ORONO, Maine — Superintendent Joanne Harriman announced Wednesday that she is leaving her post of three years for one that is closer to her coastal home.

“I have made the decision to leave Orono to pursue other challenges nearer to family and our home on the Down East coast,” Harriman said in a farewell post in a blog distributed to parents and the community.

On Friday, she said the move will put her in more direct contact with students.

“Those ​who know me well know that for some time now I have been longing for a more direct connection to kids and their learning,” Harriman said in a Friday email. “With that in mind, I am so pleased to share that I have accepted the position of Ella Lewis School principal in Steuben.”

​Ella Lewis School is a prekindergarten-through-eighth-grade school in Regional School Unit 24, and the superintendent is Michael Eastman.

Harriman said she is pleased and grateful for her time in Orono.

“I certainly enjoyed living and working in that community but I am thrilled to be back and serving in the Down East region, closer to my children and grandchildren, our farm in Hancock and to the sea,” the superintendent said.

She will continue to work in Orono over the summer as the board looks for her replacement.

“Right now the board has said that they are going to keep me for the full 90 days my contract specifies as notice or until they find a replacement, whichever comes first,” Harriman said.

Harriman said she will miss many of the people — students and staff — she worked with in Orono.

“I am thankful to have worked with many caring and committed faculty and staff members and to have been witness to the many accomplishments of the amazing young people we serve,” the superintendent said. “I am also very proud to be leaving this school system in better shape than the condition in which I found it three years ago.”