Introduction to Classwize Rules

What are Classwize Rules?

Classwize Rules lets students in your class access sites that are normally blocked by your school’s internet filtering policies, and to stop students from accessing sites that are normally allowed. You can make a rule apply to your entire class or to a single student, and the rule will keep applying to your class until you decide to turn it off. The rules you create for your class take effect only while your class is in session.


Important Concepts: Locking, Blocking and Allowing


Locked resources, such as categories, sites, signatures, URLs or apps are hard-blocked or allowed by your school's internet filter and can’t be unblocked by your class rules or a Bypass Code. Classwize will stop you from making a rule that conflicts with a Locked rule. If you think a site you want to block or allow is Locked, contact your school’s IT support team.


A Blocked resource can’t be accessed during your class even if your school's filter normally allows it. Students in your class shouldn't be able to access this site.


An Allowed resource can be accessed during your class even if your school normally blocks it.

Allow rules are not available in block rules only mode.

How Rules work with signatures, categories, and desktop applications

Rules for Signatures

Rules for Signatures will apply to both the web and, on Windows devices, desktop versions. For example, adding a Blocked Rule for the Spotify signature will block both the Spotify desktop app for Windows and the Spotify Web Player. 

See How Classwize Rules Work for more information about Themes and Signatures. 

Rules for desktop applications (Windows only)

You can add Block Rules for some Windows applications that don’t have a web component, such as Paint, Solitaire, Notepad, Adobe Reader, VLC Media Player or Firefox. See the list of compatible Windows applications on this page.

Understanding the Rules panel

The Rules panel shows you all the filtering rules you’ve set for your class so far, and who they apply to.

  1. The name of the category, site, or application the rule controls.
  2. Who the rule applies to. Rules can apply either to the whole class (all users) or to a single student.
  3. Whether the rule is blocking or allowing access for the student. Select between Blocked and Allowed.
  4. Edit or delete the rule.


In this example:

  • Spotify has been Blocked. None of the students in the class can access the website.
  • Google Sites has been Allowed. All students in the class can access the website.
  • Google News has been Allowed for all users, except Ian Smith. Ian can’t access Google News, but the rest of the class can.
  • has been Blocked for all users, except Liz Jameson. Liz can access, but none of the other students can.
  • The class has been Blocked from opening the desktop applications Notepad and Simple Solitaire on their Windows devices. None of the students can open these desktop applications while the class is in session.

Adding, Editing, and Removing Classwize Rules

Adding, editing and removing Classwize Rules is simple to do. You can block or allow resources, such as:

  • Signatures (e.g., Spotify)
  • Categories (e.g., Social Media)
  • Sites (e.g.,
  • URLs (e.g.,
  • Windows desktop applications (e.g., Camera, Paint, Notepad, Firefox for Windows)

Adding Classwize Rules 

  1. On the Class Toolbar, select Rule(s) > New Rule
    NOTE: Select Create Rule if this is the first rule you’re adding for the class.
  2. The Add new rule dialog will appear. In the This rule controls field, search and select the resource that you want to block or allow.
  3. Choose to Block or Allow the site, signature, category or Windows desktop app.
  4. Choose who to apply the rule to:
    • To apply the rule to the whole class, select the Whole class checkbox.
    • To apply the rule to specific students, deselect the Whole class checkbox, then search and select the name or username of the student in the This rule applies to field.  
  5. Select Add Rule

On the Rules panel, rules are sorted under signatures and categories, websites, and app controls (Windows only):


The class toolbar also shows how many rules are active for the class:


How soon do Rules apply to desktop apps?

Rules will start to allow or block desktop applications depending on when you added them.

  • During class: Immediately. 
  • Class is not in session: Up to 60 seconds from starting the class.
  • Student’s device is on Sleep Mode: Up to 60 seconds from waking up the device. If a rule for an app was created while the student’s device is on Sleep Mode, the student will receive a warning that the blocked app will close within 60 seconds when they wake up their device.

Editing Classwize Rules

You can edit Classwize Rules at any time. To edit a rule:

  1. Select Rules on the class toolbar.
  2. Select the Edit icon (pencil) next to the rule you want to change.
  3. Update the rule on the Edit class rule dialog, including: 
    • Allowing or Blocking the category, site, URL, or application.
    • Applying the Rule to a student or the whole class.
  4. Select Update.

To quickly Block or Allow a site or application, toggle its Blocked or Allowed slider on the Rules panel. 


Deleting Classwize Rules

You can remove individual Classwize Rules, or remove all rules at once.

Deleting a single Classwize Rule

  1. Select the Edit icon (pencil) for the rule you want to remove.
  2. On the Edit rule dialog, select Delete Rule.

Deleting all Classwize Rules

This is a permanent action and can't be undone.

  1. Select Rules on the class toolbar.
  2. Select Delete all on the Rules panel. 
  3. A confirmation window will appear. Select Delete to proceed with clearing all rules. 


See Classwize Rules FAQ and How Classwize Rules Work for more information about Classwize Rules.



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