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Who we are

Our Neurodevelopment Pathway Team works with children and young people with complex neurodevelopmental difficulties, who require a multi-agency assessment to gain a better understanding of their needs. 

This process can lead to a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder, attention deficit, hyperactivity disorder, global developmental delay and difficulties with attachment.

Who is our service for?

Our service is for children and young people up to the age of 18 years old who are registered with a St Helens GP and require a multi-agency neurodevelopmental pathway assessment. 

We work in partnership with a range of health and social care professionals and schools. This includes, but is not limited to – GPs, community paediatrics, paediatric speech and language, occupational therapy, Addvanced Solutions, education psychology, child and adolescent mental health services, and schools.

We accept referrals from all professionals who work with children and young people including GPs, paediatricians, speech and language therapists, schools etc.

If you know a child or young person who would benefit from a multi-agency pathway assessment please make an appointment with your school’s specialist educational needs coordinator (SENCo), GP or other professional who can discuss this with you.

Alternatively you can contact the team directly and we can discuss the best option to refer your child. 

Once we receive your referral we will list the child for discussion at our weekly multiagency triage meeting; following this we will be in touch as soon as possible to share conclusions and next steps with you. 

Making a referral to the team

Referrals should be made using the neurodevelopment pathway team referral form which must be completed in full and jointly by the professional and the parent/carer before being submitted via email to the team. 

The referral form contains a section for completion by children/ young people as their views are very important when considering how best to support them at home, in school and out of school. They can be very good at giving advice.

As part of this referral, parent/ carers will have an opportunity to share their views and provide relevant information to the team.

Before referring into the Neurodevelopmental Pathway for specialist review and multi-agency assessment, it is important that referrers and parents/ carers have considered support services, strategies and recommendations as per the SEND graduated response. This is in order to facilitate their learning, behaviour and individual needs both in school and at home

In support of this, please consult the existing graduated response support materials for SEND via:

Our team will communicate with you all through the process to explain what assessments your child will require. These can range from speech and language therapy, community paediatrics, consultant psychiatry, educational psychology, autism diagnostic observation schedule (ADOS), school or home assessment.

The journey for each child and young person is different and will depend on their individual needs. Please be assured all referrals to the agencies required will be completed by the Pathway Team. You will then receive appointments directly from the services who are required to assess your child. It is really important that you attend all of these appointments.

We aim to support young people, parents and carers as much as possible throughout their assessment process and are happy to offer support, advice and to refer on to other agencies who provide intervention for your child such as child and adolescent mental health services (CAMHS) or Barnardo’s if this is required.

Local services available to support children and young people with special educational needs can be found on the St Helens local offer website.


To develop information on our website to support people accessing the St Helens neurodevelopmental pathway, we asked children, young people and families what information and advice they wanted including. 

On this page, you will find links to trusted external websites where you can find information to help support you. This is not an exhaustive list and professionals may identify other websites that are useful to support your neurodevelopmental pathway journey.

Our Team website - Neurodevelopment Pathway Team

SEND/Local Offer website

All you need to know in one place, for those who need information, advice and support regarding SEND (Special Educational Needs and Disabilities) in St Helens.

St Helens Carers Centre website

The Centre aims to be a one stop shop for carers, provides FREE community services these include: information and advice, emotional support and practical help, community drop-ins to meet other carers, breaks and social activities and access to grants and training. All of our services are free to carers who are registered with the Centre.

Listen 4 Change Website (St Helens Parent Carer Forum)
Run by parent carers for parent carers of children and young people with SEND (Special Educational Needs or Disability) age 0 to 25 years.

Addvanced Solutions website supports families pre, during and post diagnosis to find the answers for themselves.

Community based learning, coaching and mentoring programmes and health, wellbeing and enrichment activities for families living with neurodevelopmental conditions.

St Helens IASS website (information, advice and support service)
Provides impartial and confidential information, advice and support to children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) and their parents/carers. St Helens IASS covers all aspects of education, social care and health related to SEND.

Contact website charity for families with disabled children.

Twinklehouse website is a registered charity providing free support sessions for children and young people with disabilities and additional needs 0 to 19 years.

Friends website friends, play for disabled children, a registered charity supporting families in St Helens.

Clair’s website is useful for Parents Meeting Parents ADHD Support Group is a parent run charity supporting parents and carers of children and young people who have Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD). 

Cerebra website is a national charity supporting families with a child with a brain condition. Brain conditions include (but are not limited to) autism, ADHD, Down’s syndrome, learning disabilities, cerebral palsy, epilepsy and developmental delay.

National Autistic Society website the UK’s leading charity for autistic people and their families.

Occupational therapy information – sensory processing difficulties.

Community dietitian’s website - Taste Buddies

Barnardo’s St Helens Resilience Service website offering emotional wellbeing and resilience support to all secondary school aged children and young people.

PALS and Complaints team

Our PALS and Complaints Team provides support, information and advice to service users, carers and their families to assist in resolving issues or concerns relating to the services of the Trust.

We would also really like to hear about your positive experiences with our services.

Tel: 0151 471 2377 or Freephone 0800 328 2941

When will my child go to the multi-disciplinary panel meeting?

Children are taken to panel in order of date of referral received by the Neurodevelopmental Pathway. This is to ensure fair access to the Neurodevelopmental Pathway.

** In exceptional circumstances some cases may be prioritised where there is a significant risk of harm to a child/ young person or family.

Why do we need a Speech and language assessment?

To assess your child’s attention and listening skills, understanding of spoken language, clearness of speech, ability to use language, social interaction skills and stammer.

Why do we need a Community Paediatrician assessment?

To complete a full developmental history, social communication difficulties, observation of the young person, possible genetic conditions, physical health assessment, attention, hyperactivity and impulsivity difficulties, motor coordination difficulties, sensory needs and screening for differential diagnosis.

Will my child have an ADOS assessment?

ADOS assessments are completed dependent on panel recommendations

What is an ADOS assessment?

Autism Diagnosis Observation Schedule (ADOS) is a semi structured assessment of communication, social interaction and play (or imaginative use of materials) for individuals suspected of having autism or other pervasive developmental disorders.

How long does the pathway take?

It is really important that we can carry out all assessments identified as being required for each child/ young person, and we recognise that these can take time.

Each of the individual agencies carrying out assessments will aim carry out an initial assessment within approximately 18 weeks.

Following on from all of these assessments being complete, each child/ young person will be listed to be discussed at our multi-disciplinary panel meeting.

What happens following the outcome from the pathway panel?

Once a clinical outcome outcome is reached at the panel, parents/carer of the young person will be contracted by a member of the Neurodevelopmental pathway team to complete a feedback appointment - it is important that you ensure we have your up to date contact details.

An outcome report will be completed and a copy will be sent to parents with consent will be sent to GP, School and other agencies where appropriate.

Signposting information will be shared with the parents/carer that is appropriate to the outcome.

Does my child need a diagnosis to get support in school?

All support provided should be needs led.

Contact your school SENCO with concerns or if required for support contact St Helens IASS - Information, Advice and Support Service.

What support is available whilst my child is on pathway?

Contact your school SENCO for support involving school and education needs and GP to discuss any further concerns regarding health and wellbeing and assessments/referrals to further agencies.