For Parents

Active parents help ensure that troops thrive.  Boy Scouts is one of the few activities where parents can enjoy activities with their children, without getting “in their way.”  In an active, boy-led troop, adults help facilitate and ensure that the scouts remain safe while enjoying the opportunity to self-manage.

There are a few expectations for all Troop 28 parents:

  • Troop Email List: Enroll at least one parent in the troop email list. BSA prohibits adult leader-to-scout communications without a second adult (preferably the parent) on the email. We also use the troop email list to communicate important details privately (e.g., family contact information, Zoom meeting info), so it is important that at least one parent receive these communications.
  • YPT:  Troop 28 asks that at least one parent from each family take the BSA's Youth Protection Training program.  BSA requires YPT for any parents participating on troop outings. Troop 28 asks that one parent from each family complete the one-hour webinar to reinforce the troop's core value of keeping scouts safe.
  • Fundraisers:  The troop annually holds one or two fundraisers (a spring Spaghetti Dinner and winter holiday sale).  The troop relies on these events to help give back to our community and to subsidize troop events.  Each fundraiser requires scout and adult participation to succeed, so we ask that you support the troop by signing up for parent shifts and ensuring your scouts meet their troop obligations.
  • Support your scout: The BSA scouting program has many opportunities for growth built into the program. Many expect scouts to take leadership in communicating with adults and learning life skills. This is a safe place for scouts to learn, fail, and improve.

Ways to get involved:

Attend Monthly Parent Committee Meetings
These are held virtually, usually on a Saturday morning, and all parents are encouraged to attend. At these meetings, parents can learn about upcoming overnights and activities, and provide feedback on their scouts' experiences (or influence activity selections)
Participate in a Board of Review
Boards of Review are among the easiest ways to help the scouts and the troop, and a great way to learn more about what we do.

As scouts learn skills and complete requirements, they are able to “advance” through the Boy Scout ranks. At the end of each set of rank requirements, they are required to sit for a Board of Review, which consists of three or more adults who are not Scoutmasters/Assistant Scoutmasters and who are not their parents. This is an informal, sit-down session where parents can ask the scouts about what they do, and scouts can talk about their adventures. It's especially great practice for scouts to learn to meet with adults in a no-pressure situation. For parents, it's a great opportunity to learn about what the scouts do, and to see their progression as they grow in the program.

No experience is required. New reviewers will always be paired with very experienced reviewers. Learn more about Boards of Review here.

Chaperone a Troop Meeting, Weekend Outing, Service Activity
Every Scouts BSA activity requires two registered adult leaders. So every scout meeting, day trip, or overnight needs engaged parents to take place. Activities include weeknight meetings, afterschool seminars, weekend day programs, Eagle projects and community service activities, and weekend overnights.  Learn more about some of our day trips, service projects, and campouts, or suggest something you think might be of interest to the scouts.
Chaperone week-long Summer Camp
Troop 28 has historically attended “Week 5” of summer camp at NEIC's Ma-ka-ja-wan Scout Reservation. When there is scout and adult leader interest, we have also attended scout “high adventure summer camps” with older scouts.

Two registered adult leaders are required to enable the trip to take place. Learn more about Troop 28's summer camp opportunities here.

Become a merit badge counselor
There are over 135 merit badges available for scouts to earn and they cover topics from vocations like Law, Public Health and Architecture, arts and crafts like Wood Carving or Animation, outdoor activities like Canoeing and Hiking, and practical skills like First Aid and Cooking.

The BSA has a reference page on becoming a Merit Badge CounselorNortheast Illinois Council has a summary page including the BSA Adult Application and the Council Merit Badge Counselor Application.

To become a Merit Badge Counselor, adults must:

  • Register as an Adult Leader with the BSA (adults already registered with the BSA still need to fill out a second application with the MBC position code of 42)
  • Submit a Council Merit Badge Counselor Application
  • Complete Youth Protection Training, if not already done
  • Complete a webinar on the merit badge program.

Note: Merit Badge Counselors will be listed in the Council online directory, and may be contacted by scouts outside the troop (though this is unusual). For most badges, you can self-report your qualifications. But a few (e.g., Lifesaving) have additional requirements.

Have something you would like to share that is not covered above? Reach out and let us know!