...political and more polarized board, IMO. If what you are trying to help is children in public schools...or public education, in general...I'm not sure electing board members will help either. It may be a 'going from the frying pan into the fire' type of situation.
IMO, any member of a board of education... elected or appointed... needs to understand child development, curriculum and instruction, pedagogy IN ADDITION TO the current issues in education, such as the education reform debate. When boards lack this knowledge, they can be manipulated by anyone with an agenda...education reform, textbook purchasing, testing, evaluation, etc.
I think there are a LOT of school boards out there with well-intentioned but under-informed members making some VERY critical decisions for their school districts. Will electing board members lower the number of low-information board members? Probably not. Will the voters care about having this added responsibility for their schools? They will when things start to go wrong...
"We shouldn't run from the truth, we should run on the truth." Senator John Kerry March, 2012