MU Family Access Center of Excellence to provide mental health support to Boone County schools

The MOU will provide additional supports to students and families within schools.

June 11, 2021


Brian Consiglio: Growing up can be a stressful time as children and teenagers alike are trying to navigate who they want to grow up to be. That’s why it can be so important that public school students have access to quality mental health services.

As part of a new agreement with Boone County schools, the University of Missouri family access center for excellence will provide mental health support for children and their families throughout Boone County. Aaron Thompson, the face project leader, says this is a one-of-a-kind project.

Thompson: “We collect the data on about 24,000 k-12 students and we feed that data back through the schools to have a conversation about the kinds of struggles that all of their students are having or specific students are having.  We’ve hired individuals, family intervention specialists that will actually provide direct services in the form of reaching out to families and providing therapeutic services to students.”

Consiglio: And while mental health has always been a priority among educators of children and young adults, Thompson says people often talk about mental health issues the wrong way.

Thompson: “We as a community or a society often view social, emotional, behavioral health or often mental health as an individualized problem. We treat it as an individual problem, and a lot of times we fear individuals who are struggling with social, emotional and behavioral health problems. But really its more about the quality of fit between an individual and their context. We can build up support in the context to change outcomes when it comes to social, emotional, behavioral health.”

Consiglio: For more on this groundbreaking partnership, visit

I’m Brian Consiglio, with a Spotlight on Mizzou

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