Apple and the US state of Maine are negotiating to find a way to extend that state's program of providing Mac notebooks to high-school students.

Associated Press reports the two sides are "working to determine the minimum level of participation needed" to extend the scheme.

At present a dozen school districts in the state are willing to engage in their own leasing agreements with Apple to extend the scheme, but the State is attempting to gauge if there is enough support for a money-saving State-wide scheme.

The Maine scheme was the first of its kind in the US, and went ahead despite vociferous protest from some parties. It currently empowers over 30,000 students there with their own notebook.

If the four-year rental program that's been proposed goes ahead at a District level it will cost $365 per notebook per year; at a state level costs fall to $300 per notebook per year, with savings driven by the economies of scale.

More details are expected on June 22.