Ambach, Commissioner of Education of the State of New York, ET AL.
Norwick ET AL.
No. 76-808
Supreme Court of United States
Argued January 10, 1979 Decided April 17, 1979

Norwick and Dachinger were foreigners who married US citizens and held permanent residence in the US as non-US citizens. Both Appellants refused to gain US citizenship. Both women had applied to become teachers in New York, but both were denied. The refusal was based on New York law stating that non-citizen applicants who were not in the process of seeking citizenship could not become teachers in the state of New York. Both women sued under the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment.
The US Supreme Court ruled in favor of the state of New York finding the citizenship requirement to be constitutionally permissible. Justice Powell applied the rational relationship/legitimate state interest standard of scrutiny in this case. It was established that states when need be have good reason to distinguish between non-citizens and citizens in their own state political and governmental venues. These venues include the idea that non-citizen teachers will lack the same allegiances as citizen teachers.

Question: T/F
Is it constitutionally permissible for states to require teaching licensure applicants to be US citizens or applying US citizens?

By: Mariah Kerlick and Max Stieve