Although Los Angeles magnet schools have long been seen as an elusive and exclusive club, more than two dozen of them are under-enrolled and actively looking to fill classroom seats.
At Montara Avenue Elementary in South Gate, for example, the math, science and technology magnet can accommodate 220 students; last year just 76 applied.
On a recent day, each of Montara's magnet students created projects on stars, the sun and the moon for an upcoming fair aimed at attracting new students. A pack of third graders finished their multiplication tables and gathered in the middle of the class to listen to a classmate's presentation. He proudly showed off a three-dimensional model of the sun.