Zoom is a cloud-based video conferencing service you can use to virtually meet with others – either by video or audio-only or both. All while conducting live chats. It lets you record sessions to view later. The person setting up/leading the meeting is called the ‘host’. The other attendees (scouts) are referred to as ‘participants’. The following is information intended to support a host, however participants may also find it useful.

Before you start…

  • Make sure you have the most up to date version of Zoom, as security weaknesses are often ‘fixed’ during updates to the application.
  • Consider an online tutorial to make sure you are familiar with the workings of the system. An up to date tutorial can easily be found by searching on the internet.

Host Do’s and Don’t’s

  • DO NOT share or publicise your meeting link on public forums such as social media (a private group should be ok). ANYONE with the link could then join your meeting.
  • Hosts, DO NOT use your Personal Meeting ID (PMI) to host public events.
  • DO ask delegates to access the meeting using the meeting ID and password. Although not essential, good practice is to send a meeting ID and password on separate emails.
  • DO NOT send the link to your meeting – this is the way most ‘hackers’ gain access.

Waiting Rooms

A virtual staging area that stops your guests from joining until you are ready for them. When you create a meeting it should default to use a Waiting Room, but if not you should ‘Enable waiting room’ under the ‘advanced options’ menu.

To admit participants click on the ‘Manage Participants’ icon (usually in the menu at the bottom of the screen). You will see a list of people waiting to join and then have the option to either admit individually or ‘admit all’ using the option at the top right.

Screen sharing

If you want to ensure no one else takes control of the screen or shares unwanted content then you can restrict the ability for someone to take over before the meeting. On the host control bar click the arrow next to ‘Share Screen’ and then ‘Advanced Sharing Options’. Under ‘who can share?’ choose ‘only host’, then close the window. You can also make this your default setting for all future meetings under ‘web settings’ if preferable.


All Meetings should be recorded for safeguarding purposes, enabling reference and review of any incidents. This recording must be deleted within a suitable time period (in accordance with data protection law). To do this start a Zoom meeting as the host and click the option to ‘Record’.  To see if participants are also recording the meeting you can click ‘participants’ and view the list. After the meeting has ended Zoom will convert the recording and you can access the file/s.

Managing participants

When setting up the meeting you can make it that only those email addresses invited can attend. Go to ‘advanced settings’ and selecting ‘Only authenticated users can join’. However if someone uses a different email address (perhaps another parents account?) then they won’t be able to access the meeting.

  • MUTE – The option to ‘mute’ and ‘unmute’ all or individual members can be found under the ‘Managing participants’ menu. Useful to prevent interruption, especially from background noise in some calls.
  • REMOVE participants – From the ‘Managing Participants’ menu, you can hover over a participant’s name, and several options will appear, including Remove. Useful for anyone unwanted joining.

Break out rooms

You can split a zoom meeting into up to 50 separate sessions. Go to your profile, click on meeting settings, and under “In Meeting (Advanced)” section, Enable Breakout room. Open the scheduled meeting or host a new meeting session using Zoom. Locate the Breakout Rooms button in the Zoom toolbar and click on it to start with creating Breakout rooms.


Want to hide or change your background (the view of the room you are in) from the viewer? …Or perhaps make the meeting more fun? While in a Zoom meeting, tap ‘More’ in the controls. Tap Virtual ‘Background’ then select the background you would like to apply or tap + to upload a new image. The background will be automatically applied.

Further Support

Official zoom support page

UK Scout online platform information