Hi Mike, I lead a small non profit in Chicago that expands learning and social capital for inner city kids through non-school, volunteer-based tutor/mentor programs. While I lead a single program, I've created the Tutor/Mentor Connection to help all of the programs in the city get resources they need, and to help fill voids in neighborhoods where there are no programs. A key resource is a Google map based Program Locator which anyone can use to find contact info for existing programs, or to build public/private collaborations to support programs.
The key question that I'd like to see more people asking is "what are all the things we need to do to help a youth born in poverty be starting a job/career by age 25?" Building participation in this question, and sustaining involvement for many years, are two of the first strategies that would need to be addressed.
I think that question is relevant for everyone on this list, but not many are asking it. It's also relevant for business and public leaders in Boston, Chicago and other cities, but few leaders are asking it and building communities of people involved in building sharing ideas and information that would lead to a distribution of programs leading to that result.
I was a history major in college so I think we might both approach this from the same perspective of "what do we already know" and "how can we share that"
I hope we can connect here or in other forums for this purpose.
Thanks Mike for the information and explanation. I have a gmail account, used google docs for a grad class with another teacher, have a wiki, blog, delicious account, and use moodle for my classes throughout the year. I have been taking grad classes to learn about the technology and how to use it. My biggest problem with implementing any of that is the school filter. all "social networking" sites are blocked. They unfiltered YouTube for a while-kids wouldn't get off of it. So back to filtering it. I would have thought Google docs would been a better choice. They are looking at Google Wave and thinking this might be something we could use. Don't know that much about it yet. Will check out what you said about that. My plan for summer is to try to plan and revise to implement as much as possible next year without burning out. I need summer to revive and rejuvinate. Tell me exactly what you do, how much it costs the district, and any other details that would be helpful for me to pass on. Thanks.