MANUAL - Secure District Mail (SDM) will allow a school or department to transfer sensitive or confidential information in single file quantities to another location inside the district without needing to hand deliver the file or pay for certified USPS mail delivery. This program supplements the current District interoffice mail system and will only be used for the secure transfer of single files from one district entity to another. The traditional District interoffice mail system and mail bags will continue to be used for files that are not sensitive or confidential. Schools may also choose to continue to use approved secure file transfers currently in use.
To participate in Secure District Mail, you'll need:
- Photocopies of the SDM Form on pink copy paper. The form must be done on pink paper (any shade of pink) to allow SDM envelopes to stand out from normal district mail. The form is available on Planning & Enrollment’s website under “Forms/Resources” > “For Schools”.
- Tamper-evident tape. A tamper-evident tape is one where the tape, if removed, leaves behind a message or other indicator that the file has been disturbed. This tape can be purchased from the District warehouse (catalog number 5108361).
- Standard manila envelopes. Because SDM envelopes must be sealed with tamper-evident tape, envelopes cannot be reused and must be discarded. A “gently used” envelope for standard District mail may be used if the SDM form covers the list of previous recipients. For single files that are unable to fit in a manila envelope (such as special education files), a reasonably-sized small box may be used.
- A contact person for SDM pickup and delivery. Place SDM items directly into the district mail bag and leave them there until picked up. School personnel do not need to alert Mailroom staff to the presence of SDM items; the Mailroom staff will sort the contents of the bag after pickup and sign as appropriate. Example: A Special Education teacher prepares a file for transfer. The envelope is sealed with security tape and the pink form is attached. The teacher can complete the form up through the initial "Release By" field. Mailroom staff will sign when they take custody of the item.
Thus, the process for sending a file through SDM is as follows:
- The sender prepares the file and puts it in an envelope or, for larger special education files, an appropriately-sized box. Tamper-evident tape should be used to seal the envelope or box. Space is provided on the SDM form to attach the form to the envelope or box with the tamper-evident tape (although attaching the form can also be done with regular packing tape if the school wants to use the tamper-evident tape more conservatively).
- The SDM mail form is completed. The form includes a “Subject” line for reference. This subject line should not include personally identifiable information (PII) about students or staff. Student ID numbers are acceptable when used in place of (not in addition to) the student’s name.
- When the sender delivers the SDM package to the contact person/location, they should sign and date that they are releasing the package. If SDM packages will be held by a staff member until District mail staff arrive, the staff member should sign and date to release the package to the District mail staff, and put the SDM items in the district mailbag. SDM packages should be secured outside of school hours.
- District mail staff will sign the form when they take custody of the SDM package. If feasible in their routes, an SDM package may be delivered the same day.
- When the SDM package is delivered, the final recipient should make a copy of the signed and completed SDM form and send it back to the sender (through regular district mail as proof of delivery). The original copy stays with the file or folder that was transferred.