There are a wealth of free template sites available to people who are not designers or do not have the time to spend crafting a site, so there is no excuse for stealing a design from another site. A student would be seriously reprimanded, if not expelled if this were a term paper.
Now, I understand that the best way to learn (D/X)HTML, is to read the source code from good sites on the Web. When I was learning, I often copied the source code of other site to tinker with, providing me the ability to see how the code works. However, I didn’t publish it to the Web and I sure as hell didn’t build a site around it.
Just because the theft is easy, does not make it any less wrong.