||The environment where children grow has a strong influence on every aspect of their development. Children who are in secure, nurturing, and stimulating environments are more likely to be physically, emotionally and socially healthy. The vision of the Healthy Child Manitoba Strategy is a simple one: Achieving the best possible outcomes for all of Manitoba’s children. In practical terms, this meant reinventing government and community around the best interests of children, refocusing investments in prevention and early intervention, and using strategic research and evaluation to advance child-centred public policy. This presentation will provide an overview of HCM’s research and evaluation strategy and highlight studies that bridges early childhood and school years. One example is the 1997 Manitoba Birth Cohort Study (also known as the "Tots Study" or "Parlons Petite Enfance") that followed a sample of 635 children from preschool to their third grade, from Manitoba’s largely rural South Eastman region and its Francophone community distributed throughout the province. This study examined how child care and other experiences influence children living in rural areas where providing support and programs to families is considered more challenging. Little research has been conducted on early childhood and development among Francophone children living in a linguistic minority context. Because these children will be attending Francophone schools but living in communities where there is a limited amount of French spoken, knowing more about early influences on their school readiness will have important implications for all children living in a linguistic minority context.