Einstein football Coach Jermaine Howell resigned Tuesday, stepping down after three seasons.

Howell, 40, said Wendsday that he decided to leave the job to spend more time with his family. The school activated the search for a new coach this week, according Einstein Athletic Director Patrick Belott. Belott expects the position to be filled by the end of December, and Howell said he will help with the transition. He will remain at the Kensington school as a physical education teacher.

Howell announced his decision to the team Tuesday. He said he had to practice his speech several times out of fear of breaking down emotionally, adding that he decided he would resign about a month ago.

“It was tough, holding back,” Howell said.

Einstein finished 4-5 this season, fourth in the Montgomery County 3A division. He finished his three-year tenure with 14 wins. In all, he coached nine years at Einstein as both an assistant and head coach, which followed coaching stints at Wheaton, Paint Branch and Riverdale Baptist.

Howell’s best season came in 2012, when he led the Titans to a 6-4 record and a near berth to the Maryland 3A playoffs. It was the school’s first winning record in at least 12 years. He also groomed a number of players who went on to play at the next level — at least 12 former Einstein players played college football this fall, Howell said.

“I always told our kids, I thought we were as good as any team in the county. We’re not as deep, but if you put in the work you’ll be able to compete,” Howell said. “Every time we lined up, we were prepared and ready to go. Regardless of the score, we were prepared and ready. . . that was one of the things we wanted to continue to breed was work eithic, confidence, and build yourself for the future.”