Veronica Sasso


Veronica Sasso has served the Franklin community as principal for 12 years and has worked collaboratively with the staff and parents to lead the students toward becoming productive and well-rounded individuals who apply critical and creative thinking skills in their journey of life-long learning. In her school, she offers a rich and rigorous curriculum with a strong emphasis in the arts through weekly classes in visual arts, instrumental and vocal music, and dance. Under her leadership, Franklin  has been recognized by the state of California as a Distinguished School.

She moved from Argentina to Los Angeles where she earned a Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction and a Master’s Degree in School Administration. During her extensive career with the Los Angeles Unified School District, she has served students from kindergarten through fifth grade as teacher, program specialist, assistant principal, and principal at various Los Angeles schools.



Heidi Motzkus

Ph.D. Resource Specialist Teacher

Heidi Motzkus holds a Bachelor's Degree in Theater Arts, a Master's Degree in Theater History/Literature/Criticism and a Ph.D. in Cultural Studies. She is the Resource Specialist Teacher at Franklin and works with students in grades K-5 in meeting individualized learning goals. She has taught at Franklin for about 20 years as a Special Education Teacher. Outside of school, she enjoys backpacking in the Sierras, traveling internationally, hiking, spending time with family, and attending the theater.


Senisa Austin

Intervention Coordinator and Instructional Coach

Senisa Austin holds a Bachelor's Degree in Fine Arts, a Multi-Subject/B-Clad Credential and is a National Board Certified Teacher. She has taught at Franklin since 2011; after teaching for 20 years in the communities of Atwater Village, Silverlake/Echo Park, Highland Park, Downtown Los Angeles, and Santa Cruz California. She had taught a variety of ages/grades, including preschool, kindergarten, 2nd, 4th, 6th, and also served as a director of a non-profit cooperative preschool. Mrs. Austin is a proud alumni parent at Franklin, her two daughters both graduated from Franklin. Along with Ms. Sandi Picasso, Mrs. Austin was also one of the founding members, president, and now currently the teacher liaison for our very own fabulous, Franklin Kids After school Enrichment Program. Her favorite hobbies are dance, dance and more dance- mainly lyrical jazz and modern/Contemporary art.



Aimee Young Hopkins

M.A. and California Credentialed Teacher

Aimee Young Hopkinshas worked extensively in literacy and arts education since 1988. Originally from Rhode Island, Aimee achieved her B.A. Magna Cum Laude from Middlebury College in Vermont and her M.A. in Theatre from Trinity Rep Conservatory in Rhode Island. Holding both the Multiple Subject Teaching Credential and the Crosscultural, Language and Academic Development (CLAD) Certificate, Aimee received the prestigious “Golden Apple Award” from LA Unified School District in 2002. Aimee has taught English in Latin America and toured the U.S. as an Artist-in-Residence. Before settling in Los Angeles, she won First Place in Rhode Island’s NATS (National Association for Teachers of Singing) Vocal Competition and several honors at the Solo/Ensemble Competition for Vocal Music. Since coming to the west coast, Aimee has performed in musical theatre and in her own musical one-woman shows and original plays. With her company, Aimee Art Productions and with the Music Center of Los Angeles, Aimee continues to offer quality arts instruction at schools and non-profits throughout the Los Angeles area. She is passionate about using the arts as a tool to build literacy and self-esteem and about sharing her expertise with classroom teachers. (Program Director; Private Teacher – piano, voice; Teaching Artist – Music, Dance, Musical Theatre, Art).  "Ms. Aimee" considers Franklin to be her "Home School". She has been a Franklin Fox since 2002 and continues to celebrate the amazing families and children at her beloved Franklin every day. Go Foxes!