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E-Mail Retention

Section 203.3 | Board Report 07-0725-PO3 | Date Adopted July 25, 2007

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That the Chicago Board of Education (“Board”) adopt a new E-Mail Retention Policy.


The purpose of this policy is to establish the retention and related requirements for messages, calendars, notes and task items located on the Board’s E-mail system(s).


This Policy applies to all Users, except student users, of any Board E-mail system whether owned or operated by a third party on behalf of the Board, school or unit. For purposes of this policy, User shall mean Board employees, officers, temporary employees, interns, vendors, consultants, contractors, and authorized agents and volunteers who use the Board’s E-Mail system(s).

  1. Mailbox Size and Management
    The Board’s E-Mail system is to be used as a method of communication among employees and other authorized users for business purposes. It is not intended to be a medium in which to permanently store electronic information. Where the Office of Information and Technology Services (“ITS”) has mailbox size or attachment restrictions in place, Users are required to manage the space in their mailbox appropriately. The retention periods described in this Policy do not guarantee that a User’s mailbox size will accommodate the storage of all E-Mail messages for the duration of the retention period. Therefore, Users should regularly review their messages and take timely action on long term retention needs. To stay within mailbox size limitations, E-Mail messages with large attachments should be saved to offline storage or printed immediately and then deleted from the mailbox.
  2. Retention Period
    1. E-Mail message and Note items more than one (1) year in age will be automatically deleted by ITS from a User’s mailbox. Any E-Mail messages and Note items, including document attachments that need to be retained for longer than one (1) year either (a) pursuant to law, (b) an order of a court, (c) at the direction of the Board’s Law Department, (d) pursuant to the Board’s records retention schedule registered with and approved by the Local Records Commission or that have administrative or historical value must be printed out or copied to offline or local storage by the User.

      ITS shall implement a system to suspend the Board’s routine for destroying E-Mails outlined herein when requested as part of a litigation hold by the Law Department. This suspension will be in place until ITS is directed otherwise by the Law Department.

    2. Electronic Calendars and Task items located on the E-mail system will be available for a period of two years.
  3. E-Mail Archive
    E-Mail messages may be public records and therefore, beginning November 1, 2007, the Board’s E-Mail system will utilize an archive system that will automatically record and retain User E-Mail messages for a period of one year. ITS will automatically destroy archived E-Mail messages more than one (1) year in age in accordance with this Policy and the Board’s records retention schedule registered with and approved by the Local Records Commission. This retention period and purge process will be applied automatically to a User’s archived E-Mails except when a User’s E-Mail messages and resources have been quarantined for litigation purposes.
  4. School-Based E-Mail Systems
    Any school which elects to operate its own E-Mail system must ensure that its system complies with the requirements of this Policy and all other applicable Board Policies, guidelines and standards as a condition for continued operation.

Policy References

Cross References  
Legal References  

Policy Managed By Information and Technology Services (ITS)


42 W. Madison St.
Chicago, IL 60602