Our community has lost a wonderful teacher, community supporter and friend. Roberta, "Bobbie," Savolskis died July 13, 2012 after a short battle with brain cancer.
Bobbie taught for many years in the adult school of the Yosemite Unified School District and taught right up until May of 2012. Her task was to help those who had not completed their high school diploma to do so, and to help Yosemite High School students who needed an extra class or two to get back on track for graduation.
She worked well into her 70s because she loved helping students, young or old, reach their goals. Her students appreciated her help and she is remembered for holding them to high standards. A recent adult school graduate, Ron Taylor, said of Bobbie, "She was a great teacher and she really helped me a lot. I wouldn't have been able to make it through school without her help. She meant a lot to me."
Bobbie often commented proudly on the lives of past graduates and how many had gone on to become local business owners and college graduates. She was a staunch supporter of providing alternative pathways to learning and earning a diploma.
In her spare time, Bobbie was a volunteer with the Mountain Area Literacy Council (MALCO) and helped many non-English speakers gain the language skills needed to succeed in the United States. One of these students went on to write a book about becoming a U.S. citizen, in which he remembered the help he got from Bobbie.
Bobbie's colleagues will remember her for her feisty personality, dedication to education, professionalism in the classroom, wonderful homemade treats and her flair for fashion. She was a dedicated wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. No graduation, wedding, or birthday party was too far away for her to attend.
As I shared at a memorial celebration last weekend, "Bobbie showed us all how to work with integrity and live with zest. She lived her beliefs and shared her talents with family, friends and students." I wanted to share this in the Star so that the many hundreds of local past students and community members touched by Bobbie's life will know of her passing.
Mary Beth Harrison, Oakhurst