety policies and procedures
- The PDF Edition is updated frequently. Check back from
time to time to make sure you have the most recent version.
- Guide to Awards and Insignia -- Uniform policy for all programs
Online & Digital Communication
- Two-Deep Leadership and No One-On-One Contact Between Adults and Youth Members Includes Digital Communication
- "Leaders may not have one-on-one private online communications or engage one-on-one in other digital activities (games, social media, etc.) with youth members. Leaders [and youths] should copy a parent [or guardian] and another leader in digital and online communication, ensuring no one-on-one contact exists in [e-mail,] text, social media, or other forms of online or digital communication."
Two-Deep Administration of Online Platforms
- Two-deep leadership principals apply to all aspects of online Scouting-related communication.
- The following passage is taken from the Boy Scouts of America Social Media Guidelines page. It was written specifically for Facebook, but the "two-deep administration" it describes should be practiced for any online platform.
- "...you should designate at least two administrators who have access to the login, password, and page management/monitoring information. This conforms to the two-deep leadership policies of the BSA. At least one of these page administrators should be a BSA employee, a local council employee, or [a] registered volunteer who has taken Youth Protection training. All Youth Protection policies that govern the use of e-mail are applicable to the use of the messaging capabilities..."
- "To help ensure that all communication on social media channels remains positive and safe, these channels must be public, and all communication on or through them must be public. This enables administrators to monitor all communication and help ensure there is no inappropriate communication between adult leaders and Scouts or between Scouts themselves. Therefore, no private channels (e.g., private [closed or secret] Facebook groups or invite-only YouTube channels) are acceptable in helping to administer the Scouting program. Private channels and private communication put both the youth and you at risk. If you feel the information you seek to share via social media channels should not be shared in public, you should not share that information via social media."
- "As it relates to social media, two-deep leadership means there should be no private messages and no one-on-one direct contact through e-mail, Facebook messages, Twitter direct messaging, chats, instant messaging (Google Messenger, AIM, etc.), or other similar messaging features provided through social media sites. All communication between adults and youth should take place in a public forum (e.g., the Facebook wall [timeline]), or at a bare minimum, electronic communication between adults and youth should always include one or more authorized adults openly 'copied' (included) on the message or message thread."
- "For the 'Info Tab' [About Link] of your Facebook page [or other social media site], you should use the guidelines set forth on the BSA National Council Facebook 'Info Tab' [About Link] in its Digital [Community] Contract, found here [under the heading 'Company Overview' and reproduced below]."
- "[BSA] Digital Community Contract
- "The views expressed by users/fans on this Facebook page are the sole responsibility of the user(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Boy Scouts of America. The BSA is not responsible for the content of user posts or the content of any linked website, or any link contained in a linked website, or any changes or updates to such websites. The posting of a link does not imply endorsement by the BSA of the linked site or its contents. The BSA does not govern and is not responsible for the privacy practices of other sites. The BSA encourages you to read and familiarize yourself with the privacy statements of any website that requests your personal information.
- "This digital Scouting community is governed by the Scout Oath and Scout Law. We will delete any comment that we believe does not reflect the Scout Oath and Scout Law. This includes comments that use inappropriate language or are potentially libelous or injurious to the privacy of an individual or group. Users posting these comments will be banned from commenting on this site. Off-topic comments as well as those promoting unapproved products and services will also be removed. Users posting any comments, photos, videos, links or other items that fall into one or more of the congressionally mandated CyberTipline reporting categories of the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (found here) will be reported to the proper law enforcement agencies."
Council Web Sites
- Local Council Web Site Guidelines [dead link]
- "While local councils may establish their own policies concerning their use of the Internet, the National Council will only recognize as ‘official’ those sites that have followed the numbered guidelines below. The National Council will not acknowledge or provide links to any council site that does not meet these guidelines."
Unit Web Sites
- Unit Web Site Guidelines [dead link]
- "We've long recognized that unit sites created by individuals at the unit level of Scouting are essentially personal, and therefore beyond the National Council’s control or liability. We do offer advisory guidelines to those who publish Scouting-related sites on their own responsibility, and we urge local councils to take the same approach. These guidelines are established to help avoid several common mistakes."
- "Protection of personal information pertaining to our youth members and volunteers should be our greatest concern. This organization has used COPPA, the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act [Wikipedia reference], as its standard in this area. ... It would be a good practice to share them with unit-level publishers in your council."
- If you need further assistance with these guidelines, contact the BSA National Council social media team at Social.Media@Scouting.org.
Boy Scouts of America (National Council)
Great Trail Council
- CubCast -- Podcasts for Cub Scout Leaders
- ScoutCast -- Podcasts for Boy Scout & Venturing Leaders
Merit Badge Counselor Training
Guide for Merit Badge Counselors
The Essentials of Merit Badge Counseling
- The Essentials of Merit Badge Counseling (PPTX)
- This presentation "covers the required procedures for merit badge counseling, clarifies the role of counselors in the BSA advancement program, and discusses the appropriate approaches to use when working with Scouts."
- Suitable for individual or group instruction, regardless of a counselor's experience.
- Good as an introduction or a refresher.
Merit Badge Counselor Information
- Merit Badge Counselor Information (PDF)
- This form is used to indicate which merit badges you wish to counsel and to list your qualifications and certifications.
- Includes: "Instructions for Merit Badge Counselors" which covers "Learning to Be a Merit Badge Counselor," "Special Qualifications and Guidelines for Merit Badge Counselors," and "Instructions to Counselors."
Reporting Merit Badge Counseling Concerns
- Reporting Merit Badge Counseling Concerns (PDF)
- "In the event unit leaders or other volunteers discover that any merit badge counselor is not following mandated procedures regarding the use of blue cards or working with the requirements as they are written, they should complete and submit to the council advancement committee the Reporting Merit Badge Counseling Concerns form."
GTC Merit Badge Counselor List
Guide to Advancement
If you'd like to announce an upcoming Scouting event, to report a Scouting milestone in your unit,
or to request coverage of a Scouting event, you can contact the media outlets listed below.
- Additional Contact Information