Dr. Kasey Kesselring, Headmaster of Montverde Academy, responded today to information posted on several basketball websites that Dakari Johnson would be reclassifying from the class of 2014 to 2013.
"Dakari's mother and I had a series of conversations regarding this matter. For the Academy, this is a very non-traditional situation, and we are very sensitive to making decisions that may negatively impact our credibility as a challenging college preparatory school," Kesselring said. He went on further to say "Dakari is a very fine young man-respectful and committed to his education; he is an A-B student at Montverde Academy and dedicated to achieving success in a rigorous academic program.
"Dakari's situation is unique. He will be one credit shy of completing his credits toward graduation at the end of this academic year, and after evaluating the opportunities Dakari has to transition to college next year, I have agreed to allow him to transition to the class of 2013 and he will finish his remaining credit in summer school 2013. I make this decision with reluctance, but ultimately, I do not want to selfishly inhibit Dakari from accepting opportunities that are available to him at the college level; therefore, I support the decision and will follow his career with interest."
Johnson followed long time St. Pat's Coach, Kevin Boyle to Montverde Academy in 2011. Considered to be one of the best high school basketball coaches in the country having coached numerous players who went on to the NBA including recent top draft picks Kyrie Irving and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Coach Boyle responded to the decision by saying, "Dakari is a great kid, a good student and a very talented basketball player. Would I like to have him at Montverde for another year? Sure, I would, but I don't think this decision will hurt Dakari; he will earn a scholarship to a high Division I program, and we will likely see him in the NBA as well.
"Right now, I want to keep Dakari focused on school , his training and enjoying his senior year and his last high school season. We have a difficult schedule this year and Dakari and his teammates need to remain focused on the business at hand. Dakari has my support, and I will continue to work hard on his development."
Makini Campbell, Dakari's mother, comes from a family of educators. Campbell commented, "this was a family decision, and we respect Dr. Kesselring's due diligence in evaluating our request. It was important to Dakari that he be able to graduate from Montverde Academy, and we are very pleased that Dr. Kesselring recognized the unique opportunities available to Dakari and was willing to work with us to advance Dakari's future academically and athletically ."
Campbell went on to say that "Florida, Georgetown, Kansas, Kentucky, Ohio State and Syracuse have expressed interest in Dakari; however, our focus right now will be on Dakari's academics and his high school season; we will evaluate his college opportunities but will wait until the season is over before taking any official visits. Right now, I just want to keep him focused on school and his team."