Two years ago it was suggested. I've been fighting it ever since. Then I went to a professional workshop at Rider University where the focus was on technology for teachers. But this was different. The technology presented was to make our lives as teachers easier, better, and more efficient - rather than technology for our students to use.
1. Your students and parents are already on Twitter. So, there's no additional class time to have anyone go through the sign up process. If there is someone who does not have it, a student peer expert can assist others in the sign up process. You can email your students' parents the Twitter handle. Ask your students to help their parents to sign up. Offer extra credit for doing so!
4. Students and parents love to be connected. You're not requesting students and parents to collaborate. You are requesting them to connect.
5. How many connections should you make? I would say with every homework assignment and upcoming graded assessment a Tweeted message is necessary. Consistency is key. So if you are going to commit to using Twitter don't start and then stop. It will "bite" you. Your audience will look for your Tweets.
My Twitter handle is Study All Knight. Come September, follow me for my classroom updates. Tweet Tweet:) https://twitter.com/StudyAllKnight