PFC Spotlight: Thornhill's Teaching Assistants
Thu, Sep 30 4:20pm

Hello Thunderbirds! 

This week we’re getting to know Thornhill’s amazing team of Teaching Assistants.  We are incredibly fortunate to have FIVE teaching assistants this year.  They make a vital contribution to every classroom, by providing essential support our teachers, leading small group learning, and offering one-on-one support to our students.  Our Teaching Assistants are funded through the incredible generosity of our Thornhill parent community.  Thank you for supporting the Thornhill PFC by participating in the Annual Fund Drive!


ANGEE ADAMS - I'm excited to be back here at Thornhill as an instructional assistant. I began working at Thornhill in January 2019 as an aide for kindergarten classrooms. I am now working with second grade classes as well as lunch duty + recess. I assist with small group instruction as well as reading and math. I've worked as a classroom aide for elementary schools for over seven years. I have lived in Oakland for 44 years.


SIOBHAN CUSHING - This is my 7th year at Thornhill Elementary as a Teacher's aide. This year I have followed last year's 2nd graders into 3rd grade, and I love knowing all of the children and continuing with them as third graders. I am always impressed with the parent involvement here at Thornhill. I am also impressed with parents that attended Thornhill and now are sending their children here. My favorite thing about Thornhill is greeting the children in the morning. I am not really a morning person but there is always so much positive energy from the different children that it makes me ready to start my day. When I'm not working, I am walking my dog, Addie, or visiting my son and daughter who are in college.

DENYSE IBARRA - I have been part of the Thornhill community through Adventure Time for over twenty years where I worked both as a teacher and then interim site director. This year I made the difficult decision to leave Adventure Time and transition to join Thornhill school as the TK/Kindergarten teacher aide. I am so excited for this new opportunity!  I love this age group as I take pride in being part of a child's first step of their formal education and growing with them as well as celebrating their victories both small and big!  In my free time I love spending time with my 17-year-old daughter by volunteering for different organizations, spending time with my two nieces, and going to the movies.

MATT LICHENS - I am very happy to be at Thornhill for my first year. I recently graduated from the University of Oregon with a degree in journalism. I started on as an aide a few weeks ago and am loving all the wonderful kids, and the amazing teachers and staff who made me feel so welcome. I will be working with the 4th and 5th grade classes this year, and so far, all the kids I work with are awesome! I want to say once again how excited I am to be a part of the Thornhill community.

EMI NAKANO - This is my first year at Thornhill Elementary as a Classroom Aide and my fifth year working with OUSD students. I am so happy to be working with the three 1st Grade classes this year! This age group is such a joy to work with-- they are curious, imaginative, and naturally upbeat. It is also great seeing them discover the wonders of books! The school community has been so warm and welcoming. What a treat to be at a school surrounded by greenery! Outside of school, you will find me hiking on the trails nearby with my husband, walking our dog, Mochi, and enjoying Great British Bake Off!


Easy Ways to Donate:

Via check: Please mail this form and a check to Annual Fund at 1792 Indian Way, Oakland, CA 94611.

Online: Visit to set up installments or to make a one time donation. 

Company matching doubles your donation! To see if your employer offers matching gifts, visit Charity Navigator and follow the simple instructions to submit a match request online.

If your company does not process matching gifts online, a matching gift form must be submitted with the donation form. PFC Non-Profit 94-2529197

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