Weathertightness remediation

This programme addresses state school buildings that have been subject to destructive testing reports as part of the Ministry’s national survey of buildings with weathertightness issues, but are yet to have remedial work completed.

Keeping school buildings weathertight

We want all schools to have quality learning environments, and one of the Ministry’s priority work areas is to ensure that schools are safe and in good physical condition.

Work to keep buildings weathertight will normally be funded through a school’s Property Maintenance Grant or more significant projects scheduled as part of a school’s 5 Year Agreement (5YA).

For buildings either built or modified from 1994 onwards the Ministry’s remediation programme will address any occurrences of weathertightness failure. However, all buildings will be dealt with on a case by case basis.

If a school building is involved in a current legal claim, any specific queries can be emailed to the Ministry’s project manager for claims and assessments.


What is weathertightness failure?

Weathertightness failure happens when water gets past the external cladding of a building. The failure is often a localised matter as a result of either workmanship and/or design issues, such as:

  • defective or missing flashings,
  • wall and roof cladding penetrations poorly formed,
  • inadequate clearance between the base of cladding and adjacent gardens or ground (paved or unpaved).

If left unaddressed, the resulting moisture levels can create further problems and lead to damage and possible health and safety risks.

Ministry's approach to weathertightness remediation

The Ministry’s general objectives in relation to weathertightness remediation are to:

  • address all urgent health and safety issues as a priority,
  • repair weathertightness failures and consequential damage,
  • complete the work with the least disruption to schools as possible, and
  • ensure all remediation work complies with the NZ Building Code.

Our approach includes an initial desktop exercise to review all existing information the Ministry has available. The information may include:

  • advice from the school,
  • previous building survey reports,
  • information gathered during the annual school visits, and
  • any other building condition assessments.

Once the existing information has been reviewed, the Ministry will usually organise a remediation inspection by an appropriately briefed Registered Building Surveyor.

Getting the work done

The Remediation Inspection report is an important part of getting the work done. It's designed to accelerate the process of remediation and identifies the most effective solution for repair. Where weathertightness failures and consequential damage are found to be localised, this approach can help reduce potential disruption to the school.

The Ministry will provide technical support. This includes arranging for a registered building surveyor to:

  • meet with the principal, caretaker or other staff members with knowledge of the weathertightness issues,
  • review any previous survey reports,
  • undertake onsite inspections, and
  • identify the proposed remediation solution.

A Weathertightness Review Panel (WRP) provides technical assistance around weathertightness remediation works and also undertakes independent reviews of project specific documentation at the following key stages:

  • Remediation Inspection Report,
  • Preliminary Design, and
  • Detailed Design.

Remediation Strategy

The Ministry’s Weathertightness Remediation and Regulatory Strategy has key policies to help ensure that weathertightness issues won't arise from current and future remediation works. These are summarised as follows:

  1. All consultants engaged on the basis of competency and experience.
  2. Remediation Inspection Reports to provide evidence that the weathertightness failures identified are responsible for the observed damage.
  3. Documentation shall include sufficient specification, construction detailing and referencing of manufacturer’s technical literature for code compliant construction.
  4. Documentation will be subject to review, normally at two stages, Preliminary and Detailed Design.
  5. Contractors are to be selected on the basis of competency and experience.
  6. The consultants engaged to document the works are also required to undertake construction observation.
  7. Quality Assurance processes to be implemented so that the proposed and completed remedial works are code compliant and appropriate to the weathertightness failures and consequential damage.
  8. Completion documentation added to the Ministry’s property file.

For architects, designers, building surveyors and other property professionals involved with remediation, the full document can be accessed in the table below.


The Ministry’s current set of templates, forms and guidance documents for weathertightness remediation can be accessed below.

Key documents (for all property professionals)
Ministry of Education Weathertightness Remediation and Regulatory Strategy [PDF, 849 KB] The Ministry's overarching document that sets out the strategy for remedial works
Quality Assurance Requirements [PDF, 395 KB] This document sets out the Ministry’s quality assurance requirements and covers all aspects of the remediation process
Weathertightness Remediation Process Map [PDF, 201 KB] This document provides a visual summary of the remediation process
Weathertightness Review Panel (WRP) Guide #1: Information for Weathertightness Documentation Reviews [PDF, 248 KB] This guide provides an overview of the remediation process and required deliverables at the preliminary and detailed design stages
Tools for Building Surveyors
Weathertightness Review Panel (WRP) Guide #2: Information for Building Surveyors [PDF, 116 KB] This guide provides the information required to facilitate a remediation inspection report
Weathertightness Remediation Inspection Report Template [DOCX, 800 KB] Use this template for preparing a remediation inspection report
Technical Briefing Note to Support the Weathertightness Remediation Inspection Report Template [PDF, 242 KB] Refer to these notes when completing the template for a remediation inspection report
Model Weathertightness Remediation Inspection Report [PDF, 4.1 MB] This document provides a completed example of a remediation inspection report for a school building
Tools for Architects and Designers
Design Report Template [DOCX, 1.1 MB] Architects and Designers to use this template at the preliminary and detailed design stages
Project Specific Quality Assurance Plan Template [DOCX, 58 KB] Architects and Designers to use this template from the detailed design stage onwards and provide a breakdown of the key work stages to be inspected on site
Model Project Specific Quality Assurance Plan [PDF, 3.5 MB] This document provides a completed example of a project specific QA plan
NZIA Webinar: Weathertightness Remediation for State School Buildings(external link) Download this June 2019 webinar from the NZIA webstore for an overview of the Ministry’s Remediation Strategy including the key policies, processes and regulatory compliance guidance.


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