Behaviour Support old

For self-expression and personal growth

Common feedback we receive from families, is that one of the biggest challenges of having a relative with a disability is the stigma they may face from members of the community, especially if the individual has challenging behaviours. Often, people will assume that challenging behaviours are the result of poor parenting, when in reality the individual may be displaying challenging behaviours to communicate their needs.


Our team of Developmental Educators, Occupational Therapists and Social Workers, working closely with our extended therapy team will conduct interviews and observations to develop a dynamic behaviour support plan to implement with all members of the individuals support network.

What is a Positive Behaviour Support Plan?

Positive Behaviour Support Plans (PBSP) have a strong evidence base to support them as an effective approach for challenging behaviours. PBSP work positively, meaning it aims to increase and strengthen helpful behaviours through reinforcement, rather than using punishment or negative consequences to reduce the challenging behaviours. They also work proactively, to identify when and where things may go wrong, resulting in the challenging behaviours, and putting strategies in place to prevent them from occurring in the first place.


It is important to acknowledge, that there is a purpose or reason behind all challenging behaviours. This purpose or reason is called the function and has the general aim of either getting something, or to get away from something. These functions can be classified into one of three categories: attention; activity or object; and sensory.


Through collaboration and consultation with the family, school staff, and other stakeholders information is gathered about the behaviours and the situation and circumstances in which they occur. This is then complemented through completion of assessments and observations in various environments to identify the antecedents, or triggers, of the behaviour and to start identifying strategies to minimise or mitigate these antecedents.


Following the observations and assessments, a PBSP is developed which will include a number of different sections. These will cover:

  • Identifying, developing and reinforcing an appropriate behaviour that replaces the challenging behaviour.
  • Creating an environment that minimises and removes the antecedent whilst reinforcing and promoting positive behaviours.
  • Developing an action plan to respond to the challenging behaviour when it occurs.


Once the PBSP has been completed, it needs to be implemented across all settings to ensure consistency and effectiveness and will need to be reviewed and revaluated regularly to ensure it is still relevant and effective.

How can our team help?

As part of our Behaviour Support service, our team can provide the following:

  • Information gathering through interviews, observations, data collection and assessment of behaviour to gather a comprehensive understanding of the challenging behaviour.
  • Development of a dynamic positive behavior support plan, which assists those supporting the individual to understand the triggers and how to respond to the challenging behaviours.
  • Advice, support and consultation relating to behavioural and/or psychological difficulties.
  • Group based programs which focus on social skills, anxiety, resilience, skill development, parenting and behaviour support.
  • Provision of ongoing 1:1 therapeutic support for children and adolescents to learn and strengthen skills important to positively support their behavior, to increase their independent functioning and to increase their quality of life. This can include assisting with the following:
    • Social skills
    • Emotional regulation (anxiety, stress and anger)
    • Distress tolerance
    • Mindfulness
    • Functional communication
    • Skills development