Plain SQL, possible?

I took a look at the different frameworks and Yii looks cool as it has this basic project which utilized bootstrap, almost feels like the ‘plain php’ and jquery I am currently using. As I am delving deeper, it looks like Yii is using an ORM (ActiveRecord?), I prefer not using an ORM and just using plain SQL, is this possible with Yii?

I haven’t had an experience using frameworks for a full web development, I only tried Slim for APIs. I may need to develop a live site in the following months and I am really concerned about security so I thought using a framework could possibly ease those security burdens, or am I wrong?

Thank you all.

You are right! Using a framework will improve system security and help to adopt best practices to proceed with development.

Thinking about it more, could I just develop the web app to use APIs and not use ORM at all?

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Of course you can also use plain SQL along with AR ORM. You can combine both depending on your needs.