A 12-year-old schoolboy was forced to go without food for nine hours because his lunch “credit card” had run out.

Instead of allowing Darren Baker to pay for his pizza meal at a later date, his food was chucked in the bin and he went hungry.

Students at Stanley Park School now pre-pay for their school dinners in the same way you top up your mobile phone, which means children do not have to bring money to school.

But mum Jackie Baker’s home computer crashed the night before school and the family were unable to top up her son Darren’s lunch account on the system.

The following day when she approached a teacher about the problem, Mrs Baker was told not to worry as they would make sure he received his meal.

But when Darren chose his lunch and tried to pay he was told he didn’t have enough credit and his meal was binned.

Mrs Baker, of Taylor Road, Wallington, said: “I am absolutely incensed. He left home at 7.15am and didn’t eat again until he got home at 4pm.

“I have tried to speak to someone at the school about it, but they haven’t called me back yet.

“I’m so angry, I don’t even want an apology now, just assurances this will not happen again.”

Mrs Baker, who works at the Royal Marsden also went on to accuse the school of double standards.

She said: “The school never get tired of reminding us to feed our kids breakfast so they can concentrate, yet have the cheek to deny my son a £2 meal.”

David Taylor, headteacher at Stanley Park School, said: “Under no circumstances should any child go without lunch – this is a rare incident, which should not have taken place and we will make sure it does not happen again.

“Our cashless catering is designed to help parents pay for school meals more easily without children needing to bring money into school.

“Those having any difficulty with the system should contact their form tutor.”