Retention and Disposition

Scheduling University Records

A retention and disposition schedule is a plan of action that indicates the period of time you should retain your records. Records schedules allow you to dispose of records in a timely, systematic manner by setting retention and disposal guidelines based on administrative, legal, fiscal, or research needs.

Objectives of a Retention and Disposition Schedule:

  • To assure the identification and protection of vital records.
  • To ensure compliance with the Kansas Open Records Act.
  • To provide clear guidance on the length of time to retain records.
  • To identify the appropriate disposition for all records.
  • To destroy records that no longer have administrative, fiscal, legal, or historical value.
  • To transfer to the University Archives; records that have enduring value and have met their minimum retention.

General and Agency Schedules

There are two types of records schedules that apply to agency records.
General Schedule for common administrative, fiscal, and personnel records of all state agencies
Agency Records Retention and Disposition Schedule - addresses unique agency records that should have a specific records retention and disposition.
Elements of a Schedule

Records schedules include several key pieces of information:

  • Record series title and description
  • Minimum retention period
  • Final disposition requirements
  • Access restrictions
  • Vital record identification

These elements are developed through an analysis of the data gathered during the comprehensive records survey.

A records schedule is a timetable that identifies the minimum length of time a record series must be retained before it is destroyed or transferred to the University Archives. Approved schedules do not preempt good judgement.


Disposition refers to the final decision about whether to dispose of records or keep records permanently. Disposition of records can mean either destroying them or formally donating them to another organization after the records have met their legal retention period.


Establish a formal procedure that ensures records are disposed of regularly. This will safeguard against accidental destruction of records that have not met their minimum retention periods or are needed for litigation, audits, or other investigations. When records have been damaged by a disaster and are believed to constitute a hazard to human safety or health or to property or when the information contained within is substantially destroyed, a state agency or local government records management officer (RMO) may request authorization from the State Archives to destroy or dispose of such records immediately. State law does not require a specific disposal method for government or other records, though you need to ensure that confidential records are disposed of properly.