If I understand this correctly, it is more about the complete process instead of it being an assignment from his shop teacher to seek an experienced woodworker and antagonize his life. So my first thought is, get him to figure the cost (total cost including labor) for a handmade desk, then go to a "naked furniture" (no not go naked, but you know, one of those stores where you buy the furniture ready to for assembly and finish). Buy a kit desk and chair and then let him put it all together, same situation, less exposure to spinning sawblades. You could be the mentor on his learning to read directions, layout the parts and put together in a consice manner. Also, if they are trying to get some custom furniture out of you through the back door, you just bamboozled them!
God and family, the rest is icing on the cake.
I'm so far behind, I think I'm in first place.
Premier Bovine Scatologist
Host of the 2015 FAMILY WOODWORKING GATHERING