Project Certification for School, Essential Services Construction Projects
Project certification is the process that the DSA uses to determine that the constructed project complies with the codes and regulations governing school construction (the codes and regulations being those used for the original design).
Electronic Document Submittal
Project stakeholders may submit and collaborate on documents in real time in DSAbox. This Cloud-based tool allows stakeholders to see when a documents was submitted to DSA and access the document and any time.
Project Inspector Card
As work progresses, the project inspector signs off the applicable blocks and sections of the DSA 152: Project Inspection Card - SAMPLE, in compliance with DSA procedure PR 13-01. A stop work order may be issued for failure to complete a section of form DSA 152. Detailed descriptions of documentation and inspection requirements are provided in the DSA 152 Manual - A Guide for Completing the Project Inspector Card.
As outlined in PR 13-02, once aware that a project is fully constructed, occupied, or otherwise in use, DSA works with the design/construction team collaboratively to finalize all certification requirements/documents. After the file is examined, the project is certified or issued a Notification of Requirements for Certification. If a project facility becomes occupied without certification, a report on the deficient paperwork is placed in the Certification Box, which is open to the public. On day 60 following the construction/occupation/use of the project, if the project is not certified, DSA will issue form DSA 301-N: Notification of Requirement for Certification - SAMPLE to all parties associated with the project. Form DSA 301-N lists project deficiencies and the parties responsible for those deficiencies.
Even after being placed in the Certification Box, a project may be certified after all deficiencies have been resolved. The parties have an additional 60 days to resolve deficiencies identified on form DSA 301-N in order to certify the project. At the end of the second 60-day period (day 120 following the construction/occupation/use of the project), if the project is not certified, DSA issues form DSA 301-P: Notification of Requirement for Certification - SAMPLE to all parties associated with the project. Like form DSA 301-N, form DSA 301-P is a list of deficiencies for the project and the parties responsible for those deficiencies.
Form DSA 301-P is posted in the publicly viewable Certification Box (see below). Any party responsible for a deficiency may submit the missing documentation to the Certification Box. School districts and design professionals may also submit form DSA 302: Response to 301-P, a document used to identify how they’ve attempted to resolve deficiencies.
Projects that are occupied without certification are placed in the Certification Box. Unlike DSAbox, which is a place for stakeholders to access project documents, the Certification Box is open to the public. Available documents include form DSA 301-P; form DSA 102-IC: Construction Start Notice/Inspection Card Request, which identifies all parties associated with the project; and any submitted DSA 302 forms.
A project certification is acknowledged by a DSA letter certifying that the building project has been completed in accordance with the requirements as to the safety of design and construction pursuant to the respective statutory requirements. The certification process provides a method to determine the safety of school construction. DSA will be unable to approve new proposed projects associated with uncertified construction (See DSA IR A-20 for in depth discussion).
Proof of Project Certification:
- Copy of DSA certification letter.
- Copy of DSA history card showing certification.
- DSA Tracker shows project is certified.
Information on achieving certification is on our Certify Construction Projects for School, Essential Services Facilities webpage.
Project closeout is the process that DSA uses to determine that the constructed project complies with the codes and regulations governing school construction. Project closeout consists of examination of specific project files for documents required to be submitted before, during and after construction, and to determine if outstanding issues have been resolved. After the file is examined, the project file is closed either with certification or without certification.
DSA may issue one of the following project closeout letters:
#1. Closeout with Certification: This letter indicates that the requirements of the construction process were fulfilled in accordance with rules and regulations.
#2. Certificate of Compliance without Receipt of All Documents: This letter indicates that the allowable alternatives were utilized for documentation of the construction process and the project can be certified.
#5. Resolution of Certification Due to Structures: This letter indicates that the matter of certification is resolved since the uncertified structures have been destroyed or removed from their approved locations.
#5a. Resolution of Certification: This letter indicates the matter of certification is resolved due to discontinued use of a school site.
301-P. Notification of Requirement for Certification: This document indicates the project is not certified due to incomplete or missing documents or potential safety deficiencies.
The letter that DSA sends out to the project architect or engineer to request any missing documents. After construction is complete, DSA reviews its files to determine whether all documents have been received. If any documents are missing, the project architect has 90 days to track down the documents and submit them. If documents are not received within 90 days the project will be closed without DSA certification.
Closed Without Certification
When DSA cannot verify that construction has been completed in accordance with code requirements, the project will be closed without certification. This may happen because of reported deviations in the construction, or because documentation required to verify that construction was properly completed was not received by DSA.
Final Verified Report
A report certifying under penalty of perjury that all construction was completed in accordance with DSA approved documents. Final verified reports are required from all architects, engineers, contractors, testing laboratories, and inspectors on the project.
Letter of Certification
Letter that DSA issues to the school district upon satisfactory completion of construction and receipt of all required documents. This letter is evidence that construction conforms to applicable requirements of the California Building Code.
Portion Scope Construction Certification
DSA may certify portions of the scope of a project that are completed if those portions include all aspects of construction necessary to make the affected structures code compliant (including accessibility and fire safety code requirements).
The process, upon completion of construction, of reviewing documentation submitted to DSA to verify that all work was performed and inspected in accordance with Code requirements. If documentation indicates that the construction met the requirements, then DSA issues a letter of certification of construction to the school district.
Interpretation of Regulations:
- PL 09-04: 90-Day Letter and Reopening of Files for Project Certification (PDF)
- PL 13-01: Re-examination of Files for Project Certification (PDF)
- Certification Starts When Construction Begins: Project Certification for Inspectors (PDF) | 11 x 17 (PDF)
DSA Sacramento Regional Office
1102 Q Street, Suite 5200
Sacramento, CA 95811
DSA Oakland Regional Office
1515 Clay Street, Suite 1201
Oakland, CA 94612
DSA Los Angeles Basin Regional Office
700 N. Alameda Street, Suite 5-500
Los Angeles, CA 90012
DSA San Diego Regional Office
10920 Via Frontera, Suite 300
San Diego, CA 92127