Q&A: changing your bac pro

Following your article on school refusal, I see the signs in my son. He started a bac pro in September but is unhappy with his choice of subject. Can he change?

A: Cases of changing mid-course are pretty rare but it is possible if his marks are reasonably good and if he wants to change to a similar-ish subject, for example, from business to sales. If he wants to change subject completely, for example, from business to electronics then he would need to repeat his seconde.

How to go about it

Firstly, he should talk to his teachers, and the earlier in the year the better. A student wanting to change course from seconde to première he will need to follow a procedure called "Affelnet première" in the last term of seconde.

If he wants to change to a completely new subject and repeat seconde, he will need to ask his professeur principal (class teacher) for the form "Affelnet troisième" and fill it in. However, this year's troisièmes will be given priority when places are offered, followed by applicants who are already in seconde and have the best marks. In other words, being allowed to change course depends very much on your 'dossier scolaire', your overall motivation and your teachers' comments as well as on the change you want to make. 
The toughest subjects to get into are the most popular such as photography, graphic design, building services and technology. The best way to increase your chances of being accepted on a new course is to be able to demonstrate how motivated your are by the subject.

Can you change course at the end of premiere?

This is virtually impossible, not least because a bac pro is evaluated in part by your stints in the workplace. Nevertheless, it is still worth talking to your conseiller d’orientation who may at least be able to help you sort out the problem you are having with the course you have chosen.

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