FACTORS MILITATING AGAINST EFFECTIVE MANAGEMENT OF SCHOOL RECORDS BY SECONDARY SCHOOL PRINCIPALS
Information is every organization’s most basic and essential asset and in common with any other business assets recorded information requires effective management.
In the past, “record management” was used to refer only to the management of records which are no longer in everyday use but still needed to be kept “semi current” records often stored in basement or offsite. More recent usage tends to refer to the entire “life circle” of records from the point of creation right until their eventual disposal. This school records are official documents, books and file containing essential and crucial information of actions and events which are kept and preserved in the school office for utilization and retrieval of information when needed.
However, record management is defined as the field of management responsible for the efficient and systemic control of the creation receipt, maintenance, use and disposition of records, including the process for capturing and maintaining evidence of and information about business activities transactions in the firm of records. These school records are kept and managed by the school principals, teachers, counselors or administrative staff.
Record management is one of the most important administrative elements of any school organization in which the school administrator or principal must adhere to. Hence, the purpose of record keeping and management is to ensure that accurate and proper records of students achievements and growth, information on school activities and matters that will promote efficiency and effectiveness of the school activities are kept.
Record management can also be defined as the application of systematic and scientific control of recorded information that is required for the operation of the school. Such control is exercised over the distribution, utilization, retention, storage retrieval, protection, preservation and final deposition of all types of records within the school. According to Durosara (2002), records are important tools for effective planning and administration of school, so it is impossible to effectively plan and administer any formal organization which records are either not kept or mismanaged. The education system as a social organization has numerous sub-systems or levels that are managed to ensure some coherence and continuity. To successfully achieve this, records must be safely kept and managed.
Egwumyega, (2005) suggested that not all information can be considered as records until they satisfy such characteristics geniueity and authenticity, that is the information that the records given must be time, correct, and original, records must be comprehensive available, accessible and secured.
Records that are kept in any educational system are numerous some are mandatory and others are optional or discretional such records are grouped into statutory and non statutory records. Statutory records includes admission or withdrawal register, attendance register, scheme of work, time table, log book, visitors book, time movement books, school diary, lesson plan note for teachers, examination record book etc. non statutory records includes cash book, staff minutes book, school magazine, stock book, punishment book, school calendar, inventory book, inspection or supervision report file, confidential report firms and requisite book.
The aim of record management is to achieve the best retrieval and exploitation of school record in the school system and also to improve the efficiency of record making and keeping process. Record management helps to control the quality and quantity of information that is created in a manner that effectively serves the need of the school (Akube, 1991 and Fasasi 2004). School record management according to Fasasi (2004) is meant to enhance the performance of secondary school administrators. Adequate record management co-ordinators and protects an institutions records, sharpens the effectiveness of records as a management memory which controls the times equipment and space allocated to records and helps to simplify intra-organizational and communication problems.