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Positions of Responsibility

For the advanced ranks (Star, Life and Eagle) scouts must serve actively in a position of responsibility for periods of 4-6 months. Here is a list of positions along with the expectations for each position:
Minimum requirements for appointment to each position are established by the Scoutmaster to ensure that qualified Scouts fill the various positions of responsibility in the Troop. In order to set expectations for Scouts, Uniformed Leaders, and parents a "rubric" has been establish for each position of responsibility in the troop. 

Here are the key elements:
  1. Each position of responsibility has a “rubric” that explains the expectations for that position.
  2. This "rubric" is based on the duties as defined by the BSA and consolidated into five categories for each position.
  3. Each category has been assigned a range of scores from one to five: 1 = expectation not met, 2 = below expectation, 3 = meets basic expectation, 4 = meets target expectations, 5 = excels.
  4. The rubric establishes minimum expectations for receiving full credit in that Position of Responsibility
  5. The expectations also are established to encourage and acknowledge superior service in a PoR.  For example, those who achieve a "5" (on the 1-5 scale) in the Patrol Leader role are likely candidates to receive the BSA National Honor Patrol Award.
  6. Frequent review of progress will provide Scouts with feedback that they need to be successful in their role.  We want our Scouts to succeed!
The BSA requirements state that a Scout must "serve actively" in a position. In order to earn full 6 months credit a Scout must have a minimum score of 15 with no 1’s in any category to be considered “active”. Scouts are encouraged to aim for a score of 20-25 which reflects goals like the BSA Honor Patrol. Performance will be monitored on a monthly basis by the Patrol Advisor (SM or ASM). If, for some reason, a Scout is not meeting minimum expectations for a position the Patrol Advisor has the option to replace the Scout with another Scout who is willing to serve actively. This should only be done in rare circumstances after careful consideration and consultation with the Scout and Scoutmaster.


"Training youth to be leaders is an ongoing process that begins immediately when a Scout accepts a leadership position in his troop. Leadership experiences can be frustrating and disappointing for a Scout who is not given the knowledge, skills, and encouragement needed to fulfill the leadership assignment." Source: BSA #721-072, 2018 Printing.

The BSA has developed a course titled Introduction to Leadership Skills for Troops (ILST) to teach Scouts with leadership positions about their new roles and how to most effectively reach success in that role.  It is intended to help Boy Scouts in leadership positions within their troop understand their responsibilities and to equip them with organizational and leadership skills to fulfill those responsibilities.  ILST is the first course in the series of leadership training offered to Boy Scouts and is a replacement for Troop Leadership Training.  Completion of ILST is a prerequisite for Boy Scouts to participate in the more advanced leadership courses National Youth Leadership Training (NYLT) and the National Advanced Youth Leadership Experience (NAYLE). It is also required to participate in a Kodiak Challenge Trek.

ILST is typically held twice a year and is scheduled shortly after SPL and PL elections.  Upon completion of Introduction to Leadership Skills for Troops, the Scout is qualified to wear the "Trained" emblem on his uniform.

Frequently Asked Questions


Q: Where can I read more about Troop 33 leadership policies (terms, elections, credit, high adventure, special projects, etc.)?

A: Check out the Leadership Policies web page.


Q: What is a rubric?
A: A rubric is a guide listing specific criteria for scoring.

Q: Why use a rubric?
A: This is a widely used concept and something that Scouts are familiar with from school.

Q: Why have you set up a rubric?
A: Positions of Responsibility (PoR) are a key part of the Scouting program, especially for those Scouts who are aspiring to advance beyond First Class on their Trail to Eagle.  However, sometimes it can be difficult to understand, communicate, and track completion to the requirements of a PoR. We understand this, and have been working on ways to make it easier to communicate the expectations associated with various responsibilities, and to help Scouts manage their progress towards successful completion of those responsibilities.  Based on recent guidance that we have received from the BSA, we are formally launching an update to our program that should help.  

Q: Who will use the rubric?
A: This is helpful for Scouts in understanding what is expected of them, allow parents to discuss expectations with their son before they pursue a position, and provide a tool for uniformed leaders to use in an ongoing conversation with the Scout about their responsibilities and performance.

Q: Is this allowed by the BSA?
A: Yes, according to the BSA document Guide to Advancement 2019 Meeting Unit Expectations. If a unit has established expectations for positions of responsibility, and if, within reason (see the note under "Rank Requirements Overview,", based on his personal skill set, the Scout meets them, he fulfills the requirement. When a Scout assumes a position, something related to the desired results must happen. It is a disservice to the Scout and to the unit to reward work that has not been done. Holding a position and doing nothing, producing no results, is unacceptable. Some degree of responsibility must be practiced, taken, or accepted.

Q: Isn’t this an additional requirement?
A: No. This is not altering the BSA requirements in any way, this is merely setting our expectations based on the BSA descriptions of the roles and responsibilities for the positions.

Q: Do other troops have this?
A: Yes, many troops do this. In fact according to the BSA, "It is best when a Scout’s leaders provide him position descriptions, and then direction, coaching, and support. Where this occurs, and is done well, the young man will likely succeed."

Q: When will a Scout be reviewed?
A: Patrol Advisors will work with Scouts on an ongoing basis with a final discussion at the end of the term.


Q: Who participates in ILST?
A: According to the BSA document Introduction to Leadership Skills for Troops

"ILST is for every Scout in the troop who holds a leadership position, including all elected positions and any appointed positions at the discretion of the Senior Patrol Leader."

This means the 
SPL, ASPL, Patrol Leader, Troop Guide, Den Chief, Scribe, Quartermaster, Historian, Librarian, Chaplain Aide, Webmaster, Bugler, Outdoor Ethics Guide, Instructor, Order of the Arrow Troop Representative, and JASM.

Q: What if I have previousl attended ILST, do I need to go again?
A: Yes, according to the BSA document Introduction to Leadership Skills for Troops

"It is strongly preferred that all Scout leaders participate in this course at the start of each term of office, even if they have participated before, and even if they are filling the same leadership position. It is beneficial for the group of Scout leaders to go through this course together, even if only some of them are new leaders. Two key purposes of this course are the establishment of personal goals for each Scout leader and the effective formation of the leadership team. Both of these purposes are best achieved if all the Scout leaders do this together"