Advancement

BSA Advancement Newsletters

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Like most businesses today, BSA has built many online resources and is using social media and email lists to push that information to potential users.

Some users automatically receive these newsletters based on their position. Some users have to opt-in to the newsletter lists.

Merit Badge Counselor’s Compass is one of those. (You can subscribe by emailing merit.badge@scouting.org.) In the current issue of the Compass, they discuss:

  • Changes Counselors Need to Know
  • Interactive Digital Pamphlets Now on Sale at ScoutStuff.org
  • Be Sure to Read The Notes
  • Merit Badge Myths: Fact vs. Fiction
  • Completing Requirements as Stated Matters
  • Beekeeping: A Part of Existing Merit Badges

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Can your Troop Boost Advancement at Camp?

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What are some ways that your troop can truly excel in advancement at summer camp? If you do increase your emphasis on advancement with scouts, does it make more work for the adults? Maybe not.

As we discussed earlier this week, it pays for the adult leaders to be familiar with the Guide to Advancement (2015) that is now available online as a webpage and as an e-book in PDF form.

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Merit Badge Counselor List

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One of the major projects for the District Committee is going to be making sure that the Troops’ expectations of who is a registered Merit Badge Counselor matches the District’s records.

The Guide to Advancement (2015) now has a system for automatically de-registering merit badge counselors who do not respond to emailed inquiries. Several of our former merit badge counselors are no longer registered in that position, who believe that they are. A copy of the current merit badge counselor list has been mailed to all of the Troop’s Key 3 (chartered org rep, Scoutmaster, and Troop Committee Chair).

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Revisiting Rules of Advancement

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As summer camp draws near, we in scouting are entering the height of “Advancement Season.” More work toward advancement will occur in the next 75 days than at almost any other time of the year. Some of this is due to participating in merit badge sessions for boy scouts and day camp activities for Cub Scouts.

guidetoadvancement2015
Guide to Advancement (2015)

For many years, most scouters relied on learning the rules of advancement by watching and experiencing our home unit manage advancement. We would learn to improve on these techniques by attending classes or through casual conversations with other scouters. Few of us had ever seen the Guide to Advancement.

As with most BSA publications up to 2013, if you wanted to read it, you had to pay for it. The Guide to Advancement was always a recommended book to have on a unit’s shelf, but few units purchased a copy or updated it regularly.

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2015 Central Indiana Merit Badge University

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UPDATE: 5/7/15. Moved to top of blog.  This event does not appear on district calendar because it is a council event. (This blog is a supplement for the Council’s website for North Star, not a replacement.)

The Seventh Annual Central Indiana Merit Badge University, sponsored by Crossroads of America Council, will be held at Greenfield-Central junior high school, May 15 through the 17th, 2015. Greenfield, Indiana is on I 70, 14 miles east of Indianapolis I 465 bypass.
They will be offering 61 different merit badges in 110 classes over five sessions beginning Friday evening and contcrossroads_patchinuing through Sunday morning. Fees vary by session length in cost of supplies. Meals are included during the Saturday sessions. Official BSA adult training courses such as scoutmaster specific training, merit badge counselor introduction, troop committee challenge, and youth protection are available. More information at

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/2015-central-indiana-merit-badge-university-registration-16461141718?aff=eac2

Originally posted 4/21/15.

BSA acquires Scoutbook. What’s that?

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On April 9, 2015, BSA announced that it has acquired Scoutbook.com. What is Scoutbook.com?

Many troops and packs use TroopMaster and PackMaster to track rank advancement. Scoutbook.com is a web-only competitor.

From a district perspective, one of the advantages of Scoutbook.com is that it makes merit badge counseling across the district easier. Easier for Scouts, Scoutmasters, Counselors, and Parents.

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