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Scouting Forums

Adding new Scouts to Scoutbook

In our pack, we have to wait for BSA to add new Scouts to Scoutbook. Each year this takes a REALLY long time. Our new Scouts registered over 3 weeks ago but they are still not entered and this causes problems when we are utilizing this as our main way to communicate to Dens and the Pack. They are missing out on many things…(and our new Lions are really missing out !)

Does anyone else have this issue?

It’s not an uncommon issue in many councils, while some councils seem to process the paperwork almost by magic. Unfortunately, the work-arounds almost all have a high likelihood of creating duplicate accounts for either the scouts, the parents, or both.

What we have done for scouts brand new to scouting is create the scout account with the name, birth date, address, etc exactly as it appears on the application before we submit the application. Similarly, we create a parent account with their name and email address exactly as it appears on the application. Then, we wait for the Registrar to “create” the BSA ID for each person, and hope that member sync catches the existing account. It only works some of the time.

For existing scouts transferring in, we use the “Transfer in Scout” tool to transfer the scout’s Scoutbook record. That only gives 90 days for the unit and registrar to get the paperwork submitted and processed, but we can “work around” the 90 days by setting a new start date on the 89th day so it keeps stretching the time. Once the official roster in my.scouting is updated, we return the membership start date to the actual start date. This has a low likelihood of creating a duplicate account assuming the scout is from the same council, their BSA ID is included on their transfer paperwork, and the “transfer application” box is ticked on the paperwork.

For my council, I take the new apps in and hand them over to our fabulous admin staff and wait while she processes them. It never takes more than two business days to appear in Scoutbook automatically.

I am fortunate to live near my council office.

Haha…I told a committee member this story and her response was “a lot of hand holding for sure!”. I said if I thought it would make it any faster in our District, I would do it! Saturday will be 4 weeks…we shall see.

We try to get all new applicants to use beascout.org to register. As CC I approve them in my.scouting and within 24 hours they are in the Pack on the roster.

As @CharleyHamilton discusses, manual entry is possible with constraints. If you have many scouts with paper applications, the Feature Assistant Extension has an import feature that creates scout accounts, parent accounts, and links them in one step.


Please be aware that the BSA’s online registration system can only be used for people who are brand new to the BSA – it currently cannot be used for transfers or former members (future enhancement).


@CharleyHamilton - I’ve had a lot of success entering the information from the paper application into Scoutbook. It just takes too long for the council to enter it. We try to discourage paper. The only time it didn’t work, the council registrar misspelled the Scout’s name.

I believe it is actually new to the unit not necessarily to BSA.

However a council may be requiring all adult applications to be summitted on paper due to the requirements for periodic background investigations. More:

There are may also be state laws that require applications and additional forms to be submitted on paper. For example:


We confirmed with the program manager that the Online Registration system does not yet support transfers.

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