The earliest known student newspaper to be published in the United States is the Willstonian started in 1881 and still in publication today. Volume one, issue one of the Ballardite student newspaper was published on October 13, 1933, entirely by the students. The editor's note stated:
"Listen! folks, you are reading a paper that is published entirely by high school boys and girls. Each month it (the Ballardite) will bring you selected news of campus life, class news, social and sports news, student wit, student poetry, student of the month, editorials, special features and items of interest of schools other than its own.” Read, then, each issue in order to keep in touch with the done by high school students."
The Ballardite was a non-profiteering publication by Ballard students. Any possible proceeds from a month's publication of the Ballardite went into the paper's treasury for the expenses of improving the next issue.
Subscription rates: Paid in advance for one school year $0.40; by mail delivery $0.55; and $0.05 for the copy monthly.
The columns included:
- Brain Sparkles printing jokes and teasers.
- Student Poetry contained original pieces by both faculty and students.
- Students of the Month gave the names of the honor students for the month.
- Sports talked about various games and listed the rosters of the various squads including football, baseball, basketball, and volleyball. The paper even printed the school yells. The sport section tried to encourage more support for the sports teams from the local community not just the students and alumni.
- Alumni wrote about the alumni students at college. It listed the college, who was attending and their student level.
- Around the Town discussed alumni and some of their business and agricultural achievements. A wedding announcement was also printed.
- Out of Town highlighted the activities of the students, alumni, and faculty was they traveled either home or to new destinations and adventures.
The paper also contained photographs such as Miss Ballard, sports teams, students and faculty.
The paper contained business advertisements from those who supported its publication. All types of businesses placed ads such as furniture stores, shoe shops, tailors, laundry and dry cleaning, pharmacies, and funeral homes to name a few. The advertisers came from all over the community, not just African Americans.
Fortunately, even though only a few issues of the Ballardite survive, they provide enough information to give an overview of the abundant student life at the school.