Recent battles over school funding, performance evaluations and tenure have given rise to public perceptions of a beleaguered teaching corps across the United States.

But a new analysis of polling data from the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index that examines “well-being” as measured by a number of indicators, including physical and emotional health, job satisfaction and feelings of community and safety, found that teachers ranked second only to physicians.

In addition, teachers ranked above all other professions in answers to questions about whether they “smiled or laughed yesterday,” as well as whether they experienced happiness and enjoyment the day before the survey.

(Hat tip to Chris Maher of Mass Insight Education)