top of page

A School Put An Autistic Boy's Desk In A Bathroom

Lucas Goodwin, an 11 year old at Whatcom Middle school, showed up to school last week only to find his desk missing. The 11 year old was told by his teacher, that his seat was in the bathroom. After his mother, Danielle Goodwin requested Lucas seat be moved to a more quiet place, so he can be more attentive to his school work. Due to Lucas having autism as well as a pediatric autoimmune neuropsychiatric disorder, his mother wanted him to do his work in a more calm space. According to the NYTimes Goodwin wrote in a post on social media "My son was humiliated, embarrassed and disgusted at this inhumane suggestion that he work in a bathroom." According to his mother, the teacher also put a sleeping mat in the bathroom, expecting him to take a nap there as well.

Greg Baker the superintendent of the school district stated the bathroom the desk was in is considered a re-purpose room. It is not an active bathroom but is intended to be used as an extra room, although no students have actually used the room just yet. Baker also went on about the low funding for the school and the space to meet students needs are limited. The school's budget is a little lower than expected. Vice President of public policy for the autism society of America states the schools decision to use a bathroom as a quiet place to work didn't pass any common sense rule. Ms. Goodwin was still shocked to know the school didn't take her suggestion using the library as a quiet place.

Since the incident Lucas has been home with his mother. In the new interview he stated he didn't want to go back to the school because they put his desk in a bathroom. This is beyond not having common sense. I don't understand why the library wasn't the first thought considering it is a quiet space. Considering he has autism they could have put him somewhere with adult supervision. Even the office would have been a better space than an old bathroom. I understand it's turning into a re-purpose room but considering there is still a toilet and sink and bathroom necessity they could have thought a little more into this placement. The audacity to put a sleeping mat in the bathroom, new or old is unsanitary to say the least. The mother of the incident has hired a lawyer Shannon McMinimee states of her 16 years she has never seen anything so weird. It's not certain if the Mother is filing a civil suit but some type of action is going to be necessary for this incident.


bottom of page