Back in January, Microsoft acquired MinecraftEdu, an organization dedicated to using the popular, blocky game as an educational tool. At the time, it announced that it would make Minecraft: Education Edition available to teachers this summer.
Over the summer, Microsoft offered an early access program in which over 35,000 students and teachers were able to use the new tools, and provide feedback to the company to help it "fine-tune the experience across a diverse set of learning environments".
Today, Microsoft announced that Minecraft: Education Edition will be available to buy on November 1. Its launch will be accompanied by new capabilities:
Classroom Mode: A companion app for Minecraft: Education Edition that enables educators to manage world settings, communicate with students, give items and teleport students in the Minecraft world. It displays a map view of the Minecraft world, a list of all the students in the world, a set of world management settings and a chat window. There is even a Minecraft clock to show time of day in the world. Classroom Mode offers educators the ability to interact with students and manage settings from a central user interface.
New Minecraft game features: We will continue to update Minecraft: Education Edition to include new game features from other editions of Minecraft. All the latest updates to Minecraft: Windows 10 Edition beta will be included, such as leads and horses, additional player skins, pistons and the remainder of Redstone functionality and an updated user interface.
Microsoft will be offering the full version of Minecraft: Education Edition for $5 per user per year, "or through a district-wide licensing model". According to this blog post, it will be supported not only on Windows 10, but also on OS X El Capitan or higher.
Source: Windows Blog