School Choice magnet schools and academies

Houston Region Magnets and Academies Programs

Some Houston Gulf Coast-area public schools offer programs that focus on a special area of study. These types of programs are called magnets or academies, and they can be offered school-wide, or as a part of a larger public school.

What is a Magnet School?

Magnet schools are public schools with specialized courses or curricula. Because the schools draw students from across normal school zone boundaries regardless of zip code, they are called “magnets.”  There are elementary magnet school, magnet middle school, and magnet high school programs.  Like traditional public schools, magnet schools are accountable to the local school board and to the state, and they are held to the same academic standards. 

Admission to a magnet school program sometimes requires an entrance exam, audition, or may be decided by a lottery.  Magnet schools exist within the traditional public school system but offer a particular academic focus alongside the standard curriculum.


Magnet Program Curriculum

Some magnets, such as International Baccalaureate (international studies) schools have a more general focus. Other magnet programs may focus on:

  • Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM)
  • Fine and Performing Arts
  • Career and Technical Education (CTE) 
  • World Languages (immersion and non-immersion)

Find Out More

Searching for “Magnet Schools Near Me” online can be confusing, so we recommend that you contact your school district to see what types of academy and magnet schools are available.


RESOURCES: What are magnet schools?

Texas school districts and magnet schools: