Scoutbook users are about to love Scoutbook even more.

The BSA’s official web app has always been a great tool for tracking a Scout’s advancement. It makes everything — “from the first knot tied to final hours of service performed” — easier and more rewarding for Scouts and their families.

An important update announced this week makes this essential tool even better. It allows all units with active Scoutbook subscriptions to sync their youth advancement with ScoutNet.

This is huge, but heads up: You’ll need to complete a one-time setup to activate the sync.

Once you do, you can approve advancement within Scoutbook and have it automatically sync with MyScouting/Akela and ScoutNet/PAS (the BSA council tools).

Previously, Scouters needed to generate a .csv (comma-separated values) file from Scoutbook, log into Internet Advancement and upload that file. This was a simple but time-consuming task.

Now all that happens automatically. Scoutbook and the BSA’s advancement systems communicate behind the scenes to make sure each is updated with the latest info.

Once you approve advancement records within Scoutbook, that info gets recorded by the BSA and your local council. This means you can print everything from Scoutbook and take that information to your local Scout Shop to purchase the advancement recognition items you need.

How to sync Scoutbook with the advancement database

To get started, you’ll need to complete the one-time Scoutbook youth advancement sync. Note that this process must be performed by a currently registered key 3 member of your unit.

You should complete this process by Dec. 31, 2017.

Starting Jan. 1, 2018, units with active Scoutbook subscriptions will only be able to approve advancements for Scouts who are in the advancement sync. If you have not activated your unit and/or Scouts within your unit, you will not be able to approve advancements for that Scout or Scouts.

Note that as a unit activates the sync, if there are Scouts who have not yet been registered (entered into ScoutNet or My.Scouting) the unit can unapprove those Scouts and continue the sync for the rest of the unit.  Once registration is complete for the outstanding Scouts, the unit can then approve them and they will be included.

The complete steps are outlined in this handy document.

Things to know about the Scoutbook youth advancement sync

  • In this first phase, only youth advancement records will be synced.
  • Because ScoutNet only tracks completed and signed-off advancements, only “approved” advancements will transfer from Scoutbook to ScoutNet. Partial completions, and items only marked “completed” and not “approved” will continue to be tracked only via Scoutbook.
  • When there is an approved change in an advancement in Scoutbook, it will be reflected in the council records. When the council records change, it will be reflected in Scoutbook. The record with the most recent update date will take precedent.
  • Advancements that require district, council or national approval will not be uploaded from Scoutbook. Instead, they will flow from ScoutNet through to Scoutbook.
  • Scout Shop staff will know that the Advancement Report from Scoutbook and the Advancement Report from Internet Advancement are both certified, and either should be accepted. The bottom of the Advancement Report from Scoutbook looks like this:

What to do if you still have questions

If you have any questions about the Scoutbook Youth Advancement Sync or if your Scouting unit has not received the sync instructions, please send an email to [email protected].

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