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In Ambach v. Norwick (1979), the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that a New York statute that forbade the granting of permanent teaching certification to aliens who qualified for but had not applied for and had no intention of applying for American citizenship did not violate the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.

Facts of the Case

Norwick, born in Scotland and a citizen of Great Britain, and Dachinger, a Finnish subject, each met all of the “educational requirements” New York required for a teaching certificate. In this case, both persons were qualified but refused to apply for American citizenship. Both persons asked the court to consider whether the statute's requiring American citizenship in order to receive a state teaching certificate was constitutional.

A federal trial court in ...

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