Records Retention Frequently Asked Questions
What is records management?
Records management is the management of a record during its entire life cycle. The life cycle of a record begins when it is created and ends at its final disposition whether that be destruction of the record or the transfer of the record to archive.
What does records management have to do with me?
All departments and campuses have a responsibility to preserve and protect all records that are under its control. The best way to do this is to understand the kinds of records that your department or campus creates and maintains and actively manage them. Each department or campus also has the responsibility to follow the polices and procedures of good records management as set out in this website.
What are the benefits of a records management program?
Records Management frees up physical storage space such as file cabinets, storerooms or frees up server space and allows departments to dispose of unneeded records with confidence. Proper records management reduces the volume of records that must be searched when responding to audits, requests for public information, subpoenas, and other administrative requirements. It also ensures compliance with federal and state records management laws, policies, and rules.
Are some documents not considered official RRISD records?
Extra copies or duplicate copies (referred to as convenience copies) maintained only for reference, a stock of publications or blank forms, catalogs or trade journals are not considered official state records.
What is the difference between a official record and a convenience copy?
Every record is either an official record or a convenience copy. The official record is retained as the original, and subject to RRISD's record control schedule requirements and disposition policies. Official records may be retained in any medium or format. Scanned images may be retained as the official, and the original can then be destroyed or managed as a convenience copy.
Convenience copies are all other copies of the record created for convenience, reference, or research. Convenience copies may be destroyed at any time and are not subject to RRISD record control schedule requirements or disposition policy. Convenience copies that contain confidential information must be destroyed in a manner that preserves confidentiality.
An example of a convenience record would be a copy of a purchase order kept by a department or campus. The official purchase order record is kept by the purchasing department and is the owner of the purchase order record.
CAUTION: A convenience copy retained AFTER the official copy is destroyed becomes the official record, subject to legal discovery and RRISD disposition policy. The recommended practice is to destroy convenience copies prior to or at the time of the official record.
How do I go about storing records in the RRISD record storage center?
There are procedures you must follow if you are storing records in the RRISD record storage center. These procedures can be found at Record Retention Storage Procedure.
Follow these steps:
- Records that are permitted to be stored in the records storage center are marked with an "A" in the Archival column of the record control schedule.
- Fill out the Request to Transfer Records form and submit the form to the records storage people.
- Pack the records in the approved boxes and number the boxes
- Attach a Record Retention Label to one end of the box
- Upon approval, open a work order to have the boxes sent to textbooks (Record Storage Center) department.
- Once the boxes have been moved to storage, you will receive an e-mail which a list of the boxes and their location
Is e-mail a code on the Records Control Schedule?
E-mail should be regarded as a format of a record and categorized by its content. Just as written correspondence is classified as general, administrative, or transitory, depending on the content of the correspondence, e-mail generally falls into one of these same three categories. E-mail may by retained as an electronic file or printed and managed in a hard copy or both. Every RRISD e-mail message has a default retention period of four months and will automatically be deleted after the retention period has been reached. Any e-mail that has a retention period longer than four month needs to be saved in order to prevent the automatic deletion.
What is transitory information?
The Texas State Library and Archives Commission's Retention Schedule defines transitory information as: Records of temporary usefulness that are not an integral part of a records series of RRISD, that are not regularly filed within RRISD's record keeping system, and that are required only for a limited period of time for the completion of an action by an official or employee of RRISD or in the preparation of an ongoing records series. Transitory records are not essential to the fulfillment of statutory obligations or to the documentation of RRISD functions. Examples of transitory information which can be in any medium (voice mail, fax, email, hard copy, etc.) are routine messages; internal meeting notices; routing slips; incoming letters or memoranda of transmittal that add nothing of substance to enclosures; and similar routine information used for communication, but not for the documentation, of a specific RRISD transaction.
CAUTION: Before designating any record as transitory ensure that it is not listed as part of another records series in the RRISD Record Control Schedule. Records designated as transitory do not require authorization for disposal but departments and campuses should establish procedures governing disposal of these records as part of their departmental or campus records management plan.
In the Records Control Schedule, what do the codes CE, FE, FE+3, and AC mean?
CE means "Calendar Year End" (end date of 12/31/xx)FE means "Fiscal Year End" (end date of 6/30/xx) FE+3 means "Fiscal Year End plus 3 years" AC means "After Close" which should always be defined in the Schedule, because it changes. It may mean after the project is complete, after the employee is terminated, after completion of audit, etc. AC could fall at any time throughout the year, whereas FE and CE refer to the end dates listed above.
What if I do not see the document I am looking for on the official RRISD Records Retention Schedule?
Any questions on records retention can be directed to the Records Management Officer for RRISD.
Does the RRISD pay for shredding documents that have met or exceeded the retention date?
Each department is responsible for creating a purchase order to have their records shredded by the approved RRISD vendor. Records that are being stored at the records storage center will be taken care of when the records have reached their retention period. The approved RRISD shredder vendor is:
Central Texas Secure Shredding
16805 Radholme Ct.
Round Rock, TX 78664(512) 670-2900
CAUTION: Section 202.002, Local Government Code, forbids the destruction of RRISD records at the expiration of its retention period if the subject matter of the record is known to be in litigation or if the record is subject to a pending request for disclosure under the Public Information Act. In addition, a record may not be destroyed if there is an outstanding request to inspect and review the record under the federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)or if the record is subject to a pending audit by a federal or state grantor or subgrantor agency or if questions remain unresolved from a conducted audit unit audit finds are resolved.