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2010-05-06T00:00:00.000Z

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Background Information

Employment History

President

Florida Christian Institute

Principal, Athletic Director and Basketball Coach

Florida Christian Institute

Web References (17 Total References)


"None of the knuckleheads have the ...

www.news-press.com [cached]

"None of the knuckleheads have the new number," said Keith Leonardo, the principal, athletic director and basketball coach at Florida Christian Institute.

Leonardo took Nicholas into his private school and put him on his team immediately after Nicholas' expulsion from Fort Myers High School in early 2009.
"We're a smaller school," said Leonardo, whose school specializes in students who have learning disabilities or troubled backgrounds. "We can do things a little bit more one-on-one with him."
Nicholas started his freshman year at Lehigh Senior High in 2005, but he was sent to the Alternative Learning Center for drug possession.
He enrolled in Fort Myers as a sophomore and played there as a junior and for the first part of his senior year.
Then came another bad decision. Nicholas said he threatened another Fort Myers student in a text message. He said he made the threat in jest, but school officials found the threat anything but funny.
...
If it weren't for basketball and the intervention made by Leonardo at FCI, Knibbs said, "he probably would be in jail right now."


Keith Leonardo, president of ...

sportsillustrated.cnn.com [cached]

Keith Leonardo, president of Florida Christian Institute in Fort Myers, said Rivera and Wardlow are both seniors at the school, which has 190 learning-disabled students from kindergarten through 12th grade.

...
Both played on the school's flag football team, Leonardo said.
Some 3,000 mourners attended Taylor's funeral Monday seeking closure through prayers, tributes and gospel music.One singer expended so much emotion she collapsed in a chair and was carried away in it as the service continued.


Keith Leonardo, president of ...

www.kccall.com [cached]

Keith Leonardo, president of Florida Christian Institute in Fort Myers, said Rivera and Wardlow are both seniors at the school, which has 190 learning-disabled students from kindergarten through 12th grade.

...
Both played on the school's flag football team, Leonardo said.Some 3,000 mourners attended Taylor's funeral Monday seeking closure through prayers, tributes and gospel music.One singer expended so much emotion she collapsed in a chair and was carried away in it as the service continued.


Keith Leonardo, president of ...

www.savvy.com [cached]

Keith Leonardo, president of Florida Christian Institute in Fort Myers, said Rivera and Wardlow are both seniors at the school, which has 190 learning-disabled students from kindergarten through 12th grade.

...
Both played on the school's flag football team, Leonardo said.


NBC2 News Online - Controversy surrounds Florida Christian Institute

www.nbc-2.com [cached]

First and foremost we're a Christian school and the first thing we tell them is when they come here their slate is clean," said Florida Christian Institute President and Athletic Director Keith Leonardo.

The school draws students from many school districts that Leonardo feels might not have made it through those educational systems.
"I don't think any of the three who are in college and on a team would be in college - let alone playing sports.Last year we had 13 grads, ten went on to college.This year we have 22 grads and we hope most of them will get to college.That's our focus," said Leonardo.
The recent problems have arisen from the relative strength of the Eagle football program.As an FHSAA affiliate member, the Eagles are permitted to have players who are beyond their fourth year of high school or even students who may not have 2.0 grade point averages.
Leonardo was advised by the state to take an affiliate status so the students who attend Florida Christian Institute could still participate in sports.
"FHSAA rules didn't fit with what we do as a school - we know that.We directly asked, 'These are the rules we play by.Can we play full member schools?' The answer was, 'If they want to play you, they can,'" said Leonardo.
Affiliate schools are still required to ensure players are younger than 19 years and 9 months old.Athletes must also be actively enrolled and attending school - just like full member schools.
State rules say affiliate schools must sit players down who do not meet the differing eligibility requirements when they play member schools.However, Leonardo received a reconfirmation that member schools can waive that rule which would allow those players to play.

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