Basic Leader Training is the culmination of more than two years of work by professionals and volunteers
around the nation. Their goal was to revise and update the volunteer leader training materials for the
Boy Scouts of America.
Their result is a seamless training program that helps leaders easily graduate through the courses quickly
and with little duplication. The package provides the district training committee with tools to achieve 100
percent trained unit volunteers. It begins with our existing Fast Start training, continues through New
Leader Essentials, followed by leader-specific training for each adult's role in the unit.
Here is a brief overview of the components of the training continuum:
Fast Start Training
Fast Start training remains essentially unchanged. It continues to provide an immediate comfort level for new leaders
and enables them to say, "I can do this!" Fast Start training is the first step for any new volunteer and is to be
delivered immediately after a new leader registers and before he or she meets with any youth.
Basic Leader Training
The new Basic Leader Training is composed of two parts: New Leader Essentials, for all unit-level leaders, and New
Leader Specific Training, based on the leader's unit-level position.
New Leader Essentials
New Leader Essentials is an introductory session that highlights the values, aims, history, funding, and methods of
Scouting. It addresses how these aims and methods are reached in an age-appropriate style within Cub Scouting, Boy
Scouting, Varsity Scouting, and Venturing. Videos, discussions, and hands-on reinforcement are presented during
the 90-minute training session. Ideally, all unit-based volunteers—Cub Scout, Boy Scout, Varsity Scout, and Venturing
leaders—take this session at the same time, so they understand that they are all striving for the same results with
the youth they serve. Each leader completes New Leader Essentials training only once.
New Leader Specific Training
Once a volunteer has a solid overview of the Boy Scouts of America's values-based program, they can then begin training
for their specific Scouting position through Leader Specific Training. This training provides the specialized knowledge
a new leader needs to assume a leadership role. Because each course is designed for a specific leadership position, the
training time varies. Leader Specific Training has been developed for the following positions and their assistants:
- Tiger Cub den leaders
- Cub Scout den leaders
- Webelos den leaders
- Pack committee members
- Troop committee members
- Venturing committee members
- Venturing Advisors
Basic Leader Training is designed for maximum flexibility. The sessions can be delivered over time—training on one or
more evenings a week or month—or in a one-day training event that incorporates all program areas. It is suitable for
large or small groups and may be presented to leaders of one or more units each time. Each council and district may
decide the appropriate delivery method, keeping in mind that the focus is to remove roadblocks and achieve 100 percent
Overview of each of the New Leader Specific Training Courses
Cub Scout Leader Specific Training
For Tiger Cub den leaders, Cub Scout den leaders, Webelos den leaders, Cubmasters, pack committee members.
Training can be completed in one day or
two or three evenings. The leader is considered trained when he or she has completed New Leader Essentials and the Leader Specific Training.
Boy Scout Leader Specific Training
For Scoutmasters and assistant Scoutmasters.
The training is divided into four parts. The first three parts concentrate on troop operation and can be
completed in one full day or three evenings. The final part, which focuses on outdoor skills, lasts approximately a day and a half, depending on the
skill level of the new leader. The leader is considered trained when he or she has completed New Leader Essentials and the Leader Specific Training.
For troop committee members.
Troop committee training consists of the Troop Committee Challenge, which can be completed in three hours. After its
completion a troop committee member is considered trained. The leader is considered trained when he or she has completed New Leader Essentials, Leader
Specific Training, and Introduction to Outdoor Leader Skills.
Venturing Leader Specific Training
For Venturing Advisors, assistant Advisors, crew committee members.
Training incorporates Venturing's current adult leader training. It can be
completed in approximately one day, along with New Leader Essentials.
Wood Badge will evolve to be the core leadership skills training course for the Boy Scouts of America The new Wood Badge
course is less focused on outdoor skills—which are addressed in Introduction to Outdoor Leader Skills and Powder Horn
training—but will instead strengthen every volunteer's ability to work with and lead groups of youth and adults. Click
for more information.
Introduction to Outdoor Leader Skills (ITOLS)
Outdoor skills are critical to the success of the Scouting program. Waiting for a volunteer to attend a Wood Badge course
to receive those skills is too long to wait. To address this issue, Introduction to Outdoor Leader Skills will become the
required outdoor training for all Scoutmasters, assistant Scoutmasters, and Varsity Scout coaches. The skills taught are
based on the Scouting skills found in The Boy Scout Handbook. The course is also ideal for Venturing leaders since it
focuses on skills that build confidence and competence in leaders conducting outdoor camping experiences.
The course is a day and a half long, but a leader can move at an accelerated pace by showing that they have mastered a
specific skill. The emphasis is on the skill, rather than on attending the course. To be considered trained, these leaders
must complete the Leader Specific Training and this new course.
- Basic Adult Leader Outdoor Orientation (BALOO) - This training is to support the new Cub Scout Leader who has minimal camping experience
but wants to plan and carry out an entry-level outdoor experience for the pack. This training is required if the pack wishes to
participate in outdoor activities.
- Outdoor Webelos Leader Training (OWL) - This training course is required for Webelos Leaders that wish to take their Webelos Den overnight
camping. Completion of BALOO does not replace this training. This training is not required for Webelos Leaders to complete basic training
but is required for their training award.
- Youth Protection Training - This 90 minute training course is "must-have" for all leaders. It is not taught as a part of basic leader training.
It is offered throughout the year both on a District and Council level. Your District Training Chair can help arrange for a special "in-house"
course for your unit.
- Cub Scout Leader Pow Wow – A training extravaganza of knowledge and skills to help you become a more effective leader. An exciting day-long
carnival of action, activities, and program ideas.
- University of Scouting - A day long event full of training courses and other supplemental training for all leaders.
- Den Chief Training – An all day training event for Boy Scouts who have been selected by the Senior Patrol Leader and Scoutmaster or Varsity Scout
Coach and approved by the Cubmaster and pack committee for recommendation to the den leader. The Den Chief helps the Den Leader with Den meetings.
- Unit Leader Roundtables – Roundtables are held monthly for the purpose of giving adult leaders the skills and ideas they need to deliver an exciting
Scout program to their Scouts.
- Junior Leader Training Conference - a week long experience for Boy Scouts featuring Scoutcraft and leadership skills.
- Trainer Development Conference – A course designed to train those who conduct training for leaders in Cub Scouting, Boy Scouting, Varsity Scouting,
Venturing, commissioner service, and district/council operations.
- Commissioner Basic Training – A training program for unit commissioners. It is offered in-council as well as at the annual College of Commissioner's
Science training event.
- District Committee Training - This workshop is an official training program of the BSA. It will help district committee members meet the overall needs
of their District, functions of district operations, responsibilities of each committee & overall importance. It is directly related to all
individuals currently or prospectively a member of the district committee fulfilling any one or multiple roles.