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New York State Reading Association

The New York State Reading Association (NYSRA) is an all-inclusive volunteer organization of members who are passionate about literacy.  We share and support efforts to improve literacy education for people of all ages on local, state and global levels.  We are teachers, librarians, parents, students, writers, researchers and professors.  We welcome anyone to join us either as an at-large member, or better yet, through one of our many local councils!

NYSRA Conference 2023 Update - The Schedule of Presentations is Complete.  Click here to view.
Please note: the schedule may be subject to change with or without notification.

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Member News: After 44 years, Herkimer BOCES teacher, Mary Kline receives Outstanding Educator Award!

Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES Director of Adult, Early Childhood and Outreach Education Mary Kline recently received an Outstanding Educator Award at the Genesis Group’s annual Celebration of Education.

As Kline nears 44 years at Herkimer BOCES in January 2023 and retirement in June 2023, she reflected on going to college with plans to become a reading teacher, starting out doing substitute teaching, working as a teacher aide, joining Herkimer BOCES as a migrant tutor in January 1979, becoming the migrant coordinator and taking on additional administrative roles over the years.

Kline said she is happy with the path her career took. She has enjoyed the job because her involvement with multiple programs provided her with a variety of experiences and kept each day feeling unique.

“You have so many different programs to work with, and they all help people – which I like,” she said. “And I’ve worked with wonderful staff – some of them worked with me for more than 30 years.”

Kline received the Outstanding Educator Award on Thursday, Nov. 17, at the Genesis Group’s annual Celebration of Education at Hart’s Hill Inn in Whitesboro. Kline was also a recipient of the School Administrators Association of New York State Leadership and Support Award in 2016.

Outstanding Educator

When Kline was first notified by Herkimer BOCES District Superintendent Sandra Sherwood that she won the Genesis Group Outstanding Educator Award, it felt “sort of humbling,” she said.

“It was also nice to be recognized for serving in the various capacities that I operated in,” she said.

Kline had previously worked as a substitute teacher and was working as a teacher aide in the former Ilion Central School District, when the Herkimer BOCES migrant coordinator was in her graduate class and mentioned a migrant tutor opportunity. Kline accepted the position in January 1979, and it turned into a 44-year career at Herkimer BOCES.

Later on, Kline became the new migrant coordinator. Then through her involvement with an Even Start Program grant that dealt with various aspects of education from early childhood to adult, doors opened for her to take on administrative duties in those areas. She added the Adult Practical Nursing Program and other aspects, and the position continued to have shifts in responsibilities over the years leading to her current title of director of adult, early childhood and outreach education.  To read the remainder of the press release published on, click here.

Click here watch a video of the presentation available on YouTube.

Dr. Pat Shea-Bischoff
Dr. Pat Shea-Bischoff Speaker Procurement Mini-Grant

The New York State Reading Association is honored to announce the Dr. Pat Shea-Bischoff  Speaker Procurement Mini-Grant. This award is intended to provided financial assistance for New York State Reading Association local chapters for procurement of a speaker(s) for professional development events and is in honor of Dr. Shea-Bischoff's tireless work to help promote and provide literacy professional development in New York State and beyond.

New York State Reading Association local councils are permitted to submit one application per fiscal year for up to $250. Please complete this application as accurately and completely as possible. Contact Keith Newvine at with any questions.

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