Schools across the North East are owed nearly £200,000 in unpaid school dinner money, according to a Freedom of Information Act request.
In most councils there has been an increase in the amount owed, forcing councils to take the money from the rest of the education budget.
Some families owe more than £800, while more and more are struggling to pay.
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Gale force winds and spells of rain to start the weekend. The Met Office have now issued a warning
Paul Brand meets more parliamentary candidates in our last political programme before the General Election. Watch it here: