Useful resources for professionals

You can use positive behaviour support (PBS) when an individual with a learning disability, autism or complex needs displays behaviours of concern that need addressing, and more socially-appropriate behaviours need promoting.

PBS has also been shown to be effective for individuals without additional needs.

How it complements other approaches

PBS is consistent with other treatment approaches that are person-centred or recovery-based. It does not work alongside restrictive or punishment-based interventions and is used instead of these approaches. PBS is grounded in applied behaviour analysis (ABA) psychology, which is the same grounding as cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT).

Health conditions could be identified as an unmet need through PBS. The practitioner may refer the individual for additional services or seeks out advice from other professionals, as well as continuing to address unmet needs. PBS works to reduce the need for punishment or restrictiveness, such as restraint, seclusion and exclusions, or removal of privileges. It can also make homes, communities, and schools safer. The aim of PBS is to improve quality of life.

PBS takes a preventative and proactive approach, helping reduce the need for additional services, helping to free up resources for other individuals as well as preventing re-referrals.

PBS in Medway Council and Kent


PBS in Medway and Kent includes the following:

  • we have in house PBS practitioners who conduct functional behaviour assessments and create behavioural support plans. Practitioners have different requirements, such as age or level of need
  • PBS practitioners are part of an expert practitioner network. They can receive referrals through existing pathways and advise who is best placed to work with the individual. They also provide support to each other and can receive clinical supervision to ensure continued professional development, as well as ensuring the service they provide is safe, ethical, competent, and compliant
  • foster carers and Shared Lives carers are being trained at foundation level
  • the Community of Practice shares learning and experiences around learning disability, autism and complex needs with a focus around PBS
  • Medway has 4 schools that are part of an EU pilot
  • Kent and Medway have the PBS framework for placing our most complex individuals
  • Small Steps provides positive behaviour support and advice to families whose children are either pre and post diagnosis of ADHD and/or Autism
  • Kent also has the Nest.

Visit our awareness training page to develop a greater understanding of PBS and to help support implementation of it across Medway.

Other useful resources for professionals

The following websites also have more information about positive behaviour support (PBS) and behaviour which challenges: