Del Mar Union proudly holds ribbon cutting for new Pacific Sky School

Students at home in Pacific Sky's Innovation Center.
(Karen Billing)

The Del Mar Union School District held a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Friday, Sept. 23. Fitting for a school whose mascot is the Pilots, the Blue Angels frequently flew by in formation in the blue sky over the adjacent McGonigle Canyon in preparation for that weekend’s air show in Miramar. It was almost perfectly meant to be, said DMUSD Superintendent Holly McClurg.

“We are proud and thrilled that the Del Mar Union School District gets to be a part of your community in Pacific Highlands Ranch,” said McClurg. “Pacific Sky is extraordinary.”

The ceremony for the new school on Solterra Vista Parkway was attended by students and families, the designers OBR Architecture and builders Erickson Hall Construction, special guest San Diego City Councilmember Joe LaCava, as well as representatives from neighboring Solana Beach, San Dieguito and Cardiff School Districts.

DMUSD Trustees Katherine Fitzpatrick and Gee Wah Mok help Pacific Sky Principal Alison Fieberg with the ribbon cutting.
DMUSD Trustees Katherine Fitzpatrick and Gee Wah Mok help Pacific Sky Principal Alison Fieberg with the ribbon cutting.
(Karen Billing)

As part of the grand opening festivities, some of the K-6 school’s youngest students sang the school anthem and the oldest sixth grade students read a Pacific Sky poem. The crowd-favorite Principal Alison Fieberg cut a somewhat stubborn ribbon with her giant pair of scissors, everyone cheered when she finally got the big ribbon to snip.

“There has been joy, pleasure and a sense of excitement in welcoming everyone into such a beautiful space,” Fieberg said in her comments.

After the ceremony, guests toured the new school, many of them wowed by the spacious innovation center and learning commons, an open and flexible space with plenty of unique seating spots and book shelves, and a stage that opens up to the back of the school.

A parent checks out a sun-filled classroom.
(Karen Billing)

The 67,000-square-foot campus has 20 K-6 classrooms, modern learning studios that open into the outdoors and roomy hallways; three labs dedicated to STREAM +; and three after-school classrooms. The design is modern and playful—inside there are nooks and spaces everywhere for student learning and exploration. Outside there are slides instead of stairs, natural tree log benches for outdoor seating—the 10.47-acre site includes three play structures and a blacktop, a field and track, set against the scenic backdrop of the canyon. Eventually, the school will have access to the future Solterra Vista Park, slated to open late next year.

Pacific Sky will also be home to the district’s first central kitchen.

Kids test out the playground equipment.
(Karen Billing)

“I’m so happy for this community,” said DMUSD Trustee Gee Wah Mok who lives just a block away and was involved in getting the vote out for the 2018 Measure MM general obligation bond, which made the school funding possible. “A neighborhood school is not only a place for kids to learn and play but it’s also a community gathering space.”

He said in Pacific Sky’s first month, he has already seen the community come together around the school and he is looking forward to those neighbor connections continuing to build.