One issue that mamas bring up over and over again is about students starting high school classes early, while they are still in junior high. My answer to that question is different today than it would have been 25 years ago.

These devoted mamas can tell that their children are advanced students. They are confident that their child can handle high school courses and these mamas are absolutely correct. However, today my heart says this: just because your child can do something doesn’t necessarily mean that he or she should do it.

What’s the rush? Would your child benefit more from the high school course if he or she waited for more maturity? If you rush ahead, will your child skip over a fascinating junior high course? 

I worry about children starting high school too soon and I worry even more about dual enrollment. It is possible that a homeschooled child will end up with a Christian professor teaching their dual credit history, English, biology, or sociology course. It is also possible, in some cases even likely, that he or she will end up with an atheistic professor bent on destroying the faith of his students.

The first scenario of a class with a Christian professor might come just at the right time in the life of a student to lead him or her to deeper faith. On the other hand, the atheistic professor might instruct a child whose brain is ready for the course but whose heart and soul are vulnerable to the professor’s agenda. In that case, just because your child can do something doesn’t necessarily mean that he or she should—no matter how many tuition dollars it might save.

Remember Jesus’ words about that in Matthew: "For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?" Education is a matter of heart, soul, mind, and body—not just a matter of the mind. What a child is ready for in the mind and body, he or she might not be ready for in the heart and soul.