Mike Armiger joined us this week to share his expertise in the sphere of mental health.
His family background included fostering children who had experienced a variety of different damaging experiences and were often traumatised by these, so Mike grew up with a remarkable set of experiences and knowledge.
He felt that a lot of the children who passed through the care of his family had been let down by the education system and so he resolved to try and do something about this. He found himself training teachers at the age of 19 after not being happy to go to teacher training college for fear of what he had learned being overridden by a standard approach.
Mike found that he managed to get jobs based on his experience and expertise, despite not having the official qualifications. He ended up working with looked-after children and on the rehabilitation of children back into education and now consults with the Police regarding sexual crimes and disclosures. At the same time he runs a centre which provides sporting qualifications for young people and works freelance across a multi-academy trust on therapy through activity and sport.
Key issues around mental health for young people
The system and how it is structured is a massive issue. The structure doesn’t fit everybody and this is coupled with a massive stigma around those with mental health issues. Mike is a huge supporter of teachers but there is still a reluctance in some teachers to take mental health seriously.
High exclusion rates are also a problem in this group as is low self-esteem with affects a lot of young people.
The challenge of relationships between home and school – this is particularly important in the area of attachment…
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