education.vic.gov.au

Policy last updated

22 May 2023

Scope

  • Schools
  • School councils
  • All Department staff

Date:
January 2020

Policy

Policy

This policy explains the asset management planning process for schools that receive capital funding.

For schools that have received capital funding, this page will provide a guide to navigating the project from start to finish.

Summary

  • An Asset Management Plan (AMP) identifies the educational needs and priorities of the school, and the functionality of current buildings to plan school infrastructure upgrades. The documents developed during the asset management planning process describe how capital funding (usually allocated to a school through the state budget process) will be used to support long term educational goals
  • Schools that receive capital funding and do not have a current AMP (completed in the last 5 years) are required to develop a new AMP in partnership with their regional office and the Victorian School Building AuthorityExternal Link .
  • Schools that have a current AMP and receive additional capital funding are usually not required to develop a new AMP.
  • The process for implementing works scoped within an AMP will differ depending on project type, complexity and budget.
  • AMPs have 2 distinct stages:
    • Asset Management Plan 1 outlines the school’s educational directions, educational specification, and a basic facilities analysis (which considers functionality, condition and spatial analysis).
    • Asset Management Plan 2 (part of the design and construction phases) involves developing a more detailed master plan/spatial analysis in addition to broader site and project requirements.

Details

Schools that do not have a current AMP who receive capital building works funding are required to develop an AMP. An AMP is normally considered current if it is less than 5 years old. This is done in partnership with their regional provision and planning teams and the Victorian School Building Authority (VSBA) and in consultation with the school community.

An AMP articulates the school’s educational direction and vision as a basis for the capital building works infrastructure and upgrade that will be completed. Once the educational direction and vision has been articulated in the first phase of the AMP process (AMP phase 1), identified works in the subsequent design and construction works that take place during the second phase of the AMP process (AMP phase 2) may include:

  • new or transformational works
  • maintenance
  • refurbishing buildings in poor condition
  • demolishing areas that are excess to a school’s area allocation as specified in the School Facility Area SchedulesExternal Link (staff login required).

AMPs also link school infrastructure funding to the specific details set out in the Budget email that schools receive when State Budget funding is announced.

School masterplans are designed through the formal AMP process. A masterplan is a high-level planning document that outlines how a school’s infrastructure can support its educational vision. The document is valid for 5 years, it maps a school’s site and outlines capital works required to achieve this vision and may include several stages of possible future works.

Where schools have school-led masterplans, they must be re-considered to ensure alignment with department policies and data. The VSBA project officers assigned to the project can lead this process.

AMP boundaries

The department uses boundaries (project specifications) on all capital works projects to target the funding to where it is most needed and ensure that the project meets the needs of the school community. In collaboration with regional staff, the VSBA establishes the boundaries for capital works projects. Boundaries that are established for all projects include:

  • project budget
  • project enrolment number
  • School Facility Area Schedules
  • excess space.

The project enrolment number (PEN) is a planning figure which represents the number of enrolments a school will provide for following completion of a capital project. The PEN is calculated by using the current enrolment number and future projected enrolment of a school. The PEN corresponds to an enrolment band in the School Facility Area SchedulesExternal Link (staff login required).

For further information on how project boundaries are calculated refer to Asset management planning guidance.

Schools that wish to change their project boundaries (for example, their PEN) must contact their regional provision and planning manager as the first step in the issue resolution process. This is a formal process and is outlined in the reference guide, Everything you need to know about a school building project (DOCX)External Link .

AMP process

AMPs have 2 distinct phases:

  • AMP phase 1 – outlining the school’s educational directions, educational specification, and a basic facilities analysis. A facilities analysis considers functionality, condition and spatial analysis.
  • AMP phase 2 – developing a more detailed master plan/spatial analysis that is informed by AMP 1 as well as broader site and project requirements.

After AMP phase 1 and AMP phase 2 there will be subsequent design and construction phases. For further details on each stage of the asset management planning process, refer to the Guidance tab.

AMPs are generally considered valid if they have been completed in the last five years, although in exceptional circumstances they may require a re-validation when funding is received.

When an AMP is not required

There are some situations where an AMP may not be required. Examples include:

  • subsequent stages in developing a new school (planning is completed in the early stages of new school planning)
  • capital building works where an AMP has been completed for an earlier stage of development and is still considered appropriate for an announced project
  • program arrangements that are similar to, but separate from, capital works (for example, Asbestos Building Replacement Program)
  • maintenance projects
  • where capital works funding targets a small, specific item such as an oval refurbishment or covering of an external basketball court.

New schools do not go through the same AMP process as capital building projects at existing schools. However, educational specifications are prepared and agreed for new schools.

So you have received capital funding. What happens now?

Schools allocated capital funding will receive a communication from the Minister for Education.

The AMP coordinator from the VSBA will contact the schools to book into a Bricks and Mortar AMP training session. After this session, the school will be allocated a VSBA technical leadership coach to support them through AMP phase 1 and a project officer, who will be the key contact for AMP phase 2 and subsequent design and construction phases throughout the duration of the project from then on. The project officer will discuss appointing an architect to the capital works project. A representative from the region, usually a provision and planning officer (PPO) or provision planning manager (PPM) will also support the school through both phases of the AMP process.

To ensure projects are implemented as quickly as possible, schools and the VSBA are required to keep to project timelines at each stage of the process. If the school is unable to meet these timelines, the school needs to speak to the relevant contacts listed under the 'Contacts' section on this page.

The following is a detailed description of the steps that the school will need to complete.

Project timelines
StepsCompletion timeframe

AMP phase 1: Educational Direction

The VSBA will be in contact to arrange a Bricks and Mortar AMP training session.

  1. School develops AMP phase 1 draft with support from region and VSBA technical leadership coach.
  2. School Council endorses AMP phase 1 draft (this may require organising a special School Council meeting). School then submits AMP phase 1 draft to the AMP coordinator (VSBA).
5 weeks
  1. The architect appointment process begins following the submission of draft AMP phase 1. This involves representatives from the school, region and VSBA.
  2. The region reviews draft AMP phase 1 and requests any changes to be made by the school.
  3. If required, school re-submits AMP phase 1 to AMP coordinator and AMP coordinator uploads to project management platform.
  4. Regions endorse AMP phase 1 on project management platform.
  5. Architect appointment finalised.
  6. The VSBA reviews and approves AMP phase 1, completing planning phase 1.
7 weeks
AMP phase 2: develop master plan of spatial location and priority projects12 weeks
Complete schematic design11 weeks
Complete design development11 weeks
Finalise tender documentation12 weeks
Tendering, evaluation and appointment of builder6 weeks
Construction starts2 weeks

Funding and expenditure

AMPs factor in capital building works funding that schools receive from the State Budget.

Capital works funding covers all costs associated with the school’s building project, including professional fees, all building-related costs (including asbestos removal) and a project contingency.

Here is the typical budget breakdown (approximately):

  • 65 to 70% – construction, including site-specific costs, external services and landscaping
  • 18% – architects and specialist consultants
  • 5% – VSBA project management and communications
  • 5 to 10% – project contingency
  • 2% – furniture, equipment and ICT.

AMPs may also include:

  • funding provided to schools from other government agencies or departments
  • other Department of Education funds such as a grant or Planned Maintenance Program funding
  • any locally/school-raised funds (schools are encouraged to identify their maximum proposed contribution to a capital works project and seek approval under the School-Funded Capital Projects policy early in the design process to prevent delays to the project).

For more information, refer to the Project Management Framework (PMF) and/or the School-funded Capital Projects policy. Schools can access PMF documents on the department's project management platform, iTWOcx reference pageExternal Link (staff login required).

The VSBA must approve all expenditure (or commitments) to be charged to the capital budget.

AMPs and school maintenance plans

AMPs and school maintenance plans (SMPs) are the 2 main plans used by schools to manage and maintain their assets. For more information about SMPs, refer to the Planned Maintenance Program policy.

Asset management planning processes

The department has developed the AMP: phase 1 communication process (DOCX)External Link (staff login required) as a guide for schools on how they can best communicate with and involve their community throughout the AMP phase 1.

The AMP: phase 1 communication templates (DOCX)External Link (staff login required) document has a number of templates to assist schools in announcing capital funding and communicating different AMP1 milestones to their community.

The department has also developed the Design and construction phases communication process (DOCX)External Link (staff login required) as a guide for schools on how they can best communicate with and involve their community throughout the design and construction phase.

The Design and Construction phases communication templates (DOCX)External Link (staff login required) document has a number of templates to assist schools in communicating different design and construction phase milestones to their community.

Some schools may be required to utilise a different communications process for the design and construction phases. These schools will be contacted directly by a VSBA communications advisor prior to the commencement of the design and construction phases should this be required.

Support for asset management planning

The VSBA provides additional AMP support to schools through the Bricks and Mortar (AMP) ProgramExternal Link (staff login required) which schools that receive capital funding will be invited to attend. This program is run by the VSBA’s technical leadership coaches (former principals) who will also support schools through AMP phase 1 and if required phase 2.

Schools can access more information about AMP roles and responsibilities, key considerations and steps in Everything you need to know about a school building project (DOCX)External Link .

Relevant legislation

Contacts

For general facilities enquiries, a school’s regional provision and planning manager should be the first point of contact.

North eastern Victoria region

Damien Hanwright
Damien.Hanwright@education.vic.gov.au
03 7022 1172

North western Victoria region

Jeanette Stubbs
Jeanette.Stubbs@education.vic.gov.au
03 8468 9224

South eastern Victoria region

Darren Clarke
Darren.Clarke@education.vic.gov.au
03 8904 2559

South western Victoria region

Kimberley Bendall
Kimberley.Bendall@education.vic.gov.au
03 9194 6305

For any specific AMP queries, schools can contact the VSBA’s AMP Coordinator:

amp.coordinator@education.vic.gov.au


Guidance

Guidance

This guidance is for schools that receive capital funding. These guidelines contain the following chapters:

  1. Asset management planning guidance
  2. School functionality
  3. Project control groups

1. Asset management planning guidance

1. Asset management planning guidance

Most schools that receive capital building works funding are required to develop an asset management plan (AMP) in partnership with their department regional office and the Victorian School Building Authority (VSBA)

AMPs have 2 distinct stages:

  • AMP – phase 1 outlines the school’s educational directions, educational specification, and a basic facilities analysis (which considers functionality, condition and spatial analysis) to ensure alignment between the school’s educational vision, direction and aspirations.
  • AMP – phase 2 involves developing a more detailed master plan/spatial analysis in addition to broader site and project requirements that best support the desired outcomes.

Schools can access more information about AMP roles and responsibilities, key considerations and steps in Everything you need to know about a school building project (DOCX)External Link (also in the Resources tab).

Need to know before starting an AMP

Project boundaries

By the time AMP has started, the school will have received specific information about the scope and boundaries of the capital works project.

School Facility Area SchedulesExternal Link (staff login required), the school’s condition, the project budget and announced scope are all used to determine and set the ‘project boundaries’ for the capital works project of the school. The VSBA is responsible for the establishment of the boundaries for capital works projects, in collaboration with regional staff. Boundaries that are established for all projects include:

  1. Project budget
  2. Project Enrolment Number
  3. School Facility Area Schedules
  4. Excess space

Any deviations from the approved AMP boundaries will be resolved via the VSBA’s established issue resolution process. For further information refer to: Everything you need to know about a school building project (DOCX)External Link .

Project budget

As stated in the Policy tab, capital works funding covers all costs associated with the school’s building project, including professional fees, all building-related (including asbestos removal) costs and a project contingency.

Here is the typical budget breakdown (approximately):

  • 65 to 70% – construction, including site-specific costs, external services and landscaping
  • 18% – architects and specialist consultants
  • 5% – VSBA project management and communications
  • 5 to 10% – project contingency
  • 2% – furniture, equipment and ICT.

Project enrolment number

The VSBA looks at both the number of current enrolments of the funded school and the 5-year projected enrolment figure to determine a planning figure, called the project enrolment number (PEN).

If a school is in a VSBA defined growth area, the 10-year Demographic Demand Forecast (DDF) will also inform this decision making.

The current built capacity is the number of enrolments that can be accommodated before completion of the capital works for which the school is being funded.

For the purposes of the capital project the PEN may differ from current capacity.

School Facility Area Schedules

To ensure equity across schools, the School Facility Area SchedulesExternal Link (staff login required) indicate the spaces required for a school to deliver the curriculum for a certain number of enrolments.

The schedules set out the number and type of learning spaces and/or square metres of space that are required for a school of a certain size and type. At each enrolment band, the schedules detail the mix of relocatable and permanent of facilities that can be considered as part of a funded project.

At each enrolment band, schools are allocated a combination of permanent buildings and relocatable buildings as per the schedules.

Once a school reaches the threshold for permanent buildings (475 students for primary and 1,100 for secondary) the standard approach is for additional enrolments to be managed through the provision of relocatable buildings.

The scope of the building project must align with the School Facility Area Schedules for the enrolment unless an alternative scope has been announced.

Excess space

The area allocation, actual space and proposed excess space, based on the School Facility Area Schedules, are provided in the funding notification letter sent to schools. Schools with excess space are required to develop an excess space strategy in AMP Phase 1 with the support of the regional provision and planning officer (PPO) or provision planning manager (PPM).

If the school’s capacity figure is higher than the PEN provided, the VSBA will work with the school during the AMP process to address identified excess space and capacity at the school.

Reducing excess space and capacity will enable the school to better utilise School Resource Package (SRP) and maintenance funding.

School condition

If the project has not been allocated a specific scope of works, buildings identified in poor condition during the master planning phase of the project will be prioritised to be addressed with the allocated funding.

For further details about school condition and the RFE, refer to Rolling Facility EvaluationExternal Link (staff login required).

Issue resolution

Schools that wish to change their project boundaries (for example, their PEN) must contact their regional provision and planning manager as the first step in the issue resolution process. This is a formal process and is outlined in the reference guide Everything you need to know about a school building project (DOCX)External Link .

The regional provision and planning manager deals with matters including discrepancy in enrolment, space allocation or other data or information supplied to them

Process to develop an Asset Management Plan

Process to develop an Asset Management Plan. Refer to long description for details
Process to develop an Asset Management Plan

Details

This image shows the steps involved in developing and implementing an Asset Management Plan and contains the following text.

My local school has been funded in the State Budget. What happens now?

The first stage of the process is for your school to identify it's educational direction and develop an Asset Management Plan for the school. The second stage helps your school identify and prioritise required building and maintenance works to achieve those educational directions.

While the process involves planning for a particular capital works project, it also takes a longer-term perspective to ensure the benefits of the immediate project are fully achieved over time.

  • Bricks and Mortar Briefing
  • Planning Phase 1 — Educational Direction (School Asset Management Plan)
  • Architect Appointment
  • Planning Phase 2 — Five Year Plan Development
  • Design and Tender
  • Schematic Design
  • Design Development
  • Tender Documentation and Review
  • Tendering and Evaluation
  • Appointment of Builder
  • Start up on site/Sod Turn

Presentation

This image is displayed with the main text on the left and the bullet-point list on the right, separated by an arrow pointing downwards.

Download Process to develop an Asset Management Plan

Bricks and Mortar AMP briefing

The Bricks and Mortar AMP briefing provides information for principals and school leaders involved in the capital works program.

It covers the process schools should follow to successfully manage their project, including:

  • introduction to the key contacts to the school
  • timelines of the AMP process
  • development of the planning phase 1 template
  • description of the architect appointment phase
  • describing connection between teaching and learning, and AMP development
  • milestones for AMP phase 1 and phase 2.

Schools that receive capital funding will be contacted by the VSBA regarding attendance at a Bricks and Mortar AMP briefing which will be held shortly after notification of funding. Technical leadership coaches from the VSBA will be available along with regional staff to provide advice and support to complete AMP phase 1 documentation.

AMP phase 1

The purpose of the AMP phase 1 is to describe the school’s future educational directions in the context of its functionality, space allocation and condition.

The AMP phase 1 outlines the specific characteristics of the school, its learning, teaching and curriculum models and the programs and organizational structures that will take the school into the future. The AMP phase 1 is developed by the school in collaboration with the school community. School community engagement is critical to the AMP process as this will ensure educational direction in regard to teaching and learning reflects local community’s aspirations.

Aligned with the school’s educational directions and informed by department policy, the school’s AMP phase 1 informs the master planning process and ensures current capital works projects and longer-term asset management strategies can be achieved.

In AMP phase 1 schools allocated capital works funding are required to complete a functionality assessment as part of the AMP template that will be explained in the Bricks and Mortar (AMP) briefing.

Further guidance on school functionality is available in the Guidance tab.

The audience for the AMP phase 1 is the school community, the VSBA and the project architect.

The VSBA will guide the school through the first phase of the AMP process with support from regional staff, and in consultation with the school community.

Once completed, AMP 1 must be endorsed by the school council president and principal before submission to the department regional office for review and endorsement. Once endorsed by region, the VSBA will approve the AMP phase 1 and the school will receive a letter from the VSBA advising of the approval of AMP phase 1.

VSBA project management portal

The online database and project management tool will be prescribed by the VSBA. Schools receiving funding for capital works will be introduced to the system in the Bricks and Mortar training session. If you require project management platform assistance, please refer to the Bricks and Mortar participant pack or email iTWOcx.support@education.vic

AMP phase 2

In AMP phase 2, more detailed master planning/spatial analysis is undertaken by the architect in conjunction with the project control group (PCG). The PCG governs a project from the beginning of AMP phase 2 (master planning/spatial analysis) until the completion of works. PCGs typically comprise the VSBA project officer, a regional provision and planning representative and the school principal or nominee.

Further information about the PCG is available at Project control group terms of reference.

AMP phase 2 results in a program of work that may include building new spaces and refurbishing, modernising or demolishing existing ones. It may also specify work to maintain, replace or upgrade site infrastructure and critical building elements that are in the poorest condition. Condition data collected through the RFE is considered as part of the condition analysis where available.

Once complete, AMP phase 2 must be endorsed by the school council president and principal before submission to the Project Review and Evaluation Panel (PREP).

A PREP consists of a milestone review meeting between the school principal or delegate, a regional provision and planning representative and a VSBA representative. The PREP meets to check progress of the project, discuss risks, budget and current or future operational impacts on the school.

The purpose of the PREP is for the VSBA to formally endorse the project at key milestone stages throughout the project. Depending on the complexity of the project, there may be up to three stages at which the PREP gives endorsement.

Implementation

Once AMP phase 2 is approved, the funded works scoped within the AMP are delivered in accordance with the VSBA’s Project Management Framework (PMF)External Link (staff login required).

The implementation phases cover detailed designs, tendering and builder appointment, and then construction.

For more information, refer to:

If you require project management platform assistance, please refer to the Bricks and Mortar participant pack or email iTWOcx.support@education.vic

Asset management plan support – where to get help

Refer to ‘Contacts’ section in the Policy tab.

Additional information

For further information, contact:

AMP Coordinator, VSBA: amp.coordinator@education.vic.gov.au


2. School functionality

2. School functionality

Introduction

The Victorian School Building Authority (VSBA)External Link is committed to supporting principals in their role as asset managers, whilst providing schools with flexibility to manage infrastructure need through tailored asset management plans (AMPs) as part of the capital works process.

Schools allocated capital works funding are required to complete a functionality assessment of their existing facilities as part of their AMP.

Victorian Functionality Matrix

Schools use the Victorian Functionality Matrix (VFM) to review and assess the functionality of facilities to determine whether they are fit for purpose in meeting the curriculum needs of the school community.

Functionality will feed into project prioritisation and targeting of funding towards projects consistent with the educational specification developed by the school.

Rationale

The VSBA works to ensure all Victorian government school students have access to functional and modern learning spaces.

Schools receiving capital works funding develop an AMP which links this funding to a school’s strategic planning and identifies a number of priority projects to be undertaken by a school over the duration of the AMP. The AMP process supports schools in delivering fit for purpose learning spaces, aligned to the school educational specification. For more information, refer to the Policy tab.

A functionality assessment – conducted through the VFM – helps schools to determine which projects to prioritise by:

  • reviewing the functionality of their current learning spaces in meeting their curricula and pedagogical aims, and
  • identifying improvement areas.

The VFM comprises 4 design principles, each with a number of sub-components which schools are to give a rating from 1 to 5. These design components are:

  1. learners and learning at the centre
  2. schools are community hubs
  3. diversity is celebrated
  4. a welcoming environment.

This approach accommodates the VSBA’s policy of non-standardised design of Victorian government schools, allowing school infrastructure to reflect the local context including a school’s educational rationale, community requirements and site-specific conditions.

Additional information

For further information, contact:

AMP Coordinator, VSBA: amp.coordinator@education.vic.gov.au


3. Project control group terms of reference

3. Project control group terms of reference

The purpose and role

The purpose of the project control group (PCG) is to provide high level leadership to manage the delivery of capital projects and large planned maintenance projects.

In this arrangement it is the PCG's responsibility to ensure appropriate representation of all views is considered during the asset management plan development and early planning phases.

The membership

The PCG generally includes representatives from the Victorian School Building Authority (VSBA), regional office and the school. For new schools, a new school principal being appointed during the project lifecycle will become a member of the PCG. At a minimum, the membership will be as follows:

  • school principal
  • project officer
  • regional representative.

The PCG has authority to make recommendations on any matter regarding the planning, design or delivery of a capital works project.

The project officer is the chairperson of the PCG. In addition to the PCG membership, other people can be invited to attend and/or report to the PCG meetings as required. These may include:

  • capital program assurance service manager
  • department program managers
  • project manager
  • principal design consultant
  • departmental executives/unit manager(s)
  • school business managers
  • specialist experts or consultants, for example, quantity surveyor, environmentally sustainable design or probity advisors
  • other departmental representatives
  • VSBA technical leadership coaches
  • other stakeholders as relevant.

Governance framework

The governance framework for the planning and development of department facilities generally represents the joint interests of the department and participating schools. The framework ensures projects undertaken are built to a standard to meet contemporary educational requirements and remain within the approved scope, budget and timeframe.

The governance body for all capital works projects is the PCG, with the operation of the PCG varying depending on the size and type of project.

The PCG focus is to manage specific capital investment and maintenance projects from initiation to financial completion of the construction or maintenance contracts. Capital investment projects include major and minor works associated with establishing and upgrading building and construction as well as infrastructure.

Maintenance projects include works designed to maintain the building at an efficient operational level, which may include minor functionality alterations that do not increase the asset base. Both capital investment and maintenance projects include design and procurement as well as administration of consultants and builders.

The department’s financial delegates are the manager, project delivery/major projects for all contracts valued at up to $10 million and the director project delivery/major projects for all contracts between $10 million and $20 million. The governance arrangement will need to address government and department policies including obtaining benefits and value from investment, ensuring probity is maintained and compliance with statutory requirements.

PCG responsibilities

Responsibilities for the PCG are:

  • oversee detailed development of the project scope in accordance with the project boundaries and budget announcement letter
  • ensure only those functional, cost and program matters contained in the approved brief are implemented and all changes to the scope and budget are sufficiently reported to the VSBA so as to permit review and approval of such changes
  • evaluate and make recommendations at major steps as required
  • apply/interpret policy, planning objectives and operational recommendations
  • assist to identify issues, analyse and report risks in the project through the project management platform
  • review the asset management plan as and when required.

It is the PCG's responsibility to make sure all views are considered during the asset management plan development and early planning phases. The structure is flexible to meet the needs of the stakeholders.

The standard approach based on value is:

  • capital projects greater than $5 million will be driven through monthly meetings throughout design and construction until project completion.
  • capital projects less than $5 million will be monitored through onsite meetings during construction and the PCG milestones meetings during design, with the majority of oversight occurring through our project management platform
  • planned maintenance projects greater than $200,000 will be managed through email and teleconferences, following a Maintenance AMP process. Onsite meetings will occur as required.
  • projects less than $200,000 will be managed and updated monthly.

For additional process steps, refer to the Project Management FrameworkExternal Link (staff login required).

The term

The PCG and this terms of reference for any project will start upon project initiation and cease at final completion of the project.

Issue resolution

If there is a disagreement on any of the above PCGs, the obligation to make the final decision for the department will by default fall upon the financial delegate of the project.


Resources

Resources

Asset Management Plan (AMP – Phase 1 and Design and Construction Phases) communication process and templates

The following resources are designed to support principals to communicate with their communities throughout different phases of their capital works project.:

Please note some schools may be required to utilise a different communications process for AMP2. Schools will be contacted by a Victorian School Building Authority Communications Advisor prior to the commencement of AMP2 should this be required.

Toolbox resources for AMP1

The toolbox resources have been developed to assist school leaders in developing their AMP 1 with input from the school community. Further support in using these items will be covered in the Bricks and Mortar (AMP) briefing.


Reviewed 22 May 2023