Brad, I agree with you on both counts when you say that the $200 dollars is worth the service, and that many people will not be able to pay and will be deprived of this service. That was one of my major concerns.
That is why we started the waiting list idea. Once we get the number of students down to a reasonable level, say 15 or so, then we will start to allow new students who are on the waiting list. Wait will probably be long so that is why you can also pay the money and join right away.
I like your other idea also, but I feel it misses out on some of the one to one communication that goes on, and there is always the people who will just look at someone elses code and just go from there. True you don't gain much that way, but there are probably many of us who would have snuck a peek at Java 4b after the 10th submission