Kelty said that officers are positioned at the back entrance of the elementary school off Moberly Road, the main entrances to King Middle and the high school, the high school bus entrance and the intersection where Bohon Rd. crosses the bypass.
In light of current calls for all departments to rein in spending, Kelty said he has no choice but to deploy a minimum of six officers before and after school.
"In the three weeks since school has been back we have spent around $1,300 in overtime, or around $400 a week and that's just salaries," he said. "Benefits would make that around $1,000 per week."
Kelty said that he is most worried about the difficulty the police department would have fulfilling public safety duties should an emergency take place during a stint directing traffic.
"The one thing that scares me the most is that during those hours we have every available officer tied up," he said. "So far we have been lucky, because we haven't had any emergency calls, but if we were to have one we are going to have to break off from directing traffic. That would bring things over there to a complete stop.
In order to cut down on the manpower necessary to conduct traffic, signs had been ordered and were expected by Monday that will be installed on barricades in the parking lots of the high school and middle school.
This could eliminate the need for at least two officers directing traffic in those parking areas.
Several alternatives that would free up officers and unclog traffic, including staggering start and finish times, were discussed at Monday's meeting.
Mercer County Superintendent "Sonny" Fentress spoke about possible solutions to the problem, including adding service roads.
Fentress said that there were tentative plans in place for improving service roads or making additional routes for bus travel.
However, he urged patience considering the cost of such moves and did not offer a timetable for when a road may be added.
"We are looking into building a road on our own (senior high school) property," he said. "Unfortunately, that's not going to happen overnight. We realize this is a problem for all schools and we want to do everything we can to alleviate that before a more permanent solution is reached."
Some questioned whether it would be possible for school personnel to take on the traffic directing responsibilities.
Fentress said that safety and liability issues had made using school employees in traffic situation problematic.
"We used to be able to put teachers and other employees out in the afternoon and mornings to direct," he said. "The issue with that is that there have been several lawsuits in the state of Kentucky. The insurance has caused a problem."
Kelty said that he knows that things can get a little tense when traffic grinds to a halt.
"I know people are frustrated, because we are frustrated," he said. "But it has gotten better since three weeks ago and we are doing the best we can."