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ABOUT BEING A MERIT BADGE COUNSELOR
Share your knowledge with Scouts. Merit badge counselors teach Scouts a variety of skills. From American Business to Woodwork, there’s a badge for everything. All merit badge counselors must be registered with the Boy Scouts of America and approved by the council advancement committee for each badge listed on the Merit Badge Counselor Information form.

REGISTRATION
The Advancement Committee of the Mayflower Council has the responsibility of approving and maintaining a list of current merit badge counselors. A merit badge counselor is a council-level position, not a troop position, which means leaders must submit a new adult leader application even if already registered in another capacity.

There are four steps for a new merit badge counselor to register with the Boy Scouts of America and begin merit badge counseling:

  1. Complete Online Youth Protection Training
    • To become a merit badge counselor, a volunteer must complete youth protection training which can be found on My.Scouting.org. Once complete, you will be offered the opportunity to print a completion certificate. Please print it as you must submit this proof of completion with your application to be a merit badge counselor. It is also a good idea to save a copy to your desktop.
  2. Complete the BSA Adult Leader Application
    • Having completed youth protection training, you need to complete a new adult application. This form is required, even if you hold a current registration with your unit or district. Please pay special attention to filling in the “Council/District Position” as “Merit Badge Counselor” and the “Position Code” as “42”. The signature blocks for the unit committee chairman and chartered organization representative do not have to be signed. Those approvals are for a unit. Do not forget to answer questions 1-6 on the right side of the application. Without answers to these questions, your application cannot be processed. The adult application must be submitted in conjunction with the online Merit Badge Counselor Information Form.
      • NOTE: The entire application form must be filled in and signed, including the Disclosure/Authorization page located at the end of the application form as well as the Additional Disclosures and Background Check  Authorization form.   All applicants and currently registered Scouters go through a background check – as noted and authorized on the Disclosure/Authorization page of the Adult Application form. Individuals who aren’t currently registered will also need to provide a completed CORI form and a copy of their ID as well.
  3. Complete the Online Merit Badge Counselor Information Form
    • This form is used by the advancement committee to know which merit badges you want to teach, to show why you are qualified to teach the listed merit badges, and to approve your request. Merit badge counselors are authorized to counsel anywhere within the Mayflower Council.

4. Turn in all the paperwork

      • Turn in the completed adult leader application, youth protection training certificate and CORI form and photo ID (if not currently registered) to the Mayflower Council Service Center or email to membership@mayflowerbsa.org.

MERIT BADGE COUNSELOR REGISTRATION CONSIDERATIONS

  • There is no fee for registering as a merit badge counselor even if you are only registered with the Boy Scouts of America as a merit badge counselor.
  • You must be current with Youth Protection Training to work with Scouts and this training must be completed every two (2) years. The council may track this requirement but it is your responsibility to remain current. Failure to keep up to date on youth protection training will also result in being dropped from the list. If a merit badge counselor is dropped from the council list the dropped counselor will have to re-register as a new counselor again.
  • Several merit badges involve activities for which BSA has implemented strategies to improve safety, improve the Scouts’ experience, and manage risk. These activities often require supervision with specialized qualifications and certifications. Merit badge counselors who do not meet the specific requirements may use the services of others who do. See the Guide to Advancement paragraph 7.0.1.1 for these merit badges and their requirements.
  • Consider not limiting yourself to only those Scouts in your troop. Many of the less popular merit badges may not have a counselor in their troop and you could help scouts pursue an interest in an area where you have some expertise.
    • This is controlled by the counselor in Scoutbook. Log in to Scoutbook go to My Positions, then Merit Badge Counselor and then select a listing preference between: Council list, District list, Unit list, or Not Listed.

SCOUTBOOK
In October 2019, Mayflower Council transitioned our merit badge counselor list from Doubleknot to Scoutbook.  Once registered with the BSA as a merit badge counselor, your merit badge counselor position will be added to Scoutbook. If you do not already have a Scoutbook account, an account will be created for you and you will be sent login information by email. You can adjust how you display on the list. Sign onto Scoutbook (if you misplace your login credentials, click login then click the Forgot Password link.) Once you login you will be able to adjust your listing preference between: Council list, District list, Unit list, Worldwide or Not Listed.

For detailed instructions on how to use Scoutbook as a merit badge counselor review this resource Scoutbook Merit Badge Counselor Guide.

The merit badge counselor listing in Scoutbook will be updated by the seventh of each month.

If you are a merit badge counselor and your listing is not showing in Scoutbook follow these directions to find out if you are registered as a merit badge counselor:

  1. Log into http://my.scouting.org
  2. Select My Dashboard (upper left)
  3. Then select My Profile. You can edit your contact information there.  Make sure your email address, ZIP  and phone number are there and up to date.  Scoutbook requires a valid email address, ZIP and phone number to be listed.
  4. Make sure your email address is not used by someone else in your family in Scoutbook.  Email addresses in Scoutbook must be unique.
  5. If you are registered as a merit badge counselor it will show there as well.
  6. While your at my.scouting.org, make sure your Youth Protection Training is current.
  7. If you know for sure you are registered with the council, check and make sure your Youth Protection Training is current and sync it inside Scoutbook.  Scoutbook will not show merit badge counselors with expired youth protection training.  The list in Scoutbook is updated on a regular basis.
  8. For information on how to register as a merit badge counselor see above.

USEFUL LINKS FOR MERIT BADGE COUNSELORS

ANNUAL RENEWAL OF MERIT BADGE COUNSELORS
All merit badge counselors must confirm their registration annually. In May of each year, currently registered merit badge counselors will be sent an email to confirm their desire to continue as a merit badge counselor. Failure to confirm this information will result in being dropped from the merit badge counselor list.

If a merit badge counselor who was dropped wishes to continue as a merit badge counselor he/she must register as a new merit badge counselor again using the forms and processes listed above.

QUESTIONS
Reviewed all of this information and still have questions? We’re here to help! Contact us at mbc@mayflowerbsa.or