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I'm actually having a really good time with my trial run of schoology. It's free and hosted, so you don't have to do anything to get it up and running except sign up.
Of course, you can't add modules and new things like you can with moodle. But my students love the interface because to them it looks like facebook. I can do many of the things I could do with moodle and the process of doing them is a LOT easier.
So far, I recommend schoology--but I'm not finished with my search!
I too am having a great time with schoology- it is user-friendly (more so than edu 2.0 I think). My thought is certainly to offer it to our teachers as a choice. Edmodo is also very promising, again depends on purpose.
I am also hoping that our district will be adopting SchoolCenter as our website and will allow teachers to have websites off the website. This would allow for those who simply want to have a website that can easily be accessible and enhance the school/home communication an easy platform to do that.
I'm excited! Thanks so much everyone for your input and ideas!!!
I have a free hosted eFront (similar to moodle, add modules/components, gradebook, forums etc..) that educators can use. Set your course to private and you are totally on your own and set up. eFront has a great set of help videos/documentation.
Hit the LMS button on the main page of EFL Classroom 2.0
You want a big'ol server with Apache, MySQL, and PHP with something like CPanel that will allow students to install any tool they want on it i.e. WordPress, Mahara , OpenSim, Drupal, etc. ...and then something that acts like a global directory that explains who installed what, and why they installed it, to let visitors see what's there and visit what they find interesting. :-)
Have you seen Canvas K12? http://www.instructure.com/k12? released earlier this year, Canvas K12 is quickly gaining momentum. You can try it for free - but first watch some of their videos to learn more.
Disclosure: I work for Instructure - however, that is a recent move. I was working at Brown University as an instructional designer and was part of the LMS assessment project (to replace Blackboard). Canvas was our selected LMS replacement and I was then a lead ont he Canvas implementation project. I developed the faculty training plan and provided training and support for Brown faculty, staff and TAs during the first 3 semesters of use. Canvas is an AWESOME LMS and it is changing edtech for the better. I believe in the product and i believe int he company, which is why I now work with them more directly.
I also teach at Salem State University who, like Brown and hundreds of others, changed from Blackboard to Canvas (I was not part of that decision or project). I LOVE teaching with Canvas. My classes are 100% online and I can tell you that my students are completely satisfied with their online experience.