Boy Scout Training

I just took a peek at the current results of the Poll on Training… and I think it is right where I thought it would be.  “Leaving us wanting More”.
We talked a lot about training at the annual meetings and just how bad it needs to be upgraded and changed.
I think that the BSA is on mark by requiring its leaders to be trained.  But the training needs to be more specific to the leaders job and it needs to provide the information that is going to do two things.
First.  Help the leader better serve youth.  Training needs to include sessions on mentoring, coaching, and dealing with youth with special needs.  The training needs to included “Train the Trainer” sessions, giving the leader skills to train youth leaders.  And the training needs to tackle issues that help the leader work with developing young men.
Second.  The training needs to address specific BSA policy so we are all providing the same program (delivery methods may vary).
Current BSA training is geared to serve the lowest common denominator.  We need to move away from this philosophy in training and train those leaders that we really want working with our youth.  Now, before I get hate mail.. I honestly think that Chartering Partners need to be selective in who they allow to be leaders.  I understand that it is hard to say no to a volunteer.. but lets not forget what we are trying to accomplish here.  These are the youth that we want leading America one day, yes this is “only Scouting”, but we are working with young men in their formative years.  We need to be carefull how we are training them and teaching them to be men.  The wrong leader can leave the Scout with a bad Scouting experience.
Boy Scout training does leave us wanting more.
Lets take Wood Badge for example.  Wood Badge should not be a training event that you attend 5, 10, 15 years along the training continuum.  It should be training right after a Scout leader completes his or her basic course.  They would get a lot more out of it I think.
Advanced training should then focus on skills, techniques, and should be delivered in Workshop formats.
Let me know what you think.
Have a Great Scouting Day!


  1. Of course, I wonder if we will still get the same “push back” from leaders if we have “even more required training” for them to complete?

    We are one of the Councils in the National Pilot and we have a few who have been very vocal about this “new” need to be trained. Of course, I remember when we tried the same thing in the 80s.


  2. I agree on Woodbadge – I waited about 7 years after being scoutmaster. My wife took it about 6 months after becoming a den leader and just after finishing basic training. She was ready and I think is ramping up much faster because of it.


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