Maine may be about as far from Cupertino as one can get in America, but there's still a serious connection between the state and company. In an effort to distribute even more OS X-based machines
to students within its public school system, Maine has ordered up 64,000 additional Apple notebooks for schools. In case you couldn't guess, Maine is the only state in America that provides laptops to every last public school student
The move was part of the Department of Education's decision to expand the Maine Learning Technology Initiative into all public high schools, a program that has been ongoing since 2002. Apple competed with an undisclosed amount of other computer makers for the first and latest bids, with the earliest order of 7,000 more machines coming in a few weeks. Education Commissioner Sue Gendron had this to say about the order and the program at large: "We have seen incredible success with our middle schools showing increased student engagement and achievement with MLTI in place and we want to bring this same opportunity to our high schools. This is not just about technology – it’s about using the technology to support education. Apple has been a great partner and consistently demonstrates that it understands the need to provide a complete solution that puts education first. We're very excited about the new school year."
The laptop package provided by Apple includes a wide array of educational software, professional development, repair and replacement and technical support. In addition to learning how to use technology, students do research, write and edit, conduct online simulations and take online tutorials. It seems as if the latest batch of notebooks will be MacBooks, but it's hard to say if students will receive the lone remaining white MacBook or the just-phased-out aluminum 13" MacBook
. Either way, we doubt Maine students will be complaining.