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Why Do Leaders Need Training?

Training shows new leaders how to do their jobs and allows for an interchange of ideas with more experienced leaders. Every Scout deserves qualified, trained leaders who will provide the best program possible, the way it is intended. Trained leaders ensure that the goals of Scouting are met. All Scout leaders need training to help them understand the aims and purposes of the Scouting program, to improve their ability to work with boys and other leaders, to learn Scouting skills, and to learn how to plan an effective Scouting program.

Mason-Dixon Council, BSA has a wide range of training opportunities to help you develop as an adult Scout leader. It all starts with Fast Start Training; a new leader's first introduction to being a Scout leader. Fast Start is available on-line or on video tape. Next is Basic Training. Basic training starts with New Leader Essentials for all leadership positions followed by Leader Specific training that specializes in the program area for which you are a leader. All Scout Leaders are also required to complete Youth Protection Training.

Learning continues with Supplemental Training events like Roundtables, Re-chartering, Leave No Trace, Friends of Scouting, Adult Awards & Recognition, Chartered Organization Representative, and many others. Supplemental Training adds to a Scout leader's knowledge base and helps bring new program ideas and skills back to the Unit.

There is also Advanced Training available such as Wood Badge, Training Development Conferences, and Philmont Training Center courses.

Who should go to Training?

If you have completed an Adult Scout Leader application, you should be going to Training! Every adult Scout leader position has important tasks in bringing the program to you Pack, Troop, Team, or Crew.

In a Cub Scout pack, if you have registered as a Den Leader, Asst. Den Leader, Tiger Den Leader, Webelos Den Leader, Asst. Webelos Den Leader, Pack Committee Chair, Pack Committee Member, Cubmaster, Asst. Cubmaster, Pack Trainer, or Chartered Partner Representative, you need to be going to Training.  To be fully trained in your position, you must complete Fast Start, Youth Protection Training, This is Scouting, and Cub Scout Leader Specific. To take Cub Scouts camping, you will also need to complete BALOO (Basic Adult Leader Outdoor Orientation) and for Webelos Leaders, you will need OWL (Outdoor Webelos Leader) Training.

In a Boy Scout Troop, if you are registered as a Scoutmaster, Asst. Scoutmaster, Troop Committee Chair, Troop Committee Member, or Chartered Partner Representative, you start your training with Fast Start for Boy Scouts. Next it is Youth Protection Training and This is Scouting. For Scoutmasters and Asst. Scoutmasters, you need to continue with SM/ASM Leader Specific, which all includes Introduction to Outdoor Leadership Skills. For Troop Committee Chairs and Members, your next step is Troop Committee Challenge.

Venturing Crew leaders also follow a similar path, starting with Venturing Fast Start. Crew Advisors, Associate Crew Advisors, Crew Committee Chairs and Crew Committee Members then continue with Youth Protection Training, This is Scouting, and Venturing Leader Specific Training.

Training Recertification

Keeping Scouts safe and keeping Scouting leaders up to date with current information and methods means some of the BSA's training courses need to be retaken every couple of years.

We all know about Youth Protection training and National Camping School, but there are some others—including some that have recently been added to the list.

Below is a list of these courses and how often they should be retaken to be valid:

  • Youth Protection—every two years-everyone is encouraged to take every November. Everyone, every year!
  • National Camping School—good for five camping seasons
  • Safe Swim Defense—every two years
  • Paddle Craft Safety—every three years
  • Aquatics Supervision/Swimming and Water Rescue—every three years
  • BSA Lifeguard—every three years
  • Visitation training—every two years
  • Climbing Lead Instructor—every two years
  • Climbing Instructor—every two years
  • COPE/Climbing Inspector—every two years
  • Safety Afloat—every two years
  • Chain Saw Safety—every two years
  • Trainer’s EDGE—every three years
  • Hazardous Weather—every two years
  • Physical Wellness—every two years
  • Climb On Safely—every two years
  • Trek Safely—every two years

National Training Codes

National Basic Training Requirements

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