While as the name implies with online school the majority of things are handled digitally, just like any other industry paper still is and probably always will be used with education. As a result now with parents being forced to convert their kitchens and living rooms into mini classrooms, it’s easier than ever for paper clutter from student notes, assignments, and forms to quickly build up—especially when there are multiple children to manage.
Learn more in this video or its transcription below about some of the potential issues parents face while trying to manage their child’s paperwork as well as how the combination of scanning and shredding (otherwise known as day-forward scanning) can be used as a solution to a parent’s problems, with details including what exactly day-forward scanning is, how it benefits parents, and finally how the strategy works.
Where Parents Run Into Trouble Trying to Manage Their Child’s Paperwork
When parents and children transition to attending school online from home, the majority of things are going to be done digitally; however, just like with any other industry, paper still is (and probably always will be) used in education for things like student notes, financial documents, and various other pieces of student information.
Not knowing what papers to keep and what to throw away, many parents hold on to everything, as a result making it easy for clutter from student notes and other papers to quickly build up, especially when there are multiple kids in school.
This clutter leads to a snowball effect that creates new issues like slowing down the time it takes to track down notes or other resources needed for studying as just one example.
Solving Paper Overload by Combining Scanning & Shredding
One of the simplest solutions for how to handle the amount of paper clutter created during school from home is to simply get rid of the paper altogether.
Rather than keeping physical copies of everything, one new alternative parents are turning to is taking up a system for scanning and shredding their child’s papers as soon as they’re created or received (otherwise known as day-forward scanning), as a result keeping all potential paper clutter to a minimum.
Then, for example, when a child has an assignment for math class and is using paper to write down and solve problems, parents are able to scan the document for the child to reference later if needed before shredding the original papers to keep things organized at home.
Defining Day-Forward Scanning
Day-forward scanning is a system for managing hard-copy documents where as soon as papers are created or received in any way are immediately converted to digital format.
Then after a digital copy of the paperwork is created, the old paper copy is shredded and disposed—as a result helping to keep the workspace clear and all documents organized.
Day-Forward Scanning’s Benefits
Saving space, security, and organization are good reasons to use day-forward scanning.
Save Space at Home
One of the main issues with turning a home into a mini classroom is the amount of space school resources and paperwork take up. To demonstrate just how much space digital school documents save, while a vertical 5-drawer filing cabinet that takes up 7 sq ft of space can hold roughly 22,500 pieces of paper. A 1TB hard drive that fits in the palm of your hand can hold up to 6/5 million document files. Also besides storage capacity, while a hard drive is usually less than $100, a 5-drawer filing cabinet can cost as much as $350.
Protect Sensitive Personal Information
In the midst of other issues with just staying organized and efficient, another concern for parents to keep in mind is the security of their child’s personally identifiable information (PII). The unfortunate reality in life is that people don’t need to be a legal adult to have their sensitive personal or medical information plucked from the trash and their identity stolen. So by finishing the process with shredding all papers before disposal, parents are able to help protect from any risks to their child’s PII.
Improve Organization & Productivity
Stemming from the benefit of saving extra space with digital documents, another benefit is how papers are automatically organized as soon as they’re scanned and indexed in a cloud or other electronic document management system. Ranging from homework and notes to past grades and report cards, the majority of school papers are meant to be referenced again. While with paper, it will take extra effort and time to track them down by hand, with digital documents, they can be easily sorted and searched for by keywords.
The Day-Forward Scanning Process
The process is very simple:
1. Backfile Conversion for Existing Papers
After deciding when you’re going to start with day-forward scanning, the first step is to go back and scan all the papers you already have.
This provides multiple benefits—for one, you aren’t going to lose track of any past documents with some form of half-and-half situation where everything before your decision to use day-forward scanning is still in paper while all new documents are digital.
Next, going back to convert all old hard-copies to digital formats also prevents you from needing to build from the ground up with an entirely new storage system for once papers are scanned. Rather than starting over with organizing and managing new digital documents going forward, the papers you scan will be implemented with what you already have.
2. Shredding Old Paper Copies
After converting all of your child’s old paperwork to digital format, then you’re able to throw away the hard copies. However, when it comes to making sure that those documents are being safely disposed, it’s important they’re shredded first.
There are two basic reasons why shredding before disposal is necessary—first, you don’t have to be 18 years or older to have personal information stolen, and second it’s not illegal to steal from someone else’s trash, meaning any documents you throw away that include types of your child’s PII such as names and addresses could be easily stolen and misused.
3. Scanning & Shredding New Papers After Receiving or Creating
After all your child’s already-existing school paperwork has been scanned is where the term “Day-forward scanning” comes from.
As the name Implies, from that point forward, as soon as your child finishes any written notes and assignments or you’re sent documents regarding your child and their education, the first thing you’ll do is scan and add your new copy in with the rest of your child’s digital documents before shredding it right afterward.
Another advantage of scanning and converting papers on a daily basis is how a digital copy of the document and the benefits that come with it are immediately available after creating or receiving a hard-copy version as opposed to when papers are periodically scanned in large chunks like normal.
What Is Your Plan for Managing Paperwork During School at Home?
Join the countless other parents who we’ve helped get a handle on a school from home using scanning and shredding for their child’s school paperwork when you visit us at Record Nations today. For a free no-obligation quote from providers near you, fill out the form, give us a call at (866) 385-3706, or contact us directly using our live chat.