Video equipment: what to buy for school/community use?

Our local Community Access TV channel is now up and running, and we would like to get our highschool students to record concerts, plays, community events, etc. and put them on the air.

With a first-year budget of $6000, what equipment would you recommend? Of course we don’t have to spend it all at once.

My wish list would be:[ul][li]A good video camera[]headphones[]heavy-duty tripod[]a few good mics (external to the camera)[]a small, simple audio mixermisc. cables and media blanks[/ul][/li]We expect to record events real-time, that is, do no editing afterwards, but put the original recording on the air as soon as possible, warts and all. This means whatever media the camera works with has to be playable in the on-air broadcast equipment without using some intermediate copying process. Right now, we can play SVHS, VHS and DVDs, so maybe a digital camera that records directly to one of the DVD formats might be best.

Any recommendations as to equipment brands/models? Ruggedness, quality and ease of use is probably more important than thousands of features. Your ideas are quite welcome.