Pitt Hopkins Day

All the support just makes my heart happy.
— Melissa Krueger, Mason's mom

There are only about 1,000 people in the world who have Pitt Hopkins Syndrome. One of them is Mason Krueger, a student in Kim Nowak’s Early Childhood Special Education Classroom at Higgins Elementary.

To commemorate Pitt Hopkins Awareness Day on September 18, Nowak and paraprofessionals Sue Slayton and Kristen Pearson purchased t-shirts in honor of Mason and in hopes of finding a cure.


What is Pitt Hopkins?

Pitt Hopkins Syndrome (PTHS) is a rare genetic disorder affecting a specific gene in chromosome 18, called TCF4. PTHS is characterized by developmental delay, possible breathing problems of episodic hyperventilation and/or breath-holding while awake (55%-60%), recurrent seizures/epilepsy (40%-50%), gastrointestinal issues, lack of speech, and distinctive facial features. As we learn more about Pitt Hopkins, the developmental spectrum of the disorder is widening, and can also include difficulties with anxiety and ADHD, and sensory disorders. (Source: Pitt Hopkins Research Foundation)


Francis A. Higgins Elementary School is located in Chesterfield Township.