The editorial "Teacher Balance in Prince George's" {July 22} continues The Post's one-dimensional coverage of a major story in both its news and editorial pages. Please advise Post readers that U.S. District Court Judge Frank A. Kaufman has ruled that the Prince George's school board's 1988 involuntary transfer of teachers to achieve a 30 to 50 percent black quota at each school was both illegal and unconstitutional.

Judge Kaufman held that over the years the board had properly monitored faculty levels as part of the desegregation plan, but he flatly disapproved the racial reassignment rules challenged in this case. Contrary to the views of The Post, his opinion unequivocally rules that the 1988 transfer policy requiring "rigid numerical ratios" was unconstitutional and "unnecessarily trammels rights of disfavored employees and violates Title VII." He has ordered further proceedings to consider relief for the improperly transferred teachers.

The Department of Justice filed this suit early last year, based on complaints that senior teachers -- both white and black -- had been transferred involuntarily to meet race quotas for each faculty. We advised first the school board and then the court that requiring each school's faculty to be between 30 and 50 percent black exceeded the board's remedial authority, since the court in 1983 had found there was no discrimination in faculty assignment to correct. In addition, we pointed out that the quota was plainly irrational -- i.e., it is mathematically impossible for every faculty to have a quota of over 30 percent black teachers, since there are only 29.7 percent black teachers in the entire system.

Judge Kaufman interpreted prior court orders as contemplating the regulation of faculty assignments as part of the overall desegregation process, and to that extent he rejected the government's view. But he went on to agree with our point that the 1988 goals were arbitrary and beyond the board's proper discretion. The Post's failure to focus on the latter holding in both its news and editorial columns transforms the court's decision from a clear vindication of the Justice Department's challenge into a repudiation of it.

The Post has insisted on treating this case as part of a sinister, ideological assault on effective school desegregation. It is not now and never was. I initiated this suit as acting assistant attorney general after a 25-year career in all aspects of civil rights enforcement. Our only aim was to apply federal law and precedents. We will continue to listen when anyone -- regardless of race or status -- complains of arbitrary and unlawful official action.

JAMES P. TURNER Deputy Assistant Attorney General Civil Rights Division U.S. Department of Justice Washington