March 6

Regarding the March 2 front-page article “Fairfax teachers plan cuts of their own”:

As a former member of the Fairfax County School Board and founder of the education reform group Coalition of the Silence, I am distressed by the threat of some teachers to use “work to the rule” as leverage during difficult budget negotiations.

The article focused on Fairfax County Public Schools’ affluence, but about a third of Fairfax students — some 50,000 kids — are poor, as measured by their qualifying for free or reduced-price meals. If the work-to-the-rule movement takes root, these kids would be hurt the most.  

My group supports teacher pay raises because we recognize that a great teacher is the most important thing a child can have in school. But for teachers to say, essentially, “pay us or else we will hurt a child” is reminiscent of the biblical “mother” who would have allowed King Solomon to slice a baby in half.

Martina A. Hone, Falls Church

The writer is founder of Coalition of the Silence.