Reporting to head of communications Clare Walker, Darling is one of two press officers in a nine-strong comms team. He joins amid the authority's review of special-needs school provision.
‘Many people, particularly parents, have views about the review of special-needs education, and are expressing them through local press. I am responding to these views,' Darling said.
The council is proposing to reduce the number of specialist schools from 11 to six, integrating special-needs pupils into mainstream education.
Darling effectively replaces Tony Webster, who was made redundant in January following a departmental review.
Part of Darling's role is to contribute towards the council's soon-to-launch monthly newsletter.
It is the former broadcaster's first full-time PR role, having been C4 News editor from 1995 to 2001. He was previously deputy editor of Yorkshire TV's Calendar.