In the past few years Dallas ISD sliced library funding by about 20 percent. Still, in fall 2010, the Marsh library received a much-needed renovation through a grassroots fundraising effort that put the students to work. About 40 students worked two-hour shifts, cleaning, painting and re-organizing, and in return, their library fines were waved. After that, the vision for a more active and inviting library for students, many of whom come from low-income families, took off, like a tech cafe with web access and hot chocolate. “This is not your mama’s library,” librarian Mary Virginia Meeks says. Advocate photojournalist Danny Fulgencio talked to Meeks about how these students and their library are thriving in a time of budget cuts. Read our March 2011 issue story about it here.