Students at David Thibodaux STEM Magnet Academy in Lafayette, La., elect to follow career pathways in fields such as engineering and biomedicine. "We really focus on high-wage, high-skill careers," principal Jeff Debetaz said. "Students do have to choose a pathway, but there is a certain point before they get to some of the more focused courses where they can switch. I think the biggest difference with us is that the classes are a lot more focused, a lot more specialized."

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