I understand the challenge of some MBC not using Scoutbook. This challenge should not dismiss the need for the badge to be counselor approved. The unit leader should not mark the approval for the MBC and also for themselves. The advancement chair or someone that would not mark “leader approved” should have to mark a checkbox for the existence of a completed blue card and counselor approval.
A requirement marked complete is not telling a “leader” that a scout is ready to be tested; it is telling a **merit badge counselor ** that he is ready to be tested. This process has been modeled after the rank requirements without regard to the fact that only one person, the merit badge counselor, can test. It is specifically stated in scoutbook for each merit badge that “Merit badge counselors are the only adults authorized to approve work on merit badges.” Leader approval should not be able to happen without counselor approval.
This system has the ability to prevent a leader approval without counselor approval instead of risking human error. I do not disagree that your answer is absolutely correct. I have two right MB now that I have to unapprove and caught one yesterday that I was able to contact the MBC to correct. Having to undo erroneously approved merit badges undermines the scout’s feeling of success.