A number of organisations currently collect information on children's services. All of these data collections are undertaken at different times, collect different information and use different data definitions. While there is some duplication of information across the collections, there are also notable gaps, and no single collection or combination of collections, is able to provide an accurate measure of the number and proportion of children who attend child care and/or preschool. Therefore, despite a high level of government and community interest in the provision of children's services and the number of children who use them, no one data collection currently exists which gives a comprehensive and comparable picture of children's services in Australia. This bulletin identifies the requirements needed for developing a new national collection for child care and preschool services.