My interest in the schools (and work for that matter) is not particularly focused on long term face to face relationships. I want enough of that to build some personal relationships, but virtual work is more scalable over the long term. To that end I've got one more school connected to the internet. The Science and Technology Training Center teaches employable skills, with an emphasis on electrical and mechanical. There I've setup 5 new computers, and the students know how to use a set of CDs to restore them to a clean stable state. This gives them more freedom to experiment and occasionally break things, which is perhaps the only way to learn. I've gotten most of them email addresses, and intend to offer some ongoing support that way. For a few of them I already am. But leaving them early absolutely breaks my heart. I feel like I'm riding a motorboat through the wreckage of the Titanic, smiling and waving to those struggling in the water, as I call out "Sorry no room, I must hurry off".
Real programming has remained a Bridge On the River Kwai Too Far, due more to my over-extended schedule, than any lack of abilities in the students. To help get us there, I've got a few students signed up for Stanford's Intro to Computers class in mid-February. I've signed up as well, to follow the lessons to act as a supplemental teacher. Hopefully the idea of virtual learning, the prestige of a real university, and the benefits of well structured class will catch on. Time will tell.