Step 1: Start up and desktop condition assessment

Before beginning work on the 10 Year Property Plan (10YPP), introduce yourself to the school and confirm the process and timing for developing a 10YPP. This step also includes the desktop condition assessment, the school evaluation of the physical environment (SEPE) detailed physical assessment of the school buildings.

Level of compliance Main audience Other


  • 10YPP Consultants


Start up

After your appointment as 10YPP consultant, it is your responsibility to contact the school and introduce yourself.

This is so you can begin your relationship with the school, set expectations, and ensure everyone understands their role and responsibilities. This is especially important if the school principal is new and has not been through this process before. They will need to understand what is expected of them and the deadlines you are working to.

You may want to combine this with your desktop condition assessment, and/or your detailed physical condition assessment, and discuss the school’s completed school evaluation of the physical environment (SEPE) depending on the location of the school.

You may extend an invitation to your school’s property advisor. You should call or meet with your property advisor in any case, to discuss any issues with the school and to access information held by the Ministry.

Collecting school data and information

You will need to collect what data and information is readily available for review prior to meeting with the school.

Some of this information is available to you from the property portal and MPlan, much of it will need to be sourced from the school or your property advisor.


  • Building warrant of fitness
  • Compliance, for example, code of compliance certificate, work requirement notices
  • Cyclical maintenance plan
  • Development plan (if available)
  • School charter or education brief, for the school’s vision for their property

Property advisor

  • Earthquake strengthening works information
  • Weathertightness issues update

School or property advisor

  • Site plan
  • Roll status: growth/steady/in decline
  • Additional learning needs, for example accessibility

Property portal

  • Area at the school recorded as legitimate space, for example, dental clinics, RTLBs, SWIS, satellite units
  • Completed and incomplete 5YA projects
  • School property guide entitlement
  • School evaluation of the physical environment (currently available through Helios)

Education property portal(external link)


  • Existing condition assessment information

Amending data and school plans

When you visit the school site you may find omissions or discrepancies in the site plan and/or the K2 data. For example, new blocks not added or demolitions not recorded.


If there are data issues, you should note these changes and complete a building update form, which is used to keep our building information up-to-date.

This form is available on Helios.

To access the form in the Helios portal:

  1. Select the school (business unit)
  2. Select the relevant building
  3. Under the Reports section, click on the building update form by School (PDF link in blue)
  4. Click on 'open' in the pop-up box at the bottom of your screen to view the document
  5. You can choose to either print, or edit and print (if you have PDF editor) or save it.

Existing information will be pre-populated for that particular building, with empty boxes to update.

School site plans (formerly known as CAD plans)

If the existing site plan is out of date or otherwise unusable, you will need to:

  • notify the school's property advisor that the site plan is out of date 
  • ensure that updating the school’s site plan is included in the first project that is altering the layout of buildings. If there are no projects that alter the layout of buildings, updating the site plan should be included in the first project in the plan. Updating the site plan should be detailed in the scope of the project so that the project manager undertaking the project can arrange for this to occur.

For all 10YPPs, updating a school’s site plan should be included in the scope of any project altering a building layout.  

Desktop condition assessment

The desktop condition assessment is a workshop using existing data and knowledge to provide a virtual assessment of the school’s condition and the works required. It relies heavily on the practical knowledge of the participants (the principal, caretaker and other property personnel).

Use the desktop assessment preparation checklist and the desktop assessment questionnaire. 

Identify strategic impacts

It is important to identify strategic impacts to ensure a building's level of maintenance reflects its current and future use and to justify any major infrastructure works. For example, the need to replace a boiler.

The first step in the condition assessment process is to meet with school representatives to discuss any planned actions that will affect the use or condition of a building, now or in the future.

If a strategic impact is identified, it is then recorded against a building or service. Any specialist reports or other relevant property reports for a school should be uploaded as a ‘strategic impact’.

Any strategic impacts must be carefully documented as they form the basis of the condition assessment and the 10YPP process to follow.

When forming the strategic impact, consider:

  • predicted changes in enrolments (up or down)
  • the impact of new technology
  • the effect of other Ministry programmes, like weathertightness remediation or earthquake strengthening
  • specialist reports, such as structural reports, that will impact the condition assessment (the report title, author and source should be noted for later reference and a copy of the report uploaded in the strategic impact).

You need to guide the school through this discussion and document the strategic impacts in the MPlan system.

To support our quality assurance measures, it is important that strategic impacts information is accurately entered into the MPlan system.

The condition assessment process is covered in more detail in the 10YPP training for consultants.

Agree maintenance standards

Work with school representatives to agree the maintenance standards to be applied to each school building.

Maintenance standards define the desired condition of buildings and services. Condition assessments should be made against the relevant maintenance standard. The standards also establish quality and presentation levels which a school is required to achieve.

Maintenance standards are aimed at avoiding uncertainty about the overall level of condition that a facility or part of a facility is to be maintained to.

The standards allow realistic condition assessments to be undertaken. They also allow the development of maintenance policies and practices to be negotiated between the school and 10YPP consultant.

They can then be used to:

  • set the type and frequency of cyclic maintenance and inspections
  • define acceptable threshold levels of performance and presentation
  • fix acceptable standards of workmanship, appearance and cleanliness
  • establish acceptable response times for the correction of faults, and
  • define performance criteria for maintenance contracts.

Definition of maintenance standards

Each building or service will have one of the following 'maintenance standards'.


Specialist spaces are spaces that need a higher level of maintenance than other areas. These spaces either get a lot of wear and tear or legally require higher or more complex maintenance (for example, science laboratories).


General spaces are general classrooms and administrative facilities. Maintenance keeps up their operational capability.


Minimal is the standard for buildings and services that have a limited life, fulfil a non-core function or have a basic utility function only (for example, ancillary buildings such as caretaker/storage sheds). Operational spending is kept to the minimum, while maintaining operational capacity.


Mothball is the standard for buildings and services that are closed and not in current use. Maintenance is only for essential security measures.

Assessing learning environments

Schools were required to complete the innovative learning environment assessment tool. This is no longer in use and has been replaced with the school evaluation of the physical environment (SEPE).

The SEPE tool is designed to assess how well the physical environment (inside and outside on the whole school site) supports teaching and learning approaches, the diverse needs of students, and the wellbeing of everyone on site.

The completed evaluation will identify where the physical environment is working well and where there is room for improvement. Once completed, the SEPE will be available through Helios and is a key input into the property plan.

School evaluation of physical environment

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