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.
More top news
A pair of seals have been released back into the wild after spending a week at the Tynemouth Blue Reef Aquarium.
The Ed's Diner customer was left a little green after discovering he was sharing his meal with something that was not on the menu.
The two men had to be separated on the touchline as Hull drew 1-1 with visiting Sunderland last night.