1. No parent, whether an adult leader or not, is allowed to sign advancement records for their son. The only exceptions to this policy are those requirements which can only be done and evidenced at home (e.g. requirements 3b and 4 of Safety merit badge, the requirements for Home Repairs merit badge, and Family Life merit badge). Parents are encouraged to assist their sons in the learning process that is part of advancement. The purposes of this policy are: 1) to give scouts an opportunity to practice formal, business-like relationships with counselors and others outside the home; and 2) to encourage equality in merit badge requirements. Occasionally, a parent will be asked by the counselor to witness the completion of a requirement and send a note.
When a Scout is seeking a particular merit badge he should:
1. Consult his Scout Handbook to familiarize himself with the process for completion of the requirements.
2. Obtain and study the merit badge pamphlet. These may be borrowed from our troop library, or purchased at our Council Office Scout Shop off Office Blvd. They may also be ordered from the Scout Supply Center catalog.
3. See the Troop Merit Badge Chairperson (Mrs. Dabeer or Mrs. Whippo) who keeps a current list of Approved Merit Badge Counselors. She will provide the scout with a merit badge card that should be signed by the Scoutmaster, filled out with the scout’s name and address information, and taken to the merit badge counselor.
4. Contact the counselor to schedule appointments before and during work on the requirements. The counselor will review the work and give guidance and help.
5. When the counselor believes that the scout has completed all the requirements for the merit badge, he will sign the merit badge card. Remember, the listed requirements are the minimum requirements set by the BSA National Office. The counselor should be an expert in the subject matter of the merit badge. The Scoutmaster, the Troop Advancement Chairman, and the Scout's Board of Review hold the ultimate responsibility for ensuring that all requirements have been completed.
6. Deliver the signed card to Ms. Sanders. She will send a record to the Great Southwest Council Office off Office Blvd. It will be filed in the Scout's permanent record at the BSA National Office in Texas.
7. Attend the next Court of Honor, where the Merit Badge will be awarded.
One of the requirements for a rank award (advancement) is a Personal Growth Agreement Conference with the Scoutmaster or one of his assistants. During this conference the scout's progress is reviewed and a contract or agreement is made for the scout's continuing advancement. These are sometimes written and placed in the scout's file for future reference. The scout should bring his Scout Handbook to the Conference.
The Conference is usually scheduled after all other award requirements have been completed but before the Board of Review. Scouts are encouraged to schedule their Scoutmaster Conference (Conferences are held the 1st Tuesday of the month) by contacting Mr. Hanson at least one week in advance.
When a scout completes all the requirements for a progress award, including the Scoutmaster Conference, he should contact Mrs. Ruane to request a Board of Review. Troop Boards of Review are held at the 2nd Tuesday of the month (but should be arranged at least a week before). For all rank advancement awards, the Board of Review is conducted by the Troop Board of Review which consists of adult scouters. For the Eagle award, the candidate will be evaluated at the Troop level by a Troop Eagle Board organized by Winton Smith, our Eagle advancement chair. The final Board of Review will be conducted by representatives from the Sandia District, Great Southwest Council. The Scoutmaster will be present at this board but does not participate. Complete class A uniform must be worn for all Boards of Review.
Any scout seeking Star or Life awards must receive service project approval by the Troop Committee and the Scoutmaster prior to conducting each project. An Eagle candidate must complete a Service Project Planning form for the District Eagle Board before he may proceed with his project. Eagle projects must be approved by the Troop Committee and the Scoutmaster prior to consideration by the District Eagle Board. An Eagle candidate must also complete an Eagle Award Application form before he may proceed with his Board of Review. Any scout seeking signatures of the Scoutmaster and Troop Committee Chairman for his Eagle Award Application will meet with the Scoutmaster, Assistant Scoutmasters, Eagle Advancement Chairman and members of the Troop Committee to assure that he has fulfilled the expectations for an Eagle in Troop 1 prior to being scheduled for his Board of Review.
Each Scout should keep a record of his progress in his own Scout Handbook and Eagle Book. The Handbook lists each step required for advancement and must be precisely followed to assure acceptance by the Scouting National Office. It has spaces for Scout Leaders to initial and date as requirements are completed. The Scout should keep careful notes of the dates he completes the requirements for each merit badge, the dates the badges were awarded, and the dates of advancement. Many scouts have found their personal records to be invaluable for verification when uncertainty arises in regard to their progress through scouting's ranks. This back-up system serves as excellent preparation for the adult world of work where individuals must be responsible for their own successes and accomplishments.