Toronto Mayor Rob Ford skipped five and a half hours of a meeting of the executive committee that he chairs on Monday in order to coach football. 

The mayor was gone from the meeting — which got underway at 10 a.m. and took a one-hour lunch break at 12:30 p.m. — from 2:30 p.m. until 8 p.m.

"He was coaching, but note it's extremely rare that his football duties conflict with his council responsibilities," said the mayor's press secretary George Christopoulos in a Tuesday email.

"He was comfortable leaving knowing there were no contentious issues remaining on [the executive] agenda and the fact that the remaining items were left in the capable hands of other committee members."

After the mayor left the meeting, he missed a vote that approved a move to issue a request for proposals for a private operator to run Casa Loma and another on a review of the city's anti-discrimination policy.

The mayor coaches the Don Bosco Catholic Secondary School Eagles.