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SEND (Special Educational Needs and Disabilities) Support Service– Complex Needs


The Complex Needs Team works with staff in schools/settings to provide the best education possible for Children and Young People with complex needs.

These children and young people may be described as having several identified special educational needs and/or disabilities.

They require a focussed ‘small step’ approach to the curriculum to address their specific needs and to keep them as included as possible in school life.

The team provides:

  • specialist assessment using a combination of informal /formal/observational assessments in a variety of contexts
  • advice regarding the successful inclusion of children and young people with complex needs 
  • strategies and resources to improve levels of attainment and progress, to aid target setting and to develop programmes of work
  • assessment and training in the use of simple and complex technology which can help children and young people in their learning
  • specialist  training for schools and settings

We seek help from  schools and settings to make us aware of any adaptations that may be needed to access the service.

Who to contact

Contact Name
Robert Robinson
Contact Position
Manager, Special Educational Needs and Disability Support Service
01254 666 520
Parent Organisation
SEND (Special Educational Needs and Disability) Support Service

Where to go


The service is part of the SEN and Disability Support Service and covers all schools and settings in Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council

Other Details


Referral required
Referral Details

A representative from your child’s school, usually the Special Needs Coordinator (SENCO), will request involvement from the Complex Needs Team when they require additional support to meet your child’s needs.

Schools/settings are able to contact the service by telephone or email if they have a concern about meeting the needs of your child. A member of the team will then make an appointment to visit the school/setting to discuss these concerns and arrange  a plan of action to address them.

Involvement from the complex needs team may be:

  • part of a graduated response in school to your child’s needs
  • an outcome from an annual review of your child’s provision
Other notes

The Complex Needs Team is available to support schools, settings and the local authority meet the duties placed upon them by Government  legislation for children and young people with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities.

The team currently works across the age range 6-19 years, although the majority of the work tends to be focussed in the primary phase of education.

This is a service for schools and settings within Blackburn with Darwen, you should contact your child’s school or setting to use the service.

The team is funded as part of monies identified for children and young people with High Needs and is free to schools/settings within Blackburn with Darwen Borough. However, independent schools/settings and those out of borough will be charged for this service.

Schools/settings are given written strategies and a record of involvement for work undertaken. Schools/settings are asked for verbal and written feedback on an ongoing basis and a formal evaluation of the service is requested annually. At this point schools/settings are asked to comment on their satisfaction with the service; how it has met their needs; how it has met the child/young person’s needs and if the service can be improved.

This service is part of the Local Offer

Local Offer

Contact Name
Karen Allison
Contact Telephone
01254 666527
Contact Email
Local Offer Age Bands
5-11 years
11-16 years
16-19 years
Needs Level
SEN Provision Type