Open Source Loaded USB Sticks for School Children

I stumbled upon an article on Yahoo about how the authorities in Paris are going to give 175,000 high school kids free USB sticks (pen drives) with a load of Open Source software installed. This is a great idea and far cheaper then issuing the kids with laptops etc. I have written before about portable applicatons, slimmed down versions of full Open Source applications designed to work on a USB stick. The kids just need access to a computer, either a friends, or at an internet cafe or at school and they can run their own software straight from the USB stick. USB sticks are really cheap these days and the software is of course free and legal to copy. It would be great to see a similar scheme here in the UK.