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The right platform for online course

This year I am creating an online course for my Year 11 French class and I am hoping to see the course happen in the whole New Zealand.

The course itself is on its way, so I am very happy :-)

But I have a huge concern and I need your help to solve it.

I would love to see the students taking part in this course to use a platform to discuss and/or solve their problems/questions. I know there are zillion of great platforms and I have a giant choice, but my concern is about accessibility.

Let’s say that I create a Facebook group for the course. The platform is free and user friendly and most of the kids in NZ have access to Facebook. The issue is that most of the school block the access to Facebook to their students. So if I chose Facebook, the students will not be able to access it when they are at school. They will be able to access it only when they are at home if their parents let them access Facebook (some of my students are not allowed by their parents to have a Facebook account). One other good point about Facebook is that if the students have a NZ Telecom Mobile phone they can access it for free, but most of the schools do not let their pupils use their mobile phone during school hours.

So I would like to use a platform that it is free, most likely not blocked by schools and user friendly !!!!

I need your help !!!!! Can you give me any suggestions ??? What do you use and why??

Thanks heaps