Children and young people with complex additional support needs: report

Meeting the needs of Scotland's children and young people with complex additional support needs is our response to the Doran Review.


The Doran Review began to consider the national provision for children and young people with complex additional support needs in November 2010. In October 2011 an Interim Report [1] was published and in September 2012 the final report [2] , which contains 21 recommendations, was provided to Scottish Ministers. This is the Scottish Government response to the report and its recommendations.

This response will set out what we intend to do in response to each of the recommendations.

Why did we have the Review?

The purpose of the review was to make a set of recommendations which lead to better outcomes and experiences for children and young people with complex additional support needs. This was prompted in part by the many changes to the legislative and policy framework, including the Additional Support for Learning Act [3] and Curriculum for Excellence [4] .

The remit of the review, as finalised and agreed at the outset of the second phase, was to consider: -

  • What are the barriers to the efficient interaction between local and national provision and how could this interaction be improved?
  • How can we improve assessment and decision making, recognising the importance of effective and efficient collaboration across Education, Social Work and Health services and with children and families?
  • What role should the Scottish Government play, including the use of national funding, in ensuring that every child and young person in Scotland has their additional support needs identified, prioritised and met, across all provision including local authorities, the independent sector, and the grant-aided special schools?
  • What lessons can we learn from other international models and from research to deliver better outcomes for children and young people?

The Interim Report and the Doran Review website [5] provide the scope and rationale for the Review in full.

The response structure

This response, like the Doran Review report and recommendations, is primarily focused on improving outcomes for children and young people with complex additional support needs. The response recognises that some of the recommendations would benefit children and young people with less complex needs, or no additional support needs. Therefore in some areas the response goes further than the recommendations set out.

This response is structured by theme in the same way as the Review report and sets out the actions that the Scottish Government will take in relation to the recommendations. Where a recommendation is directed towards another organisation, the Scottish Government has not commented on their acceptance or otherwise as these are for those organisations to consider themselves.


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