I have always enjoyed reading Judy Mann's columns, and I was surprised how off target she was in her Nov. 14 column {Metro} on Monday school closings in Fairfax County. As a parent and educator in Fairfax, I agree with her statement that "Superintendent Robert Spillane is showing considerable professional boldness" in opposing early Monday closings because the majority of parents and teachers in Fairfax County do not support the uniform work week he suggests.

Judy Mann also suggested in her article that schools become baby sitters for children on Monday afternoons. Doesn't she realize that it's not the amount of time that children spend in school but the quality of the education that they receive that really counts?

If Monday afternoon planning and meeting time were eliminated, the quality of the integrated curriculum would decline. Fairfax County has always been looked on enviously by surrounding counties because of its professional staff, which generates original research and creates new programs designed to better meet students' needs. Much of this work is done on Monday afternoons.

The two hours on Mondays is not a question of better education for our children but rather a question of who is going to mind the children.

JUDITH K. GARTLAN Fairfax