"The schools of Seattle deserve RESPECT. As a progressive, I view schools as democratic institutions that need constant refreshment through study and debate of current issues. Schools are the training ground for our democratic society and educators need to model this in both words and actions. I would like to see fully funded libraries, art, music, and drama programs."
Alumnus Jeff Treistman is a man on a mission: equitable access to books and resources and a strong school library programs for all students.
In 2015, Jeff Treisman, teacher librarian at Denny International Middle School in Seattle, was a key negotiator during the September Seattle School District teachers’ strike. Treistman worked through weekends and overnights to achieve a healthy contract for SDS teachers. Mission accomplished!
In 2016, Treistman worked unsuccessfully with Seattle School District’s union to endorse Bernie Sanders in the 2016 presidential election, he was however successful in starting his work on creating a summer reading personal library collection for his students at DIMS.
In 2017, Treistman procured thousands of dollars in multiple grants, including a prestigious American Library Association Inspire Grant, to fund the ambitious goal of sending every one of his sixth grade students at Denny International Middle School home with their own self-selected 10+ volume library of new books for summer 2018 reading.
In 2018 when library cuts in the Seattle school district were announced, Treistman with a cadre of similarly-passionate librarians, stormed the steps of the capital and demanded that legislators address both implementations of the McCleary (funding) decision as well as the levy lid education funding discrepancies. This and additional actions resulted in a reversal of the Seattle librarian cuts! Mission accomplished.
Now, in 2019, Treistman is addressing equity issues at the national level as well as the state education funding issue, working through the Washington Education Association and the National Education Association, to ensure school library programs have language and federal law as part of basic education.
A three-fold graduate of Antioch University—AU McGregor undergraduate degree, AU Seattle Masters in Teaching, and AUS library endorsement—Jeff has followed the tradition of Antioch’s first president, Horace Mann’s, edict, “to win some victory for humanity.”
Whether sitting at the bargaining table negotiating healthy teacher contracts for Seattle School District, receiving grants and awards from the American Library Association, serving as the teacher librarian representative on Social Equity Educators, or writing articles for Teacher Librarian: the (only teacher-librarian) peer-reviewed journal, Jeff Treistman has been a local Seattle leader, a state library leader, and now a national leader in school librarianship…. a man with missions.