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A student has their temperature taken while entering a New York City public high school in New York, U.S., on Monday, March 22, 2021. Photo: Angus Mordant/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Successful lawsuits waged by parents in three New Jersey school districts have prompted returns to some in-person classes, and invited interest from parents across the state seeking to do the same, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Why it matters: Parents in 30 districts in New Jersey have sought guidance from the plaintiffs in the original suits on how to organize similar efforts, illustrating the frustration of parents who feel virtual schooling has left their children "anxious, lonely and losing their zest for learning" the Journal writes.

  • The push to re-open schools at least partially comes even as cases in New Jersey surge, with the number of COVID-19 infections rising by 37% in the last month.

The big picture: According to one of the plaintiffs, Steven Baffico, even parents from other states like California have reached out for advice.

  • Baffico added that another three districts in New Jersey are preparing complaints, and parents in 14 other districts are organizing to do the same, per the WSJ

State of play: Parents in New York's Grand Island school district filed a suit earlier this month to fight for a full reopening of schools, asking the court to force the district to abandon its current hybrid model, ABC 7 reports.

Lawsuits have also been filed due to concerns about how school districts plan to reopen.

  • Parents in Illinois' Indian Prairies School District 204 filed a suit alleging that a lack of transparency concerning re-opening plans violated the state's Open Meetings Act.
  • The city of San Francisco filed a suit against its school district in February, claiming that the district's lack of reopening plans for in-person learning violated the law. Last week the city asked the presiding judge to force schools to re-open for in-person learning by the end of April, per the San Francisco Chronicle.

Go deeper

Mar 28, 2021 - Health

The key to opening schools: Better air flow

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Getting kids back to in-person learning could hinge on upgrading the ventilation systems in school buildings.

Why it matters: This is a massive undertaking in the U.S., where school maintenance has been neglected and the average school building is 44 years old. Significant stimulus funds can be funneled to installing new A/C systems, but it may not happen by fall.

Updated 20 mins ago - World

Over 70 dead in worst bombardments between Israel and Hamas for years

Smoke and flames rise after Israeli fighter jets conducted airstrikes in Gaza on May 13, 2021. Israeli forces said on May 12 they had killed a senior Hamas commander and bombed several buildings. Gaza's health ministry has said children are among the dead. Photo: Ashraf Amra/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

At least 67 Palestinians and seven Israelis have been killed in fighting between Israel's military and Hamas since Monday, per Reuters.

The big picture: The worst aerial exchanges of fire between Israel and Hamas since 2014 continued into early Thursday. It come days after escalating violence in Jerusalem that injured hundreds of Palestinians and several Israeli police officers during protests over the planned evictions of Palestinian families from their homes.

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Don McGahn agrees to closed-door interview with House panel on Russia report

Former White House counsel Don McGahn during a discussion at the NYU Global Academic Center in Washington, D.C., in 2019. Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images

Former White House counsel Don McGahn agreed Wednesday to speak with the House Judiciary Committee about former President Trump's alleged attempts to obstruct the Russia investigation — with certain conditions, per a court filing.

Why it matters: The agreement ends a two-year standoff after McGahn, a key player in former special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation, repeatedly refused to agree to a subpoena for testimony — resulting in the matter being taken to court.