I have a '97 Corolla with the same engine and they are well known oil burners. Its the well talked about piston oil return holes. This problem is well documented and is a frequent topic on any Toyota forum you can find. If you've ever opened up one of these engines its very easy to see the problem once you hold one of the pistons in your hand. The rings will be completely locked in place with hard carbon deposits. I've been inside a few of them and worked on one that even after 20 minutes of chiseling, scraped, cussing and gnashing of teeth never got even one ring off.
Mine burns Mobil 2 at a rate of 1 qt every 200-300 miles. Highway driving increases the burn rate significantly. No piston soaks, MMO, high mileage oils, Italian tune ups, or anything short of a teardown and cleaning/replacing pistons is going to work. Thicker oils did nothing. I ran 0W-20 for a while it actually seemed to disappear slower but it did increase the drip rate from the well worn front and rear main seals. The current Mobil 2 0W-30 and 5W-30 its gets now drips about a dime sized stain maybe a couple times a week. The 0W-20 was doing that pretty much every day.
These cars will runs many hundreds of thousands of miles even as horrible oil burners. We are just about to tick over 360,000 on ours and it runs so smooth its mind boggling. Not a puff of smoke ever. The exhaust doesnt even have that burnt-oil smell. I'm assuming the cat is still doing its job, there is no check engine light (yes it works, EGR has tripped a few times in recent years) and its had one heck of a lot of oil gone through its gut over the years.
As long as the underside is in ok shape, no rust in important areas and the brake lines are good, drive it until it drops. Whatever money you could spend on a new car will buy a LOT of oil.