Kenai Peninsula Borough School District
Golden Apple Award | July 1, 2019
The Honorable Mike Chenault, Alaska House of Representatives
Golden Apple nominator Sean Dusek said, “It is with great pleasure that I nominate Mike Chenault for a KPBSD Golden Apple Award for his tireless support of public education in Alaska.” The Honorable Mike Chenault, Alaska House of Representatives, is a graduate of Kenai Central High School in the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District, a successful businessman, and public servant. He served on the KPBSD Board of Education before becoming a State Representative. His time in the State House of Representatives culminated in his election as Speaker of the House where he led Alaska in its strong support of public education.
Speaker Chenault proved his mettle during tough debate on equitable funding for education early in his legislative career. His leadership allowed our district to implement innovative staffing practices that truly meet the needs of every student in the district. He led the legislature to provide forward funding for education, which our district translated into excellent results, particularly in the area of graduation rate. Speaker Chenault also held education accountable by asking the tough questions.
Assistant Superintendent Dave Jones added, “When Mike Chenault was elected to the House of Representatives for the State of Alaska, he took it upon himself to become highly informed and aware of the details involved with funding K-12 schools in Alaska. He learned about the intricacies of SB 36 (K-12 funding formula in place at that time) and the shortcomings and inequities it created.
As co-chair of the House Finance Committee, Mike Chenault was primarily responsible for the establishment of the Joint Legislative Education Funding Task Force (JLEFTF) that met during the months of June, July, and August 2007. The JLEFTF was established for the purpose of examining school district cost differentials and the existing formula for distributing state aid for education. As a result of the JLEFTF’s report to the Governor and Legislature, HB 273 was passed in March of 2008. The bill increased KPBSD’s District Cost Factor from 1.004 to 1.171 to help correct the underfunding inequities that KPBSD had been facing. HB 273 also increased the Intensive Multiplier and Base Student Allocation for much needed additional funding. KPBSD’s consistent growth in graduation rate since the passage of HB 273 can be directly linked to the additional funding made available by Mike Chenault.”
Speaker Chenault has always been a strong partner in building the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District. Superintendent Dusek said, “Through this partnership, he should share in our successes, knowing that he has made a profound difference in thousands of students’ lives. Speaker Chenault helped make the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District a high quality institution that is considered one of the best districts in the State of Alaska. I thank him for all he has done and hope he will continue to be fully engaged with KPBSD in the future.”
The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District Board of Education is proud to recognize the Honorable Mike Chenault, Alaska House of Representatives, for his dedication to the students of the school district, past, present, and future.