Online learning community for school
I have been given the task of coming up with a way to develop an online community for my school (large secondary). We want to create something which will allow pupil and staff to discuss learning topics for use in and out of lessons, also to organise trips and events and generally be an online location for school discussions. The elements we would like to include are a forum and blogs and it would be nice to share the odd document, but this will not be the main use.
We are currently using the Kaleidos Learning Platform, which we quite like for sharing lesson resources and using the VLE. But we aren't keep on the "Web 2.0" elements. It's all a bit clunky and we are looking for a straightforward user experience. We do need to ensure it is only used by the school community so would need to create and distribute usernames ourelves rather than allow the user to generate them.
It could be a really cool thing to get off the ground, but how would you go about it? My initial though would be to use a vBulletin, but it's something I know very little about. Would it even be feasible to do it this way? What other options do I have? Are there any companies that could provide me with a ready made solution?
I'm sure the infinite wisdom of the edugeekers will be able to point me in the right direction :)