The Blue Card Process or Merit Badges Mania?

All rank advancements beyond First Class Scout require merit badges. Everyone should know the system and the blue card process is a big part of that. Blue Cards or Merit Badge Applications are the documents needed to get merit badges. To start this process the unit leader and Scout should meet and go over the merit badge procedure together. The unit leader and Scout select the merit badge counselor; sign and date the blue card to get it officially started. Remember that the two-deep leadership applies to Merit Badge counselors too. That includes online conferencing, emails, text messaging, etc. Merit Badge counselors must be approved by the council, trained, the proper age, and be YPT certified. On completion of the merit badge, the counselor will sign-off the first two parts and remove the part for their record. The Scout then gives the application part of the blue card to the unit leader or the unit’s advancement team. The Scout should retain the “Applicants Record” part of the blue card. Scout Camp and Online Merit Badge Academies may have a different form however the blue card process should be maintained. One of the rumors going around is that Blue Cards are phasing out. As of the date of this filming, it is only a rumor. Eventually, it will become electronic and even moved over to Scoutbook.

🌎 The Merit Badge Program: https://www.scouting.org/resources/guide-to-advancement/the-merit-badge-program/

📄 Blue-Card PDF: http://usscouts.org/advance/docs/34124.pdf

📄 Guide to Safe Scouting: https://filestore.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/34416.pdf

⚜️ Note: Cub Scout leaders should not skip this video. Even though the blue card process will not apply to Cub Scouts. Most cub scout requirements are in their book and signed off by leaders or parents. However, Cub Scout leaders should know about the process for future reference and interactions with Den Chiefs and other Scouts. Some Cub Scout leaders are also merit badge counselors.

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Scouting’s New Path… Post-Pandemic?

Welcome to Season 3 of Commissioner Weekly. Season 2 finished filming at the beginning of February. So this is the first time we have been able to address the pandemic. Most of Scouting survived with some needed changes. “BE PREPARED” went into action. The meeting became virtual and campout was held in our own living rooms and back yards. World Scouting had its own World Jamboree online. Scouting handled it all pretty well. All parents learned how to REALLY wash their hands from their Cub Scouts. Parents also got a real hart-to-hart talk about “When your sick, stay home” from their teens.

Things that have changed for the better. We are more aware of how viruses can spread. Today we know to cough and sneeze into our elbows. We should only touch our face when washing it. When you’re feeling ill, stay home. If you get worse, contact a doctor by phone or the internet. Even when you feel well again, you may still need to stay home for some time. What do we do with the old fashion handshake? The “elbow bump” is awkward and strange. Is that part of the “Chicken Dance”? Should this be replaced with a bow? A traditional Indian form of greeting is the Añjali Mudrā gesture or namaste. Currently, we are left with a weird “mime” type of wave or worse. I’m in favor of a scout salute when in uniform. This might be perceived as militaristic in nature as we normally only salute the flag. But we all know how to give a scout salute and it can be done at a distance. B-P saluted scouts and scouts saluted him in return. It’s respectful and meaningful.

🌎 Old Fashion Handshake? http://www.scouterstan.com/?p=291

🎬 BSA Scouting At Home: https://youtu.be/chnOUp2QzLY

🎬 Scouts get creative during pandemic: https://youtu.be/I4wWXrZ3EIM

🎬 Boy Scout troops stay connected amid pandemic: https://youtu.be/p_DVxN5qkFE

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Pandemic Scouting Update

Just an update of the “new normal”? We need to start thinking about getting back into things. Start the conversations now with your charter organization about starting up again.

What is OA? (Compilation of videos.)

The Order of the Arrow (OA) is not a secret society. It is the honor society of the Boy Scouts of America or today’s Scouts BSA. These three videos explain a lot of the mystery without revealing or spoiling the traditions. It observes and preserves the tradition of the order. This video series of “Heinz 57” is intended to help you “Catch-up”. Many new adult leaders are unaware of the organization and traditions within scouting.

🌎 Order of the Arrow Website: https://oa-bsa.org

▶ OA YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/oabsa

🌐 Wiki Link: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Order_of_the_Arrow

🎬 What’s the Order of the Arrow about? https://youtu.be/rK3dULQ-vFM

🎬 I’ve Been Elected to the Order of the Arrow… Now What? Ordeal? https://youtu.be/U1SEax7-51k

🎬 I’m an Ordeal Member… Now What? https://youtu.be/v9w0Dn2Cl_I