Levels of Need Framework

The Halton Levels of Need Framework aims to support agencies to meet the needs of children, young people and their families to ensure the best possible outcomes.

It assists practitioners and managers in assessing and identifying a child’s level of additional needs and how best to respond in order to meet those needs as early as possible to prevent needs escalating further.

The Framework sets out three levels of additional needs above Universal Services that captures the full range of additional needs as they present. Universal Services remain at the heart of all work with children, young people and their families and are in place for all whether additional needs present themselves or not. The fundamental relationship between Universal Services and the three levels of additional needs is captured in the diagram below:

The key principles of the Framework include:

  • Safeguarding runs throughout all levels.
  • Providing early intervention at the earliest stage to meet needs at the lowest level.
  • Focusing on our more vulnerable groups.
  • Building on existing multi-agency working and shared responsibility for meeting needs.
  • Supporting the work of all agencies and being equally applicable to all agencies.
  • Flexibility and fluidity, allowing movement between levels as needs increase or reduce.
  • Clear and understandable
  • Focusing on the needs of the child and family to ensure the best outcomes for all.

Further materials around the Framework, including posters and leaflets are available below.

In addition, agency-specific versions with examples of how the Framework would apply at each level can be produced on request – contact Children and Young People Policy Team at [email protected]


Halton Levels of Need leaflet
Halton Levels of Need poster
Halton Levels of Need Framework Agency-specific – Legislative Context
Halton Levels of Need Framework Agency-specific – Health
Halton Levels of Need Framework Agency-specific – Inclusion
Halton Levels of Need Framework Agency-specific – Transitions


Integrated Contact And Referral Team (iCART)

iCART is the single front door for access to all Children’s Social Care services. For further information please visit: http://haltonsafeguarding.co.uk/contact-and-referral-team/



Detailed information on safeguarding is available on the Halton Safeguarding Children Board website – www.haltonsafeguarding.co.uk.


Multi-Agency Plan

MAP can be used by the children’s workforce when a family is identified as requiring support at the Multi-agency planning stage of the Halton Levels of Need Framework.

MAP is used as a catalyst to employ and co-ordinate early help and support to children and families in order to prevent escalation of needs and the necessity for specialist services.

The suite of associated MAP documentation and guidance can be accessed below: