Here's an interesting article I just discovered on the washington post all about how parents are using the internet to organize campaigns designed to influence their local schools. This can naturally be a positive thing, but also not.
Read the full article here.
This appears to be the worst of both worlds: 1. the school system is just closed enough that only the most well-connected parents with free time (read: wealthier) can break through to school administrations and 2. the school system is just open enough that these online campaigns do make an impact once off the ground.
This type of impact can be positive, but it can also be short-sighted and geared only to the success of a select few. It would seem to me that the obvious solution is to create a truly open community for every school district on the web that engages with all parents, but somehow I don't see most public school systems being that engaged or forward thinking - yet.