If you are unable to initiate or participate in chats on Microsoft Teams, your IT administrator may have enabled chat safety settings for your classroom. Learn more about the various settings and permissions that can limit chat capabilities.

Disabled private chat

If you’re unable to participate in any chats in Microsoft Teams, your school's IT Administrator may have disabled private chat. If that's the case, you can still communicate with your class or ask your educator a question. Post your questions or comments in a channel and use @mention with your educator's name to engage them.

Start a new Conversation, use @ to mention someone

Note: Other students will be able to see your question.

Limited chat permissions

If you can participate in chats but are unable to start your own, your IT Admin may have enabled supervised chat settings or given you limited or restricted chat permissions.

Supervised chat settings

Supervised chat settings help make class chats safer by ensuring that an educator is present in every student chat. Educators can initiate chats with students and students can initiate chats as long as they include an appropriate educator.

Educators cannot leave or be removed from these chats, ensuring that all student chats remain supervised.

Limited chat permissions

You may have limited chat permissions if you can start chats with supervisors or other limited users, but not with students who have restricted permissions.

A chat supervisor can add you to a chat they are supervising. 

Note: Only educators and school staff can be chat supervisors.

If supervised chat is enabled in your institution, you may see errors when you try to: 

  • Create a chat with users who have restricted permissions.

  • Add users who have restricted permissions to a chat.

  • Remove a chat supervisor from a chat they're supervising.

Restricted chat permissions

Restricted permissions are usually applied to students at an educational institution. If you have restricted permissions, you can't initiate chats with anyone who has limited or restricted permissions. However, you can start chats with a chat supervisor (educator).

You can also participate in any chat you're invited to by a chat supervisor. You won't be able to remove or add others to chats. 

If you have restricted permissions, you might see errors if you try to: 

  • Create chats with participants who have limited or restricted permissions.

  • Add or remove participants in a chat.

  • Remove a supervisor from a chat they are supervising.

Learn more

Supervised chats in Microsoft Teams for Education

Keep students safe on Microsoft Teams

Using the Conversations tab

Ask your educator for help

Additional resources for educators

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