Last week, I wrote an in depth series of posts about Apple’s Deployment Program. In addition to managing devices, Apple has made it easier (and legal!) to create Apple IDs for students under the age of 13. In fact, once the spreadsheet is uploaded, schools and IT staff are hands off when it comes to their students’ Apple IDs. It’s now up to the parents to create the Apple IDs for their kids under the age of 13.
This new program stems from Apple’s requirement to follow the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998 which states,
“an operator has to protect children’s privacy and safety online including restrictions on the marketing to those under 13. While children under 13 can legally give out personal information with their parents’ permission, many websites altogether disallow underage children from using their services due to the amount of work involved.”
Instead of districts simply getting a parent’s permission to create accounts on their child’s behalf, Apple has put the responsibility squarely on the parents’ shoulders. Here’s how it works:
After signing into the Apple Deployment Program, you’ll find Apple ID for Students in the left sidebar. In order to add students to the program you’ll need to upload a csv file based on the template that Apple provides.
The template calls for the following fields: (There were no examples in the template, so we just kinda guessed)
BATCH ID: It appears that this can be either numbers, text, or a combination of the two. No special characters
LANGUAGE: we assumed this meant spoken language, so we filled in with English
FIRST NAME: Student first name
LAST NAME: Student last name
DATE OF BIRTH: must be in MM/dd/yyyy format
PARENT EMAIL ADDRESS: Parents will received an email from Apple telling them how to create their child’s account (below)
APPLE ID: This will become the student’s Apple ID. The parent does not have the opportunity to change this Apple ID. In our case, this is the student’s Google Apps mail account.
Upload the CSV file and, depending on the number of students, the file will take minutes, up to hours to process. When processed, parents receive their email.
When the parent clicks on the link to the online consent form, they are brought to the following page where they enter the temporary password from the top of the email.
The parent then has the opportunity to fill out their child’s personal information. The parent’s email address also becomes the primary email address. This takes all Apple ID responsibility out of the hands of the schools. When I asked my Apple Engineer what we do with students who cannot remember their password and do not know any of the security questions or answers he said, “contact the parent and if the parent is not available call Apple support.”
ADDITIONAL NOTE: If you plan on using this program with your students under the age of 13, the biggest challenge will be actually getting the parent to create the Apple ID. We’ve been working on this for 3 months and still only have about 40% of our parents that have completed the process. This has been, by far, the biggest challenge.