President Obama and 6 other famous people who wrote excuse notes for students

When Mom and Dad aren't around, sometimes the president of the United States will have to do

President Obama helps a little man out
(Image credit: CC BY: The White House)

When students are late for school, it's standard practice to provide a note explaining their tardiness. Parents are usually recruited to sign the notes, but in some instances, students have amazed administrators with handwritten gems from celebrities and politicians. Here, a look at 7 famous people who have vouched for students and kept them out of trouble:

1. The president of the United States

When kids play hooky from school, the last thing they would expect is for the leader of the free world to have their back. But in June of last year, President Obama issued 11-year-old Tyler Sullivan the "ultimate excuse note," after Tyler attended an Obama campaign rally in Minnesota. When Tyler met Obama after his remarks to the crowd, the president expressed concern about Tyler's academic standing. The note read: "Mr Ackerman — Please excuse Tyler... He was with me! Barack Obama."

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2. A German dictator

To be clear, this is where similarities between the two leaders end, despite what some might say. In 1934, while waiting to see Chancellor Adolf Hitler, a group of young students started to worry when they realized that Hitler was taking longer than expected. One quick-thinking youth pulled out a piece of paper, and wrote, "We couldn't return to our class room because we wanted to see our leader. Please give this your valuable signature." When Hitler's car finally approached, the student handed him the note. The Nazi warlord reportedly laughed, and then signed it. We're guessing the note was accepted without demur.

3. A New Jersey governor

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R), a townhall veteran, has fielded a lot of questions, but nothing quite like the one he got from 11-year-old Peter Schwartz in May of last year. After he asked the governor what was being done to reduce bullying in schools, Peter also requested an excuse from class to be at the town hall. Christie first responded to Peter's question about bullying, then flipped over a "reserved seating" sign to scribble a note. He told Peter to tell his teacher that it was okay he missed school "because you were with me."

4. A Connecticut governor

A 10-year-old accompanied his mother to a local Chamber of Commerce breakfast in 1995 that featured Gov. John Rowland (R) as a guest speaker, and when Rowland spotted the boy in the audience he offered an excuse note. "Please excuse Michael for being late. He was learning about state government," the governor wrote. Rowland wasn't kidding, either: The student had questioned the governor about the state's income tax when the conversation was opened to the floor.

5. A Jonas brother

After doing a radio show in 2010, Nick Jonas was hounded by female fans, many of whom should have been in school instead of waiting outside for the teen idol. One lucky fan not only got a signed poster, but a signed late note. Jonas wrote that the student should be excused because she was "rehearsing" with him at the time. No word on whether school officials accepted this as a valid reason for her absence.

6. A baseball player

During a photo op in January, two Detroit Tigers players served donuts and coffee at a Michigan Dunkin' Donuts, which led to the store being swamped by fans. Pitcher Phil Coke offered some relief to two high school students who had waited longer than expected. With their breakfast, Coke gave them a piece of notebook paper signed, "Please excuse these guys for being tardy."

7. A comedian

Scottish entertainer Harry Lauder and his company would routinely travel on trains, and on one morning in 1932 they were running a bit slower than usual. That didn't sit well for nine Spokane, Wash., girls who had to make it to school by the opening bell. So they appealed to the conductor to write a late notice for them, a request that eventually made its way to Lauder himself. He happily signed the note, and apologized to the teacher for the delay. "This is my first autograph of a famous man," the teacher said when she received the note. "I'm starting a collection now. I guess I'll try the prince of Wales, if ever he comes this way."

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