About P.R.I.D.E.

Positive Racial Identity Development in Early Education

Learn About P.R.I.D.E.

P.R.I.D.E. stands for Positive Racial Identity Development In Early Education. Our goals are to: help young African American children develop a positive racial identity, support teachers and parents by building their racial knowledge, and raise awareness of the impact of race on young children. P.R.I.D.E. is a program within the Office of Child Development, which is part of the University of Pittsburgh School of Education.
For young children within the ages of 3 to 8, having a positive racial identity means feeling good about one’s physical features, heritage, and history. This concept is vitally important to young Black children’s healthy growth and development, and it’s one backed by research. Studies have shown that when young Black children are socialized to see themselves in positive ways, those attitudes can lead to positive outcomes like increased test scores, better factual recall, and improved problem-solving skills. Backed by the knowledge and understanding of this research, the P.R.I.D.E. Program was designed to be a protective factor for young children, ages 3 to 8, who are often inundated with social messages that can lead them to prefer White.

P.R.I.D.E. helps parents, caregivers, educators, and community leaders learn about the many ways race impacts young children, as well as helping them understand the importance of discussing race with young children. We provide them with various learning opportunities, including: trainings for educators and artists, Parent Village sessions for Black children, and art festivals created to immerse young Black children in a space designed to celebrate them. Research and evaluation is also built into P.R.I.D.E. to regularly assess program components.

what does p.r.i.d.e. stand for?

P.R.I.D.E. stands for Positive Racial Identity Development in Early Education. The P.R.I.D.E. program helps Black children feel good about their skin color and proud of their heritage by reaching the important adults in their life: parents, caregivers, educators, and community leaders. P.R.I.D.E. provides these people with the knowledge and skills necessary to talk to young children about their race and history.

is p.r.i.d.e. part of the university of Pittsburgh?

Yes. P.R.I.D.E. is part of the Office of Child Development, which implements community programs throughout the region. The Office of Child Development is part of the University of Pittsburgh School of Education.

What does p.r.i.d.e. do?

P.R.I.D.E. helps parents, educators, professionals, and the community at-large understand how race impacts children and provides them with resources to enhance their ability to talk to children about race. The components include: Parent Village, Pop Up Mini Art Festivals, Speaker Series, Professional Development, and Research and Evaluation.

Do kids really notice race?

The short answer? Yes. Children as young as three months old begin to notice when someone has a skin color that differs from that of their parents’ or primary caretaker’s. For more information about on race and children, click here for P.R.I.D.E. research.

Is this just for black children?

Our focus currently is on Black children, but we fully recognize that all children should feel good about how they look, their history, and their culture. We do have hopes of expanding to do work that includes children of other races as the size and scope of P.R.I.D.E. continues to grow.


At the moment, P.R.I.D.E. work exists in the neighborhoods of East Liberty, Homewood, and the Hill District in Pittsburgh. However, the P.R.I.D.E. Speaker Series offer opportunities for communities across the region to learn more about the intersection of race and young children. The P.R.I.D.E. model can extend to other areas as well. Learn how to host a Pop Up Mini Art Festival in your neighborhood with this guide.

Can i help or volunteer with P.R.I.D.E.?

Our Pop Up Mini Art Festivals and Speaker Series require a dedicated team of volunteers, and we are always looking for enthusiastic people to help. If you are interested, please fill out this form or email RacePRIDE@Pitt.edu.

How can i learn more?

We have resources for educators and parents on our website, and you can sign up for our newsletter below. Additionally, follow us on social media — @ThePRIDEprogram — for even more updates. 

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Email RacePRIDE@pitt.edu

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