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Posts posted by BobWhiteVA

  1. 4 minutes ago, Treflienne said:

    If you use Scoutbook for advancement records,  do you still use something else for calendar and communications?

    we use Troopwebhost for calendar and communications, it looks like with the new scoutbook, we can export from Scoutbook into TWH so scouts can see advancements as well.

  2. 3 hours ago, allangr1024 said:

    So the Scoutmaster wants to require that all scouts holding an elected office or an appointed position be required to go on 50% of the camping trips. 

    That's the key point in your quote.  In a Scout-led unit, the PLC would establish this requirement, not the Scoutmaster.  But to me it begs the bigger issue of 'why' are the older Scouts not attending outings.  This is pretty common across units I've seen, and usually is attributable to a number of things including lack of a program for the older Scouts, too many distractions, and too much of a focus on the older Scouts simply being their to teach the younger Scouts.  Ultimately this should involve a conversation with the older Scouts to find out what they want to do, and what would get them more involved.  In a lot of units, this discussion leads to establishment of a venture crew.  It could also include having adults bring ideas for outings to the PLC.  Good luck!

  3. 16 hours ago, MikeS72 said:

    When you go to Scoutbook the login page should have a message telling you to log in using your my.scouting.org login, both username and password.  

    Right, and as I noted in my original post, when we try that (both our COR and our advancements chair), we get an error:  "It looks like your BSA account is not setup with Scoutbook, if you have a Scoutbook account please login with your email/password then choose the option to link your my.Scouting.org account. If you do not have a Scoutbook account please complete the signup form to link your account."

    I searched for "scoutbook sign up form" and found this: https://www.scoutbook.com/mobile/signup.asp. however, after submitting it I get "whoops! we encountered an error trying to process your request, our webmaster has been notified and will fix it ASAP!"

    And still no response from Scoutbook to our trouble tickets.  Arghhhh.

  4. Our advancements chair and COR are unable to log into Scoutbook using my.scouting.org credentials, all the documentation on the Scoutbook site says that they've enabled single sign-on, so we should use our my.scouting.org credentials to access Scoutbook.  WIth IA now going away we're stuck, and Scoutbook support has been non-responsive.  Anyone else having the same issue?

  5. Hi All,

    We have a six year-old Troop of approximately 60 boys, given that our first patrols were 11 when we started, they are beginning to age out.  Couple with that, we've really struggled to put together a program that keeps our older Scouts involved (various attempts to start a "high adventure patrol" have fizzled as they just went with the normal Troop program, and while older Scouts do mostly attend meetings, they don't really do much).   So, we're looking at starting a Crew on the idea that it will keep Scouts active beyond their 18th birthday, give the Crew their own identity, and potentially set the stage to bring in girls.  We have identified a COR, Crew Advisor, and Committee Chair.

    Our concern is that starting the crew would create conflict with the Troop - that is, that the older boys in the Crew would stop participating and being resources for the Troop (e.g. to help out with leading meeting activities).  To avoid this, we're considering having crew meetings at the same time as Troop meetings, so everyone would come together for open/close, and then the crew would go off on their own to plan their activities, but be available on an as-needed resource to help with Troop activities.   We've had some internal debate as to whether the Crew should be optional for older Scouts as they become eligible, or whether it should be mandatory that all Scouts who are eligible are automatically enrolled.

    I'm hoping to understand best practices for starting a Crew out of an existing Troop.  .What works?  What doesn't?  What should we avoid?  Is the idea of essentially having the Crew meet with the Troop a good or bad idea?   How do we avoid the potential scenario in which all the older boys go to the Crew and leave the Troop?

    Thanks in advance!

  6. https://www.countrymeats.com has good Scout programs.  Our most successful fundraisers have been Wreaths Across America, and buying a few hundred dozen Krispy Kreme donuts and selling them at local storefronts or parks during Saturday sporting events.  KK will sell them to you for something like $3 a box, with extra free boxes based quantity purchased.  We stopped doing the donut sales though as it seemed like people are becoming donut averse.  Our next effort is to sell spirit cups - http://www.spiritcupsfundraising.com/fundraising-products/spiritcups/

  7. Some new info from TroopWebHost:

    TroopWebHost will support the ability to transfer advancement data to the new Scoutbook Lite program.

    The BSA has confirmed that Scoutbook Lite will provide the ability to upload advancement information from a CSV file, similar to the Internet Advancement upload function.   TroopWebHost will be able to produce a file in the required format.

    We are in direct communication with the BSA IT group and expect to receive detailed specifications in plenty of time to allow our customers to make a smooth transition.”

    • Thanks 1
  8. 21 minutes ago, Back Pack said:

    All current troop software platforms will offer a link in to Scoutbook. This was confirmed last week by the major vendors. It will be similar to the data import you can use today in troopmaster to import training. 

    Here's what we received from Troopwebhost:  


    We've received a lot of inquiries about the BSA ending support for Internet Advancement and specifically the ability to upload the ScoutNet advancement CSV file.  We are in discussions with the BSA about how we can fill this void.  One possibility is an upload function that was documented on the ScoutBook FAQ page three years ago:   https://www.scoutbook.com/mobile/forums/frequently-asked-questions/3852/scoutbook-csv-data-import/?Search=uploading+csv. 

    We've asked the BSA to confirm that this function is still available and whether it will be available in ScoutBook Lite.  If that's the case, we can easily produce a compatible file.  If not, there are a couple of other avenues that we can pursue.  This will be our top priority this year. 

    If you have access to a fully operational version of ScoutBook, please let us know if you can find this function and, if so, how to get to it, so we can share this with everyone else. 


    • Thanks 1
  9. Some new info posted this morning by the Commisioners of the BSA. They specifically say no API support for third party apps. :(  





    You may have seen this information a bit earlier... but it wasn't officially released until today...

    Scoutbook Lite to Replace Internet Advancement in Q2 of 2018

    The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) is excited to roll out a new solution in Q2 of 2018 that will leverage core components of the Scoutbook platform.
    The current Internet Advancement platform will be retired and replaced by a new online tool called Scoutbook Lite.
    This new application is being developed now from the ground up so that unit leaders can quickly key in advancement and other key data.  It will sport a slick new user interface optimized for desktop, tablet, and mobile devices.  

    The BSA has found that less than 10% of units use the CSV data file import feature in Internet Advancement. In the interest of focusing on tools that serve more Scouters, the CSV data file import will not be supported once the current Internet Advancement platform is discontinued.

    Other than the CSV import feature, Scoutbook Lite will offer optimized functions for everything found in the current Internet Advancement platform.

    The Scoutbook database will become the official record of advancement for the Boy Scouts of America.  

    And we will continue to work on and improve Scoutbook as our full feature application.

    And one more thing.  

    Are you a programmer?
    For Scouters who are experienced in the development of apps or web platforms, the BSA is excited to announce the upcoming roll out of API’s. 
    A selection of specific, read-only API’s will be made available to Scouting volunteers in the first half of 2018. There are no current plans to roll out API’s to third parties.



  10. I agree with what everyone else said - CC cannot mandate where Webelos go, that's up to the individual Scouts and their parents.   That being said, there are some advantages to starting a Troop from the ground up in that the boys will have instant leadership opportunities they may not receive in other units.  We started a new Troop with all Webelos and one sibling who was a Tenderfoot, he was our first SPL at age 13.  On the other hand, many boys may prefer more established programs.  Best of luck!

    • Upvote 1
  11. thanks blw2.  We've been VERY happy with TWH, the steady stream of upgrades and the incredibly quick response we get when asking for new features or for assistance would make us very reluctant to move off of it.  We use it as well to manage scout accounts, as well as to manage our Troop inventory.  Still, we're doing double work tracking advancements as we track in both TWH and Internet Advancements, so Scoutbook has some appeal to us.  Hopefully HelpfulTracks mention of a possible API enabling integration between TWH and Scoutbook comes to pass.

  12. Hi All,

    We've been using TWH for about five years to pretty much run all aspects of our Troop and we love it.  However, with BSA pushing Scoutbook, and today's announcement that Scoutbook will replace Internet Advancements (https://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2017/12/21/scoutbook-lite-to-replace-bsas-internet-advancement-platform-in-early-2018/), i'm thinking it's time to revisit Scoutbook.  From what I've been able to tell, TWH is far superior for tracking finances, equipment inventory, and for allowing parents to access their Scout's account.  Has anyone made the switch?  Or, is anyone using both?  Could anyone who is using Scoutbook provide their evaluation?



  13. Hoping this is the right forum for this question.  We have had several Life Scouts who have used GoFundMe to raise money for their Eagle Projects.  They are filling out fundraising apps if they need to raise more than $500.  


    Our concern is that if the Scouts are using their own accounts, then there is potential for abuse.  We're wondering how other units handle GFM and similar sites.  Do they route funds to the Troop and then have the Troop treasurer reimburse the Scout for out-of-pocket expenses and then turn over excess funds to the beneficiary?


    Or do they just let the Scout raise the money on their own, and hope that "A Scout is Trustworthy" and will therefore turn over excess funds to the project beneficiary?


    Thanks in advance!

    • Like 1
  14. For those of you in the D.C. area, wildsafe.org runs a FANTASTIC WFA/WFR program, it's a bit pricey but i've spoken to several who have taken 'cheap' training and the experience is nowhere near as good.  The two guys who run the program are both Eagle Scouts.  I took their course in May of 2015 and am retaking it with my boys in June.  The instructors evenly balance classroom and hands-on to ensure you get to practice what you learn.  Our final 'graduating' scenario in 2015 involved three campers who had been attacked by bears, complete with impalements, compound fractures, burns, and lacerated abdomens.   Lots of fun (and blood!)

  15. Hi All,

    I seem to recall that it is prohibited for us to post full names of our Scouts in public areas of our web site, but I can't find any conformation after digging through the BSA social media, privacy and COPPA pages.  The issue came up as we had an event entitled "John Smith's Eagle Project" posted to the public section of our site.  Am I mis-remembering?  To be safe we removed the last name, but I'd like to know if there's a specific policy available.




  16. Bob, you've said "the CO does not have any property..."

    Don't mess around with this stuff. the theft of the trailer and it's contents are the least of your worries. When the trailer decouples from the ASM's Dodge dart, rolls into the southbound lane, and all the LP cylinders ignite in the aftermath - that's what you're worried about. Or more importantly - you CO SHOULD BE WORRIED about.


    What's the CO going to do? shut down the unit. But they are legally on the hook for damages.


    CT, thanks for your response. As I understand it after talking to insurance agents, our DE, and reading whatever I could find, if the trailer were to separate from a vehicle, the vehicle owner's liability insurance is the primary vehicle. BSA insurance kicks in as the secondary policy. See: http://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2014/04/03/ask-the-expert-how-should-scouters-handle-insurance-for-troop-trailers/. Of course there's always the risk of someone who is injured filing suit against the driver, Troop leaders, CO, national BSA, etc.


    So our real concern was around any kind of liability we needed to cover when the trailer was at rest (in addition to theft insurance). Thanks!


  17. thanks for the responses, our CO is small and is in the process of obtaining their own liability insurance, they are a community organization that does not have any property or facility, so no theft of their own.


    We ended up paying for theft insurance and property liability for about $350 a year.

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