The trustees of the Del Mar Union School District finished voting on a set of motions they began considering nearly a month ago Thursday night, as the school board members found compromise on a series of questions about how the district should accept and use private funds.

There’s a catch though: a major part of the compromise expires in a year.

On Thursday, the school board formally endorsed the Del Mar Schools Education Foundation as the district’s official fundraising arm after a newly elected foundation board of directors outlined a new operating plan for the private group that has raised millions in philanthropic dollars for the district. The vote represents a major victory for the foundation, which convinced board members to abandon the strict of operating conditions it had initially set out for the foundations.

However, the board could not decide on a long-term policy governing the role of parent contributions in financing the salaries of school teachers beyond the number allocated by the district each year. Trustees agreed to allow each school site to raise parent donations to support up to two positions — one certificated teacher, and one classified staff member — for the academic year that starts in September. But they could not agree on a long term policy, putting off the contentious issue for another year.

District Superintendent Tom Bishop warned that the vote brought little certainty to the district staff or parents.

“It was a one-year decision, and it took two-and-a-half months to make,” he said after the vote.


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