The superintendent of schools in Freeport, Pownal and Durham has resigned in his first year on the job.

Edward McDonough told Regional School Unit 5 directors he would step down effective June 30, citing “personal reasons that require my attention.” He submitted his resignation in a letter dated March 21 and the school board already has advertised for a new superintendent.

News of McDonough’s resignation on Friday came on the same day Durham residents voted not to pull out of RSU 5, which consolidated in 2009. The vote was 595 against, 259 in favor, Town Clerk Shannon Plourde said.

In November 2014, Freeport voters narrowly rejected a bid to leave the district. The vote lost by 76 votes, or less than 2 percent. The costs of renovating Freeport High spurred the rift, with voters in Durham and Pownal twice rejecting proposals to renovate the high school, but Freeport’s margin was big enough the second time to win approval.

McDonough was hired in February 2015 and began work last September. He had been superintendent in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and previously worked as a longtime teacher, coach and administrator in the Wells-Ogunquit school district.

His letter doesn’t elaborate on the personal reasons.

“I greatly enjoyed and appreciated working with so many wonderful and dedicated folks. I sincerely regret the inconvenience my departure may cause and I appreciate your understanding,” the letter says.


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