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Troop Handbook


Advancement through the ranks of Scouting is taken very seriously by our Troop Leaders. Scouts’ advancement show their commitment to the Scouting program and to the spirit of Scouting. Using the Scout Handbook and being actively involved is the key to advancement.

In Scouting, we have 7 ranks. Your scout’s advancement is assessed through a Scoutmaster Conference and a Board of Review for each rank.  

Leadership roles are available for scouts who are First Class and above:

The Troop 285 suggested schedule allows a scout to mature and learn the long lasting lessons and skills that Scouting has to offer.

Earning Ranks Procedure

1.    Sign-off of Rank Requirements

Participate and accomplish all the requirements for the rank from the Scout Handbook and have them signed off by a Troop leader.

When a Scout has completed all requirements for a given rank and they’ve been signed off, the scout is ready for his Scoutmaster Conference. The Scoutmaster Conference form located on the troop website must be filled out by the scout and emailed with a request to schedule a meeting with the Scoutmaster. Class B Uniform is acceptable for this conference.

Purpose of the Scoutmaster Conference:

•    To review the Scout’s advancement record and make sure that the dates of advancement and sign-offs in his Scout Handbook and progress records are the same. 

•    To encourage the Scout to continue his advancement toward Eagle.

•    To review skills with the Scout.

•    To assist the Scout with his preparation for the Board of Review by providing pointers on what to expect.

•    To discuss any problems the Scout is having in the program and to assure that the program is meeting the needs of the scout.

Boards of Review

The Board of Review is a time to determine the Scout’s attitudes, accomplishemtns and acceptance of the scouting ideals.  

  • Sign up for your board on the sheet on the bulletin board located in the back of the Scout lodge.
  • Print out the correct Board of Review form and all other required forms pertaining to the rank you are seeking.
  • Bring your fully signed off Scout Handbook along with all required items stated on your rank form.
  • Be ready to be tested by the older advancement boys (Star rank or higher) and selected adults.
  • Full class-A Scout uniform, including shirt, pants, belt, merit badge sash, neckerchief, slide, Scout socks and dark shoes—no tennis shoes or sandals are permitted.


The Board of Review is not a training session – it is a time to show that you have already mastered the required. material. Here’s how you do it:

  1. The Scout Handbook is your reference guide. Your Patrol Leader is your mentor. Your Patrol Leader will introduce you to the skills and activities for your rank. Use your Scout Handbook as your study guide – read, highlight, and underline pertinent information. Practice skills and knowledge with your parents and patrol. The more you practice, the better prepared you will be. If you have any questions or need to a skill demonstrated, be sure to ask your patrol leader.
  2. When you think you know it, explain what you have learned to your parents.
  3. Once you understand and can demonstrate/explain our requirement, go to any adult leader to sign off on your requirements. When you meet with the adult leader, have your book open to the proper page for them to sign and know which pages cover the material. You also need to have a pen in hand – give that to the leader when you hand them the book. Don’t expect others to be prepared for you. That is what it means to “Be Prepared” as it relates to advancement. It also means that you will probably advance much more rapidly while at the same time you develop great life skills.
  4. Court of Honor – The Court of Honor ceremony is held three times per year: February, May and August. Recognition of rank advancement, merit badges and other recognition awards are presented during this ceremony. Scouts and parents are highly encouraged attend all Courts of Honor to receive their recognition and show support for all Scouts within the Troop.

Troop 285 uses to track the advancement in Scouting. Parents and eventually, the scout, are responsible for entering their information.

© 2024 BSA Troop 285 - Boy Scouts of America
© 2024 BSA Troop 285 - Boy Scouts of America