BB, I agree with Peter G's response to your comment with regard to the number of school graduates who show their appreciation to their teachers when they are successful at creating a life built on their passions and skills: the ones whom teachers hear from are the relatively few who benefit thusly from their schooling. I think that referring to them as "most" is what is most problematic. If "most" school graduates (let alone those who don't graduate, and not by choice) found school so beneficial, I would expect that "most" adults would be earning a living doing what they love.

I daresay, this has not been my experience of the world, nor is it reflected in the common culture's traditional view of work--"jobs" vs. passions or even careers. Look at the millions upon millions of school graduates who complain about their jobs, celebrate TGIF, talk about Wednesday as "Hump Day" and whine about Blue Mondays. Do you really think most paper-shufflers--all those chained to a desk or a telephone, processing piles of printed forms whether for a hospital, a retail operation, a government agency or any other institution really love what they are doing and would complain about an extra holiday or snow day?

They may come to like, even care about, their fellow workers, but the truth is, I am certain, that very, very few would return to work if they won the lottery and were no longer dependent upon their paycheck. They do what they do because they get paid to do it. The kind of passionate workers that Peter is describing certainly has moments when they aren't thrilled with their work, but overall they are doing what they most want to be doing with their time.

When I hear talk of "most people", I think of the ones I come into contact with outside of my career--the ones I see in the outside world. The vast majority of those folks would much rather be earning a living doing something else. I believe that their forced schooling has convinced them that this is the way life is for all but the most fortunate. It makes me so sad for them.