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What are the Best Strategies for Shredding School Records?

Naturally, as an educational
institution, you are concerned with helping students reach their full
potential.  Thus, part of this mandate involves keeping track of students
and their progress until they graduate (or leave). 

However, with so many students coming and going, you could end up housing a lot of paperwork. Consider The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).  It requires schools to maintain education records. 

In doing so, parents or
students (once they reach the age of 18) may access them.  Yet, FERPA doesn’t
specify the amount of time a school must keep records. Over time, many
educational institutions in Florida have no choice but to destroy older records.
 

This is done for practical reasons like saving space and money.  These days, many institutions are electing to digitize older records.  Then, shred hard copies en masse.  What are the best strategies for shredding school records?  Here are a few guidelines to follow. 

Compliance

First, be aware that there
could be rules related to how long you must keep records.  In reality, there
is no federal law to govern this activity. 
Nonetheless, the state of Florida has rules regarding the retention of
student records for public schools.

Additionally, there may be further regulations in your county or municipality to check out. Concerning school records, schools in Florida are required to maintain education records permanently.

Though, duplicates may be
destroyed when they are “obsolete, superseded or administrative value is
lost”.  What about other records?  Truthfully,
they may be destroyed more quickly.  This
includes absentee excuses and admission slips.

In fact, these items must be saved only for “30 days after the end of the grading period provided any grade appeal period expired”. Attendance records can be destroyed after “3 fiscal years provided applicable audits have been released”. 

Also, student accident records
can be disposed of “4 anniversary years after date accident reported”.  Additionally,
there are state rules regarding all kinds of documents related to students. 

Hence, it’s important to make
sure you understand and follow them.  They’re
necessary when it comes to document retention and destruction. 

Shredding on A Schedule vs. One-Time Purge

Now, you have an understanding of when school records may be destroyed.  Thus, you have to decide how you want to go about it.  In reality, there are two main options: shredding on a schedule or a one-time purge. 

Shredding on a schedule means
you simply pull documents regularly.  Maybe,
you choose monthly.  Perhaps, it’s
quarterly.  When the time comes, give
them to your Florida mobile document shredding service for destruction. 

Maybe, you’re upgrading to
digital filing.  In that case, you may
want to schedule a one-time bulk shredding after your records are scanned. 
For many educational institutions, a combination of these strategies offers the
best advantages.

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