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A week ago Wednesday, three students at Southside High School sensed a student in trouble. They didn't know how troubled he was, but they didn't wait to find out.

Instead, they sought help for Jeremy Getman, the student who police say had smuggled enough bombs and weapons into school to injure or kill untold numbers of students and staff. As it turned out, the students' act of alerting Southside authorities averted what could have been a major tragedy.

The students have not been identified by authorities, although students in school and the staff know who they are. Publicizing their names is not nearly as important now as publicizing their sensitivity and quick action. What those students did during that tense time at Southside last Wednesday can never be overstated.

Rather than ignore Getman or fear being perceived as tattletales, the students went for help. It was an act that not only defused a potentially dangerous situation, but one that also showed compassion for a disturbed teen. Their quick thinking was the latest in a series of similar situations around the United States recently.

In February alone, two other Southside-like incidents -- one in Fort Collins, Colo., and another in Palm Harbor, Fla. -- occurred when students tipped off authorities to plots by other students to attack or bomb their schools.

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