(626) 799-3105

1515 Garfield Avenue
South Pasadena, CA 91030

License Number #191500522

The staff is comprised of fully qualified teachers and aides who bring with them a variety of personal and professional experiences. Teachers are required to continue their education each year by attending classes or workshops relevant to their work with young children. Once a year, an in-service day is taken by the staff.

Karen Vahala
Sun Room


Karen Vahala received her B.A. in Studio Art from Scripps College in 1985 and a Certificate Degree in Textile and Surface Design from FIDM in 1988. Following a career as a graphic artist, she took a hiatus to start a family. She joined Oneonta as the 3 year old teacher in 2006 after having been on the parent board for four years during the years of her two children's attendance. Currently working towards her certificate in Early Childhood Education, Karen also enjoys spending her time gardening, reading and hiking.

Dawn Cansler
Green House


Dawn Cansler has worked in the Early Childhood Education field since 1994. During this time she has raised her family and earned two degrees. She received her Associate of Arts Degree in Social and Behavioral Science from Citrus College in 2009. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Liberal Studies and English from Azusa Pacific University in May 2012. The past 10 years she has worked as a Lead Teacher in a multi-age classroom. In addition she piloted a pre-k classroom utilizing the Handwriting Without Years curriculum. She also piloted a Mommy and Me program. In March of 2012 She was awarded a Director/Teacher Award through, CCPPNS, California Council Parent Participation Nursery Schools. She has spent the past 13 years being an advocate for her youngest son and is very passionate about "Inclusion" in the pre-school years. She has helped many families navigate the assessment and IEP process. She believes in and supports early intervention and that each child is an individual who brings their own unique needs to the classroom environment! Dawn enjoys spending time with her family camping at the beach. She also enjoys cooking, reading, gardening and listening to music.

Debbie Johnson
Tree House


I have been in the Early Childhood field for the past 22 years. 20 of those years have been spent in the cooperative preschool setting. My roles have been comprised of teacher, assistant director, and director. I am looking forward to going back to my roots as a teacher. I am currently working toward my Master Teacher Permit through the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing. Cooperative nursery schools hold a special place in my heart. I currently serve on the California Council of Parent Participation Nursery Schools, as well as the San Gabriel Council of Parent Participation Nursery Schools. I enjoy spending time with my family, reading, and camping.

“Play is often talked about as if it were a relief from serious learning. But for children play is serious learning. Play is really the work of childhood.” Fred Rogers

Andrea Jarolim
Sun Room


M. Andrea Jarolim received her B.S. in Communication from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona in 2000. Her children attended Oneonta Cooperative Nursery School from 2011-2014 and during their enrollment, she served on the board. She is currently taking classes toward her child development certificate at Pasadena City College and will have earned it by the end of the Fall 2014 semester. She is an AYSO volunteer soccer coach and has also volunteered at the South Pasadena/San Marino YMCA as a Youth Fit instructor. She looks forward to being a supportive figure for the Oneonta students as she understands these years are especially important in their stage of emotional and cognitive development. She loves art and hopes to inspire the students to paint and create. She also finds enjoyment in a wide range of music and wishes one day to play her guitar well enough to lead a sing-along.

Sarah Cansler
Green House


Sarah Cansler has worked in the child development field for three years. She grew up around cooperative nursery schools and is now working towards her AS in child development. Sarah enjoys spending time with her family camping at the beach and caring for her pets.