Q: How do I close out classes and transition between school years?
A: Here's the information broken down by data type:
Teachers determine at the time they make a class "Active" when the class should be removed from the Active list (end of year). A class will potentially stick around forever if a teacher chooses to not put an end date on a class. Finishing a school year has no affect on classes made active.
If an Inactive Class associated with a school year has data, it is kept under the Inactive tab even after the end of the school year, but if it contains no data, it is cleaned up after the school year is completed. Once data is associated with a class, it is kept forever, unless a class is deleted.
Imported students exist in classes based on import data. If you keep the students in your imports then they will remain in the class roster and still have access to the class if it is active class. If you remove the students from your the roster import file (rosters.csv), the students lose access to the classes, but the data remains in the class for archive purposes.
Users are unaffected by the passage of time. They are either active or inactive based on your import data.
Grades remain associated with the student in the class, even after the class is made inactive. If a student is removed from a roster, the student is disabled in the class (can't log in), but the student's data is kept and visible if the teacher wishes to reveal it. Grade data can be permanently purged if the teacher deletes individual scores or if a student account is deleted from the admin interface.
Schedules are important because they help organize grades. It is important before the beginning of every school year to make sure to define Class Schedules in your domain admin so that teachers select the right schedule when they set up their gradebooks.