Retention schedules provide such details as the kinds of records an organization has and how long the organization retains these documents before disposing them. Some public institutions and government agencies are required to have and adhere to certain retention schedules; other institutions, such as non-profits and businesses, may also have retention schedules because having one in place can help control the costs of records retention and minimize legal risk, among other things.
Retention schedules for public institutions and government agencies can often be found online. For example, the State of Indiana has retention schedules online for state institutions and for county and local institutions. With respect to other kinds of institutions, you may have to ask the institutions in question for a copy of their retention schedules.