25 January 2018: Phil Neal, non-executive director of Bedfordshire-based Capita SIMS, has been named winner of the prestigious Bett award for outstanding contribution to ICT education at a ceremony which took place last night at Tobacco Dock in London.
The award, considered the highest accolade in the industry, recognises Phil’s passion for education which inspired him to develop the technology that has transformed the working lives of teachers.
The SIMS management information system started life more than 30 years ago when Phil Neal, then a physics teacher, found he was spending too much time on administrative tasks such as taking the register and writing reports, and not enough time teaching. Phil devoted his evenings and weekends to developing software which helped teachers complete these tasks. Today, SIMS is used by more than 21,000 schools in nearly 50 countries around the world.
Caroline Wright, director general of the British Educational Suppliers Association who presented Phil Neal with the award said: “Phil is one of education’s true innovators who has completely revolutionised the way schools are run. His unwavering passion for education has transformed the way teachers work and improved the educational outcomes for generations of pupils.”
Phil Neal, non-executive director at Capita SIMS says: “I am extremely honoured to receive this prestigious award, and to be given such valued recognition from the education community. This award also reflects on the dedication and hard work of every member of the Capita SIMS team.”
Phil has taken SIMS from its earliest days to where it is today, ready to launch SIMS Primary, the first of its re-imagined management information systems which will put information in the hands of teachers and school leaders and transform schools for a new generation.
Patrick Hayes, director of BESA and chair of judges for the Bett Awards, said: “This year we had more nominations than ever before from all over the globe, and our panel of esteemed judges had an incredibly hard time to select the winner – even harder than usual! On behalf of all the judges, I would like to congratulate Phil – he should be extremely proud of receiving an accolade that is recognised across the world.”
Simon Presswell, managing director, Bett Global Series at Ascential Events added: “The education sector growth in the UK outpaces that in many other countries, and some of the most exciting and effective innovation is in education-based technology.
I would like to congratulate Phil for his constant determination to achieve excellence for education standards across the world.”
Colleagues at Capita SIMS have also recognised Phil’s remarkable achievements.
Graham Cooper, head of education, Capita Education Software Solutions says: “Phil has worked tirelessly to make SIMS the best possible solution for schools. Successfully steering SIMS from a DOS based solution, onto Windows, and then into the online, mobile and now cloud age, Phil has always looked beyond what technology can do, and focussed on what can be achieved with it.”
Louise Everett, Catherine Lane PR
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