Special Needs Students Starting Up Coffee Shop at Midland High School

by Jen Kastner
NewsWest 9

MIDLAND- Students and staff around Midland High School will now have access to a specialty coffee bar on-campus. The best part is, it's run entirely by special needs students.

The Bulldog Bistro had its grand opening this week. Special needs students are serving up all sorts of specialty coffees like cappuccinos and mochas.

Life Skills/Special Needs Teacher's Assistant, Laura Marion, says, "These kids see themselves so differently from other kids but we don't treat them any differently from other kids. We want them to have the same opportunities that the other kids have."

The students are treating their roles in running the shop like they would with real jobs. The district is even paying them for their work.

"They are so excited. We teach them social skills and business skills," Marion said.

"I was real excited to hear we'd have a coffee shop right down the hall from my classroom," Teacher, Justin Walker, said. "My marketing students from my classes are actually going to be the ones advertising and promoting and spreading the word."

We're told students have even been getting to school early in the morning to grab a cup of Bulldog brew before class.