There are certainly some bad teachers who put a quick end to the curiosity in their student base. I had a teacher in middle school literally pull me aside and inform me that (no joke) I was not allowed to READ anymore because the books I wanted to read (taken from the school library, at that) were "unfit and ungodly". But regardless of those regrettable few teachers, I think most of it is curriculum. I lived with an English teacher for a while who would routinely come home from work shouting about the god-damned-awful-shit-for-brains-no-talent-hack-book he had to teach. It is a shame that more caring, intelligent teachers don't get to teach what they actually know and love.
Oddly, despite being a misfit, anarcho-punk, auto-didactic little prick, I had a great experience in high school. My english/creative writing teacher gave me some of the best advice, experience, and education I'll likely ever have, and he was very accepting of whatever we threw his way. I once turned in a story about a person trying to commit suicide but failing because of his severe OCD - which at the time I thought was riotously funny - and he gave me an A and told me to never, ever bring it back into the school or he'd have to red flag me. I don't know so many teachers who would be that open and open-minded - and we're still friends to this day. (It also reminds me of a time when I wrote on a national standardized test about committing insurance fraud by burning down the school to buy new books and computers, except that one actually landed me in the principal's office to be searched for - exact phrase - "kerosene and grenades"...but that's a bit different)
What would you all say is the worst book you had to read in high school? Or best? Or most life-altering situation in terms of reading and writing?