Skip to main content

Early Years Support Team - Coronavirus update

 The Early Years Support Team remains operational during the Covid-19 pandemic, although we are unable to offer face to face contact with families and settings. We continue to receive referrals from health and education professionals and have limited ability to complete comprehensive Initial and Statutory Assessments at this time. However, we are endeavouring to provide families and settings with early advice and support through telephone and email contact. We are also maintaining our monthly ‘Drop-In’ session (by appointment over the phone), so that early years settings can seek specialist advice as appropriate. This is usually held on the first Wednesday of the month (term time permitting).

For further information, or to arrange a telephone appointment for our Drop-In, call 01234 718123

Who are we?

We are a specialist team of 3 Advisory Teachers and 3 Specialist Nursery Nurses.

We provide direct support to children under 5 years with SEND, their families and early years settings (including the private, voluntary and independent sector).  Our aim is to contribute to achieving the best outcomes for children who have special educational needs and disabilities, as well as for their families.

What do we do?

When a child has been accepted for referral, an Advisory Teacher will complete an Initial Assessment.

Initial Assessment 

This will identify a child's individual strengths and needs with recommendations of strategies to support the child at home and in their setting as appropriate. The Initial Assessment is completed through observation at home and/or in an early years setting. Sometimes the child may be invited to the CDC to attend an Assessment Session run by the team.


Once the assessment is completed, a team decision is made regarding the nature of support which will be offered. This is discussed with parents, carers and the child's early years setting. Support differs depending on a child's level of special educational needs. This can include regular support at home through home teaching and advice to parents and carers, support in the early years setting to raise the child's achievement and/ or support through specialist groups provided by the team. We may provide ongoing advice and support to the end of the Early Years Foundation Stage, depending on the child’s individual needs.


We provide training for providers and parents on behalf of Bedford Borough Council on matters relating to SEND.


We can also provide information and advice to families regarding early years placements, local initiatives and voluntary agencies. Parents and carers who have specific concerns regarding their child's development are able to contact the team for general advice regarding their child’s needs to discuss next steps as appropriate.


Who to contact

Contact Name
Debbie Albone
Contact Position

Where to go

Child Development Centre
Hill Rise
MK42 7EB
Get directions

Time / Date Details

When is it on
Term time only
Time of day

Other Details


Referral required
Referral Details

Children are referred to the Early Years Support Team by a health or educational professional. Once a referral has been accepted by the team the parents/ carers are made aware of this and the child is placed on a waiting list (currently 10-12 weeks) prior to being seen.

Age Bands
Parents and carers
0-4 years old
Needs Level
SEN Provision Type