Varmicide, It's a great thing you are doing! I'm inclined to agree that the 308 has it's advantages. Cheap surplus ammo is available, the barrel will last forever and there are more numerable components. If I had a choice of rifle to keep forever for 800 I would pick a Remington PSS, but since optics are included in that price the savage is unbeatable for the money.
My father had the same affliction, right handed, almost blind in his right eye. He tried to do the same thing as your protege. It didn't work well for him so he went with left handed rifles
. If the youngster learns now he will do well.
It's kinda funny, I'm going to have to buy 2 of every rifle in the future. My 4 year old is right handed, 1 year old is a southpaw. I can tell that the youngest is the shooter! My friends say the same thing.