Managing Apple Classroom with Jamf Pro: a class act

Welcome one and all; the class is in session. Today’s topic: managing Apple Classroom with Jamf Pro. In this blog, we will be taking a quick look at one of the scenarios that can take place when importing classes into Jamf Pro and how we could fix it. I'll be offering some insights along the way.

February 8 2024 by

James Penning

In a sunny classroom, a teacher helps two students on iPads that are managed by Jamf Pro and Apple Classroom.

During my time working with customers in the educational space, I was able to help troubleshoot some unique scenarios and I wanted to share some of these with the wider Jamf Community.

What is Classroom?

Apple defines Classroom as the following:

Classroom is an app for teachers, available for supported iPad devices and Mac computers, to hold classes in a schoolroom, remotely, or through a combination of nearby and remote locations (called hybrid classes).

When teaching in class, you can launch a specific app, website or textbook page. You can also send documents to and receive them from your students, and share student work locally on a TV, monitor or projector using Apple TV. Finally, you can see which apps students are working in and, at the end of the class, view a summary of how students spent their time.

For optimal performance with Classroom, class sizes of 60 students or fewer are recommended.

Screen capture of Apple Classroom for Mac window.

Starting with Apple School Manager

  1. Before any deployment of Apple Classroom with Jamf Pro can take place you will require a working Apple School Manager instance. See how to get started with Apple School Manager.
  2. You will need to ensure that you have followed Apple’s guide to Classroom requirements.
  3. Classes must sync student and teacher data with Apple School Manager.

Data management is key

One of the biggest components of setting up Apple Classroom with Jamf Pro is the management of data. How we manage this data and how we sync all of the components determines how successful the implementation and management will be.

Matching Apple School Manager to Jamf Pro

One of the biggest areas where this is likely to go wrong is how you match the criteria for importing users from your Apple School Manager into Jamf Pro. This is the criteria to use to match Apple School Manager user information with existing user information in Jamf Pro when importing users.

Before importing any classes into Jamf Pro, it would be worthwhile to decide your best option for matching this criteria. To review this, navigate to Settings: Global > Apple education support. Then, select the Apple School Manager instances tab. From there, select your active Apple School Manager connection and scroll to the bottom of the page.

1. First, we will need to decide on the field inside Apple School Manager.

2. We then can pick the operator for the match.

3. We then pick which criteria to match against inside of Jamf Pro.

Read more information on each of the options and how to sync them.

The scenario: mismatched data

Mismatched data happens when the matching criteria are not met. In this case, we need to:

  • Identify how the data is mismatched
  • Sanitize the data
  • Fix it

For example, when importing classes and using the default setup "Email (Jamf Pro)" with "Managed Apple ID" from Apple School Manager via Jamf Pro, user information is checked from Apple School Manager and matched inside of Jamf Pro.

My Managed Apple ID (MAID) might be, whereas my email might be If Jamf Pro cannot find a user to associate and link the two, Jamf Pro will create a new user record.

This can also happen if there is a misalignment of the data in Apple School Manager. For example, a new MAID has been assigned to the user in Apple School Manager. This can look like or

My strongest recommendation here is to first double-check that each of your user records inside your Apple School Manager manager has a valid email record that will match up with the end user's device record in your Jamf instance before you start importing any information.

If you see that MAIDs with numbers have been assigned to users that might differ from records in Jamf Pro, avoid this method and opt for matching an attribute that always remains the same between Apple School Manager and Jamf Pro.

With a directory services integration in Jamf Pro (LDAP or a cloud identity provider), “Email Address” is a great choice.

A pro tip: ensure you are integrating your Jamf Pro instance with a directory service. If you have a device that is enrolled via an authenticated method at the PreStage, this will record the user information such as, hopefully, the email address. With the directory service integration, you will be able to look up more information to match against if you decide to use a different method of matching criteria.

What is the EDU profile and why do we need it?

The EDU profile configures the device with user and class information. Jamf Pro generates an EDU profile that is installed on devices when they are added to a class in Jamf Pro. Without the EDU profile, the end user — whether a teacher or student — does not appear in any of the Classroom apps.

The key component and first troubleshooting step should always be whether the device has an EDU profile present.

How can we fix it?

So what happens if you already have synced the data and you have a duplicate new record?

Our first task is to identify which record holds the roster. The roster is the key piece of information that tells Jamf this user and this device requires an EDU profile, as the roster contains the class information that is synced between Apple School Manager and Jamf Pro.

Once you have highlighted the duplicate record that contains the roster, make sure that the user in Apple School Manager has been removed from the classes they are enrolled in. Then, perform a sync with Jamf Pro from Settings: Global > Apple education support. Once the data has been synced, you should be able to delete the duplicate record.

Now we have worked out the issue that we have multiple users in our Apple School Manager that have a MAID that will not match up to any user data we have in Jamf. If we switch the matching criteria to “Email Address equals Email (Jamf Pro server)," as long as the email address in Apple School Manager matches the email address of the user in Jamf Pro, the Roster should be attached to the correct user at the next sync. This gives you the perfect triangle of user/device/roster. This will then prompt the device to install the EDU profile.

Once the EDU profile has been installed for both the student and the teacher, you should start seeing the students appear in the Classroom app.

Jamf Teacher

Jamf offers another application that can help manage student classrooms separately from Apple Classroom called Jamf Teacher. Learn more about Jamf Teacher.

A class act

If you have found this blog helpful and would like to know more about how Jamf Pro and Apple Classroom can help in your school, please reach out to your local account manager.

See for yourself how to manage Apple Classroom with Jamf Pro.

Request a free trial!

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