The community is mourning the loss of Robert Allan Bancroft, a former Ferndale High School science teacher who died July 13 at age 69.
Bancroft spent more than 40 years working with Ferndale Public Schools teaching science and technology. He retired in 2008 and has been living in Onsted.
Bancroft is survived by his wife Pat, his son Sean Kelly Bancroft, his daughter Kirsten Sue (Wesley) Preston, and his grandsons Connor Allan and Ryan Curtis Preston, according to Handler Funeral Home of Tecumseh. View his full obituary here.
"He was the innovator," said Ferndale Schools director of community relations Stephanie Hall, pointing out Bancroft's work to bring new technology to the district.
He also worked with his students in a collaborative way - acting more as their manager as he ran the high school's TV studio. "He allowed a lot of freedom and a lot of problem solving," Hall said. "If something was not working he would talk them through it."
Former students were saddened by the news and there has been an outpouring of support to Bancroft's family, Hall said. "I've heard people saying 'He was a science teacher who really made me think, he really challenged me,'" she said.