SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — A retired Scranton police officer is taking his first-hand experience and turning it into a guide for schools across the nation.

Joe Harris spent over a decade working at the Scranton Police Department.

In his line of duty, Harris created risk assessments for not only major events like the St. Patrick’s parade and the Scranton half marathon, but also for school districts like Carbondale.

“It’s hanging around the school just like a bad guy would determining vulnerable areas of the school, weak points to attack the school, site security, there’s a lot of time you need to invest into that school the same way an adversary would invest if he wanted to plan an attack.”

The biggest issue he found was that there wasn’t a standardized plan being followed across school districts in our area or across county lines.

Harris says that lack of standardization is an issue and steps should be taken to be more proactive.

“An active shooter drill for instance, that is something that we’re going to do if all of our security measures have been breached. But the whole idea and objective is to prevent it from happening.”

So he spent the last three years utilizing his first-hand experience here in Lackawanna County to cultivate a blueprint for standardized school safety.

“I was able to put it into one book. Start to finish, this would give you the opportunity to know everything you need to know about school security or at least have a pretty good foundation.”

Keeping our young and brightest protected.