Apple's laptop deal with Cobb County hangs in the balance this morning, as opponents resort to the courts.

Critics of the scheme claim it's a waste of state money. If the judge agrees, it would mean the judge would limit the powers of the school board responsible.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that former county commissioner Butch Thompson is "embarrassed" to take legal action, in which he accuses school officials of planning to misspend taxpayers' money by using proceeds from a 1 per cent sales tax to start the scheme.

Cobb County School District has a program called "Power To Learn". The aim is that Apple will furnish every student and teacher in the education district with iBook G4s.

The scheme has already begun, with iBooks being distributed to some of the state's 7,100 teachers. Four schools have also been declared as pilot sites, "where students will get iBooks in the coming school year". Middle school computer labs will be upgraded later this year.

The deal will cost $70 million (raised through the special sales tax) to launch, after which it will cost "about $20 million annually", the report claims.

A decision on the opponents legal action is due within 45 days.