Welcome! This forum has a treasure trove of great info – Scouters helping Scouters! Just a heads up, though - all content, information, and opinions shared on this forum are those of the author, not the BSA.
What happened to 22.214.171.124 Web-Based Counselor Lists?
“Online counselor lists present a number of challenges. They should only be placed on official council websites that conform to the National Council guidelines. Council sites must consider the safety and privacy of their members and participants by obtaining the necessary permissions to release information about or images of any individual. Give attention to protecting counselor privacy. Limit access to those who have merit badge– related responsibilities, such as advancement committee members and chairs, or unit leaders and selected assistants. Scouts should not have access. Their interaction with the Scoutmaster in discussing work on a badge, and obtaining a counselor’s name, is an important part of the merit badge plan.”
I currently serve as a Scoutmaster and registered Merit Badge Counselor so I have Full Control. Scoutbook’s Find a MB Counselor page does indicate, “This page is only viewable by unit leaders. Parents, Scouts and other users do not have access to this page.”
My concerns began with information provided in the posts suggesting access to the MBC list is wide open to others with full control, contradicting the web page statement. I cannot see the other’s search page with allowed search parameters, or results. From you post I take it others can only search by counselor name and not by merit badge group. If that’s the case then great.
The MB Counselor Search feature is restricted to leaders.
If a parent already knows the name of an MBC because the Scoutmaster provided it to the Scout or previous experience, the Parent can go to the Scout’s connection page, click +Add and search for the MBC by name, e-mail address or BSA Member ID. This is no different than the way a parent would search for anyone else to make a connection to their Scout.
If your Council does it correctly, Counselors are authorized only for specific badges. Unless the counselor was authorized for the specific badge then the connection wouldn’t be made. In this case it looks like those counselors “cannot approve (counsel) any badges the scout is working on”.
Sounds like the system works exactly as it should.
The other poster is also correct. Only troop Scoutmaster or his designee should be connecting scouts to counselors. The parent also should not be the one contacting the counselor, that should be done only by the scout.