In his latest post Brandon Savage follows up his previous post (about learning the language first) that points out that frameworks are important/useful but they shouldn't be the focus.
In writing about how the framework you learn doesn’t matter, I hoped to advance a position that articulated the fact that among the many frameworks, picking the right one is less important than getting a solid grasp on the underlying language. In fact, frameworks have tremendous advantages to them. They take care of a great deal of things for us, things that most applications need and nobody wants to write every time they need it. Frameworks are tremendously helpful.
He points out that learning a framework first and depending on it for common functions limits your skills and hinders you from the power of the language (PHP) itself. He suggests that it's not a "language or framework" debate, but more of a "language then framework" perspective.