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Schools in the Anglia region are missing out on more than £22 million in government funding just because some parents don't want to register their children for free school meals.
The pupil premium gives £900 to schools for every pupil who has signed up for the benefit. They can then use the money to support disadvantaged pupils.
But many believe the stigma attached to getting free school meals is stopping parents registering and stopping schools getting the vital cash.
Click below to watch a report from ITV News Anglia's Elodie Harper
Schools across the region are losing more than twenty two million pounds a year in government funding because some parents aren't claiming free school meals.
Figures from the Department for Education show that twenty five thousand pupils aren't claiming the meals they're entitled to.
Schools are given an extra nine hundred pounds a year to help bridge the attainment gap between those claiming free school meals and those who aren't.