Gaynelle Franklin, Education Liaison

Gaynelle Faller Franklin hails from the city of Ponchatoula, Louisiana. She has lived in Tangipahoa Parish all of her life and she is very familiar with Livingston Parish as well. She is the proud mother of a son, Preston Watts, and a daughter, Leah Caballero. Between, them she has three grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
I love being able to ensure that all children are receiving the services that they need and deserve.
She started teaching special education in Tangipahoa Parish in 1972. This was three years before there was the existence of the IEP. I retired from teaching after 21 and a half years.

She worked in other areas for years, always dealing with the developmentally delayed population.  After four years away from the classroom, she returned to teaching. This time in St. Tammany Parish where she taught for another 15 years.


  • Favorite Food: Shrimp
  • Best Childhood Memory: Playing With My Horse
  • Famous Person You Could Have Dinner With: Maya Angelou
  • Favorite Vacation Spot: The Mountains
  • Favorite Actor: Denzel Washington

Her life with the developmentally delayed population began early with the birth of her female cousin who was born with Down Syndrome.  She fell in love with this population and never wanted to teach any other. There are other members of her family with disabilities as well.

Gaynelle feels this is what has led her to Northshore Families Helping Families.  Even though she is retired and her most enjoyable past time is spending time with family, especially her two grandchildren aged 6 and 4; she loves being able to ensure that all children are receiving the services that they need and deserve.

The education of these individuals has come a long way since she started one of the first special education classes in Tangipahoa  Parish, but she feels we still have a long road still ahead of us.