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Marcus Reeeb (L), Ellen Harper, Elodie Oliver, Victoria Crichton and Will Adams, members of The Toronto All Stars Steel Orchestra, practise at Rosedale Public School, Toronto June 30 2011.

Fernando Morales/The Globe and Mail

The Toronto District School Board will save its cherished music program.

Trustees voted Wednesday night to balance its books by cutting nearly $30-million.

But a proposal to shave $2-million off the deficit by cutting back on itinerant music instructors was shelved. IMIs are musicians who lead bands and strings and steel pan groups in Grades 5 through 8.

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The money will be found through "in house savings," such as not filling staff vacancies.

Trustees were against cutting IMIs after a chorus of protests from parents and students. An online petition to stop the cuts had generated more than 10,000 signatures.

Trustees voted earlier this year to slash about 250 high-school teaching jobs, including special education teachers and guidance counsellors, to help deal with a $55-million shortfall.

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Education Reporter

Caroline Alphonso is an education reporter for The Globe and Mail. More

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