What the tool is, how to use it, who can use it.
About the tool
The learning disability screening tool is a short questionnaire that can help identify if a child or young person aged between 6 and 18 may have a learning disability.
The tool cannot:
- tell you if the child or young person definitely has a learning disability or not, it can only give you an indication
- diagnose the specific learning disability the child or young person may have
The tool was developed by NHS clinicians based on feedback from families.
We're trialling the tool in the Bristol area to find out how useful it might be. After the trial period, we'll review the tool to understand the benefits of using it.
If you use the tool, we might contact you to ask you if you'd like to give us any feedback about it.
Why use the tool
Early assessment of SEND in children and young people helps their families and professionals identify what they need. This means the child or young person gets the best support for them and their family.
Assessment can be a complex and time-consuming process for everyone involved. Services recognise the challenges faced by families and are looking for faster and more efficient ways of getting families the support they need.
If the tool indicates that the child or young person may have a learning disability, this can help:
- identify the appropriate services for the child or young person
- their GP add them to the Bristol Children's Disability Register
Who can use the tool
The learning disability tool is designed to be used by:
- young people
- parents and carers
- professionals such as nurses, teachers, social workers, health visitors, GPs and police officers
You can use the tool with or on behalf of the child or young person.
The tool is not suitable for children and young people aged:
- under 6
- over 18
Remember that the tool can only give an indication of whether the child or young person has a learning disability or not. You must always get an assessment from a professional, such as your GP, to confirm what the tool tells you.
Use the tool
Possible tool outcomes
When you've answered the questions in the tool, you'll get one of two outcomes.
Your responses indicate that it's likely the child or young person has a learning disability. You should ask the child or young person's:
- GP for support and an assessment
- school nurse and Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO) for support
You could also ask your GP to:
- add the child or young person to Bristol Children's Learning Disability Register
- arrange an Annual Health Check for the child or young person
Your responses indicate that it's unlikely the child or young person has a learning disability.
If you still have concerns, talk to the child or young person's:
- school nurse
- Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO)
Bristol Parent Carers: a group of parents and carers of children with SEND, offering support and advice to other parents and carers.
Bristol SEND Local Offer for parents and carers of children with SEND: Bristol City Council support and advice for parents and carers.
Community Children's Health Partnership: specialist service for children with learning disabilities.
Sirona care and health: advice and signposting for children and young people.