Merit Badge Counselor - Working with Scouts

I’m a counselor for a merit badge and hosted a Troop wide merit badge clinic last year. After the clinic I went into Scoutbook and marked all the completed requirements for the scouts that attended. Over the course of the year, only half of them followed through and actually finished the merit badge. When I look at the merit badge counselor list, it still shows I’m working with XX number of scouts. It’s not a problem, I’m just curious if a scout never finishes the badge, am I going to see that count forever? Perhaps I shouldn’t have updated their Scoutbook requirements, until the very end, when they finished the badge?

Is there a best practice for paper blue card versus Scoutbook when doing clinics like that for your own Troop?


Hi, Nicholas,

I counsel several MBs, and I generally do what you did in terms of Scoutbook:

  1. Get connected to the scouts as MBC
  2. Update their MB records on Scoutbook
  3. Have a stack of scouts who are in-process until they complete the badge, age out, or ask to work with another counselor.

I always sign hard-copy blue cards for the scouts. As far as I know, my council still uses the blue card as the official record. It also provides a permanent document for the scout to include in their own record-keeping.

I try to keep SB up-to-date with the blue cards, so that I can more easily keep track of where my counselees are in their process. Sometimes, it helps me give them a nudge if I see that they’re languishing. “So, we haven’t talked about Cooking MB in a while. How’s that going? Are you waiting on me for something?”

I haven’t had any scouts age out before they finished, yet, but I’m mostly counseling required MBs recently.

Thanks, appreciate the validation. I will keep on doing what I’m doing and not worry about how many scouts it says I’m working with. :+1:

Nicholas - or you could use that number to tell folks you are really busy… “See I am working with 500 scouts…”

:laughing: :laughing: :laughing: :laughing: