The Patrol System
What is a patrol?
Four to Eight members
The number of Scouts within each Patrol should be kept as equal as possible
Some change in Patrol members will be experienced for logistical reasons, but generally they will remain the same
Led by a Patrol Leader (PL), normally a more experienced Scout showing good leadership abilities.
The PL is supported by 1–3 assistant patrol leaders.
Unit Leaders are the senior members of a Unit and have developed skills and experience from their time in the Unit.
Unit Leaders do not sit within a regular patrol, but provide extra leadership for the Unit as a whole.
A Project Patrol is a temporary group formed for a specific camp, activity or project.
Can involve Scouts from outside the Unit, and from other sections.
Has a PL and 1–3 APLs.
Project Patrols should:
Be approved by Unit Council
Have clear goals
Project Mentors (youth or adult) can help support and advise the Patrol on technical details.
Scouts can be in more than one Project Patrol at once.
How does the patrol system work?
Scouting became a movement through the natural formation of small teams of young people. In Scouting today, we call these Patrols.
Through Patrols, Scouts experience many opportunities to learn-by doing with their peers. Working in Patrols provides opportunities to develop skills in leadership, teamwork and communication, as well as building a sense of responsibility and belonging.
Scouts will experience different types of Patrols across their time in the program.
Patrols provide a structure, but their primary purpose is to enable learning for individuals.
The patrol system doesn’t exist to create a hierarchy but to enable individual learning to occur.
While the patrol system is a big part of Scouting, not everything needs to happen in Patrols. Sometimes activities and projects will happen at a Unit level or larger, or an individual scale.