Children with Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties: Strategies for Assessment and Intervention

Children with Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties: Strategies for Assessment and Intervention

Children with Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties: Strategies for Assessment and Intervention

Children with Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties: Strategies for Assessment and Intervention


Blending academic theory with policy guidelines and practical suggestions, this book provides a review of current approaches to assessment and Intervention For Children With Emotional And Behavioural Difficulties. It incorporates a discussion of government guidelines on policy and provision with schools and LEAs and reviews a range of successful innovations in intervention. Specific areas are covered, including Exclusion, Integration And Emotional Abuse.; Five Recurring Themes permeate the whole book, these being: the effects of government legislation on all aspects of EBD assessment and provision; the recognition that children with EBD come from economically and socially disadvantaged families and the implication that this has for assessment and provision; the problems of agreeing on an acceptable definition of EBD; the fact that children labelled as EBD do not have an equal opportunity to assessment and provision; and the belief that schools can make a substantial contribution to the prevention of EBD.


Children with emotional and behavioural difficulties (EBD) pose a continuing challenge to their parents, teachers, support services and LEAs. As will be seen later in this book there is evidence that the numbers of children being referred for some form of special help are increasing, that their problems are more intractable and that children appear to be displaying problems at a younger age. More and more children are now being excluded from school and there is national concern about the truancy figures.

Various reasons have been put forward to explain this trend and these are explored later in this book. It is possible that increases in the number of children labelled as being EBD may be associated with a general increase in disaffection felt by many people across the whole country which is associated with high levels of unemployment, increasing homelessness and an ever rising crime rate. Against these societal pressures it is not always easy for teachers, schools and LEAs to find solutions to problems facing them. However, this book seeks to address these issues by focusing on ways in which children with EBD can be helped within the current climate.

Indeed the government has been active in finding ways to help schools and LEAs address these problems. The Code of Practice on the identification and assessment of children with special needs and the Circulars on pupils with problems directly focus on issues such as the definition of EBD, on ways in which schools can develop discipline iscipline policies, on how schools can provide effective strategies to help children whose behaviour is troublesome and on exclusions. The government has also provided extra resources to LEAs to help them address the truancy problem. The potential impact of recent government initiatives is referred to throughout the book.

The book as a whole is divided into three sections. Chapters 1-4 focus mainly on assessment issues, chapters 5-8 on aspects of intervention and chapters 9-12 on how schools and LEAs as a whole can effect the lives of children with emotional and behaviour problems. There is, however, some overlap between the sections which reflects the fact that the whole subject is complex and is not easily divided into neat compartments.

The reader will detect some common themes which permeate the whole book and reflect its overall ethos. The first of these is the belief that government legislation, in particular the 1988 Education Act, may have contributed to the rise in problem behaviour in schools. The climate created by a market led

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