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The widely publicized defeat of bond issues in several major school districts last year did little to dampen the nation's overall spending on school construction.

An annual survey of educational construction conducted by American School & University magazine and printed in its May issue shows that spending on school construction again reached an all-time high in 1993, the ninth consecutive year of record-breaking growth.

The survey also indicates, however, that growth in the industry over the past three years has been relatively slow. The 1993 figure for total school-construction spending was only slightly above the level of 1992.

Districts last year completed construction worth almost $10.8 billion, with nearly 43 percent of that going toward new schools. Overall spending on education-related construction, which includes spending on higher-education facilities, came to $17.2 billion.

The Great Lakes region has emerged as one of the strongest in the country for school-construction spending, the survey notes.

One trend identified by the survey is that air-conditioning has become a standard feature of new school construction.

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