Posting for Brittany Viegas of Galvestion ISD Education Foundation: The IRS delineates three types of supporting organizations, defined by the degree of separation from the supported organization. This concern first arose over our MOU (hiring/firing power, etc.) with the district and was renewed over the fact that our 990 has always left the questions regarding this status unanswered. We are considering hiring a CPA for foundations and non-profits to review our operations and make changes to our MOU if needed. My question to other ed foundation directors is whether any of you have been through this process before and if you have any guidance or recommendations?
Thank you for posting this Teresa! I am now registered on the forum!
Hi Brittany! Welcome to the forum. First of all, I want to make sure I understand that your question correctly. Your EF is classified by the IRS as a public charity and not a supporting organization, correct? And your concern is that as a public charity, the ISD should not have hiring/firing power over the Executive Director, so they are considering changing the MOU so that the ED would not report to the ISD supervisor. Is that correct?
If that is all correct, who pays the salary of your Executive Director?
@fi-consultant-suzi you are correct. our ISD pays 1/3 of my salary and all of my benefits while the foundation pays for the other 2/3. My board doesn't necessarily want me to stop reporting to my ISD supervisor, and we certainly want to continue our agreement because it is so beneficial to the foundation (in-kind support, office space, etc.) but they were concerned about level of control. The board felt that they were left in the dark for much of the hiring process and they want to prevent any future issues if/when a new superintendent comes in.
I don't see your current arrangement as an issue, in my opinion. The supervision you describe is over one employee, not over the board of directors or the decisions they make. I interpret the supporting organization description to be an arrangement where the actions of the board are overseen by the parent organization (such as a hospital auxiliary). In your situation, it appears to me that the district is providing staff support to the board to assist them in accomplishing their mission but is not exerting control over the organization.