This paper examines the perceived service needs of families of Hunter region preschool aged children with disruptive behaviour problems, attending centre-based child care services. Families were recruited via clinics and child care services, using defined eligibility criteria. Respondents ranked their service needs in clinical early education, and community-based categories, as well as strategies for cost reduction. Respondents also provided service utilisation, family stress, and socio-demographic details. The highest clinical service priorities entailed expansion of mainstream community treatment services. In the early education sector, highest priority was given to extending the behaviour management skills of existing child care staff, ahead of the need to recruit specialist staff. Priority was given to support groups and an information and referral service, ahead of respite services. Exceptional levels of family stress and burden of care were detected for this group. The findings provide a consumer's perspective on the provision of services for preschool-aged children with disruptive behaviour.
The Australian Journal of Early Childhood Vol. 27, Issue 1, p. 39-45