Assigning Microsoft Classroom licenses to multiple users

Darrell as a Service
3 min readFeb 2, 2017

Rachel Chisnall (@ibpossum) and I had some trouble assigning Microsoft Classroom licenses to multiple users. The preferred way is to use Microsoft’s School Data Sync if you have it in place. But if you don’t and want to make a few quick changes, you’re probably going to assign licenses in the Office 365 Admin portal. Within Office 365 Admin, the experience is a little confusing. You have two choices when bulk assigning licenses. Add OR Replace. More can be read in “Assign or remove licenses for Office 365 for business” — Microsoft Support documentation.

  • Use Add to existing licenses assignments when you want to leave the current license assignment unchanged and simply want to add a license for a service.
    See Assign or remove licenses for Office 365 for business > “Assign licenses to several users at once.”
  • Use Replace existing license assignments when you want to wipe license assignment for selected users and start again with your choices.
    See Assign or remove licenses for Office 365 for business > “Replace existing product license assignment for several users at once.”

The logical choice while adding Microsoft Classroom licenses is to use the “Add” option, adding the Microsoft Classroom license to existing licenses. However, you’ll get an error that you haven’t included the required Exchange Online license. The strange thing is that the selected users already have that license.


It seems the only way forward using the “Add to existing license assignments” option is to do the following:
Note: Please try this with a few users to test. When you’re confident it is working as expected, apply the method to bulk users.

  1. In Office 365 Admin > Users, select all the users you want to add Microsoft Classroom to.
  2. Edit Product Licenses
  1. Add to existing product license assignment
  1. Select Exchange Online license (even though it’s probably already assigned).
  2. Select Microsoft Classroom license
  3. Add

This will add Microsoft Classroom to the existing license assignments for each user.

I suspect there’s a check for dependencies when Microsoft Classroom is selected on it’s own. Microsoft Classroom depends on Exchange Online, (and SharePoint Online for that matter.)

Originally published at webster.