Special Education Staff

Mrs. Loza, 4th grade Special Day Class Teacher

Hello, Welcome to Room 26! My name is Susana Loza and I have been teaching at Old River Elementary School since 2015.  My previous experience includes teaching high school social sciences, teaching in a 5th grade Special Day Class (SDC) and I am currently the 4th grade SDC teacher here at ORS. I received my Bachelor’s Degree from the University of California, Berkeley, I have a Master’s in Teaching with a single subject credential in social sciences from the University of Southern California, and I also have a special education credential.  I am passionate about connecting with my students and teaching them in an interactive and engaging manner that cultivates self-motivated learners who are prepared to be productive, responsible, and compassionate 21st century learners and members of society.


Mrs. Venegas, 5th grade Special Day Class Teacher

Hello, my name is Rosie Venegas. I am a 5th grade SDC teacher at Old River Elementary School. I have worked in the special education field for 7 years as an instructional aide, RSP teacher, and currently an SDC teacher. I am extremely passionate about teaching but especially passionate about teaching students in the special education classroom. I love my husband, music, art, traveling, reading, food, and kindness.


Ms. De Matta, 4th/5th Special Day Class Teacher

Hi! My name is Ms. De Matta and I teach 4th and 5th grade in a special day class setting. My bachelor’s degree is in child and adolescent studies . I received my bachelors and credential at California State University, Fullerton. I have a passion for learning anything and everything. My goal is to pass on this passion for growth and learning to my students! My core belief is that all students can learn! When I’m not tinkering with fun and engaging ways to teach my students you can find me at Disneyland, at the movies, reading a book, painting, staring at art somewhere , or spending time with friends/family.


Mr. Raber, 4th grade Resource Specialist Teacher (RSP)

Hi! My name is Brian Raber .This will be my 11th year working in Education. I have taught grades K-8 in Rowland, Oakland, and San Francisco Unified School Districts as well as one year abroad in Guadalajara, Mexico. Over the past 3 years as a Resource Specialist, I have thoroughly enjoyed the process of collaborating and working alongside classroom teachers to help all students succeed. I look forward to meeting and getting to know the families that make up our wonderful school and supporting both teachers and students at Old River!


Mrs. Poitras, 5th grade Resource Specialist Teacher (RSP)

Hi, my name Is Christina Poitras. I have been a teacher for Downey Unified since 2007. I hold a Bachelor of Arts degree in Liberal Studies and a clear Education Specialist Instruction Credential for Mild/Moderate Disabilities, along with an autism spectrum disorders added authorization and a cross cultural, language, and Academic Development certificate. My passion is to develop and inspire students to be lifelong learners providing each of them with the foundational skills necessary to live a successful and fulfilled life. In my free time I enjoy baking, reading, traveling, and spending time with my husband and daughter.


Ms. Fuentes, School Psychologist


Elizabeth Wagner, Speech and Language Pathologist


Mrs. Vanhorn
Ms. Gil
Mrs. Morales