Apple School Manager (ASM) is a free web-based portal provided by Apple to help simplify the enrollment, deployment and management of Apple devices, and the distribution of apps and content to these devices. Apple School Manager helps educational institutions to manage Apple devices by combining the capabilities of Apple DEP and Apple VPP into a single platform. Apple School Manager (ASM) bolsters the use of Apple devices like iPads and Macs in schools and other educational institutions by integrating with mobile device management solutions (MDM) to allow zero-touch enrollment and the automated deployment of device configurations and apps. Apple School Manager is essentially a tool that enables Apple devices to be used by students for education within their learning environments.
Apple School Manager (ASM) serves multiple purposes for educational institutions that predominantly provide their students with iPads and MacBooks while also simplifying the provisioning of these devices. Some of the benefits of configuring Apple School Manager for education are:
Provisioning Shared iPads: For institutions that provide a single iPad to multiple students, Apple School Manager enables provisioning them as shared iPads which ensure complete data security and user privacy.
Managed Apple ID: It creates a Managed Apple ID for all the students added to the Apple School Manager program which provides them access to multiple Apple services such as iCloud, iTunes and Shared iPad. It also enables provisioning devices without an Apple ID.
Simplified app and content distribution: It enables IT admins to seamless purchase and distribute apps and content on the students devices.
Integration with Apple Classroom app: It integrates with the Apple Classroom app and allows to create virtual classes with students and their designated teachers.
Mobile Device Management (MDM) solutions also function as Apple MDM for education, by integrating with Apple School Manager(ASM) and allow educational institutions to make the most of Apple devices. The benefit of integrating ASM with MDM solutions or iPad management software for schools is that it enables admins to simplify the onboarding of devices, distribution of resources such as apps and content, and also secure the content on the devices. Integrating Apple School Manager with a Mobile Device Management solution enables the solution to serve as a good Apple Classroom management software.
Mobile Device Manager Plus (MDM) is an MDM for schools and enterprises that integrates with ASM to provide a solution to the specific device management needs of schools and other educational institutions. Here are the benefits of integrating Apple School Manager (ASM) with MDM and using it as an iPad management software for schools:
The first step to manage devices using Apple School Manager and an MDM solution is to integrate the two portals. Integration of Apple School Manager and MDM involves three major steps:
Step 1: On the MDM console, navigate to Enrollment -> Apple Enrollment (ABM/ASM).
Step 2: Select Enroll devices for school for initiating the integration with ASM. You can select Enroll devices for business if you're an enterprise and have an account with Apple Business Manager.
Step 3: Download the public key available on the screen.
Step 1: Login to Apple School Manager (ASM) portal using an account with Administrator privilege
Step 2: Click on Settings on the bottom left of the screen and click on Device Management Settings
Step 3: Click on Add MDM Server and provide a name for the MDM server
Step 4: Upload the public key that was downloaded from MDM and click on Save to create the server token.
Step 5: Download the server token by clicking on Download Server Token
Step 1: On the MDM sever, upload the server token that was downloaded from the ASM console
Step 2: The server token has a validity period of 1 year after which it needs to be renewed. Provide the email address for expiry notification
Step 3: Configure the device activation settings as explained here to complete the Apple School Manager and Mobile Device Manager Plus integration process
Refer this document for a step by step explanation of the integration process and how to add devices to Apple School Manager.
Previously Apple provided two separate portals, namely Apple DEP and Apple VPP for device and app management respectively. Apple has now upgraded and combined both these portals into Apple Business Manager (ABM) for enterprises and Apple School Manager (ASM) for educational institutions. If you have an account for your institution in the older portal, you can migrate your devices and apps by following the steps given here.
In addition to simplifying the management of devices used in schools with Apple School Manager (ASM), Apple has introduced the Classroom App that allows teachers to conduct classes using iPads. To provide a holistic classroom experience, you can also deploy additional configuration settings for Apple Classroom using MDM. These configurations for Apple Classroom are specific to MDM solutions and cannot be used if schools manually setup the Apple Classroom app.
With the Classroom App teachers can:
For more information about the features supported with the Classroom app, refer this.