The project described in this paper investigated the needs and concerns identified by parents from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds as their children started school in Sydney, Australia. Six groups of parents from Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, Samoan, Turkish and Vietnamese language backgrounds were interviewed about what was important for them to know and/or do as their children started school. In particular, parents were asked to identify information which would have been helpful for them, and that should be available to parents with children starting school. The data obtained were compared with data derived from Australian parents whose first language is English. The results indicate that there are some issues which seem to be of concern to most parents, regardless of their cultural or language background, such as parents' desire for children to be happy and confident at school, as well as some more specific issues for some groups.