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Average increases in principals' salaries are on the rise again, although they remain well below what they were in the late 1980's, a new report shows.

Salaries for the 1993-94 school year are about 3 percent higher than those of 1992-93 for principals of public elementary, middle, and high schools, according to the report released last month by the National Association of Secondary School Principals. Average salary increases in the late 1980's were between 6 percent and 8 percent.

"We are gratified to see that compensation for school leaders is on the upswing again, especially when many school systems are facing tight economic times,'' Paul W. Hersey, the director of professional assistance for NASSP, said in a statement.

High school principals this year are paid an average of $64,993, a 2.98 percent increase from last year. Middle school principals earn an average of $60,651, an increase of 3.35 percent, while elementary school principals earn an average of $56,906, a 3.52 percent increase. The highest salary reported in the survey was $108,674.

The salary report is based on data collected by the Educational Research Service from more than 1,000 school districts.

Copies of the "Administrative Information Report'' (Publication 1609402) are available for $2 each from NASSP Publication Sales, 1094 Association Dr., Reston, Va. 22091.

Video-Game Ratings: A coalition of major companies in the video-game industry has announced a system for rating games for violence and mature themes.

An independent board of educators, parents, child-development experts, and others will rate the games, according to the proposal unveiled this month by the Interactive Entertainment Industry Rating System Committee.

The committee includes Nintendo of America Inc. and Sega of America Inc. When industry representatives first appeared before a Congressional hearing in December to announce their intention to develop a ratings system, officials of those two companies traded barbs about the violence levels in each others' games. (See Education Week, Dec. 15, 1993.)

The industry's proposal calls for a voluntary advertising code, a requirement that game producers submit the most extreme content for rating, and sanctions against companies that use fraud to secure ratings.

Representatives of two major video-game retailers, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Toys "R'' Us Inc., said they would carry only rated games once the system was in place.

Education Record: The proportion of Americans who have finished high school or who have earned at least a bachelor's degree has reached record levels, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

In 1993, 80.2 percent of people 25 and older had finished high school, and 21.9 percent had earned a bachelor's degree. The Census report attributes the higher education levels to population shifts, with the proportion of younger, more educated people getting larger as the pool of older, less educated people shrinks. In 1993, among people ages 35 to 44, nearly 87 percent had finished high school, compared with about 52 percent of people 75 and older.

Copies of "How We're Changing, Demographic State of the Nation: 1994'' are available from the bureau's customer-services office by calling (301) 763-4100.

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