The first day of school for my children is less than a month away.  I know this not because I looked at the calendar, but rather because my children have started to bemoan their pending fate.

On the upside, today Microsoft posted several free template solutions on their SharePoint Services site including one for Classroom Management.  I installed the template on my test server and was up and running on my existing SharePoint installation in about 5 minutes.  There are two templates included: a basic and a customizable one.  The basic template includes repositories for a syllabus, lecture materials, assignments, calendar, and just about everything else an instructor needs to organize their class work.

In order to install the template you must have Administrator Rights to both the root of the Windows SharePoint Server and to the server box that it lives on.

After unpacking the file you download from the Web in to a folder on the server machine. Navigate to your top-level Windows SharePoint Services Site.

Click on Site Settings at the top of the page, and go to Site Administration under the Administration section.

Under the Site Collection Galleries section, click on the Manage Site Template Gallery, and choose Upload Template and browse to the location where you unpacked the site template. . Give the template a title and description.

Now in order to create a site using the template you just installed to the gallery, you must navigate again to your Windows SharePoint Services Site. Click Create on the top link bar, and scroll to the bottom of the page and select Sites and Workspaces.

Give your site a title, description and URL, and click Create. This might seem out of order, but next you will select the template you just installed from the list of available templates. Presto! You have a new classroom site!