The Rida Framework is the primary tool that PIE uses to humanize schooling.

The term “Rida” comes from the popular culture expression to “ride or die,” referring to people who can be counted on during times of extreme duress. Education scholar Jeff Duncan-Andrade applied the term to teaching in his seminal article, “Gangsta, Wanksta, Rida,” in which he analyzed the practices of four South Los Angeles teachers and articulated a framework for effective urban teaching.

Inspired by Brazilian educator and theorist, Paolo Freire, this planning and evaluation tool asks educators to engage in continuous cycles of action and reflection. Freire believed that such cycles of critical thinking and action were key to any transformative learning process.

From these diverse influences, PIE developed the Rida Framework as a practical tool that can support educators to develop clear visions for humanizing education in their classrooms, practices for implementing those visions, and evaluation methods for tracking their progress.

The DFS Rida Framework consists of the following elements:

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Traditionally, schools demand that educators develop curriculum by first looking to the content and state standards they are required to meet. This approach fuels a culture motivated by test-taking and scores, rather than a culture of meaningful learning. It also makes school irrelevant to the students’ everyday lives. The Rida Framework, instead, requires that the teacher first deeply reflect on the context of their classroom, the purpose of education within that context and their ultimate goals as an instructor. This big picture approach gives school content a critical sense of place and purpose. From this approach, users of the Rida Framework articulate practices (action) that will result in desired/outlined outcomes within their classrooms, which they will document and evaluate via pre-determined metrics (reflection).

Throughout the year, teachers revisit their Rida Framework document in order to make edits and adjustments as they move through cycles of action and reflection.